Friday The 13th The Complete Collection
For many people, one of their favorite moments in the slasher flick parody, ‘Scream’, is listed as the voice on the phone asked the potential victim. "Who was the killer in the first ‘Friday the 13th’ movie?" Without giving it much thought. The soon to be sliced and diced teenager, quickly responds, "Jason Voorhees". For true fans of horror a wave of recognition swept over the audience. Although Jason was indeed the supernatural serial killer for the remainder of the franchise, the first movie, the slasher of teens was Jason’s mother, played by the actress Betsy Palmer. Few would argue that the Friday the 13th franchise ranks among the top three horror series in the annals of the genre. The only other two that can rival the popularity and proliferation of ‘Friday the 13th’ is ‘Halloween’ and ‘Nightmare on Elm Street’. There are of course many other rivals, but amongst most horror fans, Freddie, Michael and Jason or the personification of evil in the embodiment of the boogie man. ‘Friday the 13th’ to or slightly ahead of the rest by merit of also spawning an anthology television series, albeit for the franchise by name only, and a myriad of parodies popular cultural references and graphic novels. Like most of the top slasher franchises, this one has been given a modern reboot. Another commonality with most of the popular franchises of this category is the release of deluxe high definition box sets containing the franchises in its entirety. There are sufficient added material here to make this collection worthwhile not only for the long term, ‘Friday the 13th’aficionado was somebody who wants to indulge in a marathon of the infamous slasher with the well scarred hockey mask, realizing anything sharp and point the he finds available.
The ‘Friday the 13th’ catalog of films is perhaps the most eclectic in the field of terror. Most of the supernatural killer genre state pretty close to the original premise with very little concern for character development or altering the tenants of the franchise. While it is true that the boogie man archetype is not highly conducive to any sort of emotional or psychological growth or even change, the collective filmmakers behind this series have taken Jason to a wider variety of venues than normally encountered. Although his origins were in a cursed summer camp Jason manages to broaden his horizons by visiting New York City and eventually even extending his evil to outer space.
The Original Film Series
This introduces the fans the summer camp of the Crystal Lake. The lake has always had a sinister reputation resulting in many of the locals referring to it as ‘Blood Lake’, a name that just foster such a sense of some of fun and entertainment that is surely must be a waiting list for parents to send their kids there. One of the most persistent archetypes of subsequent slasher films is introduced here; the crazy local who warns the incoming counselors of their impending, gruesome deaths. For those who like to play 6 degree games, this film was one of the very earliest appearances for the prolific actor, Kevin Bacon. By setting this story Lakeside during the summer there was ample opportunity for pretty young female counselors to go skinny dipping, take showers at the most inappropriate moments and of course, get high and have sex. One by one the team counselors are picked off; slaughtered in increasingly gruesome methods. This film also gained a spot in cinematic history as the first slasher film to be distributed by a mainstream studio, power monitor domestic and Warner Bros. for international.
This was the first film to actually feature Jason Voorhees as the killer, although is horribly mangled face was hidden by a burlap sack instead of the mask. The actress, Adrienne King reprises her role as Alice, the one that got away. By remaining alive in the first film, the character of Alice helped to launch a very important archetype for the slasher film, the survivor girl. Most frequently, the one teenager was at the camp to do the work. She was hired for rather than speaking off at every opportunity for sex and drugs. Unlike many horror franchises, the persistence of this character provided a direct link between the movies and greater continuity.
With this installment of the franchise, another tradition was given a helping hand in and gaining traction of using Roman numerals in the movies continuing past the sequel to the point of at least trilogy. In another typical motif for the day, the third offering was produced in 3-D. considering this was the early 80s the far more primitive Anaglyph technique was utilized. Here the illusion of depth with simulated cheap cardboard glasses with cellophane lenses of different colors, typically blue and red. As you can see by the ratio between budget and box office the studio executives concerned with the bottom line were quite pleased with the progress this series of movies has made and there was an assurance that it would move past the trilogy, continuing on to the franchise. This is also where the introduction of the iconic hockey goalie mask occurred.
