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          Terror and suspense abound in this 24 hour nightmare of blood. Camp Crystal Lake has been shuttered for over 20 years due to several vicious and unsolved murders. The camp's new owner and seven young counselors are readying the property for reopening despite warnings of a "death curse" by local residents. The curse proves true on Friday the 13th as one by one each of the counselors is stalked by a violent killer. This film is widely acclaimed for it's horrifying and creative murder sequences. 

"But... then he's still out there."
             - Alice

          If you're going to fully appreciate Friday The 13th (I'm referring to the original film, not the whole series, though the exact same statement could be made there as well) you're going to have to watch it more than once. For the first time - assuming you haven't already seen it, though if you have you can imagine you haven't - forget everything you know or think you know about the film and the series from the commercials, the merchandising, the "Nightmare" crossover, the hockey mask (it wasn't in any of the original trailers for the movie), the cover art for the sequels, and Especially from the naysayers, and watch the show as if you have no foreknowledge of the film at all - as if you don't know for sure there are any sequels coming - (I doubt there'll be many people reading this who haven't seen at least a couple of the chapters, but if there is I'd love to be in your position - to be able to start the whole series over again Truly without knowing what's coming). Take it as what it's described as originally - the story of a summer camp re-opening more than 20 years after a little boy named Jason drowned, and the murder of 2 camp counsellors. Don't assume it's necessarily going to fit the slasher mold, don't assume it's necessarily going to fit the ghost story mold, just watch and let it unfold. 
          Then, after a time - weeks, years, whatever, re-watch it after you've seen the sequels; preferably all of them, including Jason Goes To Hell: The Final Friday and Freddy Vs. Jason though it could be done after only seeing certain key ones (or, if you're as big a fan of the series as I am, rewatch it after some of the sequels (say 2-7) and then again way later after FVJ). 
          Because once you've seen them all, you see things in the rewatches of previous chapters in new lights and from new angles. There's far more running under the surface of these movies than they'll ever be given credit for. Maybe part of it is a Rorshach effect, where what you see in the inkblot is all in the individual's own interpretation and has nothing to do with what the guy blotting the page was thinking about at the time, because I really can't explain how all these subcurrents could have been planned all along given that most of the films have had different writers, directors, etc. But I can say I see them there. 
          I can't really say what they are because that would involve giving out spoilers, not only to this first Friday The 13th and not only major spoilers, but little ones in various chapters all the way to the latest (as a sidenote, the only installment of the franchise - Jason X excluded - that doesn't fit into my view of subcurrents and adding slightly askew angles to what has come before, is Part VIII, which contains what seem to me to be mistakes rather than new points, particularly in regards to the time frame). I can say one thing that doesn't really give anything away - sometimes when I've watched it, I've thought I could faintly hear things in the wind that other times were absent. Rorscach again? Or creating a really effective atmosphere that makes your mind play tricks on you? Anyway, I find that freaky - a lot more so than if they were there all the time. 
          Now some, even if they really like the movie, may have no desire to go on with the whole series. Some films are admittedly better left complete and un-sequelized, like Ghost, Dead Again, Titanic, and even though I really looked forward to Book Of Shadows at the time and it wasn't an awful movie, I think I might include The Blair Witch Project as a no-sequels-required movie. But Friday The 13th isn't one of them. I would at the very least urge you to see Part 2 if you liked the first one at all, because to me these 2 form two halves of a complete beginning to the rest of the series (or 2 halves of a single whole, if you prefer). Friday without Part 2 would seem as incomplete to me as if Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back had ended the saga without Return Of The Jedi, with all the loose endings forever dangling. Actually, my full recommedation is the whole series, because while there are some chapters out there that are substantially lesser than others, the whole series remains at least good, with some truly awesome chapters in there. 

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          - During the first few weekends of the film's release, makeup/effects artist Tom Savini would go into theaters for the last five minutes of the show to see the audience react to Jason emerging from the lake and grabbing Alice. 

          - Adrienne King at first did not want to be in the film because of the graphic violence in it, but she changed her mind.

          - Tom Savini makes a cameo as a body being thrown through a window. 

          - The first counselor killed in the 1958 prologue is named "Barry" in the credits. The captions identify him as "Gary". 

          - The fake ending scene in which Alice is attacked by Jason, was shot three times. Once in September, then October and finally in November; when the temperature was 28 degrees outside. 

          - Adrienne King got the role of Alice only after the original filmmakers gave up trying to land Sally Field. 

          - There is rumored to be a deleted scene featuring the murder of Claudette. The crew of the film dismissed this, including Tom savini who said he never even worked on the opening scene. There is however a still of Claudette with a machette in her throat, although that may have been shot purely for promotional material.

          - Steve Christy is named after Steve Miner, Associate Producer for the film. 

          - The film has been spoofed a number of times, most notably in Saturday the 14th

          - Makeup designer Tom Savini thought up the idea of Jason's surprise appearance at the end of the movie. 

          - Sean Cunningham has been quoted as saying that the type of actors that he sought for the film were "good-looking kids who you might see in a Pepsi commercial." 

          - Estelle Parsons was originally signed on to play Mrs. Voorhees. 

          - In the scene where Bill is found impaled to a door with arrows his eye twitches continually because the eye effect that Savini applied was actually burning his eye and causing him excruciating pain. 




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