His Name Was Jason Daniel Farrands

His Name Was Jason Daniel Farrands
As horror freaks gear up for the impending Friday the 13th remake, they can take solace in this excellent new two-disc retrospective that examines the franchise in all of its glory and shame. Hosted by make-up/effects wiz Tom Savini, at first His Name Was Jason has that unofficial feel to it but thankfully, Anchor Bay went and sought the rights to use footage from all of the films to date. Such an acquisition enhances a project like this, especially considering the first chunk summarizes each chapter via clips and interviews with cast and crew members, as well as hardcore fans (Seth Green, Hatchet's Adam Green) and critics (BloodyDisgusting.com). Conscious of the fact that not every film was a classic, the memories are filled with as much criticism as affection, the best of which comes when they argue the plausibility and reasoning behind some of the choices made, like the whole premise of Jason Goes to Hell, the marketing plan (the frustrating videogame, transforming Jason into a "super slasher hero") and who thought up the iconic goalie mask. Themes and trends are discussed, like how all the strong women always fight back, how Shavar Ross (Dudley from Diff'rent Strokes) was "one of the very few brothers to survive," as well as explanations about how the filmmakers pulled off "Jason's greatest kills." We also hear about the controversies, like how John Carl Buechler's The New Blood was "raped" by the MPAA, parents picketed some screenings and a nasty vaginal death was cut due to the threat of an X-rating. The remake is also covered, though little is revealed other than that it will have more boobs and gory kills than ever. The extras are plentiful as well. "Final Cuts" includes interview outtakes and various interviewees discuss the most memorable scenes in "Dragged From the Lake." Even better are the fan films, which include Bun-O-Vision's 30-second Freddy vs. Jason parody, the Angry Video Game Nerd's review, Jason Hurts, an infomercial on "Voorexia," an anti-depressive for depressed serial killers, and Rupert Takes Manhattan, a mockumentary about Jason's catcher's mask-wearing failure of a brother. And everyone takes part in "Camp Crystal Lake Survival Guide," an old-fashioned educational film with pointers on how to not die (i.e., "if Jason has been dead for years, don't go dig him up"). (Anchor Bay)