Friday the 13th (1980) Poster

User Reviews

Review this title
662 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
10/10
"Friday The 13th" is a classic original slasher that started it all my personal favorite film of all time
rambofan4life7 August 2018
Friday the 13th is my all time favorite horror slasher film off all time. "Friday The 13th" that started the 80's boom of Slashers, and became a franchise it is in my top 5 best favorite Friday the 13th films. It is one of my personal favorite horror movies. It is my number 4 favorite "Friday the 13th" movie and my all time favorite film in the horror genre. Adrienne King is my favorite the final girl she is a bad-ass incredible heroine in the franchise. They aren't movies like are this one today. I love this movie to death and it is instant classic for me. I have the t-shirt about this movie the original film and I always wear it so much I love this film and this franchise.

I watched this movie 8 years ago when I was a fan of Superntural and I have heard that actor Jared Padalecki was staring in the reboot Friday the 13th (2009) so I decide to checked 4 Friday the 13th movies: Friday the 13th the original, Friday the 13th Part 2, Jason X and of course the 2009 reboot because of Jared Padelcki and I have fun watching them. What can I say? I love this film to death I love it. I have all 12 films on Blu-ray discs and I re watch every year cause it is my favorite horror franchise and I have fun with them so much I love them. It is a great horror suspense film. I am more a fan of the sequels this film isn't my number one favorite film, but that is not bad, it is in my top fives best Friday the 13th films and it is in my fourth rank in the franchise.

About the film this is a classic the death scenes are too slow very slow it is very slow paced. We never see the assailant or who does those murders but it is a great mystery who is doing the murders and I love it. When it comes one hour around the movie it self's becomes interesting, intense, fast paced and goes bloody around. Watch the last 30 min's with Betsy Palmer and Adrienne King there showdown, Betsy steals the show in my opinion. The last 30.mins of the movie is worth of watch. Betsy Palmer of the film was the best in my opinion and I really miss the actress so damn much.

Directed and produced by Sean S. Cunningham. Tom Savini (From Dusk Till Dawn, Dawn of the Dead (1978) does special makeup effects for the film that I enjoy and they are great.

In 1958 A tragic accident at Camp Crystal Lake a young boy drowns in the lake, while the camp counselors are too busy making out, then a little later on two teenagers are brutally murdered and the Camp is closed down. Then fast forward to 1980 and a bunch of teenagers are hired to open up the camp, despite the warnings and then one by one they are killed off.

We have a beautiful cast in the film that I like such a: Betsy Palmer, Adrienne King, Robbi Morgan, Kevin Bacon, Walt Gorney, Peter Brouwer, Laurie Bartram, Jeannine Taylor and of course Ari Lehman as young Jason. All those actors were beautiful and excellent to watch.

I love the gory, death scenes which were nice kills, the special effects were real practical and real done. I love practical effects and not the CGI's that are done today. Why are not horror movies like are this one today? Hollywood doesn't make movies like are this one today. The kills in my opinion were gory real practical. There was a snake that was killed in this movie and no she was not a puppet she was a real snake in this movie that was killed off, so the death scene was for real. The effects are really good and shows even this early, Tom Savini knows his stuff, like the throat slit, axe in the head and the epic head chopped off those are my favorite scenes of the film. Harry Manfredini makes a beautiful music score for this film.

Friday the 13th the original film is my personal favorite horror film it is a great movie to watch it does kind a get slow the first hour but when Betsy Palmer appears it get's faster around.

The DVD and Blu-ray has uncut version of the film which I am glad with it, I love this film to death, I enjoy it I love everything they done with the film. It is my number 4 favorite "Friday the 13th" slasher horror movie. In my opinion it is Sean S. Cunningham best film he every did. I want see any new films like are this one today.

In 26. May 2017 Friday the 13th: The Game (2017) was released and I also bought Friday the 13th t-shirt with Jason's hockey mask on it and of the original film I have a t-shirt.

R.I.P. Betsy Palmer, Walt Gorney, Laurie Bartram, Rex Everhart and Sally Anne Golden you are really missed.

The first and the original movie get's my Bad-Ass Seal Of Approval 10/10 by me this is the one that started all the slasher boom.
79 out of 80 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
Welcome to Camp Blood the classic original slasher that started it all my personal favorite
ivo-cobra824 September 2017
Friday the 13th is my all time favorite horror slasher film it is in my top 5 favorite Friday the 13th films. It is one of my personal favorite horror movies. It is my second favorite "Friday the 13th" movie and my all time favorite film in the horror genre. I love this movie to death and it is instant classic for me. I have the t-shirt about this movie the original film and I always wear it so much I love this film and this franchise.

I watched this movie 7 years ago when I was a fan of Superntural and I have heard that actor Jared Padalecki was staring in the reboot Friday the 13th (2009) so I decide to checked 4 Friday the 13th movies: Friday the 13th the original, Friday the 13th Part 2, Jason X and of course the 2009 reboot because of Jared Padelcki and I have fun watching them. What can I say? I love this film to death I love it. I got all 11 films on Blu-ray (Freddy Vs. Jason I already had before) this Thursday and I have re watch them all. I watched this film in Friday yes Friday 22th it is a great horror suspense film. I am more a fan of the sequels just this film isn't my number one favorite film but it is in my top fives Friday the 13th films and it is in my second rank in the franchise.

About the film this is a classic but the death scenes are too slow very slow it is very slow paced. We never see the assailant or who does those murders but when it comes one hour around the movie it self's becomes interesting, intense, fast paced and goes bloody around. Watch the last 30 min's with Betsy Palmer and Adrienne King there showdown, Betsy steals the show in my opinion. The last 30.mins of the movie is worth of watch.

In 1958 A tragic accident at Camp Crystal Lake a young boy drowns in the lake, while the camp counselors are too busy making out, then a little later on two teenagers are brutally murdered and the Camp is closed down. Then fast forward to 1980 and a bunch of teenagers are hired to open up the camp, despite the warnings and then one by one they are killed off.

