Halloween (1978) Short Review (5 of 5)

For my Halloween recommendation what else could I go with but the original Halloween? John Carpenter elevated the slasher flick to high art. Or something like that…This is one of the only horror movies that actually scared me as a kid. It’s shockingly bloodless for a movie that is routinely called a slasher flick and it delivers on suspense and atmosphere far more than the films its commonly lumped together with.

Starts out with an urban legeend-ish setup with the audience taking the killer’s POV as he skulks about before killing a young girl. Then it’s revealed that the killer, Michael Myers, is shockingly a child. Flash forward 15 years where the now adult Myers escapes from institutional confinement on the night before the anniversary of his first murder and the movie is rolling full steam ahead.

Donald Plaeasance as Myers’ doctor and pursuer is in all out hysterics and delivering one of his most full on over-the-top performances of his career. I’m not saying that it’s a bad thing though. It works here. The whole film works like a late night campfire tale.

The story moves very quickly. While setting up the protagonist and the surrounding characters, there are plenty of glimpses of the killer who has picked out Laurie Strode and her group of friends as his targets. The movie’s genius is that it never allows itself to be definitive, especially when it comes to its killer. Carpenter keeps everything minimalist in this, even the soundtrack, which is instantly recognizable upon just a few notes.

It really helped to set the mood of the film, as did setting the film on October 31. The ending further elevated this movie into a very memorable horror outing. It serves up a creepy little twist that for me captures the creepy spirit of Halloween perfectly.

Of course, the lovely and talented Jamie Lee Curtis is (for me) THE scream queen and here she’s at the height of her powers. Another difference between this and slasher films; the filmmakers are aware that Laurie is the protagonist, not the guy with the knife.

Okay, she only has the knife because Myers dropped it... You get my point.

I wish Rob Zombie could figure this out. He might make a decent film if he ever does.

No top 10 Horror Film List is complete without Halloween. It’s not just a good horror film, either. It’s just a great movie. A great big tub of popcorn nerve wracking entertainment. It’s one of those movies that I can watch every year and it never loses its appeal. Highly, highly recommended for a viewing around All Hallow’s Eve, especially if you’re a horror fan. Great movie! 5 out of 5… Oh. And one last thing. Happy Halloween!


One Response to “Halloween (1978) Short Review (5 of 5)”

  1. Anonymous Says:

    je kiff les film d’halloween

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