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8.8

Universal acclaim- based on 216 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 7 out of 216
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  1. SFN
    Jan 8, 2011
    10
    this movie is amazing, the storyline is amazing, the actors are good, and the whole creation of micheal myers is awesome, John Carpenter is a genuis!!!
  2. Nov 14, 2011
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Bottom Line: Why appreciate Friday the 13th and A Nightmare on Elm Street when you can appreciate this? Halloween started it ALL.

    The thing that truly makes this one a classic is that it is certainly a slasher, but it also manages to maintain the actual â
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  3. Aug 27, 2014
    8
    John Carpenter has a masterpiece on his hands. It transcends all other (often annoying) Halloween-related slasher movies. Perhaps, the use of Jamie Lee Curtis as our leading lady makes all the difference. She's wonderful.
  4. Oct 5, 2012
    10
    Halloween One of the best horror movie's 0f the 70's The Exorcist (1973). The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974) . The Omen (1976). Carrie (1976). Halloween (1978)
  5. Nov 1, 2012
    9
    This is a fun, scary movie. "Halloween" is the horror flick that provided the formula for all slasher flicks to come. Though by today's standards it looks really low budget, it thrives in thrills, and the use of atmosphere rather than gore only intensifies our adrenaline. Jamie Lee Curtis gives a great performance (and the one that ruined her career for years), but the real star isThis is a fun, scary movie. "Halloween" is the horror flick that provided the formula for all slasher flicks to come. Though by today's standards it looks really low budget, it thrives in thrills, and the use of atmosphere rather than gore only intensifies our adrenaline. Jamie Lee Curtis gives a great performance (and the one that ruined her career for years), but the real star is director John Carpenter, who directs each scene who loads of tension. "Halloween" is constantly suspenseful, and a work of art among the horror genre-- just avoid all of the needless sequels. Expand
  6. Dec 9, 2012
    10
    A brief retort to two common criticisms of this great, great movie.... 1) "Not a lot of big scares, lots of down time." These people have a very loose grasp, if any, on the concept of building tension... To them, the scenes where the killer is peering in from the background are meaningless if they don't immediately culminate in a satisfying kill scene. This may seem funny to say, but thisA brief retort to two common criticisms of this great, great movie.... 1) "Not a lot of big scares, lots of down time." These people have a very loose grasp, if any, on the concept of building tension... To them, the scenes where the killer is peering in from the background are meaningless if they don't immediately culminate in a satisfying kill scene. This may seem funny to say, but this movie was made at a time when nobody knew who Michael Myers was or what he was capable of. Watching this movie through the eyes of a newcomer might help these people appreciate suspense. 2) "They don't give us a reason for all the killing" That's the point! It's scarier that way, if you don't even know what motivates the killer, then he becomes even less human. There's no emotion, no reasoning, just a body walking around, taking death wherever it goes. People who have a problem with this are simply too used to having each and every background detail spoon-fed to them to enjoy a movie that purposely leaves the darkest parts to the imagination. 3) I read one review calling this movie "cliched"... which hilariously overlooks the fact that Halloween *started all those cliches!* So essentially, this person blames this movie for being too much like the movies that copied it... have fun with that one.... Yes, this movie does have its shortcomings (acting, editing, modest production values) but it still stands as an understated masterpiece, and the granddaddy of a sub-genre all its own. The buildup and release of tension are timed as skilfully as any scare flick ever made, and the near-total lack of blood only serves to underline the fact that the world's first slasher flick got its teeth from real directing and storytelling as opposed to cheap visuals and gratuitous violence. JUST REMEMBER: this movie must be seen in full widescreen, otherwise the framing will ruin some key scenes. Expand
  7. Oct 14, 2013
    10
    I LOVE HALLOWEEN. It's one of the best horror movies ever made and my favourite horror movie! Any fan of horror movies is intimately familiar with Halloween even if they've not seen the actual film itself. The movie has been mimicked and parodied extensively and the cliches present have become embedded in pop culture. The movie begins with the view from the eyes of a killer, who watches aI LOVE HALLOWEEN. It's one of the best horror movies ever made and my favourite horror movie! Any fan of horror movies is intimately familiar with Halloween even if they've not seen the actual film itself. The movie has been mimicked and parodied extensively and the cliches present have become embedded in pop culture. The movie begins with the view from the eyes of a killer, who watches a girl have sex with her boyfriend. As soon as he leaves, he stabs her with a knife. The killer turns out to be her six-year old brother and is committed to a mental institution. Fifteen years later, Michael Myers (Tony Moran), returns to his old home to kill once again. His targets this time include three high school students: Annie (Nancy Kyes), Lynda (P. J. Soles), and Laurie (Jamie Lee Curtis). Who dies next and who ends up living is the guessing game the audience gets to play (along with the characters). Whether intentionally or not, the movie ends up having a moralistic message. All the people who are killed are involved in sexual acts. Michael Myers is portrayed as the embodiment of evil, as opposed to being a "normal" serial killer, and some of the things he does has a hint of the supernatural. It's interesting that the movies Halloween inspired, in the slash-and-gore horror genre, borrow less from the Psycho-like feel present in the film and instead seek to showcase the scenes we don't see. There's little gore in the film and a lot of the fear is psychological. The movie is made more frightening simply because we don't see body parts splattered about. Yet later movies chose to abandon suspense as a means of achieving terror and sought instead to shock people by showing more blood and gore. Halloween's status as a cult film is assured. The movie has several flaws, but the primary reason it has gained such a status has to do with director John Carpenter's minimalist distillation of the most pure, adrenaline generating, horror and suspense moments seen before in previous films. Definitely worth a rental on Halloween night. Expand
  8. May 21, 2013
    10
    Wow, was that a pretty good and scary movie.
    My favorite old horror movie after Carrie.
    That epic music and that nervous breakdown!
    Say hello to the nightmares.
  9. Feb 17, 2014
    10
    In my opinion, one of the scariest films ever made! Low budget, but the acting is solid and the scares come at a fast clip. You feel this movie as much as you see it, thanks to Carpenter's now legendary score. Jamie Lee Curtis shines as Laurie, as do the rest of the cast. Carpenter's direction is brilliant, especially that long opening shot. Also, the film does not rely on gore. TheIn my opinion, one of the scariest films ever made! Low budget, but the acting is solid and the scares come at a fast clip. You feel this movie as much as you see it, thanks to Carpenter's now legendary score. Jamie Lee Curtis shines as Laurie, as do the rest of the cast. Carpenter's direction is brilliant, especially that long opening shot. Also, the film does not rely on gore. The lighting is perfect for frightening the audience and the pale-masked killer, Michael Myers, looks and feel more menacing than Jason or Freddy.
    First horror movie I ever saw, and still love to this day. Michael Bay's/ Rob Zombie's remake were vulgar and atrocious.
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  10. Aug 4, 2014
    9
    A truly suspenseful and terrifying film. John Carpenter is able to bring the scary without gore or torture, just good old fashion tension. Jamie Lee Curtis is brilliant and the films climax will leave you with chills
  11. GinaP.
    Sep 2, 2007
    10
    One of my favorites! This film scared the crap outta me first time I saw it, I was probably 10 or 11 at the time. These days I still appreciate it for what it was. A cult classic, first of it's kind, genuine terror and tension filled fun. This movie was atmospheric and errie. The score is really what gets to you, making the hair stand up on the back of your neck. I cannont think of a One of my favorites! This film scared the crap outta me first time I saw it, I was probably 10 or 11 at the time. These days I still appreciate it for what it was. A cult classic, first of it's kind, genuine terror and tension filled fun. This movie was atmospheric and errie. The score is really what gets to you, making the hair stand up on the back of your neck. I cannont think of a better tense moment in any horror film than the scene from Halloween when Laurie is struggling to open the front door, calling for help, while Michael walks closer and closer, almost reaching her. If that didn't make you hang on to the edge of your seat the first time you watched it, then nothing will. A definite 10 in my book..always was, always will be! Expand
  12. ScottN
    Jun 7, 2009
    10
    What more can I say - One of the greatest horror movies of all time and a true example of how to build suspense and terror without lots of gore. A true masterpiece. I only wish I could wipe my memory and go back and watch it again for the first time.
  13. James
    Sep 1, 2007
    10
    It may not be as gory as Friday the 13th or Nightmare On Elm Street but in my opinion, I think Halloween is more suspenseful and tells a better story.
  14. Oct 30, 2010
    10
    Brilliant film. Great suspenseful movie, John Carpenter is a genius. Not much gore but certainly one of the best horror movies ever. The music is well-written and makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end. Michael Myers is the ultimate horror movie character, well thought-out, a simple character yet creates an atmosphere which is incredibly scary. First saw this film when I wasBrilliant film. Great suspenseful movie, John Carpenter is a genius. Not much gore but certainly one of the best horror movies ever. The music is well-written and makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand on end. Michael Myers is the ultimate horror movie character, well thought-out, a simple character yet creates an atmosphere which is incredibly scary. First saw this film when I was 10 and scared the life out of me, overall, a great film and possibly the best horror movie ever. Expand
  15. j30
    Nov 9, 2011
    10
    This is a great movie that has dated a bit, but the premise and atmosphere is creepier than Hell. No guts, no glory doesn't apply here, there is little or no blood and still manages to scare. The thought of being watched has always made the hair on the back of my neck stand.
  16. Nov 11, 2013
    10
    This is an honestly suspenseful thriller it truly builds up right from the beginning. The fantastic simplicity of using the same soundtrack throughout lacks monotone and adds creepy familiarity, the neighborhood as the setting proves to be a falsely secure yet sunny environment. You're almost begging Michael Myers not to take off the mask which illustrates someone who looks human, butThis is an honestly suspenseful thriller it truly builds up right from the beginning. The fantastic simplicity of using the same soundtrack throughout lacks monotone and adds creepy familiarity, the neighborhood as the setting proves to be a falsely secure yet sunny environment. You're almost begging Michael Myers not to take off the mask which illustrates someone who looks human, but feels inhuman with those dark, merciless look in where his eyes should be. The colour is a muted, almost grainy tone, giving a more authentic 80's feel, with the shadow in the background disappearing with a second look which we unquestionably accept until the real thrills happen, as the haunting presence that contrasted with the setting is able to come out. Even when he does, Myers is still both intimidating and ruthless as he picks them off.
    The self-reference of a director undoubtedly feels out of place, but the psychiatric character of Dr. Loomis played brilliantly with undeniably precise questioning by Donald Pleasance. We can forgive his more likely ridiculous stance as he searches for his patient, because it is counter-acted by such an emotionless, inhuman embodiment of nature vs. nurture with no solid reason to kill.
    The running time was in tune with the story-line without frequent jump scares to provide nutrition, the kills worthwhile when they happen with a amazingly juicy one in the downstairs kitchen. It works with realism a quiet, normal neighborhood disrupted by, rather than a raging presence, a silent stalker that symbolically represents the real safety of our neighborhood which can be likewise seen in other twisted slashers such as A Nightmare On Elm Street. The killer that comes out from beneath its shell and strikes without warning. A 6 year old with no soul, a butcher knife and murder on his mind? That is an argument that writes itself.
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  17. Dec 3, 2011
    8
    While it does suffer from terrible over acting - Halloween gives us an actual scary horror film classic that is not only entertaining but its interesting. I enjoyed it.
  18. Oct 31, 2012
    10
    The horror movie of horror movies. Whenever someone is asked to listen a popular horror movie, A great majority of them will say Halloween for a reason. It's a must see classic for all horror fans.
  19. Jul 4, 2012
    8
    The twists of the movie and the soundtrack is what causes the suspense!! That's what horror movies lack in these days, particurally the remake of this CLASSIC
  20. Nov 1, 2013
    10
    On of the greatest American slashers ever created, its the simple fact that the main antagonist is just their, staring at you through his cold heartless eyes, stalking the viewer, its so goddamn creepy
  21. Sep 9, 2012
    10
    Extremely scary and well made low budget horror film that delivers quality scares without gore. Carpenter's direction is brilliant, as is his legendary soundtrack. Very atmospheric and chilling.
  22. Nov 10, 2012
    9
    Film di suspence e non di splatter, nonostante con il tempo si è creato un mito il quale vedeva coinvolto halloween come uno dei primi horror splatter, ciò nonostante di sangue nel film se ne veda davvero poco. Carpenter ha inventato un mito, intrattiene, stupisce e induce lo spettatore a immedesimarsi con la protagonista Lorie Strode, interpretata da una appena 21 Jamie LeeFilm di suspence e non di splatter, nonostante con il tempo si è creato un mito il quale vedeva coinvolto halloween come uno dei primi horror splatter, ciò nonostante di sangue nel film se ne veda davvero poco. Carpenter ha inventato un mito, intrattiene, stupisce e induce lo spettatore a immedesimarsi con la protagonista Lorie Strode, interpretata da una appena 21 Jamie Lee Curtis. La colonna sonora divenuta un cult, venne poi riadattata nei successivi capitoli, tutti inferiori al primo. ma il vero protagonista è il killer: "Michael Myers" forse uno dei migliori killer, grazie al fatto che si discosti dalla realtà dato che nn si veda mai la sua faccia, tranne nella scena iniziale. Un cult superiore a tutti i film horror degli anni 70-80. Capolavoro. Expand
  23. May 13, 2013
    10
    Talk about a classic. When people talk about the first slasher film, they actually say Psycho, but this is a close contender. Not that it's not as good as that film, in fact I think that Psycho is a bit better made compared to this, but I'm here to talk about Halloween. This is by far my favorite horror movie, and I'm a Jason fan above all. The killer is not what makes this film; entirely,Talk about a classic. When people talk about the first slasher film, they actually say Psycho, but this is a close contender. Not that it's not as good as that film, in fact I think that Psycho is a bit better made compared to this, but I'm here to talk about Halloween. This is by far my favorite horror movie, and I'm a Jason fan above all. The killer is not what makes this film; entirely, some good casting and photography makes everything better. Sure by todays standards this not considered scary or horrifying, but then again what is? Anyways, ever so rarely do you get a timeless story for a horror movie, because by now they all run dry in trying to be in on the joke. But wasn't great when you could watch a horror movie and not have to watch them make fun of themselves and the clichés they follow? I'm always up for watching a movie, of almost any genre; drama is not my forte, but horror would be my first suggestion. I watched this with friends on Halloween, it was the start of my horror movie phase; in watching all the classic slasher films, and this one came out on top. If you must know the order of the other 3 main series would be: nightmare on Elm street, Texas chainsaw massacre, and ironically Friday the 13th. Like I said previously, the camera work works well with the suspense, adding to it and making it more "terrifying". Terrifying might be a bit extreme. The story is good, it was made at a time where the formula wasn't dried up yet. Along with timeless storytelling, it manages to create some interesting themes in it. Talking about suburbia and its effects on certain people, pro feminism in how it's a damsel saving the day. So this is not just a bunch of nostalgia for me, this is a well put together film by a talented writer(s), and I think this is the definitive horror movie that should be viewed by anyone who's interested in horror or just plain filmmaking. Expand
  24. Aug 30, 2013
    10
    Revolutionary in fathering the slasher genre and catering to the masses without the blood and gore viewers are so sensitized by today. Moving briskly at a pace in which the brooding fear of The Shape's attacks build you're left shivering in your seat as the excellent score carries the mood. Carpenter crafted an immaculate piece of Horror, without perverting art in the name of profit.
  25. Dec 3, 2013
    8
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The build up to Halloween (the holiday, not the film) has inspired me to explore the old slasher ‘classics’ of the ‘70s and ‘80s, which until now has been something of a neglected pursuit. It transpires that they are often relentlessly formulaic and derivative, although this does serve to highlight the strengths of superior films in the genre.

    Traditionally, we are introduced to a group of carefree and naive teenagers who are then systematically and sadistically dispatched with varying creativity by an unseen killer. The film usually concludes with a battle between the now revealed killer and the final (usually female) survivor, culminating in an often mind bogglingly ambiguous climax.

    Artistic integrity aside, many of these killers have developed into iconic horror characters, and (sometimes in spite the original directors’ wishes) have spawned persistent franchises. It is thus with a sense of genuine curiosity that I look towards the horizon at the undoubtedly heady delights of Friday the 13th, Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989) and an answer as to why Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991) is followed by yet another three Nightmare on Elm Street films.

    Where better to start than with Halloween (the film, not the holiday)? Even if it didn’t spawn the genre, its global success certainly solidified it in the public consciousness. It brought horror away from the supernatural and into the idyllic streets of suburban America.

    Naturally, the film opens on Halloween night (purportedly chosen when director John Carpenter realised that nobody had yet made a film by that name) when a teenage girl is murdered by her own brother, the young Michael Myers. He bears a simple name that would come to represent evil incarnate, at least until it became irrevocably associated with a certain Canadian comic actor.

    The tagline “The night he came home!” is enough to reveal that the rest of the film takes place on a Halloween some fifteen years later, when an adult Michael escapes from a psychiatric hospital with the single minded objective of returning to his hometown and indulging his psychopathic tendencies.

    For reasons at yet unknown, his ultimate objective seems to be Laurie Strode, played by Jamie Lee Curtis in a role which would earn her the title of ‘scream queen’ and land her roles in the wave of slashers that appeared in Halloween’s wake, including Prom Night (1980) and Terror Train (1980).

    For all its commercial success, Halloween is at heart an independent film, one of Carpenter’s earliest, brimming with evidence of budgetary constraints and notably fraught with continuity and production errors. The famous mask was in fact a painted William Shatner mask from Star Trek, and the film was shot during spring in Southern California (not autumn in Illinois) on a tight schedule: Donald Pleasence, who played Michael’s psychiatrist Dr. Loomis, filmed all his scenes in under a week.

    Against this backdrop, Carpenter makes use of shadow and subtlety, rather than special effects. Those familiar with more modern films may be surprised by the low body count and lack of graphic violence. The slow pacing draws out the tension, and allows the character development that other such films lack. Much of the first half follows Laurie and her friends through their day, whilst Michael stalks them one step behind. He is the unsettling figure in the distance, always drifting in and out of sight. Only Laurie sees, and her distress falls on the deaf ears of her incredulous friends.

    Not everything about Halloween is completely original. At one point, Michael evokes a traditional campfire tale by hiding in the back seat of a victim’s car, a variant of which has appeared in everything from The Godfather (1972) to The Dark Knight (2008) and even in later slasher films.

    Pleasence steals the show as Dr. Loomis, bringing gravitas to a film of otherwise fluctuating acting quality. It’s faintly hammy, but the sinister British elocution provides a voice of reason and grim truth against the sea of American hysteria as he reveals the true depravity of his patient’s soul in one of the best quotes in the film:

    “I met this six-year-old child, with this blank, pale, emotionless face, and the blackest eyes… the devil’s eyes. I spent eight years trying to reach him, and then another seven trying to keep him locked up because I realised that what was living behind that boy’s eyes was purely and simply… evil.”

    We cannot deny that Loomis was right to be wary, but at its most cynical reading this paints a picture of a psychiatric system that has utterly failed Michael as a patient. Nevertheless, for a film which appears grounded in a real world interpretation of horror, there are undeniable echoes of the supernatural: Michael’s nigh immortality to the grievous wounds inflicted upon him lend credence to the diagnosis that there may be something truly diabolic at work.
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  26. Oct 10, 2013
    9
    The fun scare-fest that it is, Halloween fulfills all your expectations. It's creepy, messes with your mind, and suspense and horror are there. It avoids some horror movie clichés, but still uses some. But, maybe we can forgive that, since this movie was in 1978 when the clichés we see in horror movies nowadays were just starting out then.
  27. Sep 20, 2013
    10
    This movie is a diamond in the horror field. There is yet to be a movie made to even come close to matching it's perfection. Jamie Lee Curtis couldn't have stumbled upon a better debut. The music score is terrifying and eerie and the white mask of the shape scares you even after the movie's over. The acting was perfect and the filming was perfect. Especially for a bunch of teenagers makingThis movie is a diamond in the horror field. There is yet to be a movie made to even come close to matching it's perfection. Jamie Lee Curtis couldn't have stumbled upon a better debut. The music score is terrifying and eerie and the white mask of the shape scares you even after the movie's over. The acting was perfect and the filming was perfect. Especially for a bunch of teenagers making a horror film in 1978. Beautifully directed movie. Brilliant. Expand
  28. Feb 8, 2014
    10
    This is the best movie ever. I was horrified of Michael's stealth and his strength, also he is seen on screen for about 9 minutes and that's what makes the movie scary and how it's creepy in a stalker like manner instead of those crappy horror flicks with nothing but brutal and mass murder. They should have never made sequels after this masterpiece. Wait who is that? OH GOD ITS MICHAELThis is the best movie ever. I was horrified of Michael's stealth and his strength, also he is seen on screen for about 9 minutes and that's what makes the movie scary and how it's creepy in a stalker like manner instead of those crappy horror flicks with nothing but brutal and mass murder. They should have never made sequels after this masterpiece. Wait who is that? OH GOD ITS MICHAEL MYERS! He's got a knife and is walking toward me!
    I'M KENNY FROM THE WALKING DEAD AND I REVIEW IT, OUCH! ... to save lives.
    (Heavy breathing) ................................................................................................
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  29. Jul 1, 2014
    8
    The first half of this classic is rather uneventful, we see Michael escape the hospital, and college girls banter on about their personal life. I'm not much of a fan of this kind of character development. I found it rather trite.

    The suspense does eventually get running as Michael starts killing off these characters, and the soundtrack does justice to this psychotic mass murderer. The
    The first half of this classic is rather uneventful, we see Michael escape the hospital, and college girls banter on about their personal life. I'm not much of a fan of this kind of character development. I found it rather trite.

    The suspense does eventually get running as Michael starts killing off these characters, and the soundtrack does justice to this psychotic mass murderer. The movie relies less on gore and more on the creeping murderer around every corner.

    Less is more, in this case.

    The presence of Donald Pleasence really makes the character of Michael Myers come to life, and without him, I doubt that I would have given much of a hoot about this film. He adds a more psychological side to Michael's otherwise uninteresting (but still rather creepy) presence.
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  30. Aug 9, 2014
    10
    Ok, let's get this straight, this movie is not scary. Suspenseful, not scary. This is an old film so it wasn't going to be as scary as the new horror films. That doesn't matter though because I really enjoyed this film. It had a few violent parts, nothing like Saw or anything. You know, just stabbing and that kind of stuff. This movie was amazing, I recommend all horror fans, and alsoOk, let's get this straight, this movie is not scary. Suspenseful, not scary. This is an old film so it wasn't going to be as scary as the new horror films. That doesn't matter though because I really enjoyed this film. It had a few violent parts, nothing like Saw or anything. You know, just stabbing and that kind of stuff. This movie was amazing, I recommend all horror fans, and also everyone, to watch this. Expand
  31. Mar 12, 2011
    10
    Greatest horror film that has ever been made. This movie is amazing and will always be my favorite. It is so creepy and scary without even showing blood and gore. I can't imagine not loving this movie. This movie is horror! You can't top Michael Myers. John Carpenter is amazing!!
  32. Sep 25, 2011
    8
    Legendary director John Carpenter made his mark in the horror genre with "Halloween". Yes, its that good (and scary).
  33. May 8, 2011
    8
    Even though this movie is technically a slasher flick the action doesn't come un till much later into the movie so if your looking for a plain blood bath this is probably not your type of thing however the story line is well developed and the suspense does build, as we know that at the end the killer (Michael Myers) will inevitably attack the main character (Laurie Strode) . The basis ofEven though this movie is technically a slasher flick the action doesn't come un till much later into the movie so if your looking for a plain blood bath this is probably not your type of thing however the story line is well developed and the suspense does build, as we know that at the end the killer (Michael Myers) will inevitably attack the main character (Laurie Strode) . The basis of the plot is that Michael Myers escapes from a mental institute and goes back to his home town where he starts Stalking a girl, After finding out about the escape his physiologist realises where he is heading and goes to the home town to find, and i will leave the rest of this brilliant movie for you to watch, since if you are a horror fan this is defiantly a must watch. Expand
  34. Nov 8, 2012
    10
    One of the greatest horror films ever made; Halloween has an impeccable system of suspense, and echoes the great classic, Psycho.
  35. RF
    Oct 13, 2008
    5
    Nothing special about this movie, very dull - all the action is packed into a 20 minute block. The worst thing is it wasn't even scary - very disappointed.
  36. Nov 1, 2012
    2
    Excessively overrated crap. How can I decently scare me when I know so little of the story? Why does Michael Myers kill? Why this girl? And why couldn't you integrate some additional stories, Mr. Carpenter? A good horror movie offers more than apparently purportless killings. Not scary, not intelligent, not good. At least I thought the Michael Myers characters was good. His mask and hisExcessively overrated crap. How can I decently scare me when I know so little of the story? Why does Michael Myers kill? Why this girl? And why couldn't you integrate some additional stories, Mr. Carpenter? A good horror movie offers more than apparently purportless killings. Not scary, not intelligent, not good. At least I thought the Michael Myers characters was good. His mask and his groaning are pretty scary, you could've made a good film out of this. Expand
  37. PatC.
    Jan 8, 2004
    4
    It's supposed to be a horror classic. Go ahead and watch it. I did. Get it over with. I have neighbors with thousand-yard stares, so no fright there. I suppose one could consider this film a damning indictment of our mental health system. But what's really scary is to think that Jamie Lee Curtis could have gotten trapped doing these roles and never moved on to Trading Places, It's supposed to be a horror classic. Go ahead and watch it. I did. Get it over with. I have neighbors with thousand-yard stares, so no fright there. I suppose one could consider this film a damning indictment of our mental health system. But what's really scary is to think that Jamie Lee Curtis could have gotten trapped doing these roles and never moved on to Trading Places, Fish Called Wanda & True Lies. You go, girl. Expand
  38. PatrickD.
    Jun 29, 2007
    4
    Cliched, dull and far from exciting.
  39. TheTexasMulroneycakesMassacre
    Nov 1, 2003
    10
    THIS is what they want! Genuinely frightening proto-slasher, without so much of the actual graphic slashing as future films in the genre (or indeed its sequels). Carpenter cranks up the suspense like a mad scientist with the world's biggest and most inviting lever, JLC screams very well - rather too well for her subsequent career - and of course there's lots of venerable old THIS is what they want! Genuinely frightening proto-slasher, without so much of the actual graphic slashing as future films in the genre (or indeed its sequels). Carpenter cranks up the suspense like a mad scientist with the world's biggest and most inviting lever, JLC screams very well - rather too well for her subsequent career - and of course there's lots of venerable old baldie Donald Pleasance. Let joy be unconfined. On second thoughts, make that "fear". Expand
  40. Dec 3, 2010
    6
    Halloween was not the best in the series, because first of all, there was no blood. Which made the movie really suck, A horror slasher film needs to have blood.
  41. May 2, 2014
    5
    It's actually not that gory or violent and it takes over an hour to get to anything remotely interesting but I can see some guilty pleasure value and why others may enjoy it; not to mention it was revolutionary for the horror genre.
  42. DavidN.
    Sep 2, 2007
    10
    The best horror film ever, a masterpiece.
  43. raVen
    Nov 2, 2003
    6
    (6.5) In this movie I found something redeemable in the slasher genre. Turned off by Scream (twice-over) and Scream look-alikes, I hate slashers even more than I hate Jamie Lee Curtis movies. And still, SOMEHOW, this movie worked for me. Maybe it's because 1978 pre-dates the Hollywood fake blood quota. The scariest scene for me involves no knife: just a faceless figure carring a limp (6.5) In this movie I found something redeemable in the slasher genre. Turned off by Scream (twice-over) and Scream look-alikes, I hate slashers even more than I hate Jamie Lee Curtis movies. And still, SOMEHOW, this movie worked for me. Maybe it's because 1978 pre-dates the Hollywood fake blood quota. The scariest scene for me involves no knife: just a faceless figure carring a limp body around a house and in the front door, with a little kid watching from across the street. The just-across-the-street scheme employed here is great. Far enough away that you can't make out the details, but close enough that you might be next.... Expand
  44. BlancoA.
    Oct 31, 2003
    10
    Scared the living hell out of me when I was 7, and I'm seeing it again tonight and expect to be crapping again. Not much blood, but a lot of that "did I see something behind that bush??? did I??" Yeahhhh.
  45. GemmaM.
    Sep 28, 2004
    10
    This movie is fantastic and scary. Its been voted the best horror ever and why wouldn't it be!? Its fantastic! Fantastic performance by Jamie Lee Curtis, and dont forget this was the movie that started off her fantastic movie career!!
  46. ChristianS.
    Aug 8, 2009
    10
    An Amazing film, Halloween is one of the best horror movies i have ever seen. Classic story, great performances, top notch scares, if you haven't seen it, you are missing out big time. the best in the series.
  47. Joseph
    Apr 20, 2006
    10
    If I could I'd rate it 10 1/2 but I cant so... Anyways Halloween is the best horror movie ever. Almost everyone of its sequels is good and it started the 80's slasher genre. It is something you have to see if you havent already seen it.
  48. ChrisB.
    Aug 4, 2006
    10
    GREAT!! the best movie ever made. John Carpenter is a GOD. Honestly there are a bunch of cheesy horror movies out there. Halloween is in its own genre. Nothing will ever compare to it!!!
  49. WillY
    Aug 15, 2007
    9
    One of the best horror movies ever, I noticed someone called it cliche... how? It's a man with a disturbed past, enough so that hate overpowers deaths itself. It's an original movie with good movies and a close-to-home feel. May not keep you up at night, but still it makes it scary to walk around a dark house.
  50. JoseD
    Aug 28, 2007
    10
    Whoever calls it cliched obviously doesn't have a clue about this Classic. In 1978 it was the first of it's kind. Let me put it this way, if it wasn't for Halloween, there would never be a Jason, Freddy, Chucky.. etc. Do your homework before you write a review.
  51. GavinC
    Jul 26, 2009
    8
    Funnily enough, the fact that it wasn't very action-packed seems to be its strength.
  52. AndrewM.
    May 12, 2004
    9
    Possibly the scariest movie ever made. Different from The Exorcist in that this film is scary because of what you don't see, rather than what you do. It contains very little blood for a "slasher" film, but it doesn't need it. This film is so successful for three main reasons: the direction, the cinematography, the music. Carpenter borrows generously from Hitchcock in this film, Possibly the scariest movie ever made. Different from The Exorcist in that this film is scary because of what you don't see, rather than what you do. It contains very little blood for a "slasher" film, but it doesn't need it. This film is so successful for three main reasons: the direction, the cinematography, the music. Carpenter borrows generously from Hitchcock in this film, but he does so to perfection. His camera placements and tracking shots were masterley thought-out and added layers of tension and suspense to the feel of the film. Watch Halloween again and pay particular attention to the how this film is shot, and the methods used. They only had a small budget to work with but showed that money isn't everything. The lighting too was very effective, cleverly alternating between light and dark, though most of the second half of the film keeps you in the latter. Finally the music. Carpenter also had a hand in this and it is one of the best examples of its kind. Creepy, foreboding, agonizing music. The only weak point about the film is the acting - it is only average. And that's the only reason I didn't give it full marks. Really, it deserves it. Watch this movie, if you dare. Watch it without expectations of blood and gore ('cause you don't get much). Watch it, by yourself, on a dark winter night, with no lights on. If you're not scared, check your pulse! Expand
  53. Jena
    Aug 27, 2004
    10
    One of the absolute materpieces of horror, one of the most scaring film ever made, a night of fear and suspance, a night of evil, the night he came home!
  54. patrick
    Jun 11, 2005
    10
    This is the greatest movie thats all there is 2 say.
  55. RD.
    Oct 16, 2006
    6
    Creepy, but not scary enough to not make you sleep at night. Maybe it is because of the lack of violence which is the complete contrast of what we see today. Yet the way Michael pursues his victims and the chilling background score make the movie creepy and entertaining.
  56. ChadEM
    Nov 14, 2007
    10
    As good as it gets in the horror genre. "Halloween" is the perfect horror movie: atmospheric, well acted, masterfully directed by John Carpenter, and scary as hell. It is, essentially, a bloodless film, yet it is remembered as a brutal, gory slasher movie. Watch it on a late October night with all the lights out and the sound way up, and you'll see why it's the best/scariest As good as it gets in the horror genre. "Halloween" is the perfect horror movie: atmospheric, well acted, masterfully directed by John Carpenter, and scary as hell. It is, essentially, a bloodless film, yet it is remembered as a brutal, gory slasher movie. Watch it on a late October night with all the lights out and the sound way up, and you'll see why it's the best/scariest horror movie ever. Expand
  57. Layne
    Nov 23, 2003
    8
    The most frightening of its kind. The tension in this film is so real, so unsurpassed by any of the sequels that to simply call Halloween a masterpiece of suspense is an understatement. The acting is not great, but that does not matter. The only acting needed here is by the villain, who is incredibly horrifying.
  58. Sep 8, 2010
    7
    Boy kills his sister, goes to asylum, escapes 15 years later, goes back to hometown to terrorise teenagers.
    John Carpenter's benchmark slasher film which served as a template for many others to follow & created the horror that is Michael Myers.
    Most of it still stands up quite well using Myers sparingly, sometimes only seeing Myers' mask standing out in the darkness in the corner of your
    Boy kills his sister, goes to asylum, escapes 15 years later, goes back to hometown to terrorise teenagers.
    John Carpenter's benchmark slasher film which served as a template for many others to follow & created the horror that is Michael Myers.
    Most of it still stands up quite well using Myers sparingly, sometimes only seeing Myers' mask standing out in the darkness in the corner of your eye.
    It does get a bit silly in the last ten minutes but overall a solid horror film.
    Expand
  59. Oct 27, 2014
    8
    A horror classic. Nothing is creepier than seeing Mike Myers stalk you with his creepy mask. The scares are genuine and the chills are real. However, Halloween does have unforgettable and expendable characters.
  60. Nov 8, 2014
    2
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. I am a very easily scared person my sister has told me about scary movies and its scared me just so you get an idea of how easily frightened I am and quite frankly this movie was not scary I was only startled at two of the jump scares and it wasn't the big ones because I predicted where all of the other ones would be if i watch a horror movie and go home and walk into my house then go straight to my bedroom without turning any lights on i dont think a horror movie did its job and on top of the fact that this movie doesn't really have any good actors besides the professor who wasn't even that talented at that this movie was one of the worst movies I've ever seen and that's not an exaggeration Expand
  61. Dec 30, 2014
    10
    this is a masterwork of horror delivering one of the best slasher villains ever. this film launched both Jamie Lee Curtis and and John carpenter careers and looking back on it I wouldn't have it any other way. john's directing style allows the film to be legitimately scary in a way that a lot of modern horror movies are failing to achieve seriously give it a look if you haven't
  62. Nov 4, 2014
    9
    Awesome movie! This is very suspenseful and I really like how scary it is! I definitely recommend this movie. Much better than Friday the 13th. Watch it now!
  63. Apr 9, 2015
    8
    Halloween is a classic it is a great movie. but the movie at the beginning was so slow and boring but then it got really good so this movie great.....
  64. Apr 17, 2015
    7
    For everybody who always looking for a good horror movie, here's one. Don't look for the year of the movie, because the best horror movies ever are from the 70's. That Michael Meyers are brilliant.
Metascore
85

Universal acclaim - based on 10 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 9 out of 10
  2. Negative: 0 out of 10
  1. Reviewed by: Mike Emery
    78
    Not entirely without some laughable or dated scenes, Halloween remains an original that continues to inspire a genre and probe middle America's fears about what's really lurking in the laundry room after midnight.
  2. 100
    Halloween is an absolutely merciless thriller...I would compare it to "Psycho."
  3. 100
    From a shock-and-suspense point-of-view, Halloween is the rival of Alfred Hitchcock's "Psycho." With only a few arguable exceptions (such as "The Exorcist"), there isn't another post-1970 release that comes close to it in terms of scaring the living hell out of a viewer... A modern classic of the most horrific kind.