The Unexpected Car Stars Of The First 'Halloween' Movie

John Carpenter's 1978 horror movie "Halloween" is a classic. It practically invented the now ubiquitous "slasher" genre. Much like "Jaws" made everyone afraid to swim at the beach when it premiered in 1975, "Halloween" made an entire generation warier of October 31st. The film introduced Michael Myers to the world, and the character quickly became one of the most famous monsters in movie history and the inspiration for countless easy and cheap Halloween costumes. 

Michael Myer's boiler suit and knife, Jamie Lee Curtis' performance as Laurie Strode, and John Carpenter's soundtrack all serve in making the movie the horror mainstay it is today. But underneath the seasonably dreadful atmosphere and overall creepy feel of the movie, some stars worked in the background. Those actors made the sleepy, suburban Illinois setting not only feel more believable and "lived-in," but also just a tad scarier. It was the film's cars that served as unconventional actors that did a lot more than just sit in the background.  

Michael Myers' Ford and Dr. Loomis' BMW

The movie takes place in 1978, right in the middle of a dreary period of automotive known as the Malaise Era

Early in the film, Michael Myers acquires a State of Illinois livery Ford LTD station wagon. In 1978, a beige massive station wagon would be almost totally anonymous. A several-ton behemoth of American steel would fade completely into the background. That is, if the driver wasn't wearing a dingy boiler suit and a stark white rubber mask. A state government Ford wagon is the opposite of flashy. Much like the movie itself, Michael Myers took a slow and restrained approach.

If the literal personification of evil drove a beige family car the size of a cruise ship, it's only fitting that one of the film's protagonists drives something diametrically opposed to a municipal land yacht. Dr. Loomis, Michael Myers' psychiatrist, chases the killer in a pale yellow BMW 3 Series. In the film's oppressive atmosphere, the BMW sticks out as almost cheery. It's a fitting car for the man that would eventually empty all six cylinders of his .38 Special revolver into Michael Myers at the end of the movie.

Annie's Chevrolet Monte Carlo

One of the characters, Annie, drives a red late '70s Chevrolet Monte Carlo before meeting her demise in the front seat. In case you forgot the movie was filmed in 1978, the movie reminds you with a scene where Annie and the protagonist Laurie ride around in the Monte Carlo smoking and listening to Blue Öyster Cult's hit song "Don't Fear the Reaper." The song is rather thematically appropriate, to put it lightly. The Monte Carlo's classic sport-coupe paint scheme, unfortunately, makes the car incredibly easy to stalk from behind the wheel of a huge Ford, much to the dismay of the film's protagonists.

While Myers drove a boring Ford while he stalked his victims, both cars associated with the protagonists completely stand out in the sea of beige automotive mundanity that was the average American neighborhood in the 1970s. It's a stroke of genius on the film crew's part and helps solidify the movie's place in the pantheon of horror classics.