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Film Review: Friday the 13th Part 2
In 1981, Steve Miner released Friday the 13th Part 2, the second installment in the Friday the 13thseries. Starring Amy Steel, John Furey, Adrienne King, Warrington Gillette, Walt Gorney, Stu Charno, Bill Randolph, Marta Kober, Tom McBride, Lauren-Marie Taylor, Kirsten Baker, Russell Todd, Betsy Palmer, Jack Marks, Cliff Cudney, and Steve Daskawisz, the film grossed $21.7 million at the box office. The film was nominated for the Stinkers Bad Movie Stinker Award for Worst Sequel.
Five years after the teenagers trying to reopen Camp Crystal Lake were killed, a new group of teens are set to open a new summer camp in the same woods. However, like their predecessors, they start to be killed off one by one by an all grown up Jason Voorhees.
Though not a great film by any means, Friday the 13th Part 2 is still a pretty decent sequel to the original movie. The plot is pretty much the same with teenagers being stalked and killed in the woods. However, what’s interesting is the film brings about a pretty good attempt at making the audience think that Alice from the first film is back as the protagonist and will have to endure it all over again. However, she’s killed off within the first few minutes out of revenge for what she did in the first movie. The way this comes about is good too with her on the phone and making plans, only to open the fridge, find the head of the antagonist from the last movie and then killed. What’s really fascinating is the thought process behind the teenagers who decide to try and open a brand new camp in the same woods as Camp Crystal Lake. It may not be the same camp, but the place is obviously home to a psychotic killer. The only reason any of it makes sense is because they’re teenagers and think they know what they’re doing.
Now, what’s notable about this film is that it’s the first to actually feature Jason Voorhees as the killer, though he has a burlap sack over his head instead of the iconic hockey mask. Once the sack is taken off, Jason is revealed to be a disfigured hillbilly with only one working eye, which makes the sack’s one eye hole make sense. The film doesn’t so much as outright state what his motive here is either, other than he just likes killing them all, rather than let the viewer see that he is quite devoted towards his mother. Jason has a shrine dedicated to her that only two people ever find, one of which is immediately killed. The other person to see it, Ginny, is the one to take him out.
Ginny’s plan to defeat Jason is actually well thought out, considering she only had a few seconds to think of it. She sees the shrine to his mother and puts on her sweater while Jason attempts to hack his way through the barred door. Once he does, Ginny acts like his mother and tells him that she’s pleased and if he would only get on his knees, then he would get something special for his trouble. Throughout this, Jason sees Ginny who briefly flashes into his actual mother many times. It was a great idea and a fascinating way to make him stop so he could be stopped. There was only one flaw in this plan as well and it makes perfect sense too as Ginny didn’t have enough time to really think about all the possible drawbacks holes. Jason gets on his knees and leans over to see that his mother’s head is still where he left it and is infuriated that he was tricked. It still gave Ginny enough time to get a good hit in with the machete.
Now, like the film before it, this film does have a few places where it’s unnecessarily padded to give it a longer runtime. The most notable point in the film that does this is the beginning, where the film opens with Alice having her nightmare about what happened in the previous film before she ends up killed. This scene is a good attempt at making it look like the she’s the main character again, but the flashback is more than six minutes long and could have been halved at the very least.