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Video: The Musical Affect of Halloween, Forty Years Ago and Now

Hi, everyone. In this video, I discuss music as it is used in Halloween (1978) and it's forty-year sequel to affect the audience in a Gothic sense:


What I mean by that is Gothic in the Radcliffean sense of terror, which is to hide the monster or force the audience to use their imagination, and horror is to show the monster, and take the audience's ability to imagine away from them. In the original Halloween, the music is largely used to affect the viewer by impressing on them a sensation of imminent danger. Much of the visuals are obscured by darkness and there is seldom if ever any actual action; Michael Myers is hidden. In the sequel, the music is used to accent events that unfold onscreen, which the audience watches action (not the promise of action). These are very different approaches in terms of music that is used relative to a dangerous presence inside a Gothic space. However, I contend that there is room for both musical attacks in the franchise; each is part of the larger Gothic mode: monsters, hidden and shown.


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