It had been some expectations that ‘Friday the 13th’ would conclude as a trilogy and, at the end of the third movie. It appeared that the supernatural slaughterer was finally brought down and was dead, at the beginning of this for movie. It is clear he was just merely dead and really not sincerely dead. It is fairly axiomatic among horror writers that you don’t kill off a popular character, especially one who is the quintessential force of evil. Two circumstances possible only in this kind of a flick Jason manages to rise up out of the dead intent on resuming his team targeted college. He comes to in a morgue in his first order of business is to return to his familiar killing rounds at Crystal Lake.
With a legion of fans still poised to fill theaters and buy tickets, Jason’s immortality continues. This movie also marks another instance of a character surviving in order to make a subsequent appearance. In a slight departure from the survivor girl trope the one who got out alive in the third installment was a little boy Tommy Jarvis. Of course the role had to be recast sister several years later and he was no longer a little boy. Understandably, he was still deeply psychologically disturbed from his encounter with Jason, even though he extensively managed to kill the monster. In the area around with Tommy lives a series of brutal murders quite similar to the modus operandi of Jason begin to occur. The audience and Tommy are left to wonder whether Jason has resurrected yet again or psychotic break in Tommy has caused him to become the creature he fears the most.
Once again, Tommy Jarvis has to contend with Jason Voorhees. After killing him yet again, he decides that he has disposed of the body of Jason, so he goes to a graveyard to bury the creature’s unholy remains. Once again fate, and a creative writer, intervenes, the story takes an old-school interest as they both of lightning strikes his corpse revitalizing it. Jason was bad enough is just a highly resilient and somewhat mortal foe, but now as a supernaturally charged member of the undead. He has gained even more preternatural power. The first movie of the franchise to actually receive somewhat positive critical reaction the movie often demonstrates that it doesn’t take itself seriously as the fourth wall is periodically broken.
After being chained to the bottom of Crystal Lake in the previous flick, Jason is brought back yet again. This time the resurrection is a result of a young woman possessing psychic ability. We first see Tina Shepard as a 10-year-old child who discovers she has psychokinesis abilities when she stopped her alcoholic father and physically abusing her mother, resulting in his death. After some time in a mental institution, Peter her mother decide to get away by moving to a place that hopefully will offer a more serene environment. Once again, no one checks any newspaper archives about the area again going to all that it has been popularly called Blood Lake. Like moving to an area called tornado alley or alligator alley, there has to be a reasonable expectation that something bad is going to happen. To her psychic connection Tina manages to draw Jason out of his watery tomb.
Even with the declining profit margin the studio executives realized this franchise. It was still able to milk this cash cow. Taking place a year after the conclusion of the previous film, the anchor of a houseboat inadvertently drags a power cable over the corpse of Jason that has drifted up to the New York City the vicinity yet again reanimating the undead killing machine. He comes upon the boat were young couple are, naturally, having sex. The boy had previously scanned his girlfriend with a hockey mask tossing aside, went right gave way to carnal inclinations. Jason seasons the iconic mask and grabbing the nearest lethal thing he can find dispatches the young couple. He manages to make a great Manhattan, where he finds a venue far richer and potential targets the rural Crystal Lake vicinity.
Box office: $9.8 million
It has finally seemed that the steam had run out of the franchise and the addition of ‘Final Friday’ to the title. As it turns out, there would be further to go. But at the time of this release, it was the belief that this would be the end of the series. After his gory escapades in Manhattan, Jason once again surfaces in his home turf of Crystal Lake. This time, the FBI was waiting for him in Jason falls into the trap that resulted in being exploded. The remains are taken back to a morgue where the coroner is performing an autopsy and is somehow hypnotized by Jason’s heart. The coroner then proceeds to consume the organ which leads to his possession by the spirit of Jason. Of course it turns the corner into Jason, or reasonable facsimile. At this point, even the most loyal fans of the franchise have abandoned all hope of any plot continuity or any portion of the script making sense. This is by far one of the flimsiest excuses for bringing the supernatural monster back for another killing spree that I have ever witnessed.
