His Name Was Jason: 30 Years of Friday the 13th (2-Disc Splatter Edition) (2008) Review
(More customer reviews)The actual documentary gets **** Out of 5. But ***** overall for the DVD.
His Name Was Jason: 30-Years of Friday the 13th is a must own for fans of the franchise; this documentary on the series was written by Thommy Hutson & Anthony Masi and directed by Daniel Farrands who wrote Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers and hosted by Tom Savini. Due to some of the people involved like Anthony Masi and the fact this was put out by Starz Home Entertainment (using the Anchor Bay name) no doubt people will compare this to Halloween: 25-Years of Terror.
As much as I enjoyed His Name Was Jason it isn't without its flaws. I was hoping this documentary would cover some of the production on the movies, but actually very little of the making of the films are covered and that's where 25-Years of Terror edges it out. For most of the 90-minutes it's various members of the cast and crew and other filmmakers talking about the movies like Jason's psyche and some of the kill scenes. In a sense it's sort of like hanging out with friends talking about the films, which was really cool, but I would have liked to have heard more about the production of the films. The first 10-minutes or so are spent talking about the plots and I thought this documentary might fail. I mean I enjoy the series, but there weren't many plots. The first and third are really the only ones with hint of a plot, but once we get past that His Name Was Jason really picks up.
What I absolutely loved about His Name Was Jason was seeing some of the actors taking part. Some of the actors have done conventions or put themselves out there with interviews for various horror sites, but some of the actors are ones that haven't been heard of since the releases of the films. There were a lot of actors involved and that's what really made this so much fun. My only complaint is too much time was put on Joe Lynch director of Wrong Turn 2, Adam Green director of Hatchet and James Roday star of the TV series Psych. While I loved Hatchet and love Roday on Psych, I do feel too much time was spent with them. First off Lynch and Green were hysterical, but I would rather hear more from the people actually involved.
Like I said most of His Name Was Jason focuses on stuff you would chat with friends about rather than the making of the movies. Shavar Ross who played Reggie in the 5th part mentions how originally he was set to return for the 6th. Obviously that didn't happen since Jason Lives went in a different direction, but it would have been nice if stated what the original idea was. Granted it's not a huge deal, but information like this would have been nice. The documentary was very fun and at times informative, but I hoped for more focus on the production of the movies and there really should have been a lot more focus put on the people involved, but despite these complaints His Name Was Jason truly is a must own for fans and again despite any complaints the fans of these movies will love this documentary flaws and all.
Some people have complained about certain people not being involved, but look this documentary covers every film in the franchise and it would be impossible to get everyone involved. It would have been nice to see Dana Kimmell, Thom Matthews and Corey Feldman, but regardless His Name Was Jason is still great and has at least 1 person per film. Every film in the series has at least 1 person involved so due to that people have to lighten up.
As good as His Name Was Jason was it's the bonus features that really make this DVD so amazing. The DVD is jam packed with bonus features of 4-hours of content and this is how a DVD release should be like. Quite honestly His Name Was Jason would rate as one of my favorite DVDs; Anchor Bay truly did an amazing job at the release.
The 2nd disc has a feature called Final Cuts, which runs at a total of 77-minutes and are extended interviews with all the directors except Steve Miner and Ronny Yu. Neither of them took part in this set and it's quite a shame Steve Miner wasn't involved. Miner directed Part II, which was Jason's debut as the killer and Part 3, which was the first time Jason dons the Iconic hockey mask. When it comes to the franchise Jason and the mask are the first two things that come to mind and I would hate to think Steve Miner thinks he's above the series.
Final Cuts goes into much better detail on the making of the movies and gives pretty good insight. Some of what is said has been stated before, but this goes into pretty good detail about how the movies came about as well as filming them. His Name Was Jason was shot in 2008 and at that time some of the films ranged from 15-years old to 28-years old so it's understandable that certain details might be forgotten, but this is what the actual documentary should have been like. Again some of this stuff may have been stated before, but it was an excellent feature and really gives excellent insight.
From Script to Screen runs at 31-minutes and has interviews with Victor Miller writer of the original, Barney Cohen writer of the Final Chapter, Todd Farmer writer of Jason X and Damien Shannon & Mark Swift writers of Freddy Vs Jason and Friday the 13th 09. This is another solid feature, which gives excellent insight to the actual writing of the movies.
But my favorite features were Fox Comes Home, which runs at just under 4-minutes and features Gloria Charles who played Fox in part 3 she was a member of the biker gang and in this feature Gloria Charles walks around the filming locations of part 3 and at the end she recites one of her famous lines. Closing the Book on the Final Chapter runs at 12-minutes and features Erich Anderson who played Rob and director Joseph Zito.
This feature like Fox Comes Home is walking around the filming locations and even includes the Jarvis house as it looks now and that was really cool to see. This feature gives some really excellent insight to the making of the movie and again this is what the actual documentary should have been like.
Shelly Lives features Larry Zerner in character and was a laugh riot! This feature is bound to put a smile on the faces of the viewer and since Shelly was such a beloved character it makes this feature even better.
Overall His Name Was Jason: 30-Years of Friday the 13th is hands down one of the very best DVDs ever released. The documentary was very solid, but it's the bonus features that make this release so amazing. Fans of the series will no doubt enjoy the documentary and will love the bonus features; this is a must own for all Friday the 13th fans.
There are a lot more features on this DVD, but too many to review all of them, but trust me this DVD is worth every penny.
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Jason Voorhees has carved his place into American pop culture and is one of the most recognizable cinematic killer in horror history. Now nearly, 30 years later, see how it all happened! With over 100 interviews with cast and crew, behind the scenes footage and dozen of film clips spanning the entire Friday the 13th series leading up to the 2/13/09 remake, there is no better way to get up close and personal with one of the most feared icons of our generation. Shut off the lights, lock up the cabin and get ready to learn all about a boy... His Name Was Jason.HIS NAME WAS JASON: 30 YEARS OF FRIDAY THE 13TH is a two disc set loaded with over 4 hours of bonus material. This film is a behind the scenes look at the franchise that broke horror box office records and made Jason a pop culture icon. With over 80 interviews from the cast and crew of the Friday the 13th film franchise, including the new Friday the 13th film, these firsthand accounts of never-before-told stories and rare behind the scenes photographs offer the ultimate look at the history of FRIDAY THE 13TH!