Halloween: 25 Years of Terror
The definitive documentary about the Halloween franchise that has kept horror movie fans thrilled with each new edition. Includes behind-the-scenes footage, plus 80 interviews with cast and crew including John Carpenter, Debra Hill, Jamie Lee Curtis, Moustapha Akkad, Tom Atkins, Danielle Harris, Kathleen Kinmont, Nancy Loomis, Greg Nicotero, and others, as well as with famous fans including Rob Zombie, Clive Barker, Kim Newman, Edgar Wright and everyone at the legendary Return To Haddonfield Convention.
The first quarter century of the Halloween saga, from the 1978 original to 2002's Halloween: Resurrection, is thoroughly tracked in an 83-minute documentary on the subject. The impetus is a Halloween convention held in South Pasadena (site of the original filming), from which a considerable amount of footage is drawn. Let's be clear: this two-disc set is not a reissue of the first Halloween, but a new documentary with mucho extra features.
Halloween: 25 Years Later collects interview footage of many of the original's creators, including director John Carpenter, co-writer/producer Debra Hill, and star Jamie Lee Curtis. The very good-humored co-star P.J. Soles contributes the narration (and figures in the extra goodies shot at the convention). The film marches through the years, providing some fairly interesting behind-the-scenes material: the alternate versions of Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (aka Halloween 6), and the controversy over differing Michael Myers masks in Halloween H2O. Proper due is paid to Carpenter's brilliant first film, but nobody ever really comes out and says how bad most of the sequels were--although studio interference is blamed for the inadequacies of some of the pictures. The doc isn't exactly deep, but there are some decent observations about how the elemental horror of "the Shape" in the first film was contained in the film's style. Horror directors Clive Barker, Rob Zombie, and Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead) weigh in as well.
Most of the extras are culled from panel discussions and other interviews made during the convention. They will be absorbing for hardcore fans--and flattering to them, too, since the post-Internet faithful are lavishly credited with giving the series continued life. Sure, it's overkill--do we actually need a 25-minute panel discussion featuring the cast members of Halloween II?--but for anybody devoted to the Halloween franchise who kicked themselves for not getting to the anniversary convention, this will be almost exactly like being there.