Halloween Is a Bonus Entry and Nothing More [Review]

halloween review michael myers

Halloween has been the talk of the town for over a year now, from plot details to test screenings going awry no stone has been left unturned in the speculation of the forthcoming requel. Now that the film has arrived we can put aside the guessing game and concentrate on what, we as Halloween fans, have been offered. However, there is more here than just a good or bad sequel and it is a lot to take in.

Initially this film had me completely split down the middle, from Carpenter's amazing score to James Jude Courtney's portrayal of Michael Myers I was completely enthralled with that aspect of the film. But there was also some nagging questions I had with certain decisions that characters make and why certain plot points just vanish halfway through the movie. That's when I realized the only way I could really give this entry a fair shake would be to watch it again. So I did...

The second viewing really put things into perspective. This Halloween does have the best score of the series, second, Courtney is at the top of the list of  actors who have portrayed Myers and Jamie Lee can still crush a scene when given the chance. However, it became painfully clear that Green and McBride were more influenced by Rob Zombie's version of Halloween than that of Carpenters. They are so led by his version that the final product comes off looking more like a remake of Zombies part 2 than a true follow-up to the original 1978 version.

The life path of Lee's Laurie is not too far from the one the character takes in RZ's H2. Laurie, in both entries, is a recluse alcoholic who spends most of her daily life reliving the events of her attack and has developed a layer of backwoods white-trashness to her. The only difference being that Lee's Laurie learned how to shoot a gun and somehow managed to buy the house from The Devil's Rejects and turn it into a trap-house (no pun intended). But unlike Scout, Jamie Lee is able to really sell the fact that she has been turned into this gnarled shell of a girl-next-door character and is now just a complete mess in every facet of life.

The overall story sees lame subplots (Dr. Sartain), overdeveloped throwaway characters (Most of the cast) and characters who seem important to the plot but halfway through disappear entirely (Sheriff Barker). Couple that with every other line and scene being an "homage" to what came before and you are left with a messy sequel that wants to ignore the franchise while also constantly referencing it at the same time.

With that said though, the film is not a total loss. It has a great version of Michael Myers who seems to have more of a cold, vicious edge than in previous incarnations. Carpenter's score is so good that I can't help but believe that it single handily saves the film by providing a much need Halloween atmosphere. And though her story is a retread Jamie Lee does deliver a great performance that makes up for the lackluster H20.

The real downside is that there is nowhere left to go from here. The film painted itself into a corner and I don't see Lee or Greer returning for another entry into the series. While I understand wanting to do away with certain mythos of the franchise, it is a great disservice, and a slap in the face, to wipe away the work that Donald Pleasence and Daniel Harris put into the series. 

This Halloween plays best as a 'What If' or 'Bonus' entry into the series. But to think of this as a jumping off point to restart a new timeline of sequels would be very ill advised.

Rating: 7/10 Stars

Rich Stile @TheDevilsEyes1

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