MovieChat Forums > Halloween (1978) Discussion > Watched it last night after 40 years and...

Watched it last night after 40 years and it make no sense.


Why are there no kids outside trick or treating ??
Why are the parents going out on Halloween night ?? We always stay home to answer the door and my parents always stayed home on Halloween night.
Why weren't Tommy and Lindsey out trick or treating ? and if they were earlier where was the candy and treats that they had collected ? They would certainly be eating some of them.
Where were the Halloween decorations on the houses ? I grew up in a small town and our house always had decorations back in the 70s.
Why is the town so dead on Halloween night ? It was one of the most exciting nights of the year when I was a kid back in the 70s.
Everybody is dressed way too lightly for October 31st in the Midwest.
The leaves are still green and there is no indication that this is Autumn.


At least make the movie look like Halloween.

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I never really paid attention to that stuff, although I haven't watched the film in over a decade (it's still disturbing, as
there's nothing more frightening than a man in black wearing a mask in the night).

I DO know the film was shot in spring '78, which is why all the lawns were green (they really had no money - JLC wore
her own Sears wardrobe, and the mask was like two bucks).

I think the film is much better than its idiotic sequels, and much better than "Friday the 13th", or "Nightmare on
Elm Street."

My one main issue with the original "Halloween" is how bad the acting is of the two teenage girls. It looked bad then,
and plays REALLY bad now. But other than that, I still think it's an effective piece of horror. Too bad they didn't know
when to stop. (I'm not wasting my money on the 2018 version).

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It was an independent film with a 300,000 dollar budget. Even back then, that is a crazy low amount of money to work with in terms of making a movie.

They had ONE person doing the production design, and a limited amount of time to shoot it in (19 days I think).

All those things you listed are certainly valid in terms of making it look like Halloween, but with the resources they had, the time constraints, ect., I think they did the best they could.

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Playing devils advocate..... or boogeyman's.

1) Trick or treating is done from 6-8. Laurie and Annie arrive close to 8.
2) Maybe they passed out candy earlier, and were now going to a party.
3) They could have earlier, but their parents made them come in before they left. And their candy stash was hidden in order to avoid them eating it all.
4)True. But we can chalk that up to the movies low budget.
5) It was later into the evening.
6) Very true on that. I grew up in Michigan and we picked our costumes assuming we would be wearing it over our winter coats.
7) It was filmed in the spring in Southern California.

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Good points. One of the things that bugs me is when viewers say that just because the audience DIDN'T SEE something
happen, it didn't. Well, how do WE know that?. (I'm sure Laurie visited the toilet in the evening, even though it
wasn't shown). In other words, there probably WERE trick or treaters; we just didn't see them. Also, when Laurie
is screaming and running for help down the street, it IS typical that many people DON'T open their doors (there's
the famous 1964 slaying of a cocktail waitress on a suburban NY street, with countless witnesses watching from
their windows, but doing NOTHING to help her!).

Also, the parents could've EASILY gone out on Halloween! Maybe it was a business dinner, or something.

I think the film holds up pretty darn well. But, no, I have zero interest in the new one. Zip.

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Trick or treating was not limited to only 2 hours in the 1970's. 6-8pm are modern trick-or-treat times. In the 70's, you could trick-or-treat from late afternoon until people started turning off their porch lamps, usually 10pm or later depending on the neighborhood.

In the 1960's, kids were trick-or-treating 3-4 days of Halloween week. Kids today get screwed out of the fun of Halloween, as the adults have co-opted the festivities for themselves, by promoting short, daylight only trick-or-treating, so they can have big parties.

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Why are there no kids outside trick or treating ??
It showed kids trick or treating. Just because a few scenes in front of the set houses didn't have kids in front of them at that exact moment doesn't change that.

Why are the parents going out on Halloween night ?? Most may be home but people do go out so your parameter is too extreme and is absolute. Some people do go out.

Why weren't Tommy and Lindsey out trick or treating ? Valid point. Are they a family that doesn't celebrate Halloween? Did they not get to go trick or treating? Do they do a little earlier but had to come home early?

Where were the Halloween decorations on the houses ? I went trick or treating and I had no decorations at home. Some decorate, some don't, not a valid criticism.

Why is the town so dead on Halloween night ? You are assuming a lot. We only get a few glimpses in front of two houses. Neighborhoods have high traffic areas and low traffic areas. Houses that aren't in the main shoot and are further out. Some areas have lots of houses with kids and some areas that may have some retired people with no kids. Halloween II shows lots of kids out on that same night. We only get a view outside of the house for a couple of short instances. That doesn't mean no kids ever came by.

Everybody is dressed way too lightly for October 31st in the Midwest. True but some Halloween's are chilly, even winter like and some end up being a little warmer. October has both.

The leaves are still green and there is no indication that this is Autumn. This is valid. Illinois would have fall foliage. This is a detail they didn't cover while filming in California. It seems like they could have just made up a fictional California town instead of Illinois.

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In my home city, in the Midwest, the average high for October 31st is 59. Temperature generally doesn't start to drop much until after dark. Fifty nine is hardly chilly. I often went out on Halloween as a kid without a coat or even a jacket.

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Mmm'kay. It's about this dude in a mask who kills a bunch of people.

Now, you're all caught up. :-)

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In one of the Halloween docsCarpenter said they had one bag of fall leaves that they moved around the scenes
Really low budget film but so was NOTLD And TCM which are two stone cold horror classics

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The big focus for this film is that people with mental issues are supposed to be locked up for everybody's safety. Not the kids trick or treating

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Nitpicking much? none of that ruins the movie

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it was a great post

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I disagree. As it has already been pointed out, all of your complaints are easier dismissed with the exception of the leaves.

One thing I'll add is many parents control the candy their kids collect. They may want to inspect it before they let them eat any of it to insure it is safe. If their parents were in a rush to get to a Halloween party, there may not have been time to go through the candy. Also, parents control the Halloween candy for dietary reasons. They may only allow one or two pieces per day. Just because we don't see Tommy and Lindsey eating candy doesn't mean they didn't go trick or treating earlier.


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they must have gone trick or treating when it was still light outside.

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When I was their age we had to be home by dark on Halloween.

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