This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.
Buckshot_McGee’s review published on Letterboxd:
This review may contain spoilers.
My Hooptober 8.0 list | Film #1
Part of Cinemonster's Hooptober 8.0
I remember the very first time I watched this, I was in grade school and far too young to be watching it. The scene where an unseen figure stabs his sister and is revealed to be a child my age deeply affected me. There was something very disturbing to my innocent mind about someone so young doing something so terrible.
The other major aspect of the film that stuck with me was not seeing adult Michael's face for most of the film. I knew he was Michael, but obscuring his face dehumanized him, and made him something else: the boogie-man as referenced in the film, or The Shape as referenced in the credits.
I watched this again as an adult, but it's been many years, so while I know the story (who doesn't?) it felt in some way like I was watching it for the first time.
I had forgotten how this film wastes no time, immediately kicking off with the iconic theme music on beat one. Michael's sister is introduced and killed in quick succession. Fast forward to years later and we're introduced to Dr. Loomis as he discovers a jailbreak at the local mental institution immediately followed by Michael stealing his car. I like films that get straight to the point.
However, it does make me appreciate how Rob Zombie would flesh all of this out in his take on film.
Speaking of Zombie's take, I kept doing double takes at how many scenes in the original film were reproduced with exactness in the remake.
Another thing I forgot was how much Donald Pleasence sells this film. Every conversation he has drives home the seriousness of the threat and the urgency he demands of authorities in their response. Initially brimming with anger at not being taken seriously, he later reveals his underlying fear of The Shape when discussing his history with Michael Myers. And Donald Pleasence does this all so masterfully, because he makes me really feel those emotions along with Dr. Loomis.
Jamie Lee Curtis, P.J. Soles, and Nancy Kyes also deliver great performances and make you feel sympathetic toward them as they are terrorized by The Shape.
I don't know what else to say about this film that many people haven't already said much better than I ever could. A must watch for any horror fan, and worth reading up on the impact it had on the genre.
Also, how did Michael learn to drive?