'Halloween' is on tap for this week's Theme Thursday
So many ways I could take this theme, but I am going with John Carpenter and Debra Hill's classic "Halloween"
In case you haven't seen it before (although why I can't imagine), here is a quick plot synopsis:
On Halloween night in 1963, a young Michael Myers brutally stabs his sister to death. 15 years later, Myers escapes from the sanitarium and makes his way back to his hometown of Haddonfield, Illinois. Another Halloween night arrives, Myers sets his sights on a teenage girl and her friends.
The terror is unleashed once more.
My love for this film began, I suppose, the first time I saw it. I was 7 when it premiered, too young to see it then. But when I finally did watch it, I was probably only 11 or 12. I had known about the movie for awhile, and had a sense that it was something really scary, something that was just not good for someone so young. But I had to see it. Once I finally did, it scared the heebie-jeebies out of me. And I was hooked.
Carpenter and Hill created a film that embodies that uneasiness and fear of the unknown, the unexplainable. Michael Myers didn't have a reason for what he did. And he wasn't to be reasoned with. He just was, and he just did.
Sure, the film has a few bumps, but they are minor technical/acting issues, the film itself is a masterpiece of suspense and scares. The 'shape', lurking behind bushes and unseen peering in windows, is a spine-chilling thing. The boogeyman made real, our nightmares walking in the shadows.
I have seen this movie over and over again since that first time. And I have never tired of it. It strikes a cord in the young, anxious, scared kid in me. After viewing it, I still get the eerie feeling of fear, of unease. And each time I hear the iconic music, that simple yet creepy instrumental tune, I get goosebumps. Those are signs of good stuff, indeed.
One of the things to remember when watching this film is that it was made with no thought of a sequel, of a continuation of the story. Here, Michael wasn't Laurie's brother. She was just the girl he fixated on upon his return to Haddonfield. Halloween morning, when she walked up to his old home to place the key under the mat, he saw her and decided she was 'the one'. Simple, scary and nothing more to it than that.
The addition to the plot of Laurie being Michael's little sister was added in the sequel, and a scene of a young Laurie visiting Michael in an instituion was filmed to be added into the edited-for-TV version of the first film, not only to add some run time, but to make the revelation of their relationship less out-of-the-blue in the sequel.
I think Michael is scarier without this 'motivation'. Just a 'shape' bent on destruction and death. But, we also wouldn't have the ongoing story of Michael vs Laurie in some of the sequels without it.
Original Movie Trailer
I have no love for Rob Zombie's Halloween remake, as I have said before. He took the simple, unexplainable (with no need for explanation) Michael Myers and gave him a backstory and childhood that turned him into just another abused and misunderstood kid who went off-the-rails. Nothing creepy about that. Just sad.
If you are looking for a good, scary, Halloween flick to watch, without much blood or gore, but with tons of suspsense and chills, look no further.
Halloween is the film for you. I will be watching, scared as always.
I will end with some pics & quotes from the film:
after Michael escapes:
Dr. Terence Wynn: Now, for God's sake, he can't even drive a car!
Dr. Sam Loomis: He was doing very well last night! Maybe someone around here gave him lessons!
Sheriff Leigh Brackett: It's Halloween, everyone's entitled to one good scare.
Dr. Sam Loomis: I met him, fifteen years ago. I was told there was nothing left. No reason, no conscience, no understanding; even the most rudimentary sense of life or death, good or evil, right or wrong. I met this six-year-old child, with this blank, pale, emotionless face and, the blackest eyes... the devil's eyes. I spent eight years trying to reach him, and then another seven trying to keep him locked up because I realized what was living behind that boy's eyes was purely and simply... evil.
Tommy: Laurie, what's the boogeyman?
Laurie: There's no such thing.
Laurie: It *was* the boogeyman.
Dr. Sam Loomis: As a matter of fact, it was.
Halloween... The Night HE Came Home!