• 05 Feb 2009 /  Reviews 3 Comments - join in

    friday_the_thirteenth5_star 1980/18/92m

    “They were warned… They are doomed… And on Friday the 13th, nothing will save them.”

    Director: Sean S. Cunningham / Writer: Victor Miller / Cast: Betsy Palmer, Adrienne King, Harry Crosby, Laurie Bartram, Jeannine Taylor, Kevin Bacon, Robbi Morgan, Mark Nelson, Peter Brouwer.

    Body Count: 9

    Dire-logue: “You’re doomed if you stay here! Go… Go!

    ________________________________________

    Marvel at the unrivalled fab-ness of this film, in both pictorial (an adequate 13 screenshots) and rant form for the Final Girl film club!

    Many have laughed heartily at my declaration that Friday the 13th is my Citizen Kane. Har-de-har-har they go, you’re kidding, you’re stupid, don’t you know anything about film etc… As it happens, I have a degree in film. We watched all sorts of arty French stuff. And still after three years of credibility, mise-en-scene, cinema verite, depth, focus, the disolve, Tarkovsky, Bergman and a whole host of -isms, a half million dollar slasher flick from New Jersey, 1980, still means more to me than nearly all that other stuff combined.

    f13-1

    Everyone should know the story of Friday the 13th: Camp Crystal Lake, shut since a double murder back in ’58, finally re-opens with a gaggle of teen counsellors and, on June 13th, a Friday, they find themselves picked off one by one by a mysterious killer, who uses a variety of cutting implements to slash, slit and skewer said counsellors until only one nice girl remains to face off with the shady maniac.

    I was wrong to think she'd be the final girl...

    I was wrong to think she’d be the final girl…

    The doomed counsellors of Camp Crystal Lake

    The doomed counsellors of Camp Crystal Lake

    So there it is, simple and straightforward. A direct cash-in on Halloween, gored-up and downgraded into an organic product of on-location filmmaking and yet it was immeasurably successful at the box office, enough to generate ten fuckin’ sequels, a TV series and enough hype to spark its 2009 remake, the quality of which remains to be seen this February 13th.

    "You're two steps for Pacific Avenue and skin city."

    “You’re two steps for Pacific Avenue and skin city.”

    Here in the UK, we’ve been lucky to have the unedited version on DVD for a while now as well as all manner of bootleg VHS copies floating around since the 80s. I first saw the original cut at a late night showing circa 1997. That seldom seen X-rated certificate appeared on screen and then 92 minutes of textbook teen terror. What was cut out is comparatively minimal, four scenes to be exact: the first present-day kill – a drippy throat slashing – is shown for longer, as is a pre-fame Kevin Bacon’s infamous spike-through-the-neck, the axe-to-the-face and the decapitation finale.

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    Hoards of horror aficionados have overlooked Friday the 13th. The accusations of its innate cheapness cannot be denied, but compared to any made-for-video or DVD film of the post-Scream era, it’s a production masterpiece, with competent photography that nicely telegraphs foreclosing doom, a cabin-thrashing rainstorm and characters just a little too simple-minded to figure out that they perhaps shouldn’t go and find out what that weird noise is…

    f13-6

    You can see some things coming a mile off...

    You can see some things coming a mile off…

    Of course, in this day and age, everything  going on at Camp Crystal Lake looks dated and riddled with cliches – but Friday the 13th fuckin’ wrote those cliches! So Halloween came first, but you’ll find more of the subsequent slasher films copied Fridays homework and changed it to suit their own story.

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    Even the dead cast members are anxious to get a few seconds more screen time

    Even the dead cast members are anxious to get a few seconds more screen time

    Everything about this film is perfect to me, trumped only by the increased professionalism of Part 2 (which also benefitted from a kick-ass final girl in Amy Steel), from the minute unease of seeing the creaky door to the bathrooms open and a booted foot stepping in, to the creeping shot of Marcie at the row of sinks, and Alice’s neverending attempts to escape from the clutches of one of cinema’s most surprising villains.

    Never fear, middleaged saviours are here to help...or are they?

