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Posted on March 23, 2015

Empowerment of the Traditional in John Carpenter’s Halloween (1978)

Elizabeth Erwin

Released in 1978, John Carpenter’s Halloween not only gave Jamie Lee Curtis her definitive Scream Queen role but it also gave audiences one of the best known horror film villains of all time in Michael Meyers. On its face, the story is a simple one. On Halloween night, six-year-old Michael murders his sister and is placed in a psychiatric hospital. On the fifteenth anniversary of his incarceration, he breaks out intent on exacting revenge.

One of the reasons I keep coming back to this film is because of how effectively it uses cultural norms to elevate the horror.

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