The Big Picture
- Halloween celebrates its 45th anniversary and is back in theaters along with its sequels Halloween 4 and Halloween 5, creating a blood-soaked party for horror fans.
- The success of Halloween in 1978 sparked a wave of slasher films in the 80s, such as Prom Night, Friday the 13th, and A Nightmare on Elm Street.
- Halloween II, which takes place on the same night as the original film, is beloved by fans, while Halloween 4 had success with the introduction of Laurie’s daughter Jamie. Halloween 5, however, received mixed reactions but has seen some redemption over time.
It’s officially Halloween season. The time we curl up in a blanket on dark spooky nights to watch all our favorite horror movies. This includes John Carpenter‘s slasher classic Halloween. The film that introduced Michael Myers’ reign of terror to the helpless world celebrates its 45th anniversary this month. It’s been a whole year honoring this historic scary franchise and, if you’re brave enough to head outside, Halloween has returned to theaters to cap off Michael’s blood-soaked party thanks to CineLife Entertainment.
The best part is, Halloween’s playing in select theaters right now alongside its sequels Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers and Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers. Most horror fans know this franchise’s impact on pop culture. While it’s not the first slasher or holiday fright of its kind, Halloween’s blazing success created a new wave of slashers that would define the 80s. Prom Night, Friday the 13th, A Nightmare on Elm Street, Sleepaway Camp, and Slumber Party Massacre wouldn’t exist without what happened on the dreadful Halloween night in 1978. Its success would also lead to Halloween II in 1981 which, to this day, is one of the most beloved horror sequels in history with the story took place seconds after the original on the same Halloween night.
At the time, Dr.Loomis and Laurie Strode’s “final” confrontation with “The Boogeyman” happened at Haddonfield Memorial Hospital. This sequel was infamous for revealing that Laurie and Michael were siblings which, after the underrated anthology installment Halloween III, fed heavily into the slasher icon’s return in Halloween 4. This 1988 comeback was one of the few installments in the series where Laurie and Michael’s familial connection worked thanks to the former’s daughter Jamie Lloyd. Actress Danielle Harris made this sequel a cult classic and gave one of the best child performances ever put to screen. Halloween 4 played off the best parts of the original film while also tapping into Halloween II’s bloodier identity.
The Franchise Is Still Going Strong Despite a Few Hiccups Along the Way
1989’s Halloween 5 on the other hand doesn’t have the same love due to its rushed development time and the film abandoning Halloween 4’s dark twist ending. This was when Michael really became a supernatural force. That has always been a sore topic among the Halloween community. It also introduced the “Thorn cult” storyline, the beginning of the end for the original Halloween timeline. However, given that there have been much better Halloween sequels since then, many horror fans have started to soften their stance on Halloween 5.
Halloween, Halloween 4, and Halloween 5 are in select theaters now. You can view the showtimes near you on the franchise’s website. All three Halloween films are also currently streaming on Shudder.