Digital video, sound; 41 minutes.
This is John Carpenter’s Halloween (1978) with the horror removed. Through cutting, masking, and reordering, the film’s antagonist Michael Myers is erased. A familiar story is transformed into an unremarkable tale of three bored teens on one Halloween night.
But removing Michael does little to relieve the character’s own anxieties. Tension slowly builds but is never released; Checkhov’s gun never goes off. Absent violence, their fear becomes existential as their paranoia switches aim from the masked stranger to their immediate surroundings: the American suburbs, their homes, and themselves.