We have a beautiful cast in the film that I like such a: Betsy Palmer, Adrienne King, Robbi Morgan, Kevin Bacon, Walt Gorney, Peter Brouwer, Laurie Bartram, Jeannine Taylor and of course Ari Lehman as young Jason. All those actors were beautiful and excellent to watch.

I love the gory, death scenes which were nice kills, the special effects were real practical and real done. I love practical effects and not the CGI's that are done today. Why are not horror movies like are this one today? Hollywood doesn't make movies like are this one today. The kills in my opinion were gory real practical. There was a snake that was killed in this movie and no she was not a puppet she was a real snake in this movie that was killed off, so the death scene was for real. The effects are really good and shows even this early, Tom Savini knows his stuff, like the throat slit, axe in the head and the epic head chopped off.

Directed and produced by Sean S. Cunningham who 5 years later directed and produced my favorite horror film The New Kids I liked that film and watched since I was a teen.

Adrienne King was fantastic and excellent as the final girl and heroine who survived and defeated Mrs. Voorhees on the end.

Tom Savini (From Dusk Till Dawn, Dawn of the Dead (1978) does special makeup effects for the film that I enjoy.

Friday the 13th the original film is my favorite horror film it is a great movie to watch it does kind a get slow the first hour but when Betsy Plamer appears it get's faster around.

The DVD and Blu-ray has uncut version of the film which I am glad with it, I love this film to death, I enjoy it I love everything they done with the film. It is my number 4 favorite "Friday the 13th" slasher horror movie. In my opinion it is Sean S. Cunningham best film he every did. I want see any new films like are this one today.

In 26. May 2017 Friday the 13th: The Game (2017) was released which I might going to buy it next year for my PC if we get the game in our stores. I also bought Friday the 13th t-shirt with Jason's hockey mask on it.

R.I.P. Betsy Palmer, Walt Gorney, Laurie Bartram, Rex Everhart and Sally Anne Golden you are missed and I have respect to all of you.

The first and the original movie get's my Bad-Ass Seal Of Approval 10/10 by me this is the one that started all the slasher boom, it was "Friday The 13th" that started the 80's boom of Slashers, and became a franchise.
80 out of 86 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
A Classic, genre defining
Jane FlamE24 January 2001
Without a doubt, the work of Cunningham and Carpenter during 1978 & 1980 rocked the world of the horror genre. Friday the 13th is one of the films that to this day still has repercussions. It demonstrated the importance of setting the tone in horror movies, making the audience themselves feel as if they too were being stalked. Cunningham also was one of the few directors to introduce the idea of a possible female serial killer.

Without this film, Scream's Randy would have never uttered those famous words, 'There are certain rules to surviving a horror movie..' This film combined with Carpenter's Halloween, firmly etched the rules in stone. The creepy music, the infamous "ch-ch-ch-ha-ha-ha", the crude photography and the graphic depiction of the murders of the counsellors all blend together to give a classic piece of film history. It scared the hell out of multitudes of teenagers who, in many instances could see themselves in the victims of the stalker. These weren't bad people getting killed, these were just your typical average American kids, having a good time, getting picked off.

That is what makes this film so defining, that is why, for all its crude and harsh imagery, this is a classic. This is why alot of recent attempts at horror don't measure up. It's not the effects or the blood necessarily, it's the atmosphere and the familiarity that bring it home.It is more frightening to think, "That could be me"
86 out of 112 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
A Date to Remember
Duzniak382 August 2006
Friday the 13th. The movie which turned around the horror genre and gave us one of the most unforgettable villains and endings, is, and always will be a horror classic. Friday the 13th doesn't set out to be glossy and glamorous. Friday the 13th sets out to do what it wants to do; and that is, make you sit on the edge of your seat, feel uncomfortable and unnerved, to make you frightened when you go to bed after watching it. Friday the 13th delivers all of the fantastic horror goods. The plot revolves around American teenagers, who are the new counsellors at the apparently jinxed Camp Crystal Lake. These naive, horny youngsters have a one-track mind and break all of the innocent borders which has more depth than you would think. Basically, the message is "Don't have pre-marital sex, or you'll die" just like many of Friday the 13th's predecessors and clones send out as well. Friday the 13th has a variety of characters, all who you could possibly relate to. These characters are then slowly followed and hacked off one by one, in dark, gory, claustrophobic manners, which may leave you frightened in the same way Psycho made showers scary. As the camp counsellors are knocked off one by one, the tension rises higher and higher. Along the journey of carnage, the hugely effective soundtrack really creeps under your skin, highlighting how jumpy and scary the events happening on screen really are. For example when a chase scene occurs, the music may speed up, the tempo rising and jittering, almost moving like the characters on screen are. The acting in Friday the 13th is not bad at all; some of the actors/actresses may be a little amateur, but there is nothing terrible in this picture. The settings are also very effective. The stalkings and slaying in broad daylight and open spaces are a twist in a new direction, showing that not everything has to happen in the dark, in a small isolated house on the top of a hill, so the variation of location makes forests, cabins and even lakes more unappealing to the viewers afterwards, and may leave them creeped out by the aforementioned places. The camera-work is also very effective. The way the camera 'stalks' the victim behind trees and bushes, and the way the camera chases after it's victims as the point of view of the villain is unique and exciting, and adds a more tense and faster chill to the movie. Friday the 13th may play as a clichéd slasher, a story of sex equalling carnage, but it plays so effectively well it is a too important horror movie to simply be dismissed. It collects everything appealing about the 80's horror genre and wraps it up neatly into this fantastic horror package. A classic in it's genre.
77 out of 111 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
A classic, in spite of itself!
Maciste_Brother7 August 2003
I consider Friday THE 13TH a classic, despite everything seemingly going against it. Yes, the original Friday THE 13TH part 1 and part 2 owe a lot to BAY OF BLOOD (or TWITCH OF DEATH NERVE). There's no question about it. The similarities between the two films are obvious. The film is responsible for spawning an endless number of truly awful sequels. The acting is nothing spectacular. The script is barely there. And the film sorta drags a bit in the middle. And the ending of Friday THE 13TH is an indirect rip-off of the ending in CARRIE. But the backwoods atmosphere/mystique behind Friday THE 13TH is totally original and effective (much more than any of the sequels), and the ending of FT13 is, imo, WAY better than the ending of CARRIE. The ending of FT13 makes the movie. The entire FT13 series exists merely on the strength of that ending. It created a myth, in the name of Jason. The story (or script) is wonderfully absurd (when you think about it) which gives the murders an even more psychotic edge to them, and in my mind, are more effective than the ones in BAY OF BLOOD or in any other Friday THE 13TH sequels because of the kooky reasoning behind them. Watching Jason kill his victims in the sequels quickly got boring. And the fact that Tom Savini created the excellent gory FX is a definite plus. The acting is average (some of it even poor) but let's face it, the characters, aside from their individual death scenes, don't have a lot of dramatic things to do, except for Betsy Palmer and Adrienne King, who is good but is not the best "last surviving female" actress ever to appear in a slasher. On the other hand, Betsy Palmer is amazing as Mrs. Voorhees. She's a combination of total sweetness, insanity and camp all rolled into one. Once Betsy appears on screen the film is thrilling and she adds a lot of life (no pun intended) to the whole proceeding, which was lacking from a good part of the film. And let's not forget the good score. Very effective even if it sometimes sounds derivative. And the original poster is great!

