Friday The 13th (2009)
There have been many differing opinions about Platinum Dunes’ remake of the 1980 classic, Friday the 13th. Some people love the film, while others absolutely hate it and consider it an abomination. While there are faults within the film, I love it and consider the latest entry one of the best in the series. Longtime fans will be happy that the film is loaded with the familiar graphic nudity, drugs, and death. While the deaths in the film lack the imagination of their predecessors, it is the man delivering the carnage that is the best aspect of the film. Derek Mears is the latest actor to don the famous hockey mask and he does an amazing job. Mears’ Jason is calculated and more human than previous versions of the iconic killer.
A short time before the film was released to theaters, fans of the series were told by producer Brad Fuller that they could look forward to an unrated DVD that would be awesome and feature a new cut of the film that would be entirely different from the theatrical version. Unfortunately, the “Killer Cut” included on the DVD and Blu-ray is nothing more than a slightly longer version of the theatrical film. While I prefer the “Killer Cut” to the theatrical version, the only additions you get are slightly longer looks at the deaths, a little more sex, and an extended storyline for Amanda Righetti’s character. We can only hope that there are not plans in the future for a three disc, super extended version in the future.
If you are a Blu-Ray owner, the special features on the disc are plentiful. Standard definition viewers are left out in the cold, as the disc only has two special features to choose from. The two special features included on the DVD are an eleven minute documentary on the rebirth of Jason Vorhees and a collection of three deleted scenes. The deleted scenes featurette contains an alternate version of how Jason gets the iconic hockey mask and is far better than what we were given in the final version of the film. The Blu-Ray disc features the two previously mentioned special features and is packaged with the theatrical cut and “Killer Cut” of the film. A digital copy for your computer or iPod is also included in the packaging. The Blu-ray grants you access to Warner’s BD-Live feature, where you can see a clip from the upcoming film Trick ‘r Treat. On a side note, Trick ‘r Treat looks awesome. Also featured is the Hacking Back/Slashing Forward documentary, which gives the cast and crew’s take on the franchise. Another cool feature exclusive to the Blu-Ray is the Terror Trivia Track. This feature allows the viewer to test their knowledge about the series and gives them behind the scenes footage, all while watching the film. Rounding out the special features for the Blu-Ray disc is the Seven Best Kills featurette, which is basically a behind the scenes look at how each death in the new movie was brought to life. If you are a fan of behind the scenes footage, the Blu-Ray is definitely the way to go.
The transfer on the DVD is great, but the Blu-ray blows it away. I have seen many films in the high definition format and Friday the 13th may be one of the best looking I have seen so far. It almost seems too clean and sharp for a genre movie. I have to admit that while I was watching it, I sort of missed the gritty look and feel of the old films. God do I miss the days of using the tracking button on my VCR. The sound on both formats is stellar, but once again the Blu-ray gets the edge.
Is Friday the 13th the movie that hardcore fans wanted to see? Probably not, but it is an excellent addition to a franchise that was due for a much needed kick in the ass. News about the inevitable sequel has begun to spring up and rumors seem to be pointing toward the potential of seeing Jason in the winter months. I guess we’ll have to wait and see. Until then, happy camping boys and girls!