Halloween Marathon: Friday the 13th (1980)

We’re getting down to business! The first movie of our main feature: Friday the 13th! I’ve only ever seen Part 2 of the franchise so I have a general idea of this first one is about because my boyfriend told me a bit about how it all starts before.  I’m not exactly sure I was a huge fan of Friday the 13th but if its held up for 12 movies, it must have some redeeming features 😉 Lets see how it all started!

friday the 13thDirector: Sean S. Cunningham

Cast: Betsy Palmer, Robbi Morgan, Adrienne King, Jeannine Taylor, Kevin Bacon, Harry Crosby, Laurie Bartram, Mark Nelson

Camp Crystal Lake has been closed for a few years after a boy drowned followed by murders that occurred on the land.  However, ignoring the rumors that its cursed, it is about to be reopened.  Two more weeks before the camp officially opens, the teenage counsellors arrive to the camp site to help set up the final arrangements. Right before a heavy rain storm hits, they realize that one by one they are attacked and murdered.

I always find it hard to review these “classic ” horrors.  You can’t really use the same set of expectations.  Friday the 13th is different from the Halloween series.  Maybe its because it hasn’t held up with the years thats gone by since then but it doesn’t seem to pack the same punch as the other did.  However, thats not saying that it wasn’t good.

Friday the 13th

Friday the 13th uses clever camera work to never show who is the person doing all the killing. When that creepy moment shows up, it cues the repeated double note background sound effects and the camera follows the characters like its someone spying or creeping up on them.  At the same time, as the movie goes along, there is some interaction with the mystery killer before they are killed and also shows that its someone unknown but doesn’t look threatening either.  Aren’t those the scariest types?  Thats only sometimes, because it also pulls out to have a third person view also.  One of the big moments was seeing Kevin Bacon show up on screen and being shocked to see that he was involved in this.

Friday the 13th

I do have to admit that I expected a lot more from Friday the 13th.  I really don’t know why.  Maybe its because Halloween was so awesome.  Sure, the music had me a little creeped out at times but for the most part, it was pretty predictable.  You could tell when it would be a fake scare and when it was going to be the real deal.  The only question was where that killer would pop out from and how they’d do the killing.  The cast wasn’t that great.  I do have to say that some kills were a little shocking.  The beginning of Friday the 13th was underwhelming but okay.  It started to drag a little bit but it injected enough creepy moments to keep me awake and alert.  The best part is the finishing act once the killer reveals themselves.  I’m all about spoiler free here but I’m sure the majority of you already know who it is.  Now that was full on nutso and then with the final bit and the crazy twist.  Now that really made me forget all the meh parts in the beginning.

Friday the 13th

Overall, Friday the 13th was good.  It wasn’t quite what I expected when it first started but it did end brilliantly.  Sometimes, endings do make up for the beginning and I think it applies to here.  They had a good eerie creepy setting and for the most part, with the double note sounds it worked well to create the right atmosphere.  Although the cast isn’t anything special, even if I was surprised by Kevin Bacon’s appearance, its an good start to the series.

I have seen Part 2 but I’ll still have to rewatch it to refresh my memory.

Have you seen Friday the 13th? What do you think of it? Does it have some nostalgia moments for you?