The Lasting Terror of John Carpenter’s ‘Halloween’

I talk a lot about Sam Raimi’s Evil Dead, but by far my favorite horror filmmaking story is John Carpenter’s Halloween. Both were low-budget independent horror movies, though with one key difference – Raimi had to scrounge for $300,000 to make his cabin in the woods-movie, whereas Carpenter was given that same amount for his movie about some guy in a mask. This was Carpenter’s first “blank check,” so to speak, where he had total creative control. Lo and behold, he’d go on to create a popular spooky season mainstay. (For Film Daze, I wrote about David Gordon Green’s Halloween. For the blog, I’m writing about John Carpenter’s original.)

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‘Halloween Kills’ Review – An Ambitious, If Otherwise Messy Slasher Sequel

It could have ended with the 2018 Halloween movie. There, I said it. That’s not to say David Gordon Green’s follow-up is unnecessary—just that it comes at tremendous cost. Halloween Kills is everything that its predecessor and originator aren’t: gory, blunt, LOUD. Make no mistake, this is a Halloween movie. Any self-respecting fan will recognize the callbacks to John Carpenter’s original. Halloween Kills, too, wants to throw it back to other slasher sequels that had characters rallying together to take on the boogeyman. Its reach exceeds its grasp, but Halloween Kills makes the cut as a dumb, brutal, and nonetheless ambitious entry in the legacyquel trilogy.

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‘Fear Street Part Two: 1978’ Review – Bloody Summer Camp Fun

I’ve been to one summer camp in my life. I was 13. It was a Christian retreat called New Beginnings and it was a near death the worst experience of my life. My cousins and I were due for confirmation – the next step above being baptized. We had two choices: attend church classes in the Fall during school or go to summer camp. We went to summer camp.

It was Jesus-themed everything. We sang songs during every meal (there was always a motherfucker with an acoustic guitar), chaperones routinely gave sermons about our lord and savior, and every night we joined hands and praised to the Almighty for another day on this blessed Earth. I promise I will write this horror movie one day.

I guess in the end I’ve got nothing to complain about because at least I survived.

Fear Street Part Two: 1978 is the nightmare summer retreat to kill the very concept of summer camps. Part One: 1994 was the 90s slasher resurgent. Part Two is Friday the 13th meets Wet Hot American Summer. It’s both funny and gruesome, sunny yet grim. Part One is my favorite of the Fear Street movies so far, but Part Two is its own replayable horror gem, rough edges and all.

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