This weekend, Michael Myers returns to Haddonfield and to theaters with Halloween Kills, a follow-up to David Gordon Green’s 2018 “legacy sequel” Halloween. To commemorate his latest rampage through the sleepy Midwest town that should probably outlaw trick-or-treating and rubber masks at this point let’s be real, Film Club is taking a deep dive into the whole Halloween franchise, looking back on a dozen slasher movies (and one weird magic-mask outlier) released over the last 40-plus years, with an eye towards the cream of the pumpkin crop—beyond, of course, John Carpenter’s timeless and unimpeachable original. For our critics’ thoughts on Halloween Kills, check out this special bonus episode of the show.
You can hear the entire conversation in the episode above, or read a lightly edited excerpt down below.
A.A. Dowd: It’s funny because as scary as [Halloween] is and as suspenseful as it is—that first hour is just such a pure masterclass in suspense—it’s also weirdly comforting. It feels like home to me.
Katie Rife: Yeah, it does, because it’s because it evokes the Midwest in fall. It evokes the holiday. It evokes a chill in the air, even though none of that was really going on when they made it. All the things that we are talking about here: the simplicity, the setting, the template, how evocative it is, how primal it is, just the casual mastery of the craft of the movie. All those things come together to make this at least one of the top three best horror films ever made. Because of all of those reasons. You could have seen it a hundred times, and it’s still scary because it’s so lean and suspenseful, that that closet scene at the end is going to get you no matter how many times you’ve seen the movie.
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