New Friday the 13th Part 2 DVD: Worth it?
This is part of my continued look at the new special edition DVD's for Friday the 13th Parts 1-3, recently released by Paramount Pictures. Is this new disc for the second film worth your cash?
"Friday the 13th Part 2" has in recent years actually become my least favorite in the series. That's not necessarily a horrible thing, since I love all of these films, but if I had to rank them today I would put this one at the bottom. In this one, we find out that (somehow) Jason is still alive and now a mongoloid adult that has been living in the woods since his supposed drowning as a child. After somehow chartering a flight and killing Alice in the opening scene (think about it, it doesn't make sense), he makes his way back to Camp Crystal Lake to off the teenagers attempting to open up the cabin again.
Unlike the SE of the original film, "Friday 2" was not given a Blu-Ray release, therefore what you are looking at here is not a new transfer. Not only that, but despite all the talk in the special features of gore that was cut (over 1 minute according to Peter Bracke), it's nowhere to be found on this disc. It's possible the footage was destroyed or not in any kind of shape to be restored into the film, but it's also possible that Paramount is skimping out on us. I'll let you decide which one of those to believe.
INSIDE CRYSTAL LAKE MEMORIES
This is an interview with the author who put together "Crystal Lake Memories", a pretty fantastic book on the Friday series. The picture above is the guy who conducted the interview, who also happens to own Dark Delicacies, the horror and scifi shop out in Burbank California. His interviewing skills were fine, but his "not awkward" skills seem to need a bit of a tuneup. Yikes.
As far as the actual interview, most of it is just about the making of his book. Then, towards the end they talk for a few minutes specifically on "Part II". Most of this is information I've already heard packaged a few different ways. It runs for about 11 minutes, and although there are a few interesting tidbits, I defy you to come away with it with any other image than the one you see above. Good luck sleeping tonight.
FRIDAY'S LEGACY: HORROR CONVENTIONS
This runs about 6:30 and was shot at 2008's "Scarefest" in Lexington Kentucky, which apparently had a "Friday the 13th" reunion last year. In addition to the footage, we see some familiar faces like Tom Savini, Ari Lehman and Harry Manfredini, discussing what it's like to attend conventions and how much fun they have. Interesting for a few minutes, but ultimately this feature is kind of a throwaway.
LOST TALES FROM CAMP BLOOD PART 2
If you scroll down and click to read my review of the disc for the original film, you'll see a bit more detailed opinion on this feature. This is basically a continuation of the story started in the first "Lost Tales"... which amounts to a shot on video fan homage to the series, where apparently they can't even show Jason because of copyright issues. So we either see him with his head cut off by the frame, or hilariously in this one, out of focus in the background (where it's clearly just a guy in a black hoodie). Let me reiterate this, whoever came up with this SHOULD BE FIRED. And yes I realize we're in a recession and he'll probably have a tough time finding another job. Hopefully it will teach him a lesson. Ultimately, I'm still torn over whether this is just stupid and misguided, or actually insulting to fans of the series.
This is a convention panel with 4 of the actors who played Jason, two of which were only on screen for a grand total of 5 minutes. This is great if you want to hear Ari Lehman pimp his band's CD... so in other words, it's not.
ORIGINAL THEATRICAL TRAILER
Gee... you shouldn't have.
I was willing to forgive the relatively lackluster special features on the disc for the original "Friday the 13th" because of the spectacular new transfer and the fact that it's the only uncut version you can legally find in the states. This disc however is inexcusable, and as I've sat here and wrote all this out, it's really begun to hit a nerve with me. Out of the 4 special features on this disc (which combined barely run 20 minutes, trailer not included) only one of them has anything to do with the film on the disc. And even then, it's only tangentially related. No cast interviews, no behind the scenes, no commentary, no uncut version of the film and they couldn't even bother with a new transfer. Basically, if you're looking for my verdict, this DVD can suck it. Even if you're a huge fan of the original, stay away from this at all costs, it will only make you angry.