The 40th Anniversary of “Friday the 13th” Celebrates Four Decades of Terror

When Michael Myers began murdering teens in 1978’s Halloween, the slasher film became a phenomenon. Two years later, the original Friday the 13th was released, beginning an enduring franchise that continues to scare and delight fans to this day. If its been awhile since you visited Camp Crystal Lake, you may be shocked to learn that Jason wasn’t the big bad of the first film (umm, spoiler alert) and that he didn’t even begin wearing his iconic hockey mask until Friday the 13th: Part III. Another thing that will surprise you: The original Friday the 13th is way smarter and fun than critics gave it credit for at the time.

Here’s the synopsis, in case you are wondering what the fuss is all about:

The blood-soaked first film in the franchise has gone on to cult classic status. Decades after the drowning death of adolescent Jason Voorhees and the barn murders of a pair of young lovers, scenic Camp Crystal Lake reopens. Now the place is crawling with campers and young, naive, sex-hungry counselors…and a maniacal killer! And just what is the deal with this Jason kid? Adrienne King, Betsy Palmer, Kevin Bacon, Ari Lehman star.

Paramount has just released a 40th Anniversary Limited Edition Blu-ray of the film, complete with collectible steelbook packaging, and special features that include an unrated version of the flick plus “previously released bonus content including commentary, interviews with cast and crew, and behind-the-scenes featurettes.”

Friday the 13th Steelbook

The little slasher movie that could looks and sounds better than ever before, proving once again that the Friday the 13th saga has a lot of life left in it…even if the visitors of Camp Crystal Lake don’t.

This article originally ran in June and is being reprinted as part of our month-long Halloween celebrations!