Reel Reviews | Halloween

by Monica Hayes

The original king of slashers is back! That’s right, John Carpenter’s Michael Myers is back in all his glory, but can Indi/Stoner comedy director David Gordon Green deliver the goods?

Halloween opens up at the Smith Grove Mental Institution where mass murderer Michael Myers (James Jude Courtney and Nick Castle) has been held and studied for the past forty years. Since Dr. Loomis’ passing, Michael has been under the care of Dr. Sartain (Haluk Bilginger) who has been trying to continue where Loomis left off. Where Dr. Loomis tried to destroy the evil, Dr. Sartain attempted to take his study a step further in trying to understand why Michael did what he did all those years ago. However, time is no longer on his side and the state has decided to transfer Michael to a more secured facility. In a last-ditch effort, Dr. Sartain allowed two crime podcasters to interview Michael. To try to tempt a response, Dana (Rhain Rees) and Aaron (Jefferson Hall) break out the old rotted mask to try to get a response from Michael, but all it does it enrage all of the inmates around him.

Not to be deterred, Dana and Aaron, travel to see Laurie (Jamie Lee Curtis) to try to get her side of the story. When they arrive to her home, it looks like a secluded compound complete with floodlights, surveillance cameras, electric fences etc. Once inside, they realize that Laurie is not who they thought she would be. They suspected she would be some frail empty shell of a woman, but no. After narrowly escaping death forty years ago, two failed marriages, the removal of her daughter Karen (Judy Greer) at the age of twelve, and estranged from her family, Laurie has changed. She is quite the determined woman who has prepared for her brother’s inevitable return. So much so, that she makes the craziest Doomsday Prepper look like Mary Poppins.

Meanwhile, the transfer of Michel later that night goes on as planned and turns into be a shit show. As if we didn’t expect it to happen. What else do you expect with a bus full of mental inmates and one serial killer? Did you really think it would go smoothly? Laurie hears about the bus accident and springs into action. She quickly, goes to get her family to safety, but Karen tells her to go away and that she is not welcomed in her home until she gets help. As the night goes on, and the bodies stack up, well you know what happens.

Ever since the original movie came out in 1978, there have been seven sequels (six because we have no idea what Season of the Witch was) and we can’t forget Rob Zombie’s versions. I may be the only one, but I like his versions. One would think that someone who directed indie movies and stoner comedies wouldn’t have a clue on directing a horror film. Not to mention a classic such as Halloween. However, director David Green proved he is worthy to hang with the big boys.

It would also make it easy when you have the iconic Jamie Lee Curtis and the original Michael Myers (The Shape) Nick Castle reprising their roles. I’ve heard folks saying that Curtis’ role does nothing for feminism. I totally disagree. Here you have a woman who has gone through a traumatic experience in her life and decided to embrace it. Laurie Strode has PTSD and is acting accordingly. She decided that the next time her brother comes after her, she would be ready to defend herself and her family at all costs. She is unapologetic in her actions and has zero regrets and could care less what anyone thinks.

We would not be here if it weren’t for our favorite butcher knife-wielding, slasher Michael or as he was originally known, The Shape. Nick Castle returning as Michael brings another chilling layer to the brand new Halloween. When I heard of another remake of Halloween I was a little skeptical. After seeing the finished product, I was not disappointed. Every bit of blood, head snapping, eye-popping, kill was spectacular. I could go on, but to do so would give away spoilers.

Overall, Halloween is the sequel that should have been made forty years ago. It gives nods to previous movies all while giving the audience some quality scars and jumps. There are some comedic spots that come from an unsuspecting source that will have you almost in tears. This is on my top 2 of horror remakes.

Grade B+

BTW, stay to the end of the credits.