Saturday, October 31, 2020

31 Days of Horror: Back to Crystal Lake

It's no secret that the Friday the 13th franchise has taken over my blog this October. I figured I may as well go all out. After watching all of the proper franchise (and I'm still not finished ranking those kills), I ventured out and found a highly regarded fan film. Then, to my surprise, I found that the makers of that film released a sequel to it just a few weeks ago. And well...

Never Hike Alone


We meet with adventure YouTuber Kyle (Drew Leighty) who's out making a video about his latest solo hike and pausing to rest and pimp various merch. Eventually, he discovers that he is at the legendary Camp Crystal Lake. Next thing you know, he's being hunted by none other than Mr. Voorhees, himself. The bulk of the film, which runs a bit less than an hour, is concerned with this matchup. This has gained a huge following among fans of the franchise, for good reason. It's as tense as anything in the canon, especially anything released this century. Jason is rescued from the depths of self-parody and restored to his iconic form. Tight purse strings hold it back a bit, but only in how much more we know can be shown. What is shown looks great. If you didn't already know it was one, you likely wouldn't know it was fan film. You would know that it's a great addition to Jason lore.

Never Hike in the Snow


After the success of Never Hike Alone, and the crying out for Jason to show up in the snow, director Vincente DiSanti decides to give us what we want with this one. This one starts off with Mark (Courtlan Gordon) running for his life, yes, through a wintry landscape. Soon enough, Jason catches up with him. After that we meet a host of characters including Mark's mom and local law enforcement who go searching for the missing Mark. And off we go. The budget is still small, but like the first, it looks fantastic. To help, this film trades in some runtime for showing more of what Jason can do. It's even better than Never Hike Alone and it's biggest flaw is that runtime, clocking in at barely half an hour, leaves us wanting more. The good thing is there are plans for more. I'm looking forward to them. I almost forgot to mention that DiSante not only directed both films, he also portrayed Jason, and did a fantastic job.


  1. Exactly... just don't go hiking in the woods. Otherwise, you're bothering a guy named Jason who is likely going to kill you.

  2. Don’t hike, don’t have sex, don’t be the only African American with the group and don’t ru. In high heels on a road, crying, making noice and falling.