10 Days of Halloween – Halloween/H20

1 – Halloween / H20

You had to know this was coming, right? Well, at the risk of being totally predictable, I present you with the final day of my 10 Days of Halloween. It has been fun, even if only one or two people enjoyed it as much as I did…or at all. *giggle* As I have plans for the rest of the week, I will wish everyone a happy Halloween, and I will be back on Monday. Now, let’s get to business, shall we?

Halloween is an undisputed classic. Its legacy has survived for a billion years and will always be seen as a pinnacle, something every slasher movie aspires to be: low-budget, made all the money available in the world, and stands the test of time.

The story is simple. We start with a child, one Michael Myers, killing his older sister for no goddamned reason. Years later he escapes to wreck havoc and death on his childhood home town as his psychiatrist tracks him down. A nice young girl and her friends get in Michael’s way and pay the price for it.

And Michael does the most terrifying sit-up ever.

And Michael does the most terrifying sit-up ever.

Michael Myers is so terrifying because he says nothing, seemingly has no motive, can’t be stopped, and (of course) that mask. I think the mask is so terrifying (as opposed to Jason’s hockey mask) because it is a human face. Stark white, emotionless, expressionless, it betrays nothing. It’s human, yet totally alien. The horror is that behind it is not a monster, but rather another human — evil, corrupt, insane — but human. Jason, Freddy, Pinhead…they are all monsters, looking totally abnormal and disgusting under it all. Not Michael.

As the story continues, the one survivor, Laurie Strode, is actually Michael’s baby sister who was adopted out after Michael’s childhood crime. He hates his family so much, apparently, that he wants them dead. (Don’t pretend you can’t sympathize.)

Or he just wants to read Laurie a bedtime story...after a game of hide and seek.

Or he just wants to read Laurie a bedtime story…after a game of hide and seek.

One could see Michael as a protector. Annie was a total bitch who needed to die. Linda was nicer, but ultimately going down a rocky path filled with booze, sex, and probably teenage pregnancy. But that’s reaching. He was insane.

20 years later, Michael resurfaces to terrorize Laurie and her son, where they are in hiding from the probably dead Michael. H20 parallels the original Halloween wonderfully and is the ultimate climax to the series. (Everyone sensible pretends that Halloween: Resurrection doesn’t exist. It was a cheap way out and shouldn’t have ever been made).

Brother and sister. A family reunion.

Brother and sister. A family reunion.

The victim becomes the aggressor, the series wraps up, and we have a worthy addition to the Halloween legacy.

Halloween remains simple, stays true to its roots, and still delivers chills. Nightmare on Elm Street jumped the shark early on (culminating in the wretched video game scene. Ugh.) Hellraiser got stupid after the second movie. Friday the 13th was magical and special all along (though at least it tried to be scary for four whole movies). They all have their places, but to me, Halloween is the biggest, brightest jewel in the resplendent crown.

One thing about Halloween which cannot be overstated is the impact of the simple music. It’s not grand on the scale of Lord of the Rings, but it’s simple and evokes fear, effective dread, and — for those of us with severe Halloweenitis — a wash of nerdy, geeky happiness. The whole movie does this and I’m excited to watch it for the thousandth time.



~ by Darren Endymion on October 28, 2014.

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