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WRITTEN REVIEW: His Name Was Jason: 30 Years of Friday the 13th

Oh, you though I was going to forget about Friday the 13th, didn’t you? Well you just settle down freak show, this one is for you!

Hosted by special effects legend Tom Savini, His Name Was Jason is a retrospective look at the Friday the 13th film series and the Jason Voorheese character. The tortured, undead, murdering machine has starred in eight Friday films, two self-titled, one monster mash-up crossover, and one remake, becoming one of horror’s most loved and feared icons.

Watch cast, crew, and fans recount the making of each film, their favorite scenes, their favorite kills and how each film was made. Among the interviewed are Sean S. Cunningham, Tom Savini, Adam Green, a collection of actors who have played the role of Jason including Kane Hodder, a gaggle of once dead teenagers, and one internet videogame nerd, James Rolfe, from Cinemassacre.

I particularly enjoyed the special effects portion of the film. Special effects artists from each film explained how some of my favorite kills were pulled off along with the development of Jason’s appearance. Something that has always interested me about movies were the special effects, because when ya get right down to it, they're just magic tricks. It's tricking the eye to believe what you know isn't real. What can be more fun than magic. . . other than throwing sloppy-joes at hookers that is?

Some have complained that this documentary is too short, and that each film is only touched on before they move onto the next film. This is half true. The film moves from each installment to the next rather quickly, however this is the only way to discuss twelve films while sticking to a reasonable film length. As it is, His Name Was Jason is informative and very entertaining. If you are one of the naysayers, pick up the two disc version. The second disc has over four more hours of deleted scenes and extras.

This is a great documentary for any fan of Friday the 13th, Jason, or horror. Check it out!


★ ★ ★ ½