For a film pushing 30 years old this is a surprisingly good transfer. The opening sequence which recycles scenes from Part One is unpromising, with unnatural looking colours and a generally low amount of HD credibility. But this reveals itself to be a stylistic choice when the film gets rolling. The picture from then on is very sharp and clear, colours are great. The only criticism would be that close-ups don't offer the absolute wow factor for depth and plasticity; long and medium shots sometimes look better than close-ups. But when/if you see Part III on Blu you will think that this disc is a miracle. The True HD 5.1 soundtrack is also well-balanced and forthright.
The film itself is right up there with the original. The plot is not quite as good, but this is the film where we really see Jason get to work and establish the identity of the franchise. The 1980 original, for all its merits, was not always clever enough about hiding its debts to "Psycho" and "Halloween". For much of the film Jason (or often Jason's shoes and legs!) has real threatening presence, only late on does he occasionally turn a little goofy, perhaps a sad precursor of how the film was to eventually lose its way. When he reveals his deformed face, this is done no favours by HD, and it is clear that the deaths are both tamer and less well done by the FX standards of the recent "Friday the 13th" film from Marcus Nispel. But none of this should detract from a film that has spawned imitations and cultural quotations far and wide. Better than ever on Blu, and if you hate black bars on your TV, you'll be pleased to know that like the first and unlike the third this is in aspect ratio 1.85:1 so you're bar-free. Happy Halloween!