New Jersey Stage 2015 - Issue 10 - Page 30

mine her, as she gives a fantastic performance, which lead to her being cast in every other slasher movie over the next few years. In fairness to the actress, she’s always been quick to acknowledge the debt she owes to this film and was happy to return to the role 20 years later. The real star of course is Carpenter himself, both as director and soundtrack composer. In the latter capacity he recorded the score in just three days, basing it on simple syncopated rhythms taught to him as a child by his father, a music professor. It’s a perfect score, flawlessly employed in the film. The main theme has become iconic, as recognizable as those of Jaws and Star Wars. What Carpenter also cleverly does, and a highly original idea at the time, was to incorporate the music as a sound effect. Every time we see Myers jump out from the darkness we get a stabbing sound, which varies in tone for each situation. Like his earlier score for Assault on Precinct 13, it was entirely composed on a synthesizer, a method which would become the norm for low budget films over the next decade. Carpenter’s direction is flawless, remarkable given the pressures of time and budget imposed on the young film-maker. 2015 - ISSUE 10 30