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The Halloween franchise and the issue of its sequels

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Unlike the slasher movies he spawned, and even his own sequels, barely a drop of blood is spilled on Halloween. Carpenter and his co-writer and producer, Debra Hill, spend much of the film’s first hour creating distinct and memorable characters, especially Myers’ latest potential victim, bookworm babysitter Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis), and his psychiatrist and antagonist, Dr. Loomis (Donald Pleasence).

So, rather than reveling in guts and gore, the original films emphasize suspense, terror, and humor. Carpenters ‘sleek direction makes inventive use of negative space and darkness (especially when moving Michaels’ ghostly white mask in and out of the inky nocturnal spaces of cinematographer Dean Cundey), and foregrounds and backgrounds, which frequently reveal the presence of the killers to the viewer before they are seen by their potential victims. Carpenter also masterfully manipulates the rhythm, which rises and falls in waves through the first and second acts, casually accumulating dread and fear, before moving on to the relentlessly spooky closing scenes.

Halloween was a commercial sensation, grossing around $ 47 million on a budget of $ 325,000. This huge ROI sparked a slew of quick and cheap knockoffs after all, the logic was you didn’t need any stars or production values, just attractive young strangers and a guy with a knife. None of the successors have been more transparent or more successful than the Friday 13 series. Its creators couldn’t replicate Carpenters’ stylistic flair, so they invested in elaborate and intricate murder scenes and bucketful blood.

Friday and its first follow-up had already passed by the time Halloween II hit theaters in October 1981, but that series influence is keenly felt in this sequel. Although Carpenter and Hill have written and produced again (with directorial duties transferred to Rick Rosenthal), the violence is much more extreme and the body count is higher, as is the volume of scares, a sure sign that the filmmakers did not believe their audiences. had the patience for the slow builds of the first installment.

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2/ https://www.nytimes.com/2021/10/25/movies/halloween-franchise-problems.html

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