Crystal Lake Memories: The Complete History Of Friday The 13th Blu-ray and DVD Combo Pack Review
“Friday The 13th” fans will have a bloody good time with “Crystal Lake Memories.”
Based on the book of the same name, “Crystal Lake Memories: The Complete History of Friday The 13th” is a documentary about the entire F13 franchice (yes, even the loathsome reboot). Breaking down each of the 12 films individually (and even touching on the TV series that is unrelated to the Voorhees mythology), the Corey Feldman narrated 1428 Films documentary dives into a variety of subjects such as how certain death scenes were filmed, the origin of the iconic music, Adrienne King having a scary stalker in real life, multiple injuries on the set of a number of films, the original concept for “Friday The 13th Part 3,” Tommy Jarvis, the horror references in “Jason Lives,” alternate endings for various films, the massive amount of cuts to “Friday The 13th Part 7,” continuity errors, the long in development “Freddy Vs. Jason,” the “Freddy Vs. Jason Vs. Ash” comic book series, and the franchise’s legacy. Naturally, a host of people involved in each film (or multiple films in some cases) are interviewed here. Highlights include Creator Sean S. Cunningham, Tom Savini, writer Victor Miller, Adrienne King, Betsy Palmer, Amy Steel, Larry Zerner, Lawrence Monoson, Tom McLoughlin, Alice Cooper, Frank Mancuso, Jr., Lar Park Lincoln, Kane Hodder, Erin Gray, Adam Marcus, Todd Farmer, Robert Englund, and Derek Mears. Sadly, there are a few notable talents who likely didn’t want to participate in the documentary such as Kevin Bacon, Crispin Glover, and Steve Miner.
As a huge fan of the “Friday The 13th” series and the “Never Sleep Again” documentary, I was eager to check out “Crystal Lake Memories.” I had heard great things about the book it was based on, but I never got around to checking it out. Thankfully, F13 fans now have a visual companion to the book featuring still photographs, interviews, film clips, outtakes, and more facts and behind-the-scenes footage than you can shake a machete at.
While some astute fans will notice that some of the footage in ‘Crystal’ was featured in the previous “Friday The 13th” documentary (“His Name Was Jason”), much of the footage is new. While I could go on and on about the fascinating stories from each and every film, I feel I would be doing a disservice to readers by spoiling the documentary. Suffice to say, there’s plenty of geektastic information about films that influenced “Friday the 13th” (and films that were influenced by “Friday the 13th”), the Jason Vorhees father character that never came to fruition, unused scenes, MPAA edits, cast and crew members that tragically passed away too soon, the inception of the first film, casting stories, and so much more. In other words, it’s Voorheevian heaven!
Presented in 1.78:1, the Blu-ray transfer is a significant upgrade from that of the DVD copy. The interview participants, film clips, and photographs may look a bit fuzzy in spots, but the colors look sharper to be sure.
The Dolby Digital 5.1 audio track is also clearer on the Blu-ray discs.
The only extras include trailers for “Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy,” “More Brains! A Return To the Living Dead,” and Adrienne King.com and a feature length commentary by director Daniel Farrands, Peter M. Bracke (the author of the novel), and editor Luke Rafalowski. It’s a solid and enthusiastic track in which the trio chats about the filming of the opening and closing segments, hero characters, box office numbers, crew members, various cuts of the documentary, people they couldn’t interview, interstitials, Luke’s like of the unpopular films, gimmicky F13 films, the reboot, and much more.
Summary: “Crystal Lake Memories” clocks in at a whopping 400 minutes, and yet, I could have watched another 400 minutes. The “Friday The 13th” series may not be high art (they might not even be the best slasher films around from a technical perspective), but for many horror fans including myself, they are comfort horror. The series of films are simply fun and atmospheric slasher flicks and, much like a James Bond film, I can put on ALMOST any of the F13 films at any time and have a blast revisiting them time and time again. If you’re a F13 fan like me, you owe it to yourself to check out “Crystal Lake Memories.”
Note: If you order “Crystal Lake Memories” from this link http://crystallakememories.net/buy/index.html you can receive an extra bonus disc. This bonus disc is NOT available anywhere else.