Friday the 13th
Release year: 1980
Director: Sean S. Cunningham
Screenwriter: Victor Miller, Sean S. Cunningham, Ron Kurz
Starring: Betsy Palmer, Adrienne King, Jeannine Taylor, Robbi Morgan, Kevin Bacon, Harry Crosby, Laurie Bartram, Ron Millkie
A group of hormon-filled and eager youngsters want to re-open Camp Chrystal Lake, which has been abandonned since the gruesome drowning of a child in 1958. However, the camp may not be as abandonned as they think.
Friday the 13th is the ultimate ‘spooky summer camp, teenagers singing around open fire, being picked off one by one’ film. It is a cozy film in the way old horror movies sometimes are rather than a bone-chillingly scary one. The killing (and there are many) are effective enough and the effects are decent. The characters are a bit blah but with a few interesting exceptions: notable Mrs. Voorhees and the locals (particular officer Dorf and the diner lady). The film’s main problem is perhaps the fact that the killings begin almost immediately and continue sporadically all the way through the film; there are almost too many. Comparisons to Halloween (1978) are obvious as Friday the 13th is part of the slasher-horror way inspired by the success of John Carpenter’s Classic: in essence Friday the 13th is less scary, but more gory and it suffers from its lack of an iconic murderer like Michael Myers in Halloween. Watch it if you are a fan of early slasher-horror.
The snake scene in the beginning of the film was not in the script but was based on an actual camp experience of one of the minor cast members. The snake in the scene is real and so is its on-screen death.
If you want to watch the movie yourself, you can get it here:
Picture copyright: UIP