Wednesday, October 20, 2010

31 Days of Halloween: Halloween (1978)

Halloween is perhaps the most basic horror film ever.   If there's a list of scary flicks made in October, you can almost guarantee that Halloween is not only on it, but somewhere near the top. It is the quintessential teen oriented slasher, and while it might not be anything you don't already know, snubbing it is out of the question.  I love Halloween perhaps because it is one of the only films in this genre to legitimately stress me out.  I get antsy when I watch this, and that, my friends, is a rarity.  In his eerie William Shatner-mold mask, Michael Myers is just the sort of plausible villain you don't want hunting you down.  I think the trick r'
 treat aspect of Halloween is the thing that freaks me out the most.  It's that tiny little possibility that, in a season where everyone has an excuse to wear a mask and carry a phony weapon, some card carrying psycho might be prancing about with a real knife and knocking on your door.  Try describing that when you call the police, "um, yeah...Michael Myers just tried to break in here..."  Does not want.  The Strangers is sort of unnerving for similar reasons.  It's the mask.  In inhumanity.  The stalking.  The waiting.  The looking outside and seeing this thing that doesn't make sense in your yard.  The stress of being a teenager home alone or babysitting in someone else's house and becoming targeted for reasons you can't possibly understand.  It's just bad.  The movie, though, is awesome.  Everything, from Jamie Lee Curtis's likable Final Girl Laurie Strode to the instantly recognizable score works to the film's advantage.  It's a brilliant, highly suspenseful thriller that every child in America should be forced to watch before they graduate high school.  

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