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“Halloween” (1978) revolutionized cinema



A simple story, with a low-budget execution, but which has become one of the great references of cinema. It’s Halloween: the night of terror. The film lays down the last elements of the formation of the language of the slasher sub-genre, a branch that became feverish in the following years, strolling through the 1980s, exhausting itself until the revival with Panic, in 1996, again losing itself by excess. , in a return marked by remakes of 2000s classics and currently turbocharged to our politicized age of politicized narratives in various segments of society, especially racial and gender issues. A phase also marked by the self-referential tone of films of this subgenre. The currency is usually basic. A situation in the past triggers a series of events in the present of the narrative, with characters being harassed by one (or more) psychotic figures seeking revenge. Usually masked, the antagonists of these tales strike at a time of reunion/anniversary/holiday, where desirable victims will be gathered.

After Halloween, we’ve had a long tradition of holiday-inspired movies. The production, it should be noted, was not the first holiday slasher, as seen in 1974’s Black Christmas. There are, however, discussions that the predecessor was a proto-slasher, the basis of the transformation of the subgenre after the trajectory of Michael Myers on October 31. Directed and written by John Carpenter, with Debra Hill actually participating throughout the project, the film in question depicts the horrors of two Halloween nights. The first is right at the opening. Michael, the murderer as a child, stabs and kills his sister after the girl meets her boyfriend. The absent parents arrive after the crime. The destination of Michael, found dressed in a clown costume, is the Smith Groove Sanatorium, where he will remain hospitalized for 15 years, receiving the follow-up of his psychiatrist, Dr. Samuel Loomis (Donald Pleasence), a figure who will repeat himself in the franchise until the sixth film. So Michael manages to flee the scene.

Arriving in Haddonfield, Michael Myers, correctly interpreted by Nick Castle as an enigmatic and dangerous monster, roams the streets of the city, becoming the stalker of Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis), the last girl who will face him in the clash all at the end of the intense 91-minute story. Curious about the presence of the mysterious man who seems to be stalking her for no apparent reason, Strode has a series of surprises in store for her for the night of October 31. Caring for Lindsey (Kyle Richards) and Tommy (Brian Andrews), she’s the least fun protagonist, unlike her friends Annie (Nancy Kyes) and Lynda (PJ Soles), girls involved with their little ones. friends and very hype. , fictional characters that serve as the basis for discussions of misogyny and Christian morality, constantly associated with slasher archetypes, thematic subjects that John Carpenter rejects, but which, let’s face it, have a lot of relevance when we think about interpretation filmic within the system that encompasses the spectator, the author and the work, a more complex bundle for analysis.

With cinematography by Dean Cundey, Halloween: The Night of Terror is a carefully crafted narrative by the directorial team managed by Carpenter and Hill: the use of point of view is well applied, the image capture in steadicam development aid the construction of several sequence shot scenes, in addition to a simple production design, signed by Tommy Lee Wallace, anxious to avoid excess information and dispersion. It is in simplicity that the film is structured, therefore, it has become a cinematographic reference of suspense/horror driving by subtle but assertive strategies. It would not be frivolous to say that the production is trouble free. In some regions, there is a certain slump. Also, the characters except for the antagonist, the last girl and the psychiatrist are reasonably developed. The production, in turn, created a climate of mystery and became a cult object, maintaining itself as a class reference by avoiding excess blood and the vulgarization of the antagonist, a creature that is a mixture of humanity and entity, back in the recent trilogy. , directed by David Gordon Green, with part of the original cast, ie Laurie, Lindsey, Tommy and nurse Marion Chambers (Nancy Stephens).

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Among the positive points of Halloween: A Noite do Terror, we can highlight the minimalist but effusive tone of the soundtrack composed by John Carpenter, a hard-hitting texture that accompanies the entire franchise, an integral part of pop culture and our collective imagination. . With locations on quiet streets, with simple American architecture, those involved in the project brought to an urban area known for its calm, the horrors of violence perpetrated by Michael Myers, a figure who takes away peace and tranquility of what was once considered idyllic, the ideal space to fully experience the american way of life. Contrary to what traditionally happened in the meanders of horror, a discursive field generally known for its haunted houses and its gothic atmosphere, Carpenter, Hill and the producers left behind the clichés and took the film to another level than that expected of a film whose title is in question. Its dialogues, always interactive, are also worth mentioning, as well as the construction of the layered suspense: the feeling of fear and anguish approaches sparingly.

As it was a hit and became the foundation for what was to come later in slasher, Halloween: Night of Terror gained new endeavors, some exciting, some depressing. Ultimately, as we know, Michael Myers could be anywhere. The idea was to convey to the viewer the feeling that the danger had passed, that it could be integrated into any part of Haddonfield. The sequence of shots from different points of the city bears witness to this. In 1981, the masked man returned to pursue Laurie in the hospital after the events of 1978. Linked to what happened in slasher of that era, the body count increased. Myers is now said to have sued Strode because she was his sister. When the film ends, the body disappears and no one knows the antagonist. The worthy reunion takes place in 1998, with the intense Halloween H20: Twenty years later, Jamie Lee Curtis returns to the franchise, in a clash that seems to end the story, but culminates in the horrible Halloween: Resurrection.

Before that, however, we had Halloween 3, disconnected with the story of Michael Myers, a character who only returns in Halloween 4: Michael Myers Returns and Halloween 5: Michael Myers Revenge, both with Laurie’s daughter, the little Jamie, played by Danielle Harris. She is pursued by her dangerous uncle, becoming mentally connected to the monster from the fifth film, the more misguided of the two. The saga of the young woman ends in the boring Halloween 6: The Last Revenge. Killed in the opening, the character played by another actress ends up losing the battle against her uncle, a character who randomly returns to Haddonfield, interested in decimating a few more people, before disappearing for a few years and returning to H20, a story that is only inspired by the first two films. In addition to these examples, rocker Rob Zombie went to excess with the exuberant and excessive, but effective remake of Halloween: The Beginning, followed by the awful Halloween 2, the franchise’s worst moment.

To revitalize the journey, Blumhouse brought back the masked, this time with a more mature and critical tone, aesthetically designed to become a cutting-edge trilogy. David Gordon Green has taken over the direction of Halloween, Halloween Kills: The Terror Continues and the next Halloween Ends, the end of the saga of Laurie Strode and Michael Myers. “The more he kills, the more he transcends”: the excerpt from a brief but complex speech by the protagonist played vigorously by Jamie Lee Curtis sums up the tone of the most recent presence of this slasher universe, that is to say the idea of ​​the inability to exterminate evil and the maintenance of a climate of uncertainty in the face of scenarios that seem to bring hope, but which are distressing with the constant threatening darkness. Halloween, interpreted in an allegorical way, can be a reading of the political and social issues that are daily fierce in our still very conflicted existence. The Laurie Strode interpreter herself associated the 2018 film with developments in #metoo, and in the 1980s it was discussed by Carol Clover, a feminist theorist who linked patriarchy to certain developed issues. in the argument and development of Halloween: The Night of the Terror, a precious little masterpiece of cinema.

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