The funny thing about Friday THE 13TH is that when I first saw it 20 years ago I thought it was good but not as good as HALLOWEEN. Fast forward 20 years, and today I sorta prefer Friday THE 13TH slightly more than HALLOWEEN now, which has lost a lot of its luster, due mainly to HALLOWEEN's awful sequels and their stupid story-lines. Artistically, HALLOWEEN is still the better film of the two. There's no comparison there. But it has lost its edge, while FT13's trashiness has oddly kept it fresh. While HALLOWEEN has irremediably lost a lot of its mystique with each subsequent sequels, Friday THE 13TH, on the other hand, actually gained more credibility with every release of its seemingly endless number of ultra-stupid sequels. After seeing some of those sequels, the original FT13 looks positively brilliant compared to those horrendous sequels. It's a classic in its own special way.
59 out of 86 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
The start of a new generation in horror film-making!
Captain_Couth26 November 2003
Friday the 13th (1980) kicked started the early 80's slasher film phenomenon that was ignited by Halloween (1978) but fueled intensely by this reworking of the Mario Bava classic "Twitch of the Death Nerve". Once Friday the 13th was released, there was no turning back. The slasher film was part of the American horror film genre and it would remain that way for years to come. A film that launched countless knock-offs, wannabes, sequels and a t.v. series?! Camp Crystal Lake and the Friday the 13th film franchise are a part of Americana. The film is merely a stage for the splatter effects of F/X maestro Tom Savini. They were later toned down for it's American release and were softened even further during it's video release.

The movie itself isn't that great. Technically it's boring. To get the most out of the film you have to watch it uncut. Friday the 13th was designed around Savini's gory set pieces. Watching them with out it is like drinking a mayonnaise soda. I encourage you to seek out the uncut version of this film. Recommended.

A (uncut)

D (American version)
63 out of 97 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
A slasher-star is born !!
Coventry30 October 2003
Friday the 13th must be one of the biggest mysteries in cinema. Although it's a long way from being a good movie, its success and influence is unnameable ( and even unbelievable ). Don't get me wrong...I'm not at all saying that Friday the 13th is a terrible film or not even worth a watch but - let's face it - the plot idea is pretty dumb, the acting and directing are far below average and they haven't fully used the options of setting and location they had. The make-up effects ( by the master Tom Savini himself ) are excellent, but that alone isn't really enough to create a legendary horror movie in my opinion. Some of the later sequels ( Episode 6 : Jason Lives is the perfect example ) and even a few of the numberless rip-offs are superior to the production.

I suppose the story is pretty much known by everyone know and I even think the identity of the "mysterious killer" of this episode isn't that much of a mystery anymore. Anyway, in case you don't know it, I won't spoil the fun so see for yourself. Although my thoughts on it aren't that high, I do think it's must-see stuff for horror fans. Without any shame, I even admit that Friday the 13th and ALL its sequels are a guilty pleasure of mine. I'll never reckon them as good - or even decent - efforts in the genre, but I'm always up for a little bit of brainless gore slashing. And that's what these series are made for...pure entertainment !! So, in a way, they succeeded after all. They never try to give a thoughtful message to the viewer or something. There are just dumb-looking teenagers being slaughtered...the more the merrier.

Favorite "rewind"-scene : A young and horny Kevin Bacon being brutally killed in one of his first memorable roles.
70 out of 111 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
Classic beginning to a classic horror series
BrianCTyler17 August 2006
Friday THE 13TH (1980)

directed by: Sean S. Cunningham

starring: Betsy Palmer, Adrienne King, Jeannine Taylor, and Kevin Bacon

plot: Seven camp councilors head to Camp Crystal Lake to fix it up for the summer. Despite warnings of a dark past and a 'death curse', the teens decide to have a good time anyway, and at night indulge in sex, drugs, and strip poker. Unfortunately for them, a psycho killer is prowling the camp grounds, picking them off one by one. When only one is left, she must discover the identity of the killer and fight for her life.

my thoughts: Ever since I can remember, I've loved this film. When I was a child, it scared the crap out of me. That chilling noise playing in the stalk sequences (which has now become the most famous sound in horror films) haunted my nightmares, and some of the gore scenes were really graphic.

Viewing it now, it is no longer that scary but it is still a lot of fun. I liked how these earlier Friday films ignored the stereotypical teenage characters. There's no slut, no jock, no token anything. Every character felt really natural and for some of them, I cared when they died.

The gore scenes are great, thanks to Tom Savini. We get stabbings, decapitations, and plenty more. Gore hounds will love this. Well since every gore hound has seen this, gore hounds mostly already love this.

And then there's the two key things in making a good horror film. The directing and the music. Sean S. Cunningham is a really good director and establishes the camp setting perfectly. He adds beautiful shots of the wind blowing against the trees, the lake at sunrise, that you wouldn't find in later entries.

The music is also great. Harry Manfredini is one of my favorite composers, because he makes the chase scenes so much more exciting. The music in the final scene also works like a charm.

