'Halloween' (1978)—A Movie Review

'Halloween' is a suspenseful thriller packed with screams, a haunting story and an unforgettable musical score.

'Halloween' (1978)—A Movie Review

I hear John Carpenter’s Halloween score starting up. Yeah, Michael Myers must be somewhere.

Escaped from the institution, disturbed Michael Myers prowls the neighborhood of Haddonfield for his next victim. Babysitter Laurie Strode battles against this murderous figure in a fight nobody will ever forget on Halloween night.

Halloween created a big impact in horror film history since its release over 40 years ago! I love sitting down and watching Halloween every October. Halloween is a suspenseful thriller packed with screams, a haunting story and an unforgettable musical score.

In her film debut, Jamie Lee Curtis is outstanding in her incredible performance as Laurie Strode. Curtis actually believed that she was going to get fired believing that wasn’t capable of the role. Laurie Strode has become one of the most famous characters in horror film history who fought hard.

Before Halloween became a long wind of sequels and remakes, I like the depiction of Michael Myers in his screen debut. As director John Carpenter describes, Michael Myers a dark shape who nobody can relate to. The horror of Halloween is that Michael Myers could be lurking anywhere in the shadows with a bleak mask and sharp knife in hand.

Nancy Loomis and P.J. Soles were entertaining as Laurie’s best friends who are more focused on other things. Annie and Linda are unaware of the impending doom in the corner of their eye. As the audience, we have the advantage of seeing Myers as the characters’ backs are turned away. And the second he strikes, the murders are terrifying.

Unlike how horror films now create characters that don’t have any motivation for the plot, Annie and Linda’s subplot are important. They’re aloof teenage girls scouting out the typical teenage drama in midst of horrific murders about to unfold.

Donald Pleasance masterfully steals the show, hunting down the clues to retrieve his patient. Honestly, Halloween would not be what is without Pleasance’s compelling role as Dr. Samuel Loomis. He is very important to the story. My favorite scene will always be his eerie monologue about his first encounter with Michael Myers.

One of my favorite aspects of the characters in this movie is that everyone earns their fair share of screen-time. Even the kids who Laurie babysits for are given a chance. Right from the beginning as Laurie and her friends are walking home from school, I understood the character’s personalities. Soles was fun and I enjoyed her catchphrase. You will totally enjoy her scenes!

John Carpenter’s direction was superb. He has audiences hooked the instant the film started as we’re following the perspective of a young boy with a knife in hand. His techniques were well-incorporated, primarily the dark lighting, specifically in one signature scene. Carpenter invested in the characters, instead of the horror at times in waits for an epic conclusion.

I don’t think we’re ever going to have another nostalgic horror induced score like Halloween. Right from the moment the frightful piano music starts, Michael Myers is somewhere in the vicinity.

The first time I ever watched this movie, I can’t remember if I blinked at all when Laurie walks across the street to Annie’s house. The entire ending is a well-directed sequence filled with genuine scares and a performance by Jamie Lee Curtis that goes down in history as a horror legend.

If you are searching for a scary movie on your Halloween night, this is the one! It is a suspenseful classic. The stalker theme may not be everyone’s cup of tea, including some unpleasant murders. Halloween is an outstanding horror film that will never lose its nostalgic energy.

Happy Halloween!

halloween
Marielle Sabbag
Marielle Sabbag
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Marielle Sabbag

Writing has been my passion. I love creating stories from fiction, poetry, fanfiction, and I even enjoy writing reviews about movies and plays. I would love to become a freelance writer and leave the world inspiring minds.

See all posts by Marielle Sabbag