Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Halloween: My Decades Long Friendship With Michael Myers

Halloween is my favorite holiday...This is the time of year where I tune in to see which horror movie is currently playing on TV as part of the annual AMC FearFest at least twice a day. Or I will just pull out a bunch of my favorites from the personal collection and have my own marathon. I own more horror flicks than other genres....The total number is probably in the 100s....I purposely started TLR 12 years ago this week to ensure that the anniversary would be tied to the date--no really...and it all began with John Carpenter's 1978 classic Halloween. Like Richard Donner's Superman--The Movie helped shape my life and who I am--the scare-filled flick film did the same...

I was too young to see it during its initial theatrical run...3 years later I remember watching the premiere of the now famous TV Version....in which 12 minutes of footage was added to replace the more violent material of the original cut. These scenes were shot simultaneously with "Halloween II" in 1981...Anyway--I was hooked--Even in its edited form it scared the bejeebus out of me! My Mom was not happy with me after I disobeyed her and watched it anyway. Sorry Mom--So glad I disobeyed you.

What can one say about the performances of Donald Pleasence as Dr. Sam Loomis and a very young Jamie Lee Curtis as iconic heroine Laurie Strode...

One of the strengths of the film is its ability to scare viewers using suspense and shock-without having to depend on gore--to tell its story.

Written by Carpenter and the late Debra Hill--the tale follows masked killer Michael Myers institutionalized since childhood for killing his older sister--he escapes and returns home on October 31st to continue his spree while doctor Loomis tries to stop him.

Halloween was produced on a budget of $300,000 and grossed $47 million at the box office in the United States, and $70 million worldwide, equivalent to roughly $267 million as of 2016, becoming one of the most profitable independent films.

A cluster of sequels and one remake and its sequel later--not to mention countless imitators--and here we are.. For me, the original Halloween is one classic that just can't be topped...even after multiple viewings. In fact if you read my review of Rob Zombie's 2007 remake of the 1978 classic--you know that I loathe nearly everything about the film...Hard to believe then that I think Zombie's Halloween II was even worse!!!

The Halloween film franchise has been stalled for a number of years now while everyone wrestles with where to take the series next...There is reason to be hopeful with the news that Carpenter will executive produce the next movie--and Curtis will return as Laurie Strode as well. It looks like the new the new film will will ignore all of the sequels--including 1981's Halloween II--which picked up right after the original left off. We shall see· One thing is certain Zombie's timeline will not be revisited and that is a great thing folks. I am jazzed to see how it all plays out.

Happy Halloween everyone! "Sleep Tight Kids!"

A special thanks to my older sister Karen for watching Halloween on TV with me all those years ago and sharing a very special experience with me...

No comments: