Halloween (1978)

Missing Visual Aid

Directed by John Carpenter

35th Anniversary Edition Blu-Ray

"Carpenter's original Halloween is the lightning-in-the-bottle film that set some of the grounds of the slasher genre. Although the kills aren't as bombastic as Jason's rampages on Friday the 13th, The Shape exudes a horrifying energy unmatched by any other killer. Michael Myers's stalking either subtly or completely controls the frame--he's lurking somewhere at any given moment. Sadly, a lurking slasher doesn't entice the modern audience--which is a shame because Michael is goddamn scary. It emboldens the character to be so iconic: he's just some guy in a mask (and that's what the point of the mask is). As Michael Pleasant's character points out, though, he is evil incarnate. His presence in the film and the real world reifies him as a generalized symbol of evil, psychoticism, serial killer culturalism, etc. The film's direction also embraces the character's simplicity: he famously uses just a kitchen knife to kill, he quietly stands in the frame, the score repeats one note when he pursues his victim, and little is given about his backstory. That's what I enjoy about the original Halloween; it owns its simplicity."

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