A lot fans don't seem to give these films the credit they deserve. They seem to stick their noses up at them, calling them exploitational and worthless.... far from their own personal vision of horror. Sure Carpenter set the table for slasher films with "Halloween", but "Friday the 13th" set the standard.  "Friday the 13th" was one of the main films directly responsible for the horror explosion of the early 80's. For the next 5-7 years we saw some classic horror born. Films such as Nightmare on Elm Street, Evil Dead, Re-animator, Evil Dead 2, and Hellraiser   came along and forever changed the horror landscape. Now far from this heyday of horror, we are witnessing the general self-destruction of the genre with films such as, "Scream" , "Scream 2", and "I know what you did last summer". But atlas, let us bask in what was and hopefully someday will return.

Ok, enough of my "soapbox", but the state of horror today always gets my blood boiling. Let's get back to talking about the masterpiece that is "Friday the 13th". There is probably no other movie more responsible for my whole hearted plunge into the horror genre than the original "Friday the 13th".  This film has it all: a great story (by Victor Miller), powerful imagery (brought to life by the master Tom Savini), and an amazing score by Harry Manfredini (very Psycho-esqe).  All this mixed together with the superb directing of Sean Cunningham and you have one amazing film. A must see for any horror fan.

Since my first viewing of this classic, I adapted the motto "Give me horror, or give me death." I have to admit I am a Jason freak. No I won't hide it. Sure as the series progressed they can hold a candle to the  original (the same can be said about any of the slasher series), but on a whole they were very entertaining with the exception of Part V and VIII. Both of which I still own being the completeist I am.

As always please e-mail me if you have anything you can add to this page, or if you have any comments, criticisms or suggestion.

 

Friday the 13th

Twenty years earlier, Camp Crystal Lake was been shut down after the mysterious death of a young boy and a couple of counselors. After several failed attempts at re-opening the camp, Steve Christy (Peter Browner) is working towards making it suitable for inner-city campers. Bad idea, because it seems Friday the 13th is right around the corner and death awaits all. The locals loony, Crazy  Ralph (Walt Gorney), warns that the camp has a "death curse", but it falls on deaf and soon to be blooded ears.

One by one, the counselors seem to drop as they engage in acts of pre-martial sex, smoking dope, and drinking. Guess they all forgot to read the "Camp Blood" rules of conduct and now  must  pay with their LIVES.  No two murders are alike as evident through  Tom Savini's genius. But who is the killer? I won't tell, but please don't lose your head.

As the final machete finds its' destinations, Alice (Adrienne King) is left as the sole survivor of this massacre.   The films ends with a chilling exchange between Sheriff Tierney (Ronn Carroll) and Alice;  "... we didn't find any boy", than he's still there." This is quite evident with the emergence of Jason in Part 2. From that time on he has laid his claim to the title "King of All Slashers".  Rent this film and all of those that followed!!!  

 


  • Sean Cunningham, the director of "Friday the 13th" worked with Wes Craven on "Last House on the Left" and "A Nightmare on Elm Street".

  • Tom Savini was brought in to do the special effect on the original "Friday the 13th" because the producers admired his work in "Dawn of the Dead". Tom would later returned to the series on "Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter".

  • The British video version is terribly cut. It is misses nearly all of the violence and gore, especially Mrs. Voorhees demise.

  • Cunningham: "Jason started as a gimmick at the end of that first one. Having him lurch out of the water was a way of going out with a strong visual image. . . . I didn't know that Jason would be stalking summer camps for the next ten years. I really had no idea."

  • Betsy Palmer was chosen to play Jason's mother strictly for the fact that she could provide her own transport to the set

  • The original "Friday the 13th"was the most successful installment in the series grossing over $37 million in revenue. The series as a whole has grossed in excess of $250 million.

  • The budget for "Friday the 13th" was $500,000.

  • Opened Friday, June 13th, 1980. What opened the same day??? The Shining.

  • The film was shot over a 3 month period from September-October 1979.

  • "Friday the 13th" is banned in Finland.

  • The film series spawned "Friday the 13th: The Series" which ran for 3 years  from 1987-1990. A total of 72 episodes were shot.  Check the Sci-Fi Channel for scheduled airings.

  • This is Kevin Bacon's first leading role in a feature film. He made his feature film debut in "National Lampoon's Animal House"(1978)."Trapped in time. Surrounded by evil. Low on gas."

  • Camp NoBeBoSo in New Jersey was used for the camp scenes in the original "Friday the 13th"

  • The first two films have been release on DVD with a much rumored boxset due at the end of the year.

A new Freddy vs. Jason film is in the works , as well as, a new Friday the 13th film.

 

 

 

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Click on box cover for these recommendations
Friday the 13th, Part 2Friday the 13th, Part 3Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter
Friday the 13th: Part V A New BeginningFriday the 13th: Part VI Jason LivesFriday the 13th: Part VII The New Blood
Friday the 13th: Part VIII Jason Takes ManhattanJason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday

Click on image to navigate our other
"Friday the 13th" pages.
Navigate Friday the 13th

 

Buy the original "Friday the 13th" on DVD at Amazon.comicon

Buy the poster for the original "Friday the 13th" at Amazon.comiconicon

Buy "Friday the 13th: Part II" on DVD at Amazon.com

Buy "Friday the 13th: Part III" on DVD at Amazon.com

Buy "Friday the 13th Part 4: The Final Chapter" on DVD at Amazon.com

Buy "Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning" on DVD at Amazon.com

Buy "Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives" on DVD at Amazon.com

Buy "Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood" on DVD at Amazon.com

Buy "Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan" on DVD at Amazon.com

Buy "Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday" on DVD at Amazon.com

Buy Jason X on DVD at Amazon.com

Buy Freddy vs. Jason on DVD at Amazon.com

Buy  Making Friday The 13th: The Legend Of Camp Blood (book) at Amazon.com

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