Coming September 13th, 2013 (which so happens to be our next calender Friday the 13th) the Friday the 13th series will be released on blu-ray in one mass collection. Finally, right?!? Finally we’re given what we’ve been asking for ever since blu-ray format movies began coming out in droves. Ever since random Friday blu-rays have eked out into the market. Finally, we have the definitive collection. Or do we? From amateur to hard fans alike, Friday the 13th has been an amazing storyline worth watching over and over. Among other notable historic figures, Jason Voorhees will be remembered as the pinnacle bad guy among the many slasher antagonists of the 1980’s. Jason may not have started the modern slasher (credit for that should go to Myers), but he most certainly defined it. And yes, i’m placing this hockey mask wearing mama’s boy up on the pedestal he so rightly deserves, because with Jason there are no confusing story arches that you have to work to follow. He’s pissed his mom was killed. He’s pissed those morally questionable camp counselors let him drown as a boy and if you walk up into his Crystal Lake territory…well, adios compadre. Jason doesn’t stand on ceremony; he’s driven by revenge without the James Bond supervillain monologue. But I digress, let us get back to this “definitive” blu-ray release!
If you asked me to express in one word what I thought of this blu-ray Friday the 13th collection, my word would be: Exploited. Plain and simple, newcomers and old fans alike are being exploited against this most beloved horror series. Why? Well, lets take this point for point.
- Tin Case- this might seem mundane to some, but for me this just feels like some cheap (but expensive retail price of $130) metal box. A “definitive” collective should be in something worth the title of “Complete Collection.” And we haven’t even mentioned the art work on the cover yet. What is this? Some generic picture from Jason goes to Hell? Warner could have done something much — much — much more cooler and something worth the mantle of a Friday the 13th collection. Did the wow factor get drowned in the lake? There are so many iconic images to this franchise than some cheap copy and paste.
- Theatrical releases- each and everyone (except for perhaps the reboot film) of the FINALLY blu-ray release are not uncut…but simply a format transfer/repackaging of what we already have on DVD. If this was going to be the DEFINITIVE collection, every single disc should have included an uncut version with all the added blood the MPAA forced producers to leave out in theaters and the original DVD releases. 99% (1 % being the recent reboot included in this “collection”) of these features are recycled from previous deluxe editions. If i’m going the shell out $130, this had better be it, the very last collection you’ll ever need, or at least until the next video format comes out. But again, we end up coming back to the word — exploited.
- Friday the 13th part 3 and 3D- The blu-ray part 3 with this “collection” is simply the standard analygraph 3D format, not the actual modern 3D built in today’s HDTV’s. This is less of a big deal for me, but only because I haven’t jumped on the whole home theater 3D experience yet. But again, if you’re going to market a blu-ray collection for $130, shouldn’t it be legit? Why not bring this awesome original 3D movie into the new format? Laziness and greed…
- Special features- Nothing new here that hasn’t already been released at one point or another on one of the many DVD collections. The only thing new is the bonus “killer disc” full of supposedly never before seen footage on the making of this famous franchise; however, chances are those very same “never before seen” moments will be included in the upcoming release of a new Friday documentary called, Crystal Lake Memories: The Complete History of Friday the 13th.
Friday the 13th is a longstanding series. There have been many collection releases as the franchise rights have continually changed hands. Understandable, each producer is going to want to put out their collection, but when it comes to a blu-ray $130 box set, is it too much to ask for it to be worth the cost? As of now, blu-ray is king, shouldn’t a blu-ray collection be better than the already released DVD collections? Makes sense to me; makes sense to a lot of fans out there that have already commented on the pending release. Apparently not so much for Warner Bros. Check it out for yourselves, here is what will be included in the blu-ray collection:
- Disc 1 – Friday the 13th (1980)
- Disc 2 – Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981)
- Disc 3 – Friday the 13th Part 3 in 3D (1982)
- Disc 4 – Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (1984) NEW TO BLU-RAY
- Disc 5 – Friday the 13th Part V: A New Beginning (1985) / Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives (1986) NEW TO BLU-RAY
- Disc 6 – Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood (1988) / Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989) NEW TO BLU- RAY
- Disc 7 – Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday (1993) / Jason X (2002) NEW TO BLU-RAY
- Disc 8 – Freddy vs. Jason (2003)
- Disc 9 – Friday the 13th (2009) (Theatrical Version and “Killer Cut” Extended Version)
- Disc 10 – Killer Bonus DVD Disc
Bottom line: though intentionally excited to hear of the upcoming release of a blu-ray collection of my most beloved 80’s slasher, after looking up and reading through the above mentioned features and also seeing the marked up price, well…its not worth the cost, not yet anyhow. I know a lot of hard core fans and folks who don’t really care for uncut enough to deny themselves and will thus be purchasing this collection. Some will be grumpy; others will actually smile as they hand over their hard earned funds. But not me. This release is the same release I already own on DVD; $130 isn’t worth a few extra pixels. Warner Bros. could have done Jason and Friday the 13th right by honoring it with a collection worthy to be on a blu-ray format, but apparently the only thing their interested in is money through the exploitation of endearing fans of the series. This is a very sad Friday indeed.