For audiences in 1978, John Caprenter‘s Halloween terrified theater goers everywhere. Weirdly though, there is a whole generation that has grown up on this iconic horror movie and have possibly never seen it in theaters. I would be one of those people and let me tell you the difference a theater setting and a giant screen make.
For a movie that I have seen countless times and know so many “fun facts” about, seeing such a monumental and culturally significant film in a movie theater on a big screen brought new life to it. In a way, it was like seeing it for the first time. It really gave a sense of what audiences would have witnessed for the first time in ’78 and created an immersive experience that I have really never experienced with one of my favorite films.
Seeing it on the big screen though also had another weird effect. I was able to point out a lot of the flaws with the film mostly due to the extremely low budget of the production. Seeing Michael Myers walk through the house hold as a child gave a new understanding to how it was filmed. For those that do not know, the Myers house was already dilapidated when they bought it, so wall paper and props were placed in the house a specific way to look like an average american home.
There is also the matter of the lack of leaves on the ground. So many scenes have a congregation of so many fall leaves with multiple houses, lawns, and streets completely bare of any fall element. This was in part to trash bags of leaves being spread around to make the scenes feel like fall weather with crew members collecting all the leaves once the shot was done.
Being immersed in the film though also helped pop out so many little, yet important details like Myers staring at Laurie through her classroom window. I could actually see all the details of the mask for once which created a much more unsettling image.
It was amazing to see how much a theater can create an experience. I hope to see more theaters adopt this trend (at least around my area) for audiences to see their favorite films in a new format.