Halloween - Halloween John Carpenter's(1978 Halloween is the quintessential American slasher flick As Carol Clover invokes in her article Her Body

Halloween - Halloween John Carpenter's(1978 Halloween is...

This preview shows page 1 - 3 out of 6 pages.

Halloween John Carpenter's (1978) Halloween is the quintessential American slasher flick. As Carol Clover invokes in her article Her Body, Himself: Gender in the Slasher Film , Carpenter’s portrayal of his female protagonist Laurie Strode differs markedly from her heroine predecessors in Psycho and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre . As a victim, Laurie’s “active defense” approach towards Michael Meyers inspired The Final Girl trend that, even today, remains the subgenre’s cinematic standard. Appealing to Clover's theory, I submit an account explaining how, and in precisely what ways, Laurie’s character conforms to the notion of The Final Girl . With this in mind, I subsequently offer a brief psychoanalytic reading of Michael’s motives and speculate the roots of his violent psychosis. As Clover touches on in her article, cinema—like any artistic medium—reconfigures itself in accord with the changing times in order to expressively mirror various psychosocial anxieties pertinent to that era. The horror genre popularly, and sometimes even artfully, conveys these anxieties by using “the monster” as a figurative vehicle that masks taboo subjects with excess. Among these anxieties, gender confusion, especially with regards to the slasher subgenre, permeates cinematic horror. The late 1970s and early 1980s were notoriously conservative decades relative to the countercultural renaissance that
Image of page 1
defined the 1960s and 1970s. The moral conservatism and revitalization of religion in late 1970s and 1980s most notably incited a sense of public disdain with regards to sexual promiscuity. As Clover suggests, The Final Girl emerges, presumably, in order to promulgate a more virtuous female archetype and, in the process, curb the lingering promiscuity excited during the two previous decades.
Image of page 2

Want to read all 6 pages?

Image of page 3

Want to read all 6 pages?

You've reached the end of your free preview.

Want to read all 6 pages?

  • Spring '14
  • AshleyArgyle
  • Literature, Laurie, Horror film, Slasher film, Laurie Strode

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture

  • Left Quote Icon

    Student Picture