It was on October 25, 1978 when Michael Myers slashed his way into theaters, and our hearts.
Today John Carpenter’s classic is a reminder that they just don’t make ‘em like they used to.
If you’re as nostalgic for the horror of yore like I am, check out the book “Shock Value” by Jason Zinoman. It’s a fascinating look at the influence and influences of the horror filmmakers from the 70′s and 80′s.
Many would argue the best days of John Carpenter, Wes Craven and George Romero have passed, but no one can argue against their impact up to this point.
“Shock Value” treats us to a lot of interesting stories about their development. It’s fun to hear that Night of the Living Dead was conjured in the spirit of a hippie commune. The stakes were low, and everybody was just having a good time. Amazing that such a simple movie could have so much influence.
I also have a better understanding of the bridge between Old Horror and New Horror. One of the films that put the final nail in the coffin of Old Horror was Target by Peter Bogdanovich. He cast Boris Karloff in the role of a retired horror TV actor, one of the those early self referential ideas that still holds up as a pretty clever move.
I think “Shock Value” is worth reading, especially if you are a filmmaker who’s ever been inspired by Halloween, The Thing, or Night of the Living Dead.