I have never been a huge fan of horror movies, and have tended to avoid them throughout my life. I appreciate a good scary movie every once in awhile, but I have found more often than not, horror movies are simply just bad films in general – typically with weak acting, a shoddy story and not very often are they as terrifying as advertised. However, I decided to use this week’s Throwback Thursday to review one of the classic horror films, Halloween. Because of my general avoidance of horror films, I have missed many iconic films from the genre, including Halloween. After my review of Carrie a couple weeks ago, I was not looking forward to seeing this film.
The film starts out good enough, with a surprise twist right off the bat. I certainly did not expect the killer in the first scene to be a child, and that alone helped elevate the movie for me, simply because they were able to catch me completely unaware. As the film went on, a number of bright spots appeared. The decision to film scenes from the Michael Myers’ point of view was interesting, as it gave the film another way to tell the story. The soundtrack was a huge strength, and fit perfectly with the film. Not only the main theme, but the underlying score during much of the film also helped enhance the climactic scenes.
The horror within Halloween wasn’t what was going to happen – you knew exactly who the killer was going for, and what he was going to do. The truly terrifying part of the film was when things would happen. Michael almost always managed to pop up right when it was least suspected. He would never appear right when it was expected, but would wait until the audience believed the danger was gone, and then would appear. Unfortunately Michael was not written as an exceptionally smart killer. The scene that jumps out in my mind is his attack on Annie in the car. Annie sits in the front seat, and Michael is conveniently waiting in the back seat for his prey. He has a knife, yet for some reason decides to try to half-heartedly strangle her, giving her time to sound the car horn a number of times before finally being stabbed. Was I the only one who thought it was odd that NO ONE in the neighbourhood full of trick-or-treating kids heard the horn so many times and thought to check it out? Maybe Laurie and the jumpy kid she was babysitting just three doors down? Just a thought.
The film still does have some truly frightening moments. Michael’s face at the window when Laurie drops off the keys definitely caught me off guard. After pinning Bob’s body up on the wall like a poster, he continues to stare at it like a curious dog. While not a scary moment, it was extremely creepy and showed how twisted Michael truly was. While the film was not as scary as it was built up to be, I did find Halloween to be a surprisingly decent movie, and a definite must-watch on Halloween.