I forgot to mention that this film has one of the most popular and remembered horror endings of all time. And while it may have stolen from CARRIE, it works just as well here and is the cherry on top of a classic slasher film.
44 out of 68 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
Strangely boring and sometimes toothless in retrospect, the original "Friday the 13th" is really only notable for starting off a long-running and much beloved franchise.
MaximumMadness11 August 2016
I'll always have a soft-spot in my heart for the "Friday the 13th" franchise. Especially as an 80's baby/90's kid who grew up in a pop- culture environment where the psychotic hockey-masked killer Jason was known and loved by pretty much everyone... even kids like me who didn't see the films until we were older and only vaguely knew what they were about thanks to the whisperings and hints of our older siblings who were actually allowed to see the movies. (Usually renting them 2 or 3 at a time on trusty old VHS from the local Video King to watch after we younger brothers and sisters went to bed.)

At the time this review is being posted, the franchise has been running strong for well over 35 years. Boasting 10 films in its original continuity, the fabulously entertaining (and dopey as heck) cross- over spin-off "Freddy VS Jason", a somewhat underrated reboot in 2009 and a planned new film due out sometime within the next year or two.

But even a franchise so huge has to start with a small, humble beginning. Before the fame. Before the recognition. Before the birth of the pop-culture idol that the series spawned.

Yes, it all started with a teeny-tiny production back in 1980- the original "Friday the 13th."

It's almost impossible to really discuss this film critically without delving into spoiler territory (which I try to avoid in my reviews), though I will try my hardest to do so.

The film revolves around a group of young Camp Counselors who are prepping the infamous Camp Crystal Lake for a reopening about 20 years after a mysterious double-murder and a tragic drowning involving a young child. However, it appears someone isn't exactly a happy camper and doesn't want Crystal Lake back in business, and this mysterious figure begins to pick off our protagonists one-by- one until a tense climax reveals the dreaded truth...

It's no surprise at all that the film is essentially a glorified rip-off of the iconic slasher-horror that is John Carpenter's "Halloween." Director/Producer Sean S. Cunningham has been pretty candid about essentially wanting to create his own "roller-coaster" version of the Carpenter Classic with this film. Heck, they had ads and posters in the paper before the script was even written.

But the problem I really have with the film is that it all feels so routine. Even often boring and sometimes toothless. While it may not be fair to judge it by modern standards, even for its time, it just doesn't have that much going for it. (Especially as the very same year of release, such classics as "The Shining" and the underrated "The Changeling" were chilling audiences to the bone.) It's a very aimless, meandering film, with sloppy plotting and far too much focus placed on seemingly-pointless sequences for it to attain the "roller-coast" feeling the director was going for. The first half of the film is just too much a chore to slog through. And once the horror finally kicks in, it's just the same rinse-and-repeat formula scene-after-scene, with really only a few gruesome deaths here and there to pique audience interest. All those old clichés and tropes that even at the time had become slightly predictable.

Now, I know what you're saying- those are the things people love about these flicks. The clichés and the gore-galore. But it's so slowly paced and messy in this movie, it's hard to really get into it. It really isn't until the plethora of sequels that the formula is established and the pacing is tightened enough for those clichés and tropes to finally become fun and entertaining.

As it stands, "Friday the 13th" does have its place in horror royalty. But I firmly believe it's more for spawning the long- running franchise that followed and less for the quality of the film itself.

Oh, and I guess it's also kinda famous for introducing some guy named Kevin Bacon as a supporting character... but I'm not sure if he actually went anywhere after this.

(Please appreciate the obvious sarcasm there. I loves the Bacon!)

"Friday the 13th" gets a middle-of-the-road 5 out of 10 from me. It's worth seeing because of its important part in the history of the overall franchise. But it's one of the weaker entries and lacks the style and entertainment seen in later films.
4 out of 4 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
The original and the best...
jluis198427 November 2006
More than 25 years since its release, more than 10 sequels and an infinite number of imitations, most people seem to remember "Friday the 13th" as just another slasher with good-looking teens being killed by a seemingly unstoppable psycho while roaming in an isolated location. However, what most people seem to forget, is that "Friday the 13th" looks so typical nowadays precisely because it was the first film of its class, the origin of all those clichés and the film that redefined the mainstream horror genre during the 80s and the 90s. At its time, it was a film as daring enough to be called controversial yet at the same time accessible enough to be appreciated by the mainstream audiences; for those reasons and more, this films can be proud of being the first one, the definitive one, the film that gave birth to the slasher sub genre.

Our story begins 22 years after a series of unsolved murders happened at Camp Crystal Lake and forced the closure of the beloved Summer Camp and started the legend of the death curse of Camp Crystal Lake, now known as "Camp Blood". Now, the new owner, Steve Christy (Peter Brouwer), decides to reopen the infamous "Camp Blood" with the help of six new counselors. Ignoring the warnings of the locals, Steve and his young assistants begin the restoration of the long abandoned Camp, but on the night of Friday the 13th, the group of teens will discover that there may be some true behind the local legends, as the death curse of "Camp Blood" returns and a mysterious killer starts to claim fresh, young victims.

Writer Victor Miller claims to have taken a crash course in horror writing when he wrote "Friday the 13th", as both he and director Sean Cunningham were in desperate need of a success and saw that the horror genre had potential, but knew very little about it. So, by taking John Carpenter's "Halloween" as a model, Miller crafted his story about the nightmarish night where a group of teens end up isolated and at the mercy of an unknown serial killer, with the sole purpose of making a successful horror film. And he succeeded, as he took the many different elements that would create the "slasher rules" and turned the simple and derivative plot into a roller-coaster of horror, with the perfect mix of fun, horror and mystery that just keeps getting better and better until it reaches the climatic finale.