    Never fear, middleaged saviours are here to help…or are they?

    Uh...no

    Uh…no

    Thank you, Friday the 13th, you truly have been life altering. I’d marry you if I could and father lots of baby 13ths!

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    Blurbs-of-interest: Adrienne King and Betsy Palmer returned for brief cameos in the sequel and Palmer also appeared in The Fear: Resurrection; Kevin Bacon turned from victim to killer in sci-fi slasher Hollow Man twenty years later; producer Steve Miner directed Parts 2 & 3 and Halloween H20.

    Posted by chimpy @ 12:28 pm

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3 Responses

WP_Blue_Mist
  • Final Girl Says:

    I won’t laugh at you…I think it’s a great effing horror film.

  • Cheezesteak Says:

    Hudson Horror V – 35mm Film Festival

    Friday the 13th UNCUT and Legend of the Seven Golden Vampires have just been added!

    On Saturday, May 19th, 2012, the hallowed grounds of the Silver Cinemas South Hills 8 will once again showcase the greatest classic horror film festival in the Hudson Valley, Hudson Horror Show V (www.hudsonhorror.com)! Our fifth 12 hour movie festival will feature five full length classic genre films along with shorts and drive in style trailers, all off rare 35mm film prints!

    Our December to Dismember 2011 show was a sell out with people having to be seated in our “reserved for staff seats”. Don’t miss out, grab your tickets now! This is our third year of shows and ticket prices are still only $26.00 in advance via PayPal. Advance ticket holders save money and will be admitted first. If any tickets remain they will be available at the door on the day of the show for $30.00, cash only.

    Our Frankenstein like monster of a lineup is now complete! Doors open at noon that day and our “opening act” will be a mash up of two of the greatest movie studios of all time as Hammer Films and the Shaw Brothers collide in LEGEND OF THE SEVEN GOLDEN VAMPIRES! This film, also know as The Seven Brothers Meets Dracula, mixes Gothic horror with well, kung fu, it’s kind of like putting your peanut butter in my chocolate, who knew they would taste so good together?

    We’ll have our semi-traditional “Mystery Movie” in the lineup and that could be just about anything at this point. Perhaps some blaxploitation? How about a good old fashioned rape/revenge flick? Maybe some more giant monsters? Our lips are sealed until show time but we are sure the mystery movie will be anything but a disappointment.

    Hudson Horror Five will then push on full steam ahead with our triple axe attack triple headliner! Our zombie movie for this show will be an extremely rare screening of George A. Romero’s DAY OF THE DEAD. Unfortunately this amazing film was barely seen in theaters upon its original theatrical run in 1985, and it’s had even fewer screenings since. We are proud to unearth this zombie classic one more time.

    Headliner number two will be a movie that has been constantly requested by Hudson Horror fans, PHANTASM! Dwarf zombies, crazy bugs, killer spheres and of course, “The Tall Man”, the nightmarish masterpiece will definitely make you want to sleep with the lights on.

    Our third and final headliner of this triple threat will be none other than the incredibly influential slasher flick, the original, FRIDAY THE 13th! This film, originally released in 1980, was a watershed horror release and kick started the slasher craze that took Hollywood by storm for many years to come. Perhaps the biggest star of the film isn’t Jason Voorhees, but Tom Savini’s realistic and gruesome special effects. These effects were unfortunately toned down in 1980 so the producers could secure an “R” rating. However, we’ve been lucky enough to obtain a print that has the best parts intact! At long last, Hudson Horror presents the UNCUT version of the original FRIDAY THE 13th off 35mm film!

    We will have the usual shorts, drive in trailers, vendors, giveaways, trivia questions and usual nonsense that make Hudson Horror so much fun. We’ll have just a few vendor spots for HHV, if you are interested in selling or promoting your wares, or if you just have questions regarding our show, send us an email to info@hudsonhorror.com. Get your tickets early for Hudson Horror Show V, and we’ll see you on May 19th, 2012!

    Interested in becoming a vendor at the next show? Just shoot us an email to info@hudsonhorror.com.

  • left 4 dead 3 trailer Says:

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