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1978 - 91m.

This horror classic was the highest grossing independent film of all time (and rightfully so) until The Blair Witch Project took the title twenty years later. Along with Friday The 13th this was reponsible for the slasher movie glut of the early 80s yet none of them was able to capture the magic of this.

Opening with a great POV (point-of-view) murder of his sister in 1963 this introduces us to Michael Myers who fifteen years after the event escapes from the asylum to head back home to Haddonfield on Halloween night to terrorize a handful of local girls (including Jamie Lee Curtis who after this would have a brief "career" as a scream queen) while being chased by his obssessed psychatrist Loomis (played with aplomb by Donald Pleasence, who'd forever be known for this - his career role).

Compared to most of the slasher films that followed it this is actually quite tame on the deaths (in fact only four people die - one of those not even on camera) and its slower build-up adds to the mood. Director John Carpenter and co-writer Debra Hill have crafted a horror flick that just oozes suspense, has one of the greatest musical scores/themes in history (being that its so simple, yet so damn effective), adds plenty of "look out!" thrills by having the killer constantly lurking in the background and one tense as Hell finale.

Throw in the fact that Myers' mask is creepy (it's actually a modified William Shatner Star Trek mask) and the whole thing is done with conviction and you have the best slasher film ever made.

This was Curtis' film debut. The 1951 version of The Thing is shown playing on a TV set, Carpenter would go on to remake it in 1982.

Followed by seven sequels.

Directed By: John Carpenter.
Written By: John Carpenter, Debra Hill.

Starring: Donald Pleasence, Jamie Lee Curtis, Nancy Loomis, P.J. Soles.