Favorite Carpenter Creations: “The Fog” (1980) Review

My choice for Carpenter week is his 1980 film The Fog.

In the town of Antonio Bay at the time of the town’s anniversary, a fog is setting in. But this isn’t just any ordinary fog. This fog contains evil, revenge seeking ghosts out for blood. Among its potential victims are Elizabeth (Jamie Lee Curtis), Nick (Tom Atkins), Kathy, the mayor, (Janet Leigh), the local priest (Hal Holbrook), and the local radio host Stevie Wayne (Adrienne Barbeau). It is Stevie who first realizes something isn’t right about this fog, and as the body count begins, Stevie frantically tries to get someone to save her son back at her home, as well as save the town, all while being trapped up in the radio tower. What do these ghosts want and who will survive the fog?

While Halloween is my favorite Carpenter film, The Fog is another one of his films that can’t go unnoticed. The Fog contains an amazing and spooky mood and atmosphere, sandwhiched together with an amazing and creepy score. The ghosts in the film I would even consider very creepy. While watching the film you almost start to fear the rapidly moving fog like the characters do. It’s almost as if the fog has eyes and it’s following its next victims. Two of the best scenes in the film is when Elizabeth and Nick are trying to save Stevie’s son from the fog, the other is Stevie’s chase scene to the top of the radio tower with the ghosts coming after her. Both are filled with great edge of your seat suspense. Adrianne Barbeau by far gives the best performance and has the best character. It’s also very interesting to see some familiar Halloween faces including Charles Cyphers, Nancy Loomis, and of course Jamie Lee Curtis. We even get Jamie’s mother, and Psycho vet Janet Leigh thrown in the mix.

I said once in my review of it before, and I’ll say it again. STAY AWAY FROM THE REMAKE!! It completely takes away everything effective about the original. There’s not suspense or decent score, the plot is messy, and the whole film is CGI filled, including the ghosts. The ghosts are actually scary here because they are played by real people and not created by technology. Of all the horror movies I’ve seen, no one can create suspense and a great creepy atmosphere like John Carpenter. Wes Craven (my favorite horror director) may know how to make an excellent and fun-filled horror film, with some good suspense but it is Carpenter who can really bring on the chills.

–Cody Landman

Slashers We Love: “The Fog” and “High Tension”

Once again, you guys have yet to let us down! Two more mini reviews from another great fan of the slasher genre. Thank you Brian C. Tyler for two more of your awesome selections! Want to submit your own mini review? Just go to the Slasher Studios Facebook Page and select a picture from your favorite slasher movie, do a small write up and we will feature you and your review on our site. One special review will win a free autographed copy of Teddy!

“High Tension”
And another one. Probably my favorite slasher film made in the last ten years this actually manages to be dark and scary. High Tension returns to the feel of the most twisted 1970’s horror/exploitation films with a terrifying villain known only as “The Killer” who doesn’t discriminate, brutally killing men, women and children for no apparent reason. We also have a great heroine and we’re in her shoes every step of the way, I felt so much suspense especially in that public bathroom scene and early on in the house when she’s trying to erase all the proof of her being there. And that twist I definitely did not see coming and I thought it was awesome!

“The Fog”
Not really considered a slasher film, but it does have people getting stabbed with hooks and machetes and getting their eyes poked out. I find John Carpenter’s The Fog to be a very underrated horror film. It has it all: a great setting, spooky atmosphere, a perfect cast for a horror film (Adrienne Barbeau, Jamie Lee Curtis, Janet Leigh, Tom Atkins etc.), a good story, creepy death scenes, lots of suspense and in my opinion a score almost as good as Halloween. And what a great ending!