Costing $300,000 and grossing $60 million, Halloween was the independent slasher film that put director John Carpenter on the map, and established many of the clichés found in thirty years of low-budget horror that followed. Now considered a classic, the film’s success lies in its simplicity. A neat plot coupled with deft camera work gives Halloween a stark realism which plays on our primeval fears.
One dark halloween night, a six-year-old boy named Michael Audrey Myers (Will Sandin) stabs his teenage sister to death with a kitchen knife. Discovered soon afterwards by his parents, the boy is sent to a sanatorium under the care of child psychiatrist, Dr. Sam Loomis (Donald Pleasence). After spending eight years in treatment and a further seven locked up, Myers escapes to his quiet hometown of Haddonfield, Illinois, looking for prey.
A 19-year-old Jamie Lee Curtis plays the bookish schoolgirl Laurie Strode. Babysitting on hallowe’en night, Laurie is unaware that the adult Myers (Tony Moran), a psychopathic killer wearing an expressionless white mask, is lurking right around the corner, waiting for his moment to pounce and change the course of her life forever. Meanwhile the horrified Dr Loomis waits, as single-mindedly obsessed as the killer he’s chasing.