Friday the 13th, part 2

release year: 1981
genre: horror
viewing setting: home DVD, Friday 9/13/02

synopsis: Ignoring recent murders, some teenage counselors try to set up summer camp in the vicinity of Crystal Lake. They don't succeed.

impressions: The most common criticism I hear about this and other late-70s/early-80s slasher films is that they're the same old thing, blah blah. What some morons forget (and the rest never know) is that this was one of the first...that's right, it came BEFORE almost all others. It was actually one of the first and thus didn't copy anything, it actually was the one that got copied later on. Anyway, this is a sequel to Friday the 13th which was a mix of spookiness and gore. This is the one that introduced Jason as a bona fide killer, although this Jason wears a potato sack over his head and isn't superhuman or indestructible, he's just a lumbering goon. A strong opening scene and a competent heroine also add to this movie, making it one of the better in the (admittedly long and often tedious) overall series. One negative note: ever since the early 1980s, I've remembered this movie as the first I ever saw with a cop-out ending. Several major plot points are unexplained or unresolved when the credits roll, and given the fact that part 3 hadn't even been conceived while this one was shooting, the ending really pissed me off.

things to watch for: Young, perky Terri. She's easily one of the cutest girls to appear in any film, slasher or otherwise.

acting: Standard for this type of movie; only some of the kids are really memorable. Ginny was one of the better heroines in this series.

body count: 9 confirmed.

final word: One of the best of this series.

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