Well that was quick wasn’t it? Its Wednesday and time for another wicked horror movie review. This week we are going classic slasher flick. This one was requested so I got a hold of the movie and watched it again, the first time for a lot of years I have to tell you. Lets re-visit Halloween.
Then I remember that haunting piano music. One of the finest horror themes ever written. The film itself is one of John Carpenter’s finest hours and I think this movie rebranded horror in a way.For 1978 it was pretty progressive and instead of being a pure gore-fest in the way that The Exorcist had been 5 years previously, I think this was one of the first horror movies to modernise suspense and make it the scary bit rather than all the blood and guts of which I have to say, in this movie, there wasn’t actually that much of.
Starring the great Donald Pleasance, who face in itself was a scary enough thing to me as a youngster, as Doctor Sam Loomis, a child psychologist who is assigned to the case of Michael Myers, a 6 year old boy who murdered his older sister on Halloween night in 1963. Making her debut on the big screen was one Jamie Lee Curtis, who of course would be one of the biggest leading ladies in Hollywood history. She plays Laurie Strode, a high school student who is babysitting 2 children at Halloween 1978 when Michael Myers returns to his hometown. of Haddenfield, Illinois.
Now as a piece of film-making, this is a true masterpiece. There are so many moments of seeing Michael with his mask on just standing in a doorway, or at the end of a lane. He doesn’t even need to say anything to be menacing, and indeed he has no lines in the entire movie. This clever use of the camera and the fact that there is no killing until nearly an hour into the movie all create an intense feeling of suspense and dread and you can see what is coming, but it takes a little while to build up to it, so when that actual moment arrives, in that split second, the reveal is enough to scare you just that little bit more.
Useless fact number one: the mask worn by Michael Myers throughout the movie was in fact a William Shatner mask that had been altered slightly to make it more menacing with no eyes and much paler. It had the desired effect although perhaps the ordinary Shatner mask would have been just as scary.
I would highly recommend this movie for any horror film fan, and still think it one of the best ever made, purely for the suspense factor and the score which is brilliant. I give Halloween a very worthy 8/10. The success of the film spawned many sequels and cashed in on the original’s format. Jamie Lee Curtis would reprise her role of Laurie Strode another 4 times before calling it a day. The franchise has been rebooted in recent years by rock legend Rob Zombie who has released the first two movies as remakes. He has added his own ideas, but I think the original holds up the best of all. Enjoy the original trailer once more: