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DVD Shopping Bag: Halloween 35th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray

No Effing Way!

By Robert T. Trate     October 01, 2013
Source: Mania.com

Halloween 35th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray
© Anchor Bay
When Anchor Bay Entertainment announced that they were releasing John Carpenter's Halloween again on Blu-ray, I thought that it made sense. It is the perfect time of year and why not capitalize on that? I didn’t think, however, that I needed to add yet another edition to my collection. It felt like only yesterday that I wrote about the Halloween box set in this very column. It turns out that it was actually 5 years ago (read it here). Half a decade later, I thought it might be time to write about Halloween again. 
What really swayed me on this Blu-ray Edition was the fact that Jamie Lee Curtis was doing the commentary with John Carpenter. Now, it seems strange, but John Carpenter commentaries are an interesting experience in watching his films. With Big Trouble and Little China, he and star Kurt Russell kick back, drink a few beers, and get lost in their own conversation. That conversation had nothing to do with the film, yet it was completely worth it. In Ghosts of Mars, Carpenter chats with star Natasha Henstridge and he calls the film his Biggest P.O.S. (read that review here). Halloween is not Ghosts of Mars. In fact, it is Carpenter’s defining film and one that is considered, by many, to be a classic. What was going to happen in this particular commentary was something I had to find out. 
The commentary track starts off very technical. Carpenter and Curtis discuss the opening title sequence and how Tommy Lee Wallace carved the pumpkin and shot the whole thing in a garage. Curtis wants to know where all the cuts are in the opening sequence, though she is quick to point out where all the camera shadows are. That opening sequence is completely dissected. Carpenter and Curtis reveal how it was the last day of shooting, as well as how the entire crew, including Curtis, white washed that house. As the commentary progressed, Curtis would go on to repeat that this was the most fun and best experience she ever had a on a film, which wasn’t surprising, but it was Curtis’ over all excitement about the film that made the commentary worth watching. 
Jamie Lee Curtis was nineteen years old when she made Halloween. Curtis is now a mom who doesn’t swear or watch horror movies. In fact, at one point, Carpenter wants to suggest a few, but she refuses because it’s not her thing. He then tells her she can swear on the commentary, too. What is funny is that she is in one of the most beloved horror films of all time and she can’t watch horror films. She points out the obvious, but in a way that makes us think we are watching the film for the first time with our own mothers. Little things like shadows and mood become apparent again. There are reasons why Halloween has endured and Curtis reminds us of all those great things. What really stood out for this critic was Curtis reminding us that a studio or director today wouldn’t make a film like this. There would have to be quicker cuts and no long drawn out takes. Carpenter points out that the reason why they are there is because they didn’t have the time or the money. They had to get it all done in one. 
There is a ton of great material about the making of this film revealed, here, things that this horror and movie fan didn’t know. The first is why Donald Pleasence did the film. Also, that Ray Stark called Curtis’s mom, Janet Leigh, and asked her to audition for The Exorcist. Plus, Carpenter talks about using the new Panaglide camera from Panavision, their own version of the Steadicam. This is the best way to start off the Halloween season!
Halloween 35th Anniversary Edition Blu-ray is out now Blu-ray. 

TOP 5 Picks of the Week: 
1. House of Wax [Blu-ray]
2. The Amityville Horror Trilogy [Blu-ray]
3. Ultimate Horror Classics (SD Blu-Ray) (The Ghoul / White Zombie / Sweeney Todd / House on Haunted Hill / Phantom...
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Boondock Saints II, The: All Saints Day [Blu-ray]
Cold War
The Frozen Ground
Jean-Claude Van Damme Double Feature (The Order / Nowhere to Run) [Blu-ray]
Killing American Style (Special Edition)
Torn Curtain [Blu-ray]
Volcano [Blu-ray]
Aria the Animation (Litebox)
Godannar Complete Collection
Hakuoki Season 3: Complete
Sankarea: Complete Series (Limited Edition Blu-ray/DVD Combo)
Tiger & Bunny: The Movie- The Beginning [Blu-ray]
Beetlejuice: A Halloween Spooktacular
Charlie Brown Thanksgiving 40th Anniversary
The Croods
Dc Comics Superman Triple Feature
Dragons Holiday-Gift of the Night Fury
Kung Fu Panda Holiday
The Little Mermaid (Two-Disc Diamond Edition: Blu-ray / DVD + Digital Copy)
Merry Madagascar
Phineas and Ferb: Mission Marvel
Scooby-Doo & The Snow Creatures
Shrek the Halls
Snoopy's Holiday Collection
Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Ultimate Showdown
Cottage To Let
From Here to Eternity [Blu-ray]
The Wizard of Oz: 75th Anniversary Edition (Blu-ray 3D / Blu-ray / UltraViolet)
About Last Night / St. Elmo's Fire [Blu-ray]
The Big Parade [Blu-ray Book]
Richard Pryor Triple Feature (See No Evil, Hear No Evil; Stir Crazy; The Toy) [Blu-ray]
100 Bloody Acres
Abandoned Mine
Aliens Vs Humans
Beast: A Monster Among Men
Dead Before Dawn [Blu-ray]
Fright Night 2: New Blood (Blu-ray Combo Pack)
Hallows Eve
Killer Tomatoes Strike Back / Killer Tomatoes
House of Wax [Blu-ray]
Medusa Touch [Blu-ray]
Night of the Living Dead
Ultimate Horror Classics (SD Blu-Ray) (The Ghoul / White Zombie / Sweeney Todd / House on Haunted Hill / Phantom...
Wishmaster 3: Beyond the Gates of Hell [HD]
Cocoon 2: The Return
The Extraordinary Adventures of Adele Blanc-Sec [Director's Cut] (BluRay/DVD/Digital Copy) [Blu-ray]
Short Circuit / Short Circuit 2 [Blu-ray]
Superheroes Collection (The Incredible Hulk Returns / Trial of the Incredible Hulk / How to Draw Comics)
This Is The End (Two Disc Combo: Blu-ray / DVD + UltraViolet Digital Copy)
Agatha Christie's Poirot: Series 7 & 8
Beauty & the Beast: The First Season
Columbo: Season One
Columbo: Season Two
Columbo: Season Three
Columbo: Season Four
Glee: The Complete Fourth Season
Highway to Heaven - The Complete Second Season
How I Met Your Mother: Season Eight
Murder, She Wrote: Season One
Murder, She Wrote: Season Six
New Girl: The Complete Second Season
The Amityville Horror Trilogy [Blu-ray]
Bond 50: Celebrating Five Decades of Bond with Skyfall [Blu-ray]
Magnum P.I.: The Complete Series
Murder, She Wrote: The Complete Series
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Showing items 1 - 7 of 7
doublec 10/1/2013 9:07:37 AM

 My sister heard Jamie Lee Curtis speak at a business woman's conference several years ago and her one criticism, oddly enough, was how much Curtis swore during her speech!
I'm not a special features person and already have Halloween on Bluray so I'm gonna pass on this one. 

jedibanner 10/1/2013 11:40:27 AM

Hi Robert,

Any way to know if this new release of Halloween differs a lot from past versions on BR?

RobertTrate 10/1/2013 8:54:49 PM

 The blu-Ray picture was excellent. The only thing was that was new was commentary. The tv scenes were there but only as a special feature. No TV cut included, the 08 version had that as a bonus disc.

jedibanner 10/2/2013 8:32:19 AM


mellowdoux 10/2/2013 10:18:47 AM

 Damn... I saw Fright Night II and got excited! Thought it was the William Ragsdale/Roddy McDowell sequel.

It's some cheesy direct to dvd thing though... :(


ultrazilla2000 10/2/2013 3:34:44 PM

Mellowdoux, I seem to recall the "original" Fright Night 2 going straight to video as well...

mellowdoux 10/2/2013 8:48:20 PM


Nope. I saw 'Fright Night II' in the theater, mate.



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