Just like Miller took ideas from other horror stories, Cunningham too employs elements from "Psycho", "Texas Chainsaw Massacre" and specially "Reazione a Catena", mixing them and taking them one step further, in a simple but very effective approach that slowly develops Miller's plot while at the same time offers a quite graphic vision of violence (thanks to Tom Savini's excellent effects) that completes what we know as the "slasher set of rules". Cunningham may not be an original filmmaker, but his "Friday the 13th" remains as one of the most effective suspense tales that despite the bad reputation earned by its sequels, still packs up some good chills thanks to its remarkably well done set pieces and the good use of visuals and music to create tension.

The acting of the film is one the level of the horror films of its time; sure, those may not be the best performances in horror but are miles ahead most of what was delivered by the film's sequels. While the cast is nothing really special, two exceptions are easily noticeable: the young Adrienne King, who becomes our main character, delivers a very good performance that makes her decision of stop acting even more surprising. And of course, Betsy Palmer, who gives the performance of her lifetime as Mrs. Vorhees, a former cook at Camp Crystal Lake that knows more about the Camp's curse than what she may tell. Palmer truly created an iconic character that sadly has been overshadowed by the image of the killer with the Hockey Mask.

While it's true that Cunningham and Miller made a film heavily based on previous horror classics, "Friday the 13th" doesn't feel as derivative as it should, as the many "borrowed" elements here work together with frightening perfection. And despite having average acting, and a fairly low-budget, what truly has become the movie's fatal flaw is the poor reputation that its sequels, its parodies and its imitators have given to "Friday the 13th"'s name, making the film the source of laughs instead of scares, and making the series to be synonymous with stupid horror tales.

The many sequels have truly harmed this film's reputation among the classics, but the truth is that while this movie is far from being a perfect movie, it's creepy and entertaining enough to deliver fun even more than 25 years after its initial release. To enjoy "Friday the 13th", one must try to forget what it's known about the series, and simply enjoy the film as if it was the first time one heard about the infamous crimes of "Camp Blood". 8/10
26 out of 39 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
The original horror classic!
jhaggardjr29 May 2000
In 1980, two years after "Halloween" scared the hell out of everybody, "Friday the 13th" was released to theaters. This was a clever knockoff of the John Carpenter horror classic, only this one was more violent and gruesome. That aspect turned critics off big time. But moviegoers couldn't resist. They flocked to see this movie and made it a big hit. I never saw this film on the big screen because I was only 9 years old when it came out. After I saw it on cable a few years later, it scared the hell out of me! It doesn't scare me that much today, but it's a far more effective horror/thriller than the last five movies in the series (parts 5 through 9). They should have stopped making these "Friday the 13th" movies after the fourth film, which was subtitled "The Final Chapter". And you know what's even scarier, they're making part 10. "Friday the 13th" was the beginning of the sick slasher genre that played out during the early 1980s. The first films in both the "Halloween" and "Friday the 13th" series' were easily the best. "Halloween" was a great horror film. "Friday the 13th" isn't up there with "Halloween", but it's a well-crafted gorefest.

*** (out of four)
28 out of 43 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
"Then He's Still Out There"
sddavis6329 October 2009
I'll concede right off that it's very hard to be objective in reviewing this movie. The truth is I've never seen it until today, but it's spawned so many sequels and become such a part of popular culture (for better or worse) that it's stamped into your mind whether you've seen it or not. Trying to be objective I'd say - it's not bad. It's not as good as what I would consider to be the classic of the slasher movies (1978's Halloween) but it has some moments of pretty good suspense and somewhat surprisingly to me I found that it wasn't a "gore-fest." There's violence and blood but the murders, while they're portrayed, tend to be shown quickly and the movie moves on fairly quickly. The setting is used pretty well to create atmosphere - the movie is set in a remote camp about to be re-opened after being closed for over 20 years following the murders of two counsellors in 1958. Those murders kick off the movie. There's some decent camera-work, as the camera serves as the eyes of the killer, and at times that effect is used when the camera isn't being used as the eyes of the killer, so there's a bit of uncertainty for the viewer. It is a bit of a chuckle that this movie uses as its setting the classically bad opening of terrible novels ("it was a dark and stormy night.")

The performances were OK, if a little bit forced and artificial at times. Adrienne King did a good job near the end of the movie as the terrified Alice. Kevin Bacon had a role in this as Jack, but it wasn't the lead role, and aside from him no one from the movie rose to any significant stature in Hollywood and there was certainly no Jamie Lee Curtis (see Halloween) among the female leads, although there were many shots of young and cute women in various stages of undress!

Strange to say, but in some ways knowing the basic outline of how the series progresses adds to the suspense at the end of the movie as to the identity of the killer, and does get you wondering how the heck this is going to lead to sequels - or at least to the sequels it led to, although Alice's last line ("then he's still out there") clearly establishes that those responsible for the movie were already looking ahead to the sequels. Not having been really interested in the series before this, I will confess that, having seen the first instalment, I now have a certain curiosity to see how the second instalment is constructed. 7/10
6 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Ki Ki Ki Ma Ma Ma
americanadian2512 December 2004
Warning: Spoilers
The original Friday The 13th was the one that started it all. The world's first exposure to the infamous Camp Crystal Lake aka Camp Blood. It goes like this. Camp Crystal Lake, after being closed for a number of years is reopening. The Camp has been closed for so long due to a number of catastrophes such as the young boy Jason Voorhees drowning in the lake, cabins catching on fire, and (I almost forgot) tons of camp counselors being brutally slashed and murdered by a killer running loose in the camp. So when the camp is being reopened, its deja vu, the new camp conselors are in for it. The killer is back and is ready for more. This is the movie that started in all, the classic slasher series that has a total of 11 films to date. The movie is good, but don't expect a truly scary horror film. Its full of some tense moments, nice jumps, and gore, lots of gore. What it lacks is some decent acting (not very impressive). Still, any horror collection isn't complete if you don't have at least one Friday the 13th film, so this one is not to be missed.
40 out of 68 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Still a classic
movieman_kev11 January 2005
A group of camp counselors, a young Kevin Bacon among them, are busy trying to re-open Camp Crystal Lake years after multiple murders shut it down, despite the ravings of Crazy Ralph. They are dispatched one by one by an unseen killer. This IS a classic and always will be. Don't get me wrong as it's not perfect. But it's far from "merely a Halloween" clone which some people say. The original Halloween is a perfect classic, but let this film stand on it's own legs as it has every right to. Although I'm saddened about how shoddily Paramount seemed to put out their recent box set. Hell when New Line acquired the rights to the series, yes their Jason films suck, but at least they do right by the fans DVD-wise.Paramount could have done a great service to us by looking back at New Lin's Nightmare on Elm Street box set. It's a shame they didn't.

