Halloween Review: A fitting end to the 40 year old slasher story

Director: David Gordon Green

Running Time: 1h 44m

Cast: Jamie Lee Curtis, Nick Castle, Judy Greer, Andi Matichak, Will Patton

Movie Score: 88%

*[0-50%-red (poor); 50-70%-yellow (average to good, better and promising); 70-90%-green (very good to great); 90-100%-blue (outstanding to perfect and a masterpiece)]

THIS IS A NOT A COMPLETELY SPOILER-FREE REVIEW.

Michael Myers is the most feared killer since 40 years and though there have been around 10 movies so far to this evil character, the very originality of the first Halloween by John Carpenter, was unmatched and untouched-until the new Halloween, in 2018. David Gordon Green has delivered the fitting end to a 40 year old slasher story. The latest installment is the direct sequel to the 1978 first film which was in itself a masterpiece of horror filmmaking.

The thing which makes this entry (probably the last now, I guess) refreshing, is the treatment given to the characters’ significance by the director and how he has kept them the same the way they were 40 years back. But still, adding the feel of revenge to the protagonist’s mind is the best thing about the new film. Whereas the first Halloween showed the beginning of the havoc of Michael Myers.

This Halloween brings back the super fantastic Jamie Lee Curtis as Laurie Strode who managed to survive from Michael, towards the climax of the first film. And there is also Nick Castle, who has made a return as the iconic horrific psycho killer, Michael Myers, who’s waited for 40 years to go back again to kill Laurie. Well, the body count gets only higher in this one, since he just doesn’t want to stop killing!

The sequel also shows the family of Laurie who she’s trying to protect for 4 decades after the events of Halloween in Haddonfield. There is Karen (played by Judy Greer) who’s the daughter of Laurie and hates her mother for her obsession with killing Michael. She hates Laurie’s over-protective ways and methods used since her own birth. She wants her mother to leave her obsession of killing the ‘boogeyman’ and take revenge, since she (Karen) thinks it’s all unreal, nonsensical and won’t happen actually. Then there is Allyson (played by Andi Matichak), the daughter of Karen and granddaughter of Laurie. She has her own life, and her best friend is Vicky (played by Virginia Gardner).

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The film’s opening scene starts with the facility where Michael has been kept (with other mentally ill patients) for 40 years and is treated by his doctor Ranbir Sartain (played by Haluk Bilginer). Two podcasters (basically journalists) try to trigger Michael to speak something, but he doesn’t.

Then it’s shown that while transferring Michael, along with the other patients, to a new facility through the bus, he succeeds in escaping! And being a psycho killer he kills several people too. Then the countdown begins towards his arrival back to Illinois, Haddonfield. Before that, he needs his mask back too, which he easily gets by killing the two journalists (mentioned above) in the washroom of a gas station.

Nick Castle as Michael Myers in a still from the film. Image Source: www.jornaldaparaiba.com.br

Nick Castle is so convincing as Michael that whenever he’s on-screen, his haunting breathing while examining a target or a place makes you shivered inside. It becomes really very disturbing. Castle’s performance is immensely brilliant as the killer who will stop at nothing to murder and kill random innocent people.

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Michael Myers goes for other tools also this time (not just knife) to show even more brutality. Some scenes just feel so dark that you will want to shut your eyes. You can’t help it still, since it’s an R-rated flick.

Jamie Lee Curtis as Laurie, in a still from the film. Image Source: images.indianexpress.com

And on the other side, there is Laurie, who’s preparing for a long time for this day when she will get to meet Michael one more, but last time, because she will kill him, at any cost. It’s her only aim in life. She’s made her home a fortress-heavily guarded and protected by motion sensors and barriers for safeguarding her family.

She has trained herself and her daughters also to shoot guns and pistols, if the situation arrives. It can be understood why she hates Michael so much and just wants him dead, no matter what. When she gets to know that Michael has escaped and has entered in Haddonfield, she starts chasing him like a wild hound. Jamie has thrown everything in her role and that’s what makes her so powerful, to watch. Her angst, weeping, and tensions, all seem rightful from her standpoint.

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When the two in fact have a face-off it gets bloodier than thought. But my personal favourite is one moment when it looks like Michael has killed Laurie and throws her from a window of her house. But when he looks down! Oh my god! That was so great and epic and makes you remember the first Halloween’s similar scene. In the original one, Laurie throws Michael from the window and thinks that he’s dead. But when she looks down, he’s gone!

There are many other great moments in the sequel that gives you a flashback from the first film.

But all this doesn’t mean that David Gordon Green has created the perfect horror sequel. There are issues with Halloween 2018 where some elements make you think like whether they were really relevant to the film’s plot or not. In-between the scenes, the use of a slight comedy works but it doesn’t serve any purpose. Had it been kept serious throughout, then also it would have given the same impact. But that’s okay.

Director Green is mostly known for his comedy films, so maybe he just tried to use a bit to add a variation in this otherwise brutal horror flick. But when it comes to his direction, he has succeeded in impressing the Halloween fans, by his own vision of the story and taking it forward from the first movie’s ending.

If you want your own Halloween day to be great and scary, then you should go for this one. It is worth the wait, just like Laurie’s, to kill Michael! Go find out if he really dies this time or has escaped again.

Distributed by Universal Pictures, Miramax, and Blumhouse Productions, Halloween is now playing, successfully, in theaters near you.

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