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Horror - Slasher

Friday the 13th (1980)


Duration 1h 35m Rating (UK) X
Source of story An original screenplay
Director Sean S. Cunningham
Writers/Script Victor Miller
Starring Betsy Palmer, Adrienne King, Kevin Bacon

Elevator Pitch: A group of young counsellors are preparing to reopen Camp Crystal Lake after it has been closed for years, and is reputed to be cursed. They make some preparation during daylight, including setting up the swimming floats and the after dark they relax. Their leader is away and when they venture out for any reason they are killed in some gory manner. The last three of them play a game of “strip” Monopoly and they fail to notice that no-one else is around. Will they survive?

Content: There is a bit of nudity, the young peole in their swimwear and underwear, and one fairy extensive sex act which, unusually, the participants seem to enjoy.  We see the earlier event which resulted in the curse, then a young woman gets a ride in a Jeep she has her throat cut, then as time passes when the other guys venture out they are killed in a variety of unpleasant ways, the worst maybe being an axe in the face.

A View: We came across this on TV and were motivated to watch it because of its reputation, although I wonder if it was this original or one of the many sequels. Honestly, it was terrible. The acting was poor, the plot wasn’t feasible and the actions of the killer were actually impossible. It was not liked by the critics  but stunningly on a budget of about half a million dollars it has made forty million dollars. In fact it made ten times its estimated production cost on its first weekend. So if you a bit into slasher films and intends o watch all the others in the franchise it is probably important to start from here.

Additional Info: There have been numerous sequels and Jason, the apparently drowned son, has become a horror symbol, and becomes the killer in the subsequent films.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels



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