My Grade: A-

Eye Candy: Jeannine Taylor shows ta-tas and ass cleavage
38 out of 71 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
"Doomed... You're all doomed."
bensonmum221 May 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Friday the 13th may not have been the first movie of its kind and the kill scenes may have been copied from other movies, but there's no denying the importance of the film. Friday the 13th is the film I see as most responsible for the slasher boom of the 80s. It and its sequels proved that horror fans were willing to pay money to see practically the same movie (with slight modifications) over and over. As I look back at it now, it seems a bit silly to me, but I was one of those who willing plopped down my money every few years for a chance to see another Friday the 13th movie.

I don't see any point in going through the plot. Most horror fans know it by heart. Instead, I'll cover a few of the things I like about the movie. First, the kill scenes. Tom Savini's special effects are great. I especially like the scene where Kevin Bacon is speared from under the bed. Second, regardless of the number of times I've seen it, the film does have an atmosphere of fear about it. The repetitive music, the unseen killer, and the bodies dropping at every turn have always given me chills. Third, I enjoy the final showdown between the killer and the "final girl". I've always thought the final fight scene was a highlight of the film. Finally, and this is a personal thing, but Friday the 13th was the first movie of its type I ever saw. I hadn't seen movies like Halloween or Black Christmas when I first saw this one. Therefore, it holds a special place with me.

Unfortunately, even though I'm a fan, I see problems. The biggest is the predictability of the plot. Even though Friday the 13th was made early in the slasher cycle, how hard was it to predict the outcome? Also, the characters in the movie are incredibly stupid. A lot of the murders could have been prevented if anyone at any point in the movie had demonstrated any brain power. But then it wouldn't have been so much fun.

It may not be the kind of movie the more "sophisticated" horror fan admits to enjoying, but I'm not above admitting that Friday the 13th remains a favorite of mine. It's fun stuff!
6 out of 8 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
6/10
Fairly effective of its type
mnpollio22 November 2010
Warning: Spoilers
This film and the subsequent indestructible series that it spawned will never be confused with Shakespeare. That said, some of the earlier entries are fairly effective in their sense of dread and jolts before the entire series devolved into an assembly line of utter trash that fails to even live up to the minor demands of this sub-genre. Following the surprise mammoth success of the original Halloween, movie makers everywhere began vomiting forth holiday themed slasher pictures. Of the imitators, Friday the 13th is certainly notable and was arguably the most successful alongside A Nightmare on Elm Street, which came a few years later. The simple scenario of a group of camp counselors stalked by an unseen predator while undertaking their efforts to re-open a children's camp, dubbed Camp Blood by the locals due to a series of deaths from years before, is decent enough on which to hang the set pieces of the film. Unlike many of its later sequels and far worse imitators, the film sticks with the small handful of counselors for the duration of the film and does not require a brutal death every five minutes. It would be too much to say that we "care" what happens to them, so much as they at least seem credible to a good extent when the carnage starts. Even the initial victim - killed fairly early in the film - gets a lengthy exposition on her background and reasons for working at the camp. The trademark score certainly spooks things up and Sean Cunningham's direction does what it needs to - it keeps the pace moving and elevates the suspense and dread in the final third of the film to keep viewers edgy. Unlike Halloween, this film does not really skimp on the gore, but unlike far worse of its ilk, it does not dwell needlessly on it either. The death scenes are gruesome, but fairly quick. The film also doesn't make the genre mistake of having all or even most of the victims be female - a tiresome conceit from other films. The cast (including then newbie Kevin Bacon) is believable as they work, relax, flirt and die, but there are really no great stand-outs. Adrienne King is an adequate heroine, who manages to be terrified, gutsy and vulnerable, and she interestingly breaks the mold as she is depicted as having a relationship with the head of the camp and is not the standard virginal good girl. Betsy Palmer is an intimidating late addition to the film as the now legendary Pamela Voorhees and the fight scenes between her and King are incredibly suspenseful and well-choreographed. The cheap DePalma-esquire shock epilogue on the film was hackneyed then and seems worse now - and, of course, opens the door for the countless sequels.
4 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
An Original Low Budget Cult Movie, With Unknown Actors and Actresses and Lots of Great Special Effects
claudio_carvalho15 November 2003
In a full moon night of a Friday, 13th, the instructors of Camp Crystal Lake are murdered, one by one, in a night of terror. In the end of the story, a convincing explanation clarifies what have happened. This cult movie was very original and spooky in 1980. Placed basically in one location and with unknown young actors and actresses, it was indeed a successful low budget movie, copied many times in other films. Today I have just watched it again, now on a recently released DVD, and it is still good to see. I regret the sequels, since the story is very well resolved in a credible way without supernatural. This way, it is much more terrifying and could have stopped right here. My vote is seven.
13 out of 23 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Classic horror
MisterWhiplash12 July 2000
Not exactly a masterpiece, but not a waste of time either. This film is basically a starters set for the film-buffs who start watching horror films. Premise- a killer is after a bunch of kids at a camp many years after a tragedy to a kid named Jason Voorhees. Some good killer scenes (and Betsy Palmer is very good in this film) but not exactly a great horror film. Classic entertainment anyway. A-
22 out of 43 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
One of the Classic Horror Films.
movies2u23 September 2001
Friday the 13th sets off when teenage camp counselers travel to Camp Crystal Lake, which is known as Camp Blood. The reason for its name is that many camp counselers have been murdered there over the years. Many of the townspeople believe it is the ghost of a boy named Jason who drowned in the lake years before while the camp counselers had no idea he was drowning. Ever since then camp counselers have been getting slaughtered, so that is why it got the name "Camp Blood". When all the counselers arrive a week before the camp is open, they are there to fix the camp up. But then a terrible storm hits and the counselers are getting killed left and right. Who will survive the night at Camp Blood?

