Starring Jamie Lee Curtis, Donald Pleasence
Directed by John Carpenter
First released 1978
WHY Because it’s the granddaddy of teen-slasher flicks, and still more primal (and thus more frightening) than any of the gazillion knock-offs that have pounded its breakthroughs into cliché. And, yes, we mean Scream too.
PEAK SHRIEK This one’s hard, since the movie is basically a series of shockers strung along a thin plot. And that’s its genius. But we’d have to go for the simple shot of Michael Myers standing in the doorway, covered by a sheet and wearing a dead guy’s glasses?
DVD EXTRAS The “Collector’s Edition” DVD also includes the “television cut” that director John Carpenter assembled around the time of Halloween II, including 14 minutes of new footage shot at that time (which is why Jamie Lee Curtis is wearing a towel on her head in one new scene — her hairstyle was different).