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The Playlist

The Essentials: 7 Great John Carpenter Movies

  • By Drew Taylor
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  • July 30, 2013 12:43 PM
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  • 8 Comments
John Carpenter Essentials
This week, "The Fog," filmmaker John Carpenter's 1980 chiller about a fog that rolls into a sleepy seaside community carrying with it ghostly visitors, will be re-released on Blu-ray and DVD by Shout Factory, complete with a host of all new special features (including a wonderful, retrospective conversation with Jamie Lee Curtis that doesn't just cover her collaborations with Carpenter but goes on to include a frank discussion of most of her genre work from that period). With its pristine picture quality and sound, it goes a long way in reminding you what a skilled technician and artist Carpenter truly is, able to conjure forth visions of nightmarish clarity, nearly out of thin air. This is a director capable of keeping you up at night, but one who isn't interested in a cheap scare. When asked to give advice to young filmmakers, he said, simply, "Play for history if possible." That's certainly what Carpenter has tried to do; and to celebrate this recent release we've decided to run down seven of his most essential films. Frequent collaborator Kurt Russell has said of his friend that he "sees the world slightly askew." As a Russell character in a John Carpenter movie would say: no shit.

Watch: Test Footage From John Carpenter's 'Halloween' Using Steadicam Competitor Panaglide

  • By Cain Rodriguez
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  • July 30, 2013 10:42 AM
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  • 3 Comments
Though many know of the great impact that the Steadicam had on the filmmaking world at large, few are aware of its competitor, the Panaglide. Though many use the two names interchangeably now, both were two different systems that were part of a nasty battle but what’s important now are the images the two rigs have given us over the years. In the case of Panavision’s Panaglide, it gave John Carpenter the power to put his audience into the mind of a killer and test footage shot during the pre-production of the seminal horror classic “Halloween” using the new technology has appeared online.

John Carpenter's 'Halloween' Returning To Theaters Just In Time For Halloween

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • October 24, 2012 10:27 AM
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  • 1 Comment
Sequelized, remade and rebooted over the years, it speaks to the power of John Carpenter's 1978 horror classic "Halloween" that it still tops all of its subsequent iterations. At thirty-four years old, the film still remains a thrill, but if you haven't seen it or want a rare chance to see it on the big screen with an excited crowd, now's your chance.
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