The movie itself is scary and enjoyable yet full of terror. Also, I was surprised to see Kevin Bacon in this film, and he did a great job! Friday the 1th is a classic. I give it a 10 out of 10!!!!
18 out of 34 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
Why can't I stop watching these films?
TOMASBBloodhound15 May 2005
Warning: Spoilers
This is the original Friday the 13th installment. But as horror films go, there really was nothing original about it. By 1980, we had already seen Halloween and Black Christmas and countless other slasher films. I just cannot explain either the public's or my own utter fascination with the majority of the films in this series. Any time one comes on , I just have to watch at least part of it. Even if it's one of the bad ones.

The first film in the series used a formula that would be repeated in most of the others. We have a group of young camp counselors getting hacked to bits in a remote camp by a mostly unseen killer. Some of the killings are incredibly brutal and some happen off screen. We learn in an unexpected twist at the end that it is a woman doing the killing. She is a former kitchen worker who is getting revenge for the death of her son (Jason Voorhees) many years earlier. He apparently drowned while the counselors on duty were making love. Perhaps that is why nearly anyone in these films who has sex gets offed. Anyway, the mother is finally defeated in a particularly gruesome scene. The following installments feature her son Jason killing off anyone who dares come into the area to have fun.

Sounds simple enough, but why all the demand for more sequels? Few really famous people have ever starred in these films. Kevin Bacon (who was hardly famous at the time) and Corey Feldman are perhaps two exceptions. Other than the Tommy Jarvis character beginning in part 4, there was next to no character development in the series. The mostly unknown actors are quickly introduced and obliterated by whatever garden or implement tool is handy. The music is always fun and creepy, but Halloween already set the bar as far as that was concerned. Some may argue that the detailed brutality of the special effects were a big selling point, but these films really only had one or two memorable deaths per episode. The ax to the face featured in part one still stands as one of the best. The POV camera shots utilized in the series had also been done before. (Halloween, once again) I think there are two main factors that have made this series so on-going. First of all, you would have to cite the tiny budgets needed to make the earlier installments. Part one had well-below a one million dollar budget, and all it took was noticeable demand for sequels and you were bound to get one after the other. Another factor was the hockey mask Jason dons in part three. That mask looks very spooky, and it made him an easily recognizable icon in American cinema. Even casual film fans know Jason is the guy with the hockey mask.

I love the Friday the 13th series. The older episodes in particular. I really cannot explain why, but these films have been as much a part of my life while growing up as anything else. Even the Star Wars films. 1,2,4, and 6 are probably my favorites. I hope they're yours, too! 8 of 10 stars. The Hound.
10 out of 17 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Friday the 13th
raulfaust3 January 2011
Warning: Spoilers
"Friday the 13th" is a classic for those interested in the development of the horror movies throughout the years. If we consider this film for nowadays, we are obviously going to think it's just like tons of other horror movies such as "Identity", "Ghost Ship", "I Know What You Did Last Summer" and many others.

But we have to analyze it as a 1980 movie which is full of originality and innovation. And don't get me wrong, but the creepy soundtrack they used in past is much more scary than nowadays'. Furthermore, it made its job, entertained the audience with a creepy atmosphere, despite looking so amateurish in the fight between Mrs. Voorhees and Alice. Also the last scare in the river was truly unexpected, bottoms up for the director in here.
5 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
The start of the best '80s slasher series.
lostanddelirious8510 December 2010
"Friday the 13th" is one of those love it or hate it movies. On one side, you've got the people judging it based on its technical merits such as script, acting, etc. and on the other, you've got those who just appreciate it for what it is: a good, fun movie whose only purpose is to scare. And that it does.

While not as technically accomplished as "Halloween", I find "Friday the 13th" to be the more entertaining film. The story is simple, but rather than being a bad thing, its lack of plot complications is oddly comforting. The story begins at Camp Crystal Lake in 1958, when two horny counselors are murdered by an unknown assailant. Flash forward to 1980, and a group of kids are all making their way to the infamous camp site to help the owner, Steve Christy, get the place in shape for re-opening. Almost from the start, we are warned of the terrible events to come in the form of the town crazy, Ralph, who ominously warns one of the characters that Camp Crystal Lake has a "death curse." Thankfully for us, the kids don't let all of the scary talk affect them, and soon enough we begin to see the old killer get back in action--dispatching of the apple-faced youngsters in a variety of creative ways.

This movie was widely renowned for its creative murder sequences back in 1980--something which every film after it tried to copy shamelessly. As a result, some of the more bizarre murders might seem tame in comparison to what we've seen in the ensuing 30 years after its release. However, this doesn't take away from their entertainment value.

What really works for this movie is the setting, which is so simple yet so classic. Every American ventures out into the wilderness to go camping at some point, and this movie is the equivalent of those camp fire ghost stories you tell to scare your friends. Every time I go camping now, I can't help but think of this film's prowler creeping around the woods outside my cabin and hearing that iconic "ki ki ki ma ma ma" sound in the back of my head. This movie did for outdoors trips what "Jaws" did for the beach.

This film has rightfully carved out a niche in popular culture--the film equivalent of an urban legend told to scare future generations of kids out of their wits and make them think twice about wandering around camp alone in the dark.

No, it's not award-winning material, but it doesn't have to be. Appreciate it for what it is, and you can't go wrong.
5 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
So Much Better than Its Critics Originally Gave It Credit For
caseynicholson14 February 2015
If you go back and look at the 1980 critical reception for the original "Friday the 13th", you'll find that the film was widely panned by critics, with many taking exception to the more overt gore and camera angles of the film. As I sit down to write this review some 35 years later, I find those reviews to have missed the genius of what is actually a very well made horror film.

