John Carpenter's Halloween is one of the greatest horror films of all time, but that doesn't stop it from having quite the large plot hole. That shouldn't be too surprising though, as many excellent films still end up with plot points that don't really make any sense upon reflection. Screenwriting is hard, as is mastering continuity when most films shoot scenes out of order, due to logistics involving cast, crew, and location availability.
Some horror fans hold up Halloween as a near-perfect horror film, with lots of scares, an iconic villain, likeable characters for him to target, a mesmerizing score, and masterful shot composition from director Carpenter. All those sentiments may well be true, but Halloween didn't manage to to make it to the screen without at least one big element sure to make viewers stop and scratch their heads as to how it would make any sense.
We all know Halloween's story. Michael Myers kills his sister Judith as a small child, and is then locked up in Smith's Grove Sanitarium for the next 15 years, only to escape and return to Haddonfield, Illinois to claim more victims. Only, it's how he gets there that makes no sense.
Halloween Plot Hole: How Does Michael Myers Know How to Drive?
Following Halloween's famous opening scene in which Michael's murder of Judith is seen from his point of view, Halloween jumps to 15 years later, with Dr. Loomis and Nurse Marian traveling via car to pick up Michael from Smith's Grove for a mandatory court hearing. When they arrive, they see patients wandering the grounds, and it's clear something is wrong. An escaped Michael then attacks the car, steals it, and drives away, all the way back to his hometown of Haddonfield, Illinois. Wait, back up, how the heck does Michael have any idea how to drive?
Michael has spent the last 15 years in isolation, barely moving or speaking, even to Dr. Loomis. He was sent there as a child. There is absolutely no logical reason he should know how to drive, and further, no reason why anyone would teach him, as it's doubtful Michael would've been allowed to leave the sanitarium for joy rides. Carpenter seems to realize the plot hole, throwing in this exchange between Dr. Wynn and Dr. Loomis: "Wynn: Now, for God's sake, he can't even drive a car! Loomis: He was doing very well last night! Maybe someone around here gave him lessons!"
Of course, that's a very lazy explanation at best, and makes no sense in its own right at worst. Why on Earth would someone give the murderous kid who didn't speak to anyone driving lessons? Since Halloween 6 reveals that Dr. Wynn was in fact part of the Cult of Thorn that was powering Michael, one could infer that Wynn taught Michael to drive on the sly, but that's an entirely fan-supplied explanation, not anything actually made explicit onscreen. Plus, Carpenter had nothing to do with Halloween 6, clearly didn't know when writing Halloween that Wynn was evil, and that sequel has since been retconned from Halloween's timeline not once but twice. Michael driving was and remains Halloween's biggest plot hole.
- Halloween Kills (2020) release date: Oct 16, 2020
- Halloween Ends (2021) release date: Oct 15, 2021