Plot: What’s it about?
Crystal Lake’s past is soaked in blood, but that doesn’t stop summer camp owners from trying to lure in campers. Five years after a deceased camper’s mother went on a murderous rampage, leaving behind an impressive body count, someone has decided it was the ideal spot for a fun summer. A group of young counselors has already arrived, in order to prep the campground for the campers, but of course, there’s more fun than work. The group never shies away from the booze, weed, or unprotected sex, which draws the ire of one former camper, Jason Voorhees. His mother’s reign of terror was ended, but now he is back from the lake’s depths and looking to settle the score. Once Jason targets the fun loving counselors, will any of them survive and will Crystal Lake forever be haunted by its past?
While Friday the 13th is synonymous with Jason Vorhees, he only had a brief cameo in the first film. But in this sequel, it was Jason’s turn to shine, even if he didn’t have his trademark hockey mask just yet. So how did Jason’s first run as the featured slasher turn out? This is a predictable slasher film of course, but it is handled well and is fun to watch. All of the usual conventions are in place, from the 10 Little Indians murder chain to the shallow, stereotypical characters to the “leave it open for a sequel” finale, but it all works in Friday the 13th: Part 2. The pace is brisk, the kills are cool, and we even have a female that can act, so the film does bring some goods to the table. This is still going to appeal most to fans of horror and slasher films in specific, but as far as sequels go, Friday the 13th: Part 2 is more than solid.
Video: How does it look?
Friday the 13th: Part 2 is presented in 1.78:1 anamorphic widescreen. I didn’t have high hopes, but this looks good and is a massive improvement over the original DVD release. The print looks much cleaner and of course, that leads to enhancements across the board. I found detail to be strong throughout, with solid depth, but never three-dimensional level stuff. Even so, a refined image that is sharper than ever before. Also improved is the contrast, which is starker and more consistent, while colors are good and no issues arise. This is simply a very good transfer for a movie that has looked rather poor on previous home video releases, so fans should be satisfied.
Audio: How does it sound?
The audio isn’t as good as the video, but this Dolby TrueHD 5.1 option isn’t bad. The audio just rarely leaves the front channels and that limits the experience. These kind of movies can benefit from an active track, as surround use can add to the tension, mood, and atmosphere, but this track remains flat throughout. The music gets a minor boost, but aside from that, this is a pretty inactive soundtrack. I will say that dialogue is clear and never suffers, however. This disc also includes the original mono option, French and Spanish language tracks, and subtitles in English, French, Spanish, and Portuguese.
Supplements: What are the extras?
The best extra is Jason Forever, a half hour featurette of a roundtable with various actors who have played Jason. This is fun to watch, but doesn’t offer much depth. Still a good piece and one that fans should enjoy. This disc also includes two brief featurettes, a newly created short film, and the film’s theatrical trailer.