Tag: John Carpenter

Here’s a Set of Neat Halloween III: Season of the Witch Lobby Cards

Here’s a Set of Neat Halloween III: Season of the Witch Lobby Cards

Ephemera, Movies
When Halloween III: Season of the Witch was released in October 1982, fans of the horror series were no doubt surprised at the total lack of Michael Myers. That and anything resembling a good story. But all you needed to do was look at any of these lobby cards for the film to know that this would be very much unlike the first two Halloween flicks. Turns out that masks, old men, and dudes in business suits aren't the crucial ingredients for a classic horror movie. Who knew? Still, that Silver Shamrock tune is so very catchy.
GFS Home Movies — Halloween III: Season of the Witch

GFS Home Movies — Halloween III: Season of the Witch

Movies
To understand just how large a failure Halloween III: Season of the Witch was, first consider the premise. An evil scientist/company owner seeks to use a vaguely mystical and ancient pagan technology to kill millions of children wearing Halloween masks. Now say that out loud. Sounds awful, doesn't it? And yet this was the story that John Carpenter and Debra Hill ostensibly signed off on for the third installment in Carpenter's legendary Halloween horror series. Look, bonus points to Carpenter and Hill for boldly moving away from what was already becoming a tired genre -- the slasher film. It's hard to imagine now, but their 1978 original was just that -- original. And the sequel, while not nearly as groundbreaking, was almost as good. But by 1982 it was already clear that Hollywood stud
Retrotisements: Halloween (1978) U.S. and Foreign Movie Posters

Retrotisements: Halloween (1978) U.S. and Foreign Movie Posters

Featured Posts, Retrotisements
This piece originally ran in October 2008. I've republished it because, really, this should run annually. But to show I'm not just being lazy, I've added posters from Denmark and Italy below! October 25 marks a momentous day in horror history — the 30th anniversary of the release of John Carpenter's slasher classic Halloween.  While it certainly wasn't the first horror film on the block, it is one of the best and most influential. I and many other fans of classic horror consider it to be part of the holy trinity of the genre, alongside Friday the 13th (1980) and A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984). In retrospect, it seems like such a simple concept that it's hard to believe it hadn't been fully explored before. A psychopath is on the loose in the streets of a quiet, suburban town (Haddo
GFS home movies: The Thing (1982)

GFS home movies: The Thing (1982)

Movies
I spent a lot of time as a kid watching horror movies, but somehow never got around to watching John Carpenter's 1982 classic The Thing. Spurred on by the impending release of the so-called prequel (directed by Matthijs van Heijningen Jr.), I decided to rectify that. Sure enough, it was great. The Thing works as a straight horror movie in that there are plenty of gruesome deaths and disturbing visual effects, but where it really succeeds is as a psychological thriller. Throughout most of the movie I kept recalling the classic Twilight Zone episode, "The Monsters Are Due on Maple Street." The premise of the two is the same -- a mysterious alien entity has made its presence known and a formerly tight-knit group succumbs to paranoia and the violence it inevitably breeds. The main differenc...
Rob Zombie gets a rock

Rob Zombie gets a rock

Movies
Credit Rob Zombie for at least this much -- he opted to offer a different perspective on John Carpenter's 1978 horror classic Halloween rather than to simply update it. The problem is not that his new take fails to improve upon the original story, but that it detracts from it in crucial ways. While this was perhaps predictable, it is nonetheless disappointing. Zombie's biggest miscalculation is in providing a more detailed look at Michael Myers' early life in an abusive and low-class household. Not only does this demystify the character - for part of what made the original so great was that Myers was seemingly as blank as his iconic spray-painted William Shatner mask - but it reduces him to a clichéd white trash psychopath. He is picked on at school, tortures animals, and lives with a d
William Shatner mask + jumpsuit = Mayhem!!

William Shatner mask + jumpsuit = Mayhem!!

Movies
If you're so inclined, scoot on over to Yahoo! Movies and check out the trailer for Rob Zombie's remake of Halloween. I could go either way on this one - I do so love the John Carpenter original, and am doubtful if remake is really needed. On the other hand, I know Rob Zombie is a huge horror fan so I think he will treat the material with respect. There are, of course, some major ingredients missing that could spell trouble. Instead of an unknown and fresh-faced Jamie Lee Curtis redefining the role of Scream Queen in what was her debut movie, Laurie Strode will be played Scout Taylor-Compton, who it seems has already built a sizable resume. I hope that experience doesn't prevent her from portraying the innocence that is crucial to the character. Also missing will be the late Dona...