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4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars the original master, 29 Dec. 2006
This review is from: John Carpenter: The Prince of Darkness: The Prince of Darkness, an Exclusive Interview with the Director of 'Halloween' and 'The Thing' (Paperback)
I was curious about this book for one simple reason, how could such a great director, who produced the likes of halloween, the thing and escape from new york, have gone so down hill over the last few years? This book covers all his films upto and including ghosts of mars. In a series of interviews he covers his life story and influences, before discussing each of his films in great detail. He is brutally honest in his conversations over what is right and wrong with each of his films,and the difficulties and opposition that he faced, especially from the critics. Time I feel has been kind to a lot of his films, the thing was deemed a flop at the time, but is now considered a classic with special effects that beat a lot of modern films hands down. Halloween is the original, copied many times, bur rarely beaten. Did the book answer my original question? Yes, but you'll have to read it for yourself to find out. A must for fans, and still a good read for the mildly intrested
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Showing 1-6 of 6 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 16 May 2012 11:32:59 BDT
Downhill? When did this happen? Don't believe the box office hype the guy is still a genius.

Posted on 14 Mar 2013 16:48:38 GMT
Julia says:
I agree his work did go down hill I watched a recent film of his and it was terrible. I think a big reason is Deborah Hill who worked with him on all his best films sadly died. I think he has lost his way without her. She was much like Mrs Hitchcock was to Alfred Hitchcock a huge influence but not given the credit and acknowledgement they deserved.

In reply to an earlier post on 14 Mar 2013 21:54:24 GMT
You have a valid point there. But every director has there bad films, even happened to Howard Hawks of all people. For me Carpenter redeemed himself with Cigarette Burns, which was fantastic. Pro Life wasn't too bad either, but was spoiled by the writing.

In reply to an earlier post on 13 Oct 2013 21:55:41 BDT
A. Moncrieff says:
Debra Hill worked on The Fog (which was OKAY) and not The Thing (which was amazing). I don't think that's a great theory.

While THE WARD was predictable, it was well acted and well directed - just a bad script. It wasn't as bad as Village of the Damned. GHOSTS OF MARS really isn't a terrible film either, it's just not a great one. VAMPIRES is a movie that gets better each viewing and IN THE MOUTH OF MADNESS is one of Carpenter's best films, and it came a few years after MEMOIRS OF AN INVISIBLE MAN, not a bad film but hardly a great one for Carpenter.

His decline is very, very exaggerated - he's found it harder and harder to keep control of his own films.

In reply to an earlier post on 13 Oct 2013 22:10:05 BDT
Mouth of Madness is a fantastic film. I think after then he just gave out average to fairly good films. Hey he's still a legend though!

In reply to an earlier post on 4 Apr 2015 18:36:52 BDT
Karlykins says:
Yes, I agree to some extent, Julia. Ms Hill did work alongside JC on nigh all of his earliest work and they must have had a great chemistry to come up with what they did. I still adore The Fog as their best, most atmospheric work together, but I also like the much-maligned Halloween III: Season Of The Witch, which I think was also greatly creepy in its witchcraft-related themes (rather than the boring slasher stylings of the first two Halloween films). JC still made some great work without his initial collaborator though - don't forget the absolute classic that is The Thing (never bettered!), plus Prince of Darkness and They Live - all greats in their own right. Personally though, I would say that after They Live, his work has definitely declined, with the exception of a decent hour-long TV instalment here and there. Whether this is due to a lack of ability to control his projects (as stated elsewhere) or not doesn't matter. A decline nonetheless I would say; but a genuine modern-day master with a great body of early work to his name which stands the test of time and still gives great viewing even today, methinks! Which is your favourite? :-)
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