#30 -- Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981)

Director: Steve Miner
Rating: 5 / 5

Alice, the sole survivor of Pamela Voorhees' rage, is at home. It is a couple months after her nightmare, and she believes that it is over. Other than bad dreams and increasing paranoia, everything seems fine. That is until Alice finds a decapitated head in her refrigerator, and she gets an icepick to her skull. Alice thought that killing the woman would be the end of it, but oh how wrong she was. What she didn't know was that that woman's son - the one who had supposedly drowned in 1957; the one she was desperately trying to avenge - had been watching. This man, extremely sheltered and living off of the land, watched his mother being murdered. He might or might not have known what his mother was doing - murdering innocent people - but that is irrelevant. He loved his mother, and in his mind, she did not deserve to die. He was hurt and angry. So he decided to find the girl and avenge his mother.  How did he find her, you ask? Well, according to Making Friday the 13th: The Legend of Camp Blood, Alice returned to Camp Blood. She felt that she needed to deal with the trauma and terror she'd been through, "exorcise her demons." It was from there that Jason followed her home.
Five years later, a counselor training camp was opened - opposite the camp where the original movie took place- by a man named Paul. Plenty of youngsters signed up for the course, including Paul's girlfriend Ginny. Huddled around a campfire, Paul tells the story of Camp Blood: Pamela was killed and that her son had watched the whole thing. It was just a legend at that point. Jason was the boogeyman, nothing but imagination. Or at least that is what they thought at first. They were a little bit scared, but they didn't think too much of it, until their friends started dying. 

Half of the kids at the camp go out to a bar to party. The others decide to stay back at camp - which they probably shouldn't have done. They were killed, and the others returned to the fight of their lives. This was a stunt by the crew of the flim, because there were "too many characters." They needed to isolate the main characters so the film could focus mainly on them (again, Friday the 13th: The Legend of Camp Blood)

The flim ends up with Paul and Ginny as the last two standing. Ginny finds a sort of shrine to Pamela Voorhees, where she dons the woman's sweater and tricks Jason. She speaks softly and sweetly to him (like a mother would), and Jason sees his mother's face instead of Ginny's. This shows - some would say Jason's lack of intelligence - his vulnerability. Some - many - believe that Jason is, and always has been, nothing but a mindless killing machine. But there is more to him than that. He's a big, strong man - but he's soft as well. You just have to know where to poke. He has feelings; he knows what he's doing, and he's smarter than most people think.

There is a climactic battle, where Jason Voorhees' grisly face is revealed. Note: Jason did not yet have his hockey mask. Instead, he wore a burlap sack, and I believe some overalls. It was a little bit comical, and my nickname for him in this one is Farmer J. I read an excerpt of a novelization of the film, and it states that when Jason emerged from the lake where he supposedly drowned, he found a mirror. He was so frightened and appalled by his own face that he felt it needed to be covered. It wasn't until the third film that he got his iconic hockey mask.

After Paul and Ginny's struggle with Jason, Ginny awakes while being carried off by paramedics. Jason is nowhere to be found, and neither is Paul. It never states directly that Paul was killed, but we can assume that he was for several reasons. Some might believe that he escaped, but I can't see him leaving his girlfriend to fend for herself against a vicious killer. So, there are only two more options. 1) He got lost in the woods. So, if he hasn't been killed already, he will be. Jason has lived in the woods for the majority of his life and, though Paul is a wonderful camper, knows the woods far better. And he will find him. 2) Paul has been killed and carted off by Jason, unseen by Ginny or the paramedics. Why did he leave Ginny and only take Paul? Well, there has to be at least one survivor, right?

Body Count:
1. Alice: icepick through the skull
2. Crazy Ralph: strangled (I was so sad to see Ralph go; he was one of my favorite characters of the first film)
3. Policeman: hammered in the head
4. Scott: throat slit
5. Terry: stabbed
6. Mark: machete through the head
7 & 8. Jeff & Sandra: impaled while making love
9. Vickie: stabbed
10. Paul: vanished, assumed dead

I will go back to what I said in my review of the first Friday the 13th. While gruesome and horrible, it is a beautiful story of unconditional love. Pamela was seeking revenge for her son's death, and Jason was doing the same for his mother. One must know the pain Jason must have felt watching his mother die. His pain and frustration is not fully shown until much later, in Marcus Nispel's remake in 2009. 

Fun fact: the actor credited for playing the role of Jason Voorhees, quite honestly, did not deserve it. Warrington Gillette did, in fact, play Jason in a couple of scenes (it is his face we see when Jason's mask is removed). The crew realized that he could not do his own stunts, as he'd said he could. They had to create special props for him, just so he could get the job done. They eventually got tired of it and fired him. In his place, they hired Steve Dash, who played Jason in the majority of the film. But since it was Gillette's face shown, he received the credit, and Dash received a measley stunt credit. 

I'm sure, in making this film, they thought it would be a fun idea to bring Jason into the picture. But did they realize how far it would go? This was only the second in a franchise of twelve, and I'm sure (I hope; keeping my fingers crossed) there are more to come. Some would say that it's gone too far, and that there's not much else that could be done with the character. And partly, I agree. In some of the films, it seems that they pulled the ideas out of their asses, and didn't properly think them through. The result: not the best. But regardless, I am a mega fan, and I will never get tired of seeing my hockey masked killer do his worst. 

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