Credit: Everett Collection

Elijah Wood has plenty of horror movie experience from both sides of the camera. As an actor, his credits include Robert Rodriguez’s alien invasion film The Faculty and the disturbing 2012 remake of Maniac. As a cofounder of indie-horror company SpectreVision, meanwhile, he has helped shepherd to the screen a diverse array of projects, from director Ana Lily Amirpour’s vampire saga A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night to Brit filmmaker Jim Hosking’s berserk serial killer story The Greasy Strangler, which is released in cinemas and on demand, Oct. 7.

Who better, then, to kick off our annual round-up of Halloween horror movie recommendations? Especially given that Wood’s choice actually is director John Carpenter’s 1978 terror classic, Halloween.

“I think I watch Halloween every Halloween,” says Wood. “It’s one of my favorite films of all-time. It elicits a warm and fuzzy feeling for me, genuinely. It makes me feel happy. The innovation of the film still blows me away — and how simple it is. It was obviously among the films to start the slasher movement. We saw a lot of films copy it, and ultimately deviate, or water the genre down. That film uses empty space really well. The camera will pan, and you’ll see a glimpse of Michael Myers standing in the background, and that will be terrifying, rather than relying on jump scares, and things we’ve come to know within the genre. It had room to breathe. That opening sequence can’t be beat, that POV shot with the reveal of a child. It’s f—ing incredible.”

You can see a trailer for Halloween, below.