Thursday, January 22, 2009
What's up with the sack head?
We all know that Jason's sack mask in Friday The 13th Part II was done before in The Town That Dreaded Sundown, but was it really a stolen idea? Steve Dash was asked once about it and he pretty much said that he had no clue what inspired it. He did go on to say that Steve Miner ditched the idea in Friday The 13th Part III because of the complications that came with shooting- basically, the sack had to be taped down to his face with double-sided tape. He mentioned that when he would run the eye hole would move around and it made it hard to see. After many, many takes over many, many days removing the mask from the double-sided tape ended up ripping the top layers of skin off and made the ordeal painful.
In 1980, another infamous sack headed character came out- The Elephant Man, which could have also inspired the sack-head Jason Voorhees. Truth is, the movie came out while Friday The 13th Part II was filming so it is possible- the Elephant Man's sack also had one eye. It seems like Jason II was more of a John Merrick clone than The Phantom Killer in The Town That Dreaded Sundown.
Since then it seems like we have had a dozen or so sack-headed killers, no doubt inspired by all three of the above movies. I personally love the sack-headed killer more than a hockey mask. I think the hockey mask became more iconic, without a doubt, but if you saw a man stalking you in the woods with a sack on his head I think that you'd be a little more freaked out than a man with a hockey mask. I personally may end up laughing if I saw a man with a hockey mask chasing me! Well, maybe not.
There's still a lot of debate where the hockey mask came from (read my little blog about it) and who it should be credited to. Let's face it, Jason Voorhees was not the first villain to wear work clothes and a hockey mask. The 1974 film Act Of Vengeance had a rapist who wore the now iconic hockey mask as well. The movie was not a slasher, but has become a cult classic- perhaps because of the hockey mask wearing rapist? To tell you the truth I am elated to see Jason wearing the sack in the upcoming Friday The 13th remake. Hopefully it will open a lot of new fans' eyes to Jason, who he is and his history. Hell, some people didn't even know that Jason ran! Look for a nice blog about that in a few days too!
Anyways, here's some other movies with a sack headed killer that I would greatly recommend. Some are in fact really good slasher movies;
The Undertow: A nasty slasher movie with a 7'4" nasty killer. The movie is nothing close to unique and at times a bit annoying, but it's a solid shot on DV slasher film by Jeremy Wallace. I was quite impressed with the atmosphere in this film as Sub Rosa movies can be a hit or miss, usually a miss.
Back Woods (Parts I and II): A really good duet of movies- I am shocked that these have not seen a distribution yet. The killer has a sack head and the movies are raw shot on DV slasher films with everything a slasher film should have. You can get these movies straight from the creator.
Incest Bernie: DSK movies aren't always good, but at least they can be entertaining. This one has not been released yet, but I heard it's bloodier'n hell. Check out the MySpace page for updates.
Clawhammer Massacre: Let's not forget this short that I did, it's based on the Buffalo bike path rapist. It's a 7 minute short, and I am hoping to do a full-length one day. The mask was inspired by Jason & The Phantom Killer, however the true rapist wore one as well!