Thursday, February 12, 2009

His Name Was Jason: 30 Years of Friday the 13th

12 Films ~ 3 Decades ~ Bad Luck Was Never So Bloody

Genre - Horror Documentary
Year Released - 2009
Running Time - 90 minutes
Directed by Daniel Farrands
Written by Anthony Masi (who also co-wrote Halloween: 25 Years of Terror) and Thommy Hutson

Rating: 4 Skulls

Plot Summary:
30 years ago, a small horror film gave birth to 11 sequels, an endless body count, and one of the most terrifying icons in horror history.

Gore FX legend Tom Savini is your host for the ultimate documentary on everybody's favorite hockey-masked momma's boy and his three decades of cinematic carnage.

Featuring classic clips from the Friday the 13th movies, rare behind-the-scenes photos and footage, and over 80 interviews with filmmakers, actors, stuntmen, FX artists, journalists, and fans including Sean Cunningham, Kane Hodder, Seth Green, Harry Manfredini, Betsy Palmer, Greg Nicotero, Amanda Righetti, Adrienne King, James Roday, Amy Steel, Felissa Rose, Ari Lehman, Camilla & Carey More, Lar Park-Lincoln, Shavar Ross, Tony Timpone and many more!

His name was Jason. . . and this is his incredible legacy!

In preparation for the release of the latest Friday the 13th film, which comes out tomorrow, I decided to watch this documentary feature [rather than attempting an 11-movie marathon]

In all honesty, I thought it would have been pretty cool for a theatre to have had a 24-hour Friday the 13th movie marathon, showing all 11 films, culminating with the release of the latest, at midnight tonight - now that I would have been down for! No such luck though - this is why I need to own my own movie theatre ;-)

With all of that said, I definitely enjoyed this retrospective, and all I watched was the 90-minute feature!

The feature starts off with a rapid-fire re-capping of the first 11 films in just the first 15 minutes!
It then settles into a more comfortable pace, going back to Jason's roots, discussing the formula used throughout the films [nubile young teens, sex and nudity, interesting & unique kills...] creation and make-up effects, music/score, memories from cast & crew, marketing, etc.
There is also a great killing montage sequence!

Towards the end of the feature, they briefly mention the book "Crystal Lake Memories" which, if you have never read this book and are a Friday the 13th fan, you need to own/read as it is a fantastic book!
They also briefly discuss the "re-imagining" which I am even more psyched for now!

And, of course, I have to mention that the film was wonderfully hosted by none other than F/X Master Tom Savini, who rocks!!

Here's the trailer:

The DVD is a 2-Disc "Splatter Edition" which includes:
The Men Behind the Mask [extended interviews with all of the men who have played Jason]
Final Cuts [extended interviews with the directors]
Dragged from the Lake [More stories from Camp Blood]
From Script to Screen [interviews with the screenwriters]
The Camp Crystal Lake Survival Guide [which is what I will probably watch next]
Jason Takes Comic-Con
Fan Films
Friday the 13th in 4 minutes
*and much more! Overall, I still have over 4 hours of Bonus Material to watch! :-)



Wings said...

I watched the documentary today, too. I loved how so many of the people involved in the making of these movies still had good memories and fond things to say about their experiences. Was a very good 90 mintues for F13 fans!

Also watched "The Men Behind the Mask". I found it quite interesting to see what the actors had to say, and I never knew about the Warrington Gillette/Steve Dash "controversy". Interesting! And I thought Derek Mears looked so menacing, but after hearing him talk, he comes across as quite well educated and engaging. Might just be quite an interesting Jason.

I am half-way through the "Final Cuts" segement, with the directors speaking. More interesting stuff, including some of the stuff that "might-have-been". Will try and watch the rest of the bonus stuff tonight.

I DID do the movie marathon, having watched all 11 films in the past few days. I have to say, as much as I have issues with Part V, I still think Jason Goes to Hell is the weakest film. So much "what the hell..." stuff.

Cannot wait for tomorrow. We already pre-purchased our tickets. Hope it is a good, fun, Jason flick!

thebonebreaker said...

Awesome Wings!

Glad to hear that the bonus features hold up with the main feature :-)

It's been a few years since I've watched all of the other films in the series, though I may have to agree that 9 was my least favorite as well - My personal favorite is VI: Jason Lives!

I am sure that tomorrow is going to be a fun day at the theatre!! :-)
We'll have to compare notes!


P.S. I completely forgot to mention that the DVD came with a free movie ticket, so I'll be seeing the movie, free, thanks to Anchor Bay! :-)

The Igloo Keeper... said...

I wonder what kind of effect watching all 11 movies one-after-the-other in a cinema would have...?

thebonebreaker said...

I think that would be AWESOME!! :-)