By this point, the profit margin was far too slim to continue on. Ludicrous scripts and overdone special effects can be excused by the studio, but nothing is more lethal for an indestructible killer in a bad showing that the bottom line. If you thought a hypnotic heart in possession was just a bit too much, then you going to love the premise for this film. Years ago, apparently after the run in with the FBI, the federal government takes possession of Jason Voorhees. You think into a research facility and deemed far too dangerous to have around. Several attempts to investigate him resulted in the usual mayhem that the site to put him on ice, literally. A private inadvertently puts an electric blanket on the frozen Jason defrosting him. Devotees of science-fiction will recognize this as a direct steal from the sci-fi classic ‘The Thing from Another World.’ Eventually, Jason is the apprehended and once again frozen. 200 years later, earth’s become unable to sustain life in the population had immigrated to Earth two. Some researchers, on a field trip to the Crystal Lake facility inadvertently reactivate the block of ice, formerly known as Jason. That the screaming, hacking and mayhem commence. Couple little pieces attributed here, Lexa Doig and Lisa Ryder would be reunited as costars on the sci-fi series ‘Andromeda’. This movie also features an on-screen appearance by a filmmaker known for surrealistically gory effects and intense psychological thrillers, David Cronenberg.
A crossover movie pitting Jason Voorhees against the master of evil from the ‘Nightmare on Elm Street’ franchise, Freddy Krueger, had been on the drawing boards for many years, but for one reason or another, never managed to get made. Obvious by the much larger budget and subsequently more respectable box office receipts, the studios will willing to bring the unstoppable hockey mask wearing Jason out of retirement for one more appearance terrorizing the local teens. It has been about a decade since Freddy Krueger has been entering the dreams of his young victims. In order to manifest in our reality, his victims have to believe in him and dream about him, or more accurately, have nightmares featuring the bladed finger monster. A concerted effort of the townsfolk was instituted to remove all traces of Freddy from their collective consciousness. In an effort to return this plane of reality, Freddy brings Jason back and sets him onto a killing spree. As the body count increases so does Freddy’s strength.
With the largest budget and most lucrative return of any film in the original franchise, this reboot proved that you can’t keep a good supernatural serial killer down. With the cast that included some familiar faces of popular television shows, Jared Padalecki and Danielle Panabaker, this reimagining was targeted, not only for the original fans, but was expanded to introduce a new generation of followers. Many of this statement of the demographic were not even born when Mrs. Voorhees began the lethal tradition at Crystal Lake. The director, Mr. Nispel, was also chosen to helm another classic horror reboot, ‘Texas Chainsaw Massacre’. Both ‘Halloween’ and ‘Nightmare on Elm Street’ would receive their own chances with rebooted stories. Jason has been reconfigured as a much more agile killer and in an attempt to maximize suspense, was not seen until well into the film. In order to placate a new audience, the special effects wizardry was responsible for a sizable portion of the expanded budget. In a lot of effort in detail went into the new Jason as well. As the ingenious methods he would use the dispatch his victims.
Killer Bonus Disc
This set is composed of ten Blu-ray discs, nine for the movies and one titled ‘Killer Extras’. This contains most of the extra material that was part of each individual film release. There is a booklet with one explanatory page per film; all packaged in a nice the embossed metal casing. There was also a collection of artwork culled from the films. Perhaps some of the best touches provided with this set are the single Ultraviolet code number. If entered into Vudu or any other ultraviolet enhanced site, it will add video on demand copies of each of the movies, that’s a 12 movie, set with the entry of a single code number. I was pleasantly surprised when I entered the number into Vudu, and watch one movie after another popping up in my ownership queue. Aside from the convenience of having all the movies packaged ready to go on most computers, tablet and smart phones, much of the material here has been available previously. Still, if you don’t have all the films and Blu-ray, or your lagging behind a bit and just getting started with your slasher collection this is definitely the way to go. remember this offer is limited so verify whether the contained code is still valid.
Collectible Tin Case