It doesn’t matter what time of year it is, any time you watch “Halloween” it becomes October 31st for an hour and a half. Anchor Bay Entertainment reminded me of this with its 35th Anniversary Edition of John Carpenter’s slasher masterpiece. It’s always a pleasure to re-visit Haddonfield and spend a little more time with Michael Myers, Dr. Loomis, Laurie Strode, and all her friends.
Does “Halloween” really need any introduction? It might not be the first slasher film in horror history, but it’s certainly the one that jump-started the genre and is still being imitated today. After the image of Michael Myers’ famous white William Shatner mask hit screens, things were never the same. Suddenly, every psychotic in these types of films was covering their face using gimmicky guises. We’ve seen every sort of mask cover the maniac’s identity, including hockey, gas, jester, cherub, and firefighter.
“Halloween” captures the time period and small-town feel of its setting so perfectly. Anyone who lived through the late 1970s and trick-or-treated as a child in a suburb can attest to this. If you happened to grow up in Illinois like I did, the movie hits home even more. Honestly, Director Carpenter couldn’t have done a better job establishing a believable atmosphere for this suspenseful and thrilling masterpiece.
An all-new HD transfer was supervised and approved by cinematographer Dean Cundey for the “Halloween” 35th Anniversary Edition. The picture is crystal clear without losing its “real film” flair. John Carpenter’s eerie score and Michael Myers’ heavy breathing is even more frightening and unnerving in Dolby TruHD 7.1 surround.
Fans of “Halloween” will be ecstatic when they see the special features found on this 35th Anniversary Blu-ray Edition. New audio commentary is included with Writer/Director John Carpenter and actor Jamie Lee Curtis. The new featurette “The Night She Came Home” follows Jamie Lee Curtis around as she makes a special appearance at a horror convention. It also contains the featurette “On Location: 25 Years Later.” TV version footage, a trailer, and TV and radio spots round out the bonus material.
“Halloween” 35th Anniversary Edition is a great looking item that any fan of the franchise will prize. It comes in a hardcover book packaging which features 20 pages of behind-the-scenes photos and commentary about the making of the film and its legacy. The Blu-ray is housed in a cardboard sleeve attached to the inside of the back cover. It’s oversized in comparison to a regular Blu-ray case, so some might find it a pain for regular storage.
The “Halloween” 35th Anniversary Edition is available now on Blu-ray.
For more articles by Eric Shirey, check out:
Blu-ray Review: “Halloween II: Collector’s Edition”
Blu-ray Review: “Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers”
Blu-ray Review: “Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers”