A new addition to the Halloween franchise hit theaters in October 2018, and those who have sat through several disappointing sequels over the years are wondering what Halloween 2018 gets right. Producer John Carpenter has released several memorable horror films since he introduced audiences to Michael Myers in 1978. From The Fog to Christine, Carpenter set the standard for creative monsters, but none of his later films quite lived up to the success of Halloween.
Since Carpenter's Halloween was so successful, studios began pumping out sequel after sequel. Although some of the Halloween sequels resonated with fans of the franchise, most of the films were nothing more than slasher fodder. The best Halloween movies are the ones that stay true to the original, which is exactly what the 2018 sequel does. Clearly, fans were pleased with the outcome, as the David Gordon Green-directed movie became the highest grossing slasher film ever.
Writers David Gordon Green, Danny McBride, and Jeff Fradley avoid many of the worst film mistakes of the franchise, which is why Halloween 2018 is better than some of the other reboots.
Halloween 1978 is almost undisputedly the best Halloween in the series. John Carpenter and Debra Hill wrote one of the most memorable and terrifying horror stories of the 20th century. The film was incredibly successful, and it's a huge bonus for any new director to gain Carpenter's approval.
The producers of Halloween 2018 approached Carpenter with their script and Carpenter gave his stamp of approval, calling it the best since the original. His positive reaction to the film is a relief to fans and producers alike, seeing as he openly disapproves of the other sequels - even the ones he wrote.
The original Halloween has a score that haunts fans of the franchise to this day. Director John Carpenter is also a talented musician who wrote the score himself, and then expertly used it to enhance the claustrophobic terror and suspense of his carefully blocked shots. The Halloween theme itself has been used in every film in the franchise, although never to the effect that Carpenter used it in the original.
Carpenter liked Halloween 2018 so much that he volunteered to compose the score. Along with his son Cody and godson Daniel Davies, Carpenter once again used the music to ratchet up the suspense. Although the music has been enhanced and amplified because of the film's bigger budget, the original theme still shines through with as much potency as ever.
John Carpenter's original Michael Myers induces fear because he operates with no comprehensible motivation, stripping the audience's empathy and leaving behind an eerie shell - or shape. Later entries try to give Michael a motivation to help the audience understand him; Rob Zombie's films, for instance, gives a psychological explanation for Michael's aggression. Unfortunately, it strips away the mystique of the character and his terrifying aura.
The 2018 film's creators remove any supposedly canon explanations for Michael's behavior, reviving the mysterious, almost inhuman nature of his sprees. No longer driven by an ancient curse, Michael is a monster that looks like everyone else on Halloween night.
Michael Myers and Laurie Strode go hand in hand; their relationship is complicated and intertwined. As perhaps the most famous Final Girl in slasher film history, Laurie fought Michael in four different films in the series, each time overcoming her fear in order to face the otherworldly aggressor.
With all the focus on her character over the past 40 years, it only makes sense the screenwriters of the 2018 film would want to make her Michael's main adversary. Much like Halloween H2O, the 2018 film explores what Halloween night of 1978 did to Laurie. A deeply damaged yet still immensely strong woman, Laurie has spent decades training and preparing for the return of her greatest enemy. Vulnerable yet capable, Jamie Lee Curtis's Laurie is more than willing to take on Michael, the source of all her fears.