MovieChat Forums > Halloween (1978) Discussion > Flaw in criminal justice system

Flaw in criminal justice system


Does this film point out a flaw in the criminal justice system at the time of its original release? I mean in real life in the 1960s/1970s, would a kid who murders someone be sent to a minimum-security mental hospital (where he could break out of when he is older) instead of a high-security prison? If so, I wonder if this film addressed the need for states to adjust their juvenile justice laws in order to prevent something like the Michael Myers killings in real life.

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They depicted Michael as catatonic when he finished the murder. Even back then there would have been a case for mental illness.

Ed Gein in the 1950's killed two women as well as his grave robbing and was sentenced to a mental institution. So it did happen in real life, even back then.

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missing the point

the film was made when 'deinstitutionalization' was big in communities. The film warns that people with disabilities are 'dangerous' Compared to say Carrie this film is not even that violent, it just focuses on Michael being 'disturbed' and the idea that somebody like him could be released into a community.

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As Paladin said, Michael was catatonic and never spoke again after murdering his sister. From an outside perspective he just, 'broke.' His escape from the institution couldn't have been foreseen by any reasonable expectation. The subtle implication was that Michael was possessed or otherwise unnatural. The whole mental institution vs prison thing is above my pay grade, I have opinions but I'm not educated in the subject.

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Maybe if Michael Myers was black he would've been sent to the high-security prison, especially if he murdered a white woman. Black men coming for white women was a popular fear back in the day.

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