Monday, October 31, 2011
Horror Week Day 7: The Return
Halloween(1978) Directed by John Carpetener
After viewing the film Halloween on October 30, 2011, I felt compelled to re-enter my Apple Iwayback Time Machine® and travel back over time and space…over space and time…and land on the date…
October 30, 1978
My Apple Iwayback Time Machine ® lands outside the cafeteria of my old high school. I unstrap myself before entering this building from my past. As I ease through the doorway, I immediately see a teenager sitting alone at a table eating what appears to be a rather greasy cheeseburger. I take the seat across from him. Our conversation is recounted below.
The Older: (Extending hand) Hello
The Younger: (reluctantly shaking hands) Hello? Do I know you? It’s funny, but you look an awful lot like my father.
The Older: (Laughing) Well you’re on the right track, but I’ll get to that in a minute. So…it’s the day before Halloween. What are you planning to do tonight?
The Younger: Me and my girl are going to watch a movie.
The Older: Girl?
The Younger: Okay. Okay. Me and a couple of the guys from the AV club are going to watch the movie Halloween if you must know.
The Older: (Pumping Fist) Yes! I’ve come back to just the right time.
The Younger: Look, Mister. Who exactly are you?
The Older: Well, this may be hard to believe, but I’m you. I’ve traveled back in time from the year 2011.
The Younger initially stands as if to protest before slinking back to his seat.
The Younger: (Thoughtfully) I…I believe you. I’ve somehow always known about you, and have dreaded your coming. What exactly is it you want from me?
The Older: Don’t be alarmed. I just wanted you to share your thoughts with me on the movie Halloween.
The Younger: (Clearing his throat) All right. That doesn’t sound too difficult. It’s on Home Box Office tonight. Cable premiere. It’s such a great movie!
The Older: Don’t know if it will stand the test of time.
The Younger: What do you mean? This was the main movie we talked about in school last spring. When I saw it at the theater, the audience was hiding their eyes or gasping or yelling out to the screen, “Don’t go in there.” Like yelling out is going to help!
The Older: I know. I was there, too.
The Younger: Oh, yeah. Since you seem to already know everything, why is it you need to visit me?
The Older: I’m hoping to use you as a conduit for drumming up some enthusiasm for this movie. I can’t seem to do it.
The Younger: Really? I become that jaded over time? That’s a depressing thought. But what about that great story? Six-year-old killer escapes fifteen years later from madhouse to terrorize hometown. It’s got suspense! Thrills! Violence! Frights! Scary Music! P. J. Soles topless! What more do you want from a movie?
The Older: Part of the problem is how often Halloween has been copied or borrowed from or stolen from or whatever it is you want to call it. The plot and the style of this movie seem like old hat at this point. I have seen and you will see many of these types of movies over the next few years.
The Younger: So you’re saying the fact that Halloween is an influential movie and is copied much in the future makes it look weaker? Why is it fair to blame the original movie?
The Older: It isn’t fair. But that doesn’t change my perception of it.
The Younger: Okay. What about the thrills and the chills in the movie?
The Older: They’re okay. But seem a little tamer than I remember. Especially right after seeing The Evil Dead.
The Younger: Whatever that is. What about that great music?
The Older: The score, you mean? I would say an excellent initial use of music begins to be overused by the movies second half.
The Younger: And the acting? Jamie Lee Curtis can really scream and I really like Donald Pleasence.
The Older: He’s a bit over the top, I’m afraid. Always reciting overdramatic platitudes like “The evil has escaped” or “He had the devil’s eyes.” Just too much.
The Younger: Geez, man. What about P. J. Soles topless?
The Older: Well, you got me there. I still like P. J. Soles.
The Younger: (Thinking for a moment) But I think Halloween will stand the test of time, better than say, The Exorcist.
The Older: I disagree with you. Since your standing the test of time quotient is about four years, I’m going with my opinion on this one. I think The Exorcist holds up quite well.
The Younger: That is really heavy. I liked The Exorcist when I first saw it. Now I’ve outgrown it and later you’re saying I will grow back into it? Huh. So your or my opinion on Halloween will change as we get older. So what will we think about other movies I like now? What about Psycho? You must still like Psycho.
The Older: One of my favorites.
The Younger: That's a relief. It’s good to know I don’t become a total asshole.
The Older: You watch your mouth, young man!
The Younger: What are you going to do? Ground me in the hopes I won’t turn into you?
The Older: Good point.
The Younger: I was just thinking that if you’re me years from now, how about throwing me some Super Bowl scores so I can place some knowledgeable bets in the seasons to come?
The Older: Sorry, kid. This is about Halloween. Not Back to the Future.
The Younger: What the hell is Back to the Future? Ah, never mind.
(The Older starts to leave)
The Younger: Hey, where are you going? Can’t you give me any advice for my life?
The Older: (After thinking for a moment) Yes. Avoid Halloween 2. It really sucked. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’ve really got to go now.
The Older leaves the cafeteria and gets into his Apple Iwayback Time Machine® and sets it in motion. The Younger leans out the cafeteria door.
The Younger: (Yelling to be heard over the roar of the Apple Iwayback Time Machine®) Could you just answer me one question before you go?
The Older nods.
The Younger:(Yelling) Are you the boogieman?
The Older: Yes, that’s exactly who I am.
The Older disappears back into his own time.