Friday the 13th (1980) – Love Horror Bites

Love Horror 2.0

Jonesy the Cat:

This film exists for one purpose and one purpose only; to feed off of the success of Halloween. This isn’t bitter marketing cynicism, it’s the bloody truth. However, this is the film that gave us Jason Voorhees…kind of. Jason is only used as a plot device in the first of the Friday… instalments and it is in fact his psychopathic mother who commits the grizzly murders. For a man that has seen every single film in the series, this is one of the lesser episodes. Friday the 13th is not a good film in any sense of the word, but it is certainly entertaining.
Well worth watching if only for Savini’s masterful special effects.

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Fun though this is (and who doesn’t enjoy Mrs Vorhees crazy face?), I have to agree with Jonesy the Cat in this instance, its not even the best of the series (for my money that honour goes to part 2: Amy Jones kicks ass!).
The music is fantastic, as are the gory effects (Kevin Bacon in the bed: amazing). Everything else is a little ropey and there are so many moments where you would just get the hell out of there (or perhaps not go there in the first place…hell, crazy Ralph tried to warn them).
Nonetheless, it clearly has some effect: I would never stay in a summer camp in America.

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Zombie 2:

Okay so it’s not the best horror film, hell it’s not even the best of the Friday the 13th series, however it is the first and that counts for a lot.
It’s technically unimpressive, has some hammy acting (including Kevin Bacon) and the story is pretty dumb. But the shocks and gore are all there making it over all an enjoyable slasher flick.
Remember that without it the world wouldn’t have had Jason Voorhees and all his ever more patently preposterous, blatantly bloody and ever enjoyable sequels. And that my horror loving friends would have indeed been a terrible loss.

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Zombie 1:

Three words – arrow through neck. Need I say more?
Paled with age and superior sequels, it is easy to see Friday the 13th as over-rated. However, one must remember that this was one of the first to set out the conventions that we now all love, enjoy and obey:
smoking pot gets you killed; having sex gets you killed; walking into the darkness shouting “Johnny, are you in there” is probably also going to get you killed.
I like this installment because Jason isn’t in it!
Over the years, he became some kind of unstoppable, inhuman, terminator-like killing maching – for no real reason. Fun, but also a bit silly, and dare I say boring.
The original, very human killer (Mrs Vorhees) is therefore a favourite of mine. Matching Jason’s abilities, but minus his superhuman powers.

Movie Rating: ★★★¾☆ 

Additional film information: Friday the 13th (1980)



Tom Atkinson

Tom is one of the editors at Love Horror. He has been watching horror for a worryingly long time, starting on the Universal Monsters and progressing through the Carpenter classics. He has a soft-spot for eighties horror.More

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