John Carpenter

One of the best horror and action movie makers.

Halloween (1978) -- Although this gets all the hype as the first of its kind of horror movie, which is it, I'm not sure that's such a good thing. It's good by those twisted standards, but I'm not sure it's good. I think the main thing that bugs me is that Dr. Loomis kept saying "You don't know what he is!" and then never got to explain to the audience what that is... so we never know. It's that kind of "who cares?" sloppiness that I hate about most horror films. (Rick Rosenthal directs the sequel, Halloween 2.) C

The Thing (1982) -- Surprisingly good for a horror movie: more of simply a suspenseful movie than a "boo!" type horror movie. Pretty smart, and well worth watching. B

They Live (1988) -- A pretty funny social satire in which Roddy Piper is able to see things as they really are, "in black and white," which of course is an endless stream of advertisements that, at the core, only say "Obey," "Consume," "Watch TV," "Marry and reproduce," etc.  It's something people can figure out without a magic pair of sunglasses, but it's fun to see it so bluntly on the screen.  It's also fun to see the upper class as either aliens or humans being paid off by aliens.  "I should have known it would be something like this," Piper laughs.  Beyond the satire, there are some good action scenes and fight scenes, the best being an insane street fight between Piper and his best friend (a fight that would later be translated almost literally into a "cripple fight" on South Park).  All of it is goofy fun, in the end, with great lines like "I am here to chew bubblegum and kick ass.  And I'm all out of bubblegum." B

Copyright (c) Sep 2001 - Nov 2005 by Rusty Likes Movies