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The Good and Bad of Never Hike in the Snow

November 19, 2020 | Posted by Bryan Kristopowitz
Never Hike in the Snow

The Good and Bad of Never Hike in the Snow


Never Hike in the Snow is another Friday the 13th fan film made by the team that brought the world Never Hike Alone, which I reviewed last week (check out that review here). Once again written and directed by Vincente DiSanti (he also plays Jason in the movie alongside Bryan Forrest), Never Hike in the Snow is all about Mark Hill (Courtlan Gordon), a teen photographer who heads out to the woods to take photos and whatnot, comes across Jason Voorhees, Hill “goes missing” (he gets killed by Jason), and then Mark’s mother Diana (Anna Campbell) calls the cops to look for him. The sheriff, Rick Cologone (Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives! veteran Vincent Guastaferro), starts investigating, and in the process of looking for Mark Rick runs into Tommy Jarvis (the returning Thom Mathews), who is once again looking for Jason in order to destroy him.

Just like Never Hike Alone, Never Hike in the Snow was released on YouTube (it was released on October 13th, 2020, which was a Tuesday, not a Friday, as there were only two actual Friday the 13ths in 2020, one in March and one in November). The movie runs 31 minutes, although about six minutes of that runtime is used up by listing everyone who gave money to the production via Indiegogo, so, really, the actual movie is only about 25 minutes.

And so, without any further what have you, what’s good and what’s bad about Never Hike in the Snow?

The Good

Once again features terrific production value: Just like Never Hike Alone, Never Hike in the Snow looks amazing. You just don’t expect a “fan movie” to look like a real movie, and Never Hike in the Snow looks like it cost big time money. The set design is phenomenal, from the Crystal Lake Camp set to the house that Anna Campbell’s Diana Hill lives in. And Jason’s lair looks a dank pit, exactly the kind of place you’d expect Jason to live in. Where the heck is this location? And what’s going to happen to it in later Never Hike… movies? What else is there to see of it? I’m curious to find out.

Has Jason in the snow: Seeing Jason kill people in the snow has been a big fan want for God knows how long, and with an actual new official Jason movie a long ways off, it didn’t look like we’d ever actually see Jason in the snow. Writer/director Vincente DiSanati decided to make it happen and, I have to say, it’s a pretty cool image. Jason’s decayed and nasty body really pops against the stark white of the snow. The snow also helps make Jason look damp, which is what I’d imagine Jason would be like in real life. Perpetually damp. And smelly as fuck.


Jason uses a bow and arrow: One of the scariest Jason moments in the official movie series, at least to me, is from Friday the 13th Part 3, when Jason kills Vera. You don’t expect Jason to use a spear gun because, well, you just don’t (an axe? A machete? A pitchfork? Absolutely. A spear gun, though? That seems out of character). And yet there he is using it. The bow and arrow that Jason uses in Never Hike in the Snow isn’t as out of place as the spear gun, but it is kind of odd because the weapon involves two things, the bow and the arrow. Jason seems more of a “one weapon at a time” kind of guy. But then you realize that, back when he was a kid at the camp, he probably used a bow and arrow as part of some activity. When you think about it like that, a bow and arrow isn’t as strange as it seems. And, much like seeing Jason in the snow, it’s a pretty awesome image: Jason with a bow and arrow. He doesn’t have to walk after you. He can just shoot you. Terrifying.


Thom Mathews returns: Mathews once again returns to his Tommy Jarvis role, and he’s looking for a fight with Jason. Bringing a shotgun with him into the woods, Tommy clearly plans on finding Jason and blasting him apart with the shotgun. The shotgun David Kagen’s Sheriff Garris used in Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives! was a pretty nifty equalizer going up against Jason until it jammed, so it’s a good weapon to have (and you’d think that shotgun technology has improved thirty plus years later). Would a grenade launcher be better? Yes, but where the hell is he going to get one of those?

