Movie Review- Halloween

Hi Folks,

 

 

So today’s the day…the big one…the best day in the whole damn calendar….

 

 

From my family to yours

 

HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!

 

We made it! 31 days 31 reviews and with some creative accounting I managed to stave off the machete for another year.

 

He's still hungover from that camping trip

This deserves something special…something so mind blowingly awesome that only Halloween could’ve given it to us…

 

Oh wait we’ve got that:

 

 

 

 

Halloween (1978)

 

 

Fast Facts

 

Made in 1978 and directed by the master himself Mr. John Carpenter (Rob Zombie isn’t fit to carry his jock let alone remake his movies) Halloween is the ultimate stalker with a knife movie.

 

Also Jesus Christ what a creeper

Our story centers around a group of teenagers preparing for the scariest day of the year. Babysitters by trade they ready themselves to take care (or ignore) their charges for the evening unaware that Evil has a shape and it’s coming for them.

 

 

Cast

 

The accent totally makes it

Donald Pleasance- Gives one of the genres classic performances as Dr. Loomis a psychiatrist who’s been studying Michael Myers for some time and is the only one who really understands just how much Haddonfield is totally fucked.

 

God your pretty

Jamie Lee Curtis- At her scream queen best in this her most famous role. She plays Laurie Strode the final girl and the only one to have ever survived more than one night against The Shape.

 

Having a smart mouth Is a death sentence

Nancy Kyes- Plays Laurie’s best friend Annie and daughter of the local sheriff, she’s one of my favorite slasher victims. Oh wait you didn’t think she was going to live did you?

 

Being a ditz doesn't help you either

P.J. Soles- Plays Lynda another of Laurie’s babysitting friends and a bit of an irresponsible ditz…guess where that gets you.

 

 

Shouldn't you be trick or treating?

Kyle Richards- Plays Lindsey Wallace one of the children in Laurie’s care, does a nice job upping the tension without being irritating.

 

Shouldn't you be trick or treating?

Brian Andrews- Plays Tommy Doyle, Laurie’s primary sitting responsibility and genuinely a sweet kid. You’ll like him an awful lot by the time the credits roll.

 

Observations

 

Halloween is one of those movies that you just have to watch more than once. And no matter how many times you pop it in the same things are going to get you every time.

 

Though occasionally the subtext is what gets you

Michael Myers in this movie is absolutely nightmarish, he’s completely silent, robotic almost and he is so agonizingly deliberate that every painfully slow move he makes will have you twitching with anticipation for the big finish.

 

This is a slasher movie that uses children effectively; to increase the scares without diminishing the entertainment. Tommy and Lindsey become people we’re worried about rather than just props that cry and do things to endanger the heroine.

 

Dr. Loomis is the thing we want in every scary movie; he’s the grown up who’ll make the bad guy go away, if anyone would ever listen to that guy his presence would be a distinct comfort. Donald Pleasance is just as much the hero of this movie as Jamie Lee if not more so but don’t expect to see anyone overpower The Shape.

 

Again the music for this is iconic, you can’t hear it without knowing exactly what it is and even when it’s used for other things there’s only one image it conjures up.

 

As always we’re going to go in depth on three particular sequences in this movie not all of them are kills and I thin that says a great deal about this as a film.

 

 

  1. The opening sequence.

 

Now Michael got started young and why on earth wouldn’t we want to see that? Apart from the fact that his sister’s nude scene is…awesome, there’s also the way this is shot; we see everything through the eyes of little Mikey’s clown mask which is just genius cinematography and gives the beginning a kind of voyeuristic feel that isn’t going to let up any time soon. The pov shot on it’s own gives us a unique viewpoint which would later get copied to death.

 

The death itself isn’t particularly graphic you don’t see much because of the way it’s shot. But there is no question the state of Judith Myers’ anatomy afterwards.

 

Childproofing...more important than you think

This scene is novel in and of itself for the implied though non graphic depiction of a child murderer. It’s not seen much outside the supernatural sub genre but is certainly lays the foundation for Loomis’s rantings later on.

 

  1. The Chase sequence

 

Once Michael has effectively eliminated all of Laurie’s friends and set up the final showdown, what we get is one of the better Final Girl maturation sequences in the genre.

 

The corpse gauntlet in Halloween is particularly good and the fact that it culminates in one of the scariest sequences ever is just a bonus.

Is it straight? i think it's tilted...

 

My favorite scene in this movie is about 15 seconds long but it feels like it goes on for days. Laurie is standing on the porch having just escaped Michael’s clutch’s banging on the door for help and then we cut to Mike just slowly walking towards her across the street.

 

Honestly Mikey gets more abuse than Laurie does

Frantic pounding, slow plodding, frantic pounding, slow plodding I know what happens and I’m still biting my teeth by the end of it. It’s like watching a shark circling a wounded fish. You know what the outcome is going to be, the shark knows, but the fish is still holding out hope and you can’t help but pull for him.

 

Above: the fish

 

 

  1. The closet

 

This is about as famous as they get. Jamie Lee crouched in a closet trying in vain to hold off The Shape before he cuts her open. She’s terrified, he’s persistent and the audience is shaking in their boots as he crashes through the flimsy closet doors with that huge Butcher knife so incredibly close…

 

Jamie Lee's hidin in the closet...And then I pulled out my Gun!

We’ve already seen Laurie take him down once already but I’ve got to tell you the first time I watched this I didn’t give her very good odds at this point. Laurie is the good girl, she’s never shown inhaling when she smokes, she doesn’t abandon the kids to save herself and she’s too smart for boys too like her but I really didn’t think that was going to be enough this time around.

 

But of course I was wrong…mostly.

 

She'll fucking cut you

She gets him in the fucking eye! With a wire hanger and then goes for the knife like a pro.

 

The real glory of this scene is how claustrophobic the closet is, it’s all about the enclosed darkness of the space with the door rattling and the individual slats of light flickering across the back wall, it’ll make your heart pound every time.

 

 

Ok like two more points and I swear I’m done.

 

First off the sound effect for Michael breathing is ridiculously creepy and it’s constant use starts to grate on your sanity after a while.

 

Creeeeeeeeepeer

Secondly what is Mikey’s problem with dogs? I mean seriously he kills two of them in the first movie alone and that certainly isn’t the end of the canine body count for the franchise.

 

Final Thoughts

 

Halloween is the original teen slasher that set the benchmark for every masked killer after it. John Carpenter created a subgenre with this movie (building off of others given but still) and there is not one that has matched it’s replay value or the level of craftsmanship.

 

The face of terror...no really

 

All in all a perfect 10 out of 10

 

 

Your FINISHED Screamstress,

 

 

 

~Fright Dyke

 

 

 

 

Woo Hoo! I did it bitches!….I’m gonna go sleep till November…you go get scared tonight…

 

Thank God maybe you'll shut the hell up for a while

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One Response to “Movie Review- Halloween”

  1. maturehorrorfan Says:

    Congrats on finishing! Agree this was always the best one, first for Jamie Lee and second because Michael Myers was scary without being somehow superhuman. He still needs to be able to be killed or theres no suspense, letting him get back up after being run over, shot, stabbed and cut in half with a chain saw like they do in the later ones kind of ruins it.

    Keep it up!

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