The next treat we have in store for you is quite the doozy. I have gathered up an amazing group of horror fanatics from all around to discuss a very beloved holiday-themed franchise -- none other than John Carpenter's Halloween. Two to three times a week, all the way until the 31st we will bring you a different writer discussing a different film from the franchise. Each will provide there own unique spin on things. I am forever grateful for everyone who was willing to participate (and for those who were unable to make it) for all they have done and all the hours they spent slaving away over hot coals writing for you all! I hope you enjoy, and as always: leave a comment below and let us know what you think!
This first article is from the very man who encaptures Halloween himself. The one, the only: GREGAMORTIS from Land of the Creeps! You will never meet a single person who loves these movies as much as this guy, so I am forever thankful he was able to contribute and write the very first article discussing the film that started it all. Don't forget to follow Land of the Creeps on Facebook, on Twitter, and check out more from GregaMortis on Instagram! - Channy Dreadful
When I was approached by Channy Dreadful to write a review of a film that has been such an influence and inspiration in my life, I jumped at the chance. Channy asked if I could review John Carpenter's 1978 classic Halloween. Of course I was stoked, because I love this film almost as much as I love life itself. Then reality set in and I thought: ‘I am not a writer. What could I possibly say that has not already been said about Halloween?’ So it dawned on me: how about I write about why I love this film so much, and how it has molded my life as a podcaster? So this is what I am going to do. But first, to anyone that has never seen or heard of John Carpenter's film, I will start with a quick plot synopsis.
1963. October 31st. Halloween night. 6-year-old Michael Myers clothed in a clown costume murders his sister Judith with a butcher knife. Michael is admitted into Smith's Grove Sanitarium. 15 years later on October 30th, 1978, Michael Myers, now 21 years old, escapes from the sanitarium and is heading to Haddonfield, Illinois. It is in this town where Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) and her best friends Annie (Nancy Loomis) and Lynda (P.J. Soles) will have their lives turned upside down by the Boogeyman himself Michael Myers. Can anyone kill the Boogeyman?
Irwin Yablans approached young director John Carpenter about a horror movie where some babysitters would be stalked and murdered on Halloween night. John, with then-girlfriend Debra Hill took the idea and wrote a script. The rest is history. With a very shoestring budget of around $325,000, Halloween terrified millions. It is has been said that because of the success of this film that it spawned one of the greatest decades of horror, the 1980's slasher craze.
As I mentioned earlier, Halloween has been reviewed and talked about by so many. What could I actually write that would be new to you, the readers? Factually, probably nothing, but I could share with you my love for this film.
It must have been around 1981 on Halloween night. I would have been 9 years old. I had just come in from a long night of knocking on doors dressed in a costume (for whatever reason, I can't quite remember of what) holding my orange plastic pumpkin and saying the words ‘Trick-or-Treat!’ with anticipation of receiving some kind of chocolate goodness. I walked in my door and sprawled all my candies on my bed. What a haul! I had really racked up that night. You may be asking, how do you remember all that? Very clearly because it was on this night that my life changed for ever.
While sitting on my bed, I turned on my little 13-inch black-and-white television to see what cartoons might be on. Cartoons were not what I found. It was Halloween and WOW was I scared, but yet could not look away. I felt so many emotions go through my mind while watching this film. I felt laughter, anger, sadness and most of all fear. I am sure that I had seen possibly a classic horror film like Wolfman or Dracula before this night, but it was not until 1981 -- Halloween night -- that horror grabbed hold of me and never let go. What was it about this classic film that had me in a trance?
Well, as a kid, it was probably that Michael Myers was so freaking scary. He was in the shadows, he didn't talk, he didn't run, but he was always stalking his prey. This was new to me. This was not Woody Woodpecker or Tom and Jerry. No, this was HORROR. It was because of this film that I dove headfirst into the horror world. I began buying Fangoria magazines instead of comics. I would cut out pictures and posters to hang on my wall. I made Mom take me to video stores to rent VHS movies of horror films. I would make my mom watch Saturday Night Nightmares on TV. All of this because of the movie Halloween.
Flash forward to 2016 and I still love the horror genre and am always looking for that feeling I felt that wonderful night. I began podcasting in 2010 with my original show The Creepture Feature Horror Show and now Land Of The Creeps. I would have never began podcasting had it not been for Halloween. If you have listened to any of my shows, you will know that I mention Halloween in almost every episode. That is my love for this film. So why did John Carpenter's film change me? I believe the cast was a huge reason. Jamie Lee Curtis, P.J. Soles, Nancy Loomis, Donald Pleasence, Charles Cyphers -- the list goes on. The cast had great chemistry together. Combine that with a crew consisting of Dean Cundey, Tommy Lee Wallace, as well as John Carpenter and Debra Hill... it was a perfect storm. Limited funds, a young crew and cast, all with one goal in mind: to make a great film, and they did just that. A very simple story with a larger-than-life look. The last ingredient that I believe made this film was the amazing score by John Carpenter. As much as the theme from Jaws is recognized by most, I daresay that the theme song from Halloween is just as recognizable. Now all the pieces finally fit. A perfect film. You can try to argue or even debate with me about this, but no one could ever change the fact that Halloween is my favorite movie of all time.
So as October has finally arrived and you are looking for scary movies to watch, never overlook the greatest movie of all time: John Carpenter’s 1978 Halloween!
(Pictured here is Jamie Lee Curtis and the writer of this article -- GregaMortis -- repping his JLC tattoo!)
(Pictured here is GregaMortis meeting the man behind the mask [figuratively-speaking], John Carpenter!)