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His Name Was Jason: 30 Years of Friday the 13th (DVD Review)

23 Jan, 2009 By: Kyra Kudick


Street 2/3/09
Anchor Bay
$19.97 two-DVD set
Not rated.

Anchor Bay Entertainment is billing His Name Was Jason as “the ultimate tribute documentary,” and I have to admit it is a pretty accurate description of this film about our favorite hockey-masked villain.

The two-DVD “Splatter Edition” includes the feature-length documentary, a host of bonus features, a limited-edition poster and a Hollywood Movie Money ticket for admission to the 2009 theatrical remake of Friday the 13th.

Although the doc could be considered informative to non-horror viewers, it is clearly meant for fans of the genre, specifically those who have a fondness for the “Friday the 13th” movies.

It is entertainingly hosted by renowned special effects make-up artist and actor Tom Savini, who was responsible for the make-up effects in the original Friday the 13th in 1980, among his many other credits.

The audience is taken on a journey down memory lane, spanning the entire franchise history, through an impressive abundance of interviews and testimonials from the filmmakers, crew and actors associated with the films, as well as fans, genre journalists and contemporary horror practitioners.

While the doc is incredibly amusing (much like reminiscing with old friends), some of the bonus features end up being just too much information for one sitting. However, they may appeal to fans interested in every detail of the making of these films.

For entertainment value I recommend the featurette “Friday the 13th in 4 Minutes,” wherein directors Joe Lynch (Wrong Turn 2), Adam Green (Hatchet) and DreadCentral.com editor-in-chief Steve Barton summarize the plots of the entire franchise in four minutes. It is edited to appear as if they are finishing each other’s sentences — and these guys are funny.

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