D. S. Thorndike
The year is 2009, and you are waiting for the release of Friday the 13th (2009). You show up at your local theater on Thursday around 11:30 PM. Enough time for concessions and previews of the spring line-up of films to come. Some are there with their significant other for an early Valentine’s Day rendezvous, but you are there to see one thing. Jason Voorhees kill sex-crazed young adults. That is the formula for the Friday the 13th franchise. It has already been established that you do not need a hockey mask. Just a big guy with a weapon killing counselors or unlucky children, and snobby teens. Usually during or after coitus.
Camp Crystal Lake – Help Wanted: Counselors Needed…
Jared Padalecki from Supernatural fame, stars as the protagonist alongside Danielle Panabaker, and Amanda Righetti. Friday the 13th (2009) characters are straightforward and genre basic. Classic for this franchise. Honestly, any 80s horror fits the description. This is a basic formula that modern movies still use today. You may see it more in satire projects like Cabin in the Woods (2011) than anything else. The formula is laughable and can be lazy, but it has been executed gracefully before, and it will happen again.
The audience quickly learns this film is not a reboot of the original from 1980, but a sequel. You do not see the title card for almost twenty-four minutes. It almost sneaks up on you because of the intensity of the first twenty minutes of the movie. The opening goes hard. Very hard. Those twenty-four minutes make it one of the longest prologues of any horror movie in history.
Friday the 13th (2009) does not disappoint in the slasher realm. The kills are thoughtful and, in some cases, terrifying. Jason finds himself easily disposing of college students that can barely put up a fight. Unless you look like “Mommy,” you are on the kill list. Marcus Nispel’s vision of Jason provides a better of how he travels and where he lives. Additionally, this emotionless killing machine has emotions. We have seen him show some emotion in previous movies when it comes to “Mommy,” but this film highlights it.
People criticize this movie for being unimaginative with the direction of the film and Jason. This franchise has used many backdrops to push it forward and keep it fresh for future generations to enjoy. Most are familiar with Camp Crystal Lake but let us not forget that Jason has been to the Big Apple, Elm Street, and even outer space. I appreciate that they took us back to the lake and showed us that he may be a supernatural killer, but there are very real problems he faces. “Mommy issues”, are the starkest through the franchise. They do not shy away from that in the latest installment, making this Jason’s greatest weakness.
How about sophisticated tunnels under Camp Crystal Lake though? Now, we know how this towering maniac gets from place to place. The franchise never really touches on his ability to get around the camp so quickly, always feeling that he can just teleport to his next victim’s whereabouts was always fun but somewhat of a let down.
Friday the 13th (2009) Will Reach Cult Classic Status…
The sex and violence are truly what put this film in the better half of the franchise. I might get a lot of hate for saying that, but it is the truth. Friday the 13th (2009) is one of the bloodiest of the franchise and has sex scenes that will make you laugh or cringe, depending on the viewer. Both are acceptable while watching a Friday the 13th film.
When it comes to Friday the 13th at my house, it is watched during summer with the intent for gore, sex, and crazy antics. I like to go through the whole franchise and by the end of it, most of the films bleed together (pun intended), and not one stands taller than the others. I have my personal favorites, and Friday the 13th (2009) joins the pack.
It has already been receiving more positive attention and rewatches from fans of the horror genre. Platinum Dunes horror remakes and reboots will all be branded with the moniker “Cult Classic” in my lifetime, and that puts a smile on my face.
A Future for Camp Crystal Lake…
80s slasher flicks are making their way onto your television in the form of tv shows and cheap straight-to-streaming movies. Some have made large impacts and started an 80s trend of children actors becoming the focus, and monsters chasing them. It is only a matter of time we substitute the children for a teenage/young adult demographic and have them being chased by a deformed killer that wears a mask. What could be in store for the lake-dwelling killer?
There are rumors of a theatrical reboot with the original director Sean S. Cunningham, as of 2023, as well as a prequel series that would stream on a network with original writer Victor Miller. It is unclear what their title would be through the process of each project if they can even get it off the shelf.
Jason Vorhees will never die and will haunt land-locked bodies of water for as long as we have Hollywood. We are living in a re-emergence of the slasher genre, with new original stories and characters coming to theaters yearly. It will only be a matter of time before the youth ask you if you have ever heard of the boy that drowned in the lake.
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