Monday, June 7, 2010

"Friday the 13th Part Two"(1981)d/Steve Miner

Impressive poster art,you guys went all out.Is that Frazetta?
The summer of 1981 was a pretty good time to be a kid like me.Me and the boys spent endless hours and dollars(from this huge-schnozzed kid,who will remain nameless here,that stole beaucoup bucks from his own granny just to make friends with everybody)at arcades like Davey's Mine and Aladdin's on classic video games,I had just experienced my first winning season as a Lions fan,mainly on account of the legs of Heisman winner,Billy Sims,and we were all unplugging the jukebox,doing ourselves a collective favour.Best of all,it was the summer of horror movies galore,and the American Theater was mere blocks away.It seemed like every week there was a new slasher being served up,and multiple times every week we all paid to see the latest gloriously grotesque feature,only getting kicked the fuck out a few times in the process.Tonight's entry was on our must-see list,after thoroughly enjoying the living shit out of Maestro Savini's horrendous handiwork in the first film...
"Main Entry: 1for·mu·la
Pronunciation: \ˈfȯr-myə-lə\
Function: noun
4 : a customary or set form or method allowing little room for originality"
To say the producers rigidly stuck to the formula for commercial success early on in this series,is like saying Jayne Mansfield had two assets she'll always be remembered for.If you can overlook minor aspects like plotline or continuity,you'll be entertained for the better part of an hour and a half by several diversely idiotic teenaged camp counselors who overlook the fact that they're partying with booze and drugs and having wanton sex ridiculously close to where it all started(and continues to continue,over and over again,at least until the box office profits dry up).In the first sequel to Friday the 13th,director Steve Miner takes the reigns of the franchise,which it seems,was already on auto-pilot,and pushes wheelbarrows of money to the bank for Paramount Pictures,taking the joke ending of the first film,and creating a lucrative franchise around him,which is currently on the SECOND Friday the 13th Pt. 2,scheduled for release in 2013.Now that's some scary shit,right there.
Insert your own "impaling Marta Kober" joke,dripping with innuendo,here.I've made too many over the years already.
Two months after Alice(Adrienne King)managed to survive the vicious onslaught at Camp Crystal Lake,she eats temple-inserted icepick death from an unknown assailant.Five years later,Paul(John Furey)tells a group of stupid kids around a campfire who've gathered for "counselor training" a short walk away from the original site of Camp Blood,the terrible tale of Mrs. Voorhees' deceased mongoloid son,Jason Voorhees,who,apparently,after fatally drowning,climbed right out of Crystal Lake alive,dried himself off,and built a shack in the woods for himself,where he's survived for two decades,undetected by society altogether,mere yards away,now poised to take revenge against all camp counselors,both for his mother's beheading and letting his ass drown as a child.Just then,unfunny jerkoff,Ted jumps out in a rubber mask and loincloth with a spear and scares them all.That's a pretty good joke,guys.Oh wait,that's also the premise to this movie?I guess it's feasible if you also buy a now-hulking murderous retard standing idly by in the woods,watching somebody cleave his mommy's domepiece off her shoulders without tagging himself in and effing one young girl who's nearly in shock right the eff up,like he was about to do hundreds of times over afterwards.And the same hydrocephallic horror icon figuring out where Alice has relocated herself,then walked there(unnoticed,mind you) just to snuff her candle.I don't know if I can swallow all of...wait a sec,is that the delicious and talented Marta Kober in a bikini top?You know,the whole damned thing just got more feasible to me.Local bicycling loony,Crazy Ralph gets garrotted from behind a tree(unlike Captain Kidd,who was gibbetted).A cop in pursuit of a sackheaded oaf crossing the road eats cranially inflicted claw hammer death in Jay-Jay's mid-woods shit shack.Then the counselors-to-be,shagged,fagged,and fashed from all the strenuous training(translation:looking for Camp Blood,boogieing,jogging in the woods,swimming,and a crucial bbq...I'd be crying "Uncle!" over here,myself),decide to do a little bit of battery recharging in town,in the form of getting shitface knackered at the pub,while several vict...errr,kids stay behind to enjoy some marijuana and intercourse instead.Terry the hardbody goes skinny-dipping in the lake,while Scott the pompous douchebag steals her clothes,inadvertantly getting himself caught in an Apache foothold trap(!) in the process.Okay,so Jason the deformed mongoloid set that?Just checking.
Mark(Tom McBride),about to get fucked,instead,gets fucked.
Anyway,Scott gets an extra mouth on his neck,free of charge,and Terry joins him when she discovers his lifeless body upside down,swaying to and fro in the moonlight.Sandra(Kober)and Jeff,ill from prolonged dopesmoking and boogieing,retire upstairs to try pushing each other to the hospital while naked in bed.They get shishka-fucked through the mattress by Ted's trusty spear.Vickie the charity fuck,about to give Mark the crippled arm wrestler a piece of pity-pussy,gets stabbed up in Psycho(1960)-fashion,while her wheeled sex interest eats machete face-bissection before rolling down the stairs.Paul returns from the bar with Ginny the new Final Girl,and discover the bloody shennanigans unfolding at the camp.Paul gets attacked by the sackheaded oaf in bib overalls(where'd he get those?),and Ginny discovers Crazy Ralph's cadaver,then jumps out the fuckin' window.The homicidal John Merrick lookalike gives chase through the woods,when she stumbles across his craptastic abode,littered with his bloody trophies,and a candle-lit altar to his dead mother,with her severed,rotting head as the centerpiece.Ginny throws on Mrs. V's bloody,moldy sweater and tries to dupe the deformed maniac into thinking she has returned to him,but he spots the head with his good eye,still on the altar.Paul shows up,struggles with the burlapped bastard,Ginny picks up a stray machete and plants it in the masked monster's shoulder,apparently doing him in.Back at the cabin,the ugly fuck mirrors the trick ending of the first movie only on land this time,crashing through a window in slow-mo,grabbing a screaming Ginny.As she's being gurneyed into an ambulance,was it a terrible dream?Where's Paul?Did they really try and pass this off as a serious attempt at a different movie?
Jason(Warrington Gillette)loves giving those surprise hugs,doesn't he?
If you put cardboard cut out maskies of the first film's cast over the faces of the cast of the second film,it probably wouldn't make for any more of a cookie cutter feel here.Not that I mind,really,it is what it is.Miner does an adequate job injecting plenty of jump scares and tense moments throughout,and quite a few paens to Bava and Hitchcock as well.Sadly,most of Carl Fullerton's excellent gore effects work remains missing from all dvd releases thus far,including the latest special edition(interestingly,most of the other films have either restored gore or a deleted scenes feature).How many more discs are we gonna have to buy of this thing before we get the fully intact bloody payoff already,Paramount?You could probably meet most of the cast at upcoming horror conventions if you sell off some of your 3 3/4" action figure collection as a budget for the weekend.Just sayin'.Of note,the fantastic Betsy Palmer payed her light bill with a memorable return cameo here,whereas the delicious and talented Marta Kober seems to have fallen off the radar sometime in the nineties after scoring roles in fare like Rad and Slumber Party Massacre 3.Come back,Marta,my adolescent fantasies just aren't the same without you,baby.
From "What's My Line?" to "Where's my Atlas vertebra?".You've come a long way,Betsy Palmer.

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