Vincent Guastaferro is the sheriff: Guastaferro, who was a mere deputy as Rick Cologne back in Jason Lives!, is now the full sheriff, and he’s worried about the missing Mark Hill. We don’t really know why, though. Does Rick know something that no one else seems to know? Is he hiding something? I mean, look at the way he investigates Mark’s bedroom. Sheriff Rick is hiding something. Guastaferro also has a nifty scene with Mathews, where Sheriff Rick interacts with the arrested Tommy Jarvis. And Rick still uses the laser sight on his pistol. How cool is that?

Good suspense: Once again, writer/director DiSanti heaps on the atmosphere and suspense and makes the viewer uneasy as hell. Because when is Jason going to show up? And what else are we going to see in his abandoned summer camp? The pacing also helps amplify the sense of unease throughout. What would DiSanti be able to do with his own original material? I’d love to find out one day.

Features a sequence where a guy gets shot in the face with a shotgun and we see everything: This happens towards the end of the short film and is absolutely disgusting, which is why it’s so great to see. There’s also a pretty good axe to the mouth sequence at the beginning of the movie. If only we had more of that kind of thing in this and in Never Hike Alone/ The creative kills are part of the Jason movie experience.

The Bad

It’s not really clear if this is supposed to be a sequel or prequel to Never Hike Alone: The plot description I saw on YouTube and on imdb seems to suggest that Never Hike in the Snow takes place months before the events of Never Hike Alone, but you don’t get that sense actually watching Never Hike in the Snow. I’m assuming we’re meant to think that this is a prequel because of the placement of a particular dead body, but all of the stuff involving Tommy and Sheriff Rick suggests something else. So what the heck is going on here? Is Never Hike in the Snow a prequel? Is it a sequel? Is it both? Why isn’t this clear?

It isn’t long enough: Quite a bit of story is packed into Never Hike in the Snow’s 31 minute/25 minute running time, but it still ends too soon and too quickly. It sure seems like it should go on for like twenty more minutes or so. And it probably should since the movie’s story features more characters. Never Hike Alone was 54 minutes and half of that movie is just one character, so what gives here? Why isn’t Never Hike in the Snow at least 50 minutes long? Are further episodes going to be even shorter?


It doesn’t do enough with the whole “Jason in the snow” thing: Again, having Jason appear in the snow is a striking image and very cool, but I do wish there was more actual Jason in the snow, walking through snow banks and being caught in a blizzard and all that. I’m sure doing that would have been expensive and insane to pull off (I’d suspect that’s why we haven’t seen “Jason in the snow” in an official Jason movie. It would be expensive as hell and a logistical nightmare to do), but it’s still a bit of a letdown that all we get is Jason amidst moderate snowfall. Maybe we’ll see more extensive snow stuff in a future episode?

Still doesn’t have enough good kills in it: I can’t stress this enough, but a Jason movie needs cool kills in it. It’s part of the draw. Never Hike in the Snow has more inventive kills than Never Hike Alone, but it still doesn’t have enough. Are we going to get the ultimate fan movie bloodbath in a later episode?


Never Hike in the Snow is a worthy follow up to Never Hike Alone and definitely expands on what that fan movie set up. It’s cool as hell to see both Thom Mathews and Vincent Guastaferro playing again in the world of Jason. And Jason in the snow is awesome. I just wish there was more to it. Never Hike in the Snow makes me want to see what happens next but, really, what the hell am I watching? Is it a prequel? Is it a sequel? Why is this so unclear?

And when are we going to see the next one? Are we going to have to wait three years? Three months? And what are we Never supposed to do again?

If you liked Never Hike Alone, be sure to check out Never Hike in the Snow. It’s worth your time. And, hell, it’s only 25 minutes long.

See Never Hike in the Snow. See it, see it, see it.


Rating: 7.5/10.0


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Well, I think that’ll be about it for now. Don’t forget to sign up with disqus if you want to comment on this article and any other 411 article. You know you want to, so just go do it.

B-movies rule. Always remember that.