Sunday, November 7, 2010

Halloween (1978)

Halloween (1978)
   Directed by John Carpenter

As my first series of reviews, I wanted to start with the series that is my personal favorite and instead of writing a cliff notes version of the story or a lengthy review on how I believe it is the greatest movie of all time – I will keep this review short and sweet. 

Summary:
Its Halloween night 1963, in the slow quiet town of Haddonfield, Illinois, a young boy returns home only to find his sister enjoying a “treat”.  Michael, the little boy still dressed up in his clown outfit decides to treat her with a “trick”.

Fast forward 15 years and we become introduced to a true bad ass – Dr. Sam Loomis.  Dr. Loomis has been Michael's life long psychologist during his stay at Smith's Grove Institute.  Loomis has been assigned to move his patient to another facility and upon arrival has discovered that the patients of this particular insane asylum have already left for the day.  Sam Loomis and his assistance scamper off to find out exactly how the inmates broke free, but most importantly where did their person of interest head to?

150 miles away our escapee shows up were it all began – Haddonfield, Illinois.  But this time he is no longer a child in a clown outfit – instead he decides to dawn the mask of Captain Kirk only this isn't your typical “Beam me up Scotty” get-up.  We are now introduced to one of the greatest horror icons within the past 50 years......

Queue the Halloween music......

His name is Michael Myers.

Conclusion:
The film itself is a complete masterpiece.  From Carpenter's use of wide camera shots, the killer's POV camera angles, the use of foreground mix with background, and the most important aspect of Carpenter's work – the score.  In my opinion this is the most iconic movie score of all time regardless of genre.  How many other movies can have only a few notes of their theme song played and become instantly recognizable?  Halloween on its own could and should hold its ground with timeless classics like the Godfather or Citizen Kane.  This wouldn't even touch on the fact that this particular movie alone is directly responsible for today's entire horror genre.  Carpenter also created and defined the role of the slasher.  Michael Myers became the founding father for other legendary slashers such as Pamela and Jason Vorhees (F13), Freddy Krueger (NOES), Hatchet, The Prowler, and Madman.   He was able to create a story that not only scared the hell out of millions but also created a since of realism for the viewer.  Every state has a Haddonfield and every town has their secrets. 

Thank You Mr. Carpenter for:
  • Slasher genre - creation and definition
  • High school girls should never babysit
  • Sex = Death
  • Maximum scare factor without the all the gore
  • Greatest Theme Song Ever
  • Clown costumes on little kids are never cute
  • Introduction of iconic scream queen: Jamie Lee Curtis
  • Countless holiday spin off titles
  • The Shape
Most important!!!
  • Never make fun of a Trekkie in a Captain Kirk mask


Bloody Buckeye Rating:
5 out of 5
 
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