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The History of Horror Movies: 15 Films that Defined the Horror Genre

Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981)

Suppress your desire to bash me over the head for this pick, and instead hear me out.

While the inaugural Friday the 13th film was a fun slasher with some awesome death scenes, it was most certainly a copycat film. Over the years even director Sean S. Cunningham has admitted that he had no interest in creating an amazing film, he simply wanted to piggy back the success of Carpenter’s Halloween and make some massive deposits in his bank account. Well, Mr. Cunningham, job well done.

The first Friday film didn’t boast the beauty of Carpenter’s sub-genre defining pic, but it did open the door in which Jason Voorhees would come lumbering out of just a year later. And while there’s a mighty big load of schlock sprinkled throughout every film in the Friday the 13th franchise, nothing can change the fact that Voorhees, like Myers, is one of the very few screen villains that has joined the ranks of some of Universal’s most amazing monsters. You can’t shake the image of that hockey mask (not to be donned until the arrival of Friday the 13th Part 3), and machetes are now practically synonymous with the character. Voorhees owns a very real place in the books, and that’s something special given the fact that not one single movie in the 12 (counting Freddy vs. Jason) thus far created can be deemed anything beyond brainless fun.

There isn’t too much to really talk about when it comes to Friday the 13th Part 2, but in 50 years, people will still surround the cooler, chatting up the insane wrecking ball that we know to be Jason Voorhees. Whether Cunningham hijacked Carpenter’s – and Clark’s, to a lesser extent – vision or not, he managed to leave an indelible mark on the genre.

Continue the countdown of the 15 films that defined the horror genre on the next page!

About The Overseer (2283 Articles)
Author of Say No to Drugs, writer for Blumhouse, Dread Central, Horror Novel Reviews and Addicted to Horror Movies.

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