Halloween (1978) Review

Halloween (1978) Director: John Carpenter

Rating: 4 out of 5.

On Halloween night in 1963, a young boy named Michael Myers stabs his older sister to death in Haddonfield, a small town in Illinois –we are placed within the boy’s point-of-view while the murder occurs (allusions to Hitchcock’s Psycho abound). Fifteen years later, Michael escapes from an asylum and returns to his hometown where he begins stalking Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) whose father is trying to sell the old abandoned Myers house. Michael steals a mask, a rope, and some knives from a nearby store as his doctor Dr. Sam Loomis (Donald Pleasence) teams up with Sheriff Leigh Brackett (Charles Cyphers) to track him down, but not before he digs up his sister’s grave and begins killing people. Amidst heavy breathing behind a pale white mask, Michael Myers is said to be the embodiment of pure evil –an utterly remorseless person.

Another installment in the “cheesy but fun” slasher-horror genre, I was most struck by the cinematography in Halloween. We often experience scenes through long, uncut shots captured from behind the mask of Michael Myers while he stalks his prey, and we peer through the eye-holes, leering for uncomfortably long stretches of time. It leads to a supremely eerie and uncomfortably voyeuristic effect for this Halloween classic.

1 thought on “Halloween (1978) Review

  1. Even though I’ve only seen a select few of the Halloween films, including the very first, I appreciate its longevity and loyal fan base. Certainly for Jamie Lee Curtis and what it did for her career. Even though Terror Train is my favorite slasher film with her. It was also one of Donald Pleasance’s best performances. Thanks for this review and may you have a good Halloween. 🎃

    Liked by 1 person

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