We went to see the remake of Halloween, and this is the first time I’ve seen the original. So yeah, I’m that person. I’m that sixteen-year-old who thinks Sheryl Crow wrote “Sweet Child O’ Mine.” From Mike’s extensive disclaimer (about how lots of techniques and style choices would seem trite because they are everywhere in horror films now, but this was the first), I was worried. But after watching for awhile, I really started to get into the time period and the style, and I think it’s one of the best horror flicks I’ve seen.
From the very start of the film, the highly voyeuristic camerawork, which intentionally fails to provide an “antecedent” or reference for the point of view, is not only jarring, but it also sets up the entire style of the remainder of the film. Ignorance provides the basis for the horror in this film. We don’t know why this young child turns homicidal on Halloween. We don’t know why he wears a mask. And lots of times, we don’t even know where he is.
Whereas the recent remake fills in some of these gaps in information, the original uses the simple idea of less is more to its advantage, creating a creepy mood by forcing viewers to fill in the blanks for themselves. I think many modern horror films could benefit from this technique.