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  • Writer's pictureMr. Pat

Never Hike in the Snow

Updated: Jul 19, 2021

The 293rd review!

Man, this week has been brutal. Seriously, 2020 and especially this week has been for the birds. It’s trying to ruin October which is supposed to be our happy month! Wanting to get out of my funk, a movie I’ve been waiting for years to come finally released on Netflix! It’s a prequel to a movie I loved from a few years ago. It’s...

Never Hike in the Snow (2020). Youtube

The Friday the 13th franchise has been in the most annoying legal limbo possible. A squabble between the series creator and original writer is preventing any new Friday the 13th stuff and caused the end of updates to the Friday the 13th video game which I’m eternally upset about. With nothing new on the Jason front, I’ve had to rely on fan films to scratch that itch, and sadly not all of them are created equal.

This movie is prequel to Never Hike Alone, which came out in 2017 and I was a huge fan. Literally the only complaint I had about the movie was Jason’s footsteps were too loud. For a man who stalks his prey before killing them, it shouldn’t sound like he’s wearing cement shoes. When the surprise reveal at the end happened, I couldn’t stop smiling. The movie was something different to the formula while still feeling like a Friday the 13th movie. It was seriously great.

Imagine my delight to find out the company making it was putting out four entries! This one takes place a few months before the events of NHA. We open with a dude in bright yellow coat running from something in the snow. He thinks he’s near his salvation when all of a sudden our hockey mask-wearing friend peeks out from behind a tree holding a bow and arrow, at this point, we know where this is going.

After his brutal death the movie switches to the search for the missing 17-year-old. Thom Matthews once again shows up as Tommy Jarvis, which thank goodness for that, I love him in the role. Vincent Guastaferro reprises his role from part VI as (now) Sheriff Rick Cologne. It’s nice to see him back, someone who knows who Jason is and what he’s capable of, so you don’t have to run the “doubting officer” storyline.

I don’t know if my distaste for this one is because I loved the original so much, but it seems a lot more run-of-the-mill stuff we’ve already seen before. In Never Hike Alone, it was a survivalist who wandered somewhere he shouldn’t have and has to test his wits against Jason. The cat and mouse game between the two was outstanding. I think my biggest complaint for Never Hike in the Snow is we see Jason too much by himself. In the first one we only see Jason in relation to Kyle McLeod. In this one, despite a half-hour runtime we see what Jason’s up to in his spare time. In NHA, Jason’s presence looms large because you don’t know where he’s at or what he’s doing. Even when he’s not on screen the possibility that he’s right there is always in the back of your mind. But when the movie backs up a bit and shows you how the kid first ran into Jason, it’s a really effective and creative way to announce the big man’s presence.

There’s a slate of Jason fan films making their way to Youtube and I have no doubt this is going to be the best of them all. Despite my complaints it still looks great. The production values are higher than anything you’re going to see from this method of filming. I mean, I liked it, but I wanted nothing more than to like it more. I don’t know why it’s only 30 minutes, but they tried cramming in a bit more than they should and then it just abruptly ends.

I feel like a parent when I say I’m not angry, just disappointed. The first set the bar so high and I think this one fell flat. People have been clamoring for a movie where Jason is killing people in the snow, and this is the first one to have a winter setting. Unfortunately it doesn’t do anything cool with the setting, it’s just Malibu Stacy with a new hat.

I think I’m being overly critical to a project that I am still excited about and will rush to the computer the second each get released. It’s entertaining enough, especially seeing Tommy again and it’s only around 32 minutes including credits. If you like Jason and lament that it’ll be years before we see him on the big screen again, I say give it a watch. It’s free and it’s on Youtube.

6.5 Dr. Chainsaws!

Post Script, I think this may have a lower rating than Friday the 13th: Vengeance, but I want to say I already admitted I put it too high, and in no way is Vengeance better than this one.


Never Hike in the Snow: A Friday the 13th Fan Film

USA | 2020 | 31 min

Never hike in the Snow Blu Ray Pre-Orders available here:

Set three months prior to “Never Hike Alone,” “Never Hike in the Snow” follows the strange disappearance of Mark Hill (Courtlan Gordon), a Crystal Lake resident who went for a hike in the dead of winter and never came home.

As Local Wessex County Sheriff Rick Cologne (Vinny Guastaferro) and Deputy Allen Mabry (Bryan Forrest) search for answers, town local Tommy Jarvis (Thom Mathews) believes that his old nemesis Jason Voorhees (Vincente DiSanti) is to blame. Will Diana Hill (Anna Campbell) ever see her son again, or will her son become another lost victim of the cursed camp?

(30 min est)



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