It's fair to say that Friday the 13th may not be original in its own right, with "Halloween" having been made two years previously. Still, "Friday the 13th" actually is not a typical slasher movie, as its villain is not revealed until quite late in the movie, and then we ultimately find that the antagonist in "Friday the 13th" is far from a Michael Myers clone, but rather more of a psychopathic profile. I find this film to be infinitely more cerebral than its "slasher" movie counterparts, regardless of how stereotypical its sequels may have become as the 1980's went along. And inasmuch as the camera angles may have been controversially gross at the time, with their first-person views from the angle of the killer, the convention nonetheless marks the advent of a new move in cinema, one that certainly has often been imitated even if it's seldom done as effectively as it is in the opening scene of "Friday the 13th".

Another reason that this film is great is that it's not overdone. The acting of the teenage camp counselors may not be Oscar worthy in any given year, but the performances are strong, just the same. Betsy Palmer, who it's said was horrified to have taken on the script at all and only did it for the money, also turns out a truly strong performance, and ultimately provides one of the archetypes of the horror genre. The gritty texture of the film, visually, gives it a believable feel that transcends the decades, as does the soundtrack (even the odd mix of piano and synthesizer near the end after the film is coming to its dramatic conclusion).

I say all of this as someone who is not a horror film buff, but can still appreciate horror when it is well done, and my estimation of this movie is that it is much more well done than its contemporary critics gave it credit for. 8/10 stars.
7 out of 11 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
The film that started it all
Smells_Like_Cheese14 November 2003
Friday the 13th, as we all know, it's the film that started it all when it came to one of the most memorable boogeymen, Jason Vorhees. I'm afraid though that this isn't the film that he stars in, it's actually his mother that started the whole "have sex and die" sacred rule of horror movies. Friday the 13th has kind of a harsh rating here on IMDb, this is a classic in some sense I think, it's the ultimate sleepover movie and still gives me a little scare when I watch it in the dark. Friday the 13th also started the cheesy acting, un-needed sex scenes, blood, and gore; wither that's a good or bad thing, I'm still not sure, but one thing that Friday the 13th does deliver is awesome death scenes that will never disappoint. It'll also make you think twice about going to camp.

A group of young adults are opening up Camp Crystal Lake after 20 years, the place has been dubbed as a cursed camp where two young counselors were brutally murdered and a young boy drowned. But the group continues getting the camp ready, but when a nasty storm ensues, the group separates and does their own thing. But one by one, they keep disappearing, but when Alice, one of the camp counselors is concerned with how everyone is not returning, she goes to find a nasty discovery and will have to survive the most terrifying night of her life.

Friday the 13th is a memorable film in it's own right, I know that the performances are horrible, I mean, this is no Halloween, but it's a different concept and scared a lot of people. I remember it scared me as a kid to go to camp, that's for sure. But it has tense music and very scary scenes and it keeps the best going, along with a huge amount of sequels to come, we're up to 20, right? LOL, just kidding, it's only 10 that I'm aware of, but I would recommend Friday the 13th for the horror fans, it's always a fun movie to watch.

7/10
13 out of 24 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
Happy Friday The 13th Everyone!
moviemattb14 July 2018
As a child, I was not allow to watch any of these movies, as they are R rated horror flicks that contains nudity, violence, etc. I do remember one of my vague memories when "Friday the 13th: Part 3" came on TNN before it became Spike TV, and Paramount Network, I remember seeing Jason in a hockey mask chasing some girl at a barn. Heck, I remember when my uncle brought a copy of the movie when he rented from a video store, and I sneakily put the tape in to see Jason on an old VHS tape and seeing a brief snippet of him he did look quiet scary. After that, my mother caught me, and I turned it off. Never intend to watch it, I just only wanted to see Jason for a bit and that was it. With that said, here is my review of the first one that started it all, before Jason became the main killer, as well as putting on his iconic hockey, brought back as zombie, going to Manhattan, Hell, space, fighting Freddy Krueger, and being rebooted. The first film's plot is pretty simple, as you have a group of teenagers that are trying to reopen Camp Crystal Lake, but something evil is lurking them as it kills its victims. When I first saw this movie, I really love it, but as time goes by, I began to recognize its flaws. Nevertheless, its far from being a bad movie, and it is not the worst thing ever as critics make it out to be when it first came out. There is a lot of good things to say, where is the bad isn't that much, nor that big of a deal. To start off, I thought that Tom Savini's makeup FX are outstanding, and really is a master at it. The movie does have some great kills such as putting an axe on Jeannine Taylor's face, as well as having an arrow into Kevin Bacon's neck. The music by Harry Manfredini is completely unforgettable, he made that theme sound so iconic and everyone always like to remember that theme, when something bad is about to happen when you hear "Ki Ki Ki Ma Ma Ma." Totally classic. Taking place in the woods is great, and really does have that surreal atmosphere quality as you do feel somewhat unsettle as if you were alone in the woods. The characters I'll admit, aren't really three dimensional as you would seen in other great horror films, but at the end they are still likable. The acting isn't the greatest, but its really not that bad either. They all did fine for what they have to do; the best actors, in my opinion are Adrienne King and Betsy Palmer. For King, she really does have a natural beauty, and for having the girl next door type. Now for Palmer, she is having a blast with this role, and you can't take your eyes off on how fun she is for playing Jason's mother. The plot is simplistic as it needs to be, and the direction by Sean S. Cunningham is very solid. While as much as I love Palmer's performance, it would have been interesting if she had more screen time, if the audiences would have thought that she is a nice woman, before the twist ending is being revealed that she is the killer. Imagine that. Also, while I do love the character of Alice, I do notice a character error, where she runs away from Pamela Voorhees as she gets into the Jeep, but doesn't drive off as she screams by one of the victims that Pam killed. Don't get me wrong, I do love the climax, but for a realistic standpoint, she should know that the Jeep has gas in it, and could have turned the keys over so she can get herself out of there. The Jeep has gas, when Pam first arrives at the camp. Just saying. Lastly, I do love the last scene, which I'll admit, I did get jumped by the last scene, where Jason played by Ari Lehman jumps out off the water to pull Alice into the water. Very scary, to say the least. All in all, no matter what flaws this movie has, "Friday the 13th" is a fun thrill ride that has great kills, scare factors, unforgettable music, and likable characters. I'm giving this movie a 9 out of 10.
2 out of 2 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
An error has occured. Please try again.

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews


Recently Viewed