The regeneration and resurrection of Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982) has been something of a personal crusade for me. It was the first Halloween franchise film I ever watched (yes, even before Carpenters 1978 original) and its impression on me has remained undiminished in the intervening twenty years. While I would by no means argue it is the best film in the franchise, that honour does comfortably belong to the first film, I’m firm in my conviction that it is the second best. Halloween III is possessed of an attitude that is deeply pessimistic and cynical. It is perhaps the most unremittingly grim and paranoid mainstream American horror film of the 1980’s. It highlights the ease with which a force of evil can gain purchase within America, if it manages to tick all the right capitalist boxes. It illustrates the manner in which the media can be used as a tool of propaganda, and indicates how malleable the adult population is when confronted with the demands of children. The film does have a number of serious shortcomings, not least of which is a rushed finale, and uninspired direction. Much of the tension and atmosphere instead is derived from a chilling electronic score courtesy of Alan Howarth and John Carpenter. I even find the much maligned advertising jingle for Silver Shamrock a great piece of music. Its repetition in the film an intended strategy to irritate both the characters and the audience. It does my heart good to have read a number of positive reviews for Halloween III over the last few weeks, and I feel that slowly but surely, its critical standing is on the ascent in the horror community. This edition of Celluloid Sounds is a celebration of what I consider to be one of the finest horror soundtracks of the 1980’s.