I know I’m often too busy for the Blog Complainer gig, these days, but I made time to end this month off with a big Halloween post. I have done one of these every year, not going to stop now. In previous years we have looked at multiple bad horror movies and some obscure classics, but for this year to keep it simple I’m just going to focus on one franchise. I have chosen the Halloween series for this year, mainly because of the release of the new movie and also because the idea of checking out the Halloween sequels have being on my mind lately. We’re going in chronological order for this post, and I’ve got a tier list at the bottom if you care for rankings.
Ah, the original Halloween, my introduction to John Carpenter’s films and an absolute favourite until this most recent rewatch where I now think it’s a little overrated. Not to say that Halloween is a bad movie or anything, far from it. The film is really good at building up a creepy and tense atmosphere thanks to Carpenter’s directing, the fantastic camera work and that iconic theme. To give it some extra credit, Michael Myers is one of the few slasher villains I actually find intimating and kind of scary. Other than that, the thing that’s holding it back from being a masterpiece is the bad acting and writing that would eventually crossover into the numerous slasher movies this inspired. This film was so influential in fact that these criticisms also carry over into it’s own sequels.
I think I like Halloween II way more than the first movie. Should I explain myself, or re-evaluate my life?
While the first film was more concerned with amping up the creep factor, this one does do a bit of that, while also making it a more entertaining movie. Since this is the sequel, everything is bigger, more locations, more expendable characters, some actual gruesome kills and one big epic encounter to tie it all together. You also have the great Donald Pleasance as Dr. Loomis playing a complete nutjob in this, perhaps more so than Michael Myers as he can actually scream and terrorize people. My favourite scene features Loomis waving a gun around trying to shoot someone who is dressed up as Michael Myers, which results in one of the most humorous things I’ve ever seen in a serious horror movie. It’s a fun film, which is an aspect that I missed in the subsequent Halloween movies.
The outlier of the Halloween series, because it’s not a slasher movie nor is Michael Myers the main antagonist. Halloween III is definitely a unique film, not just for this franchise, but something I can envision audiences of today going nuts over, which according to John Carpenter was the original intention for the series. It’s a horror mystery that takes place on Halloween, and is about two people looking into the conspiracy of this strange company that is manufacturing children’s Halloween masks. It’s like a dark twisted Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory type of deal and it gets really strange. I’m a little mixed on this one, but I do know that I liked it more than the films that followed it, so let’s leave it at that.
As the title suggests Michael Myers is back, because no one in the 80’s liked weird shit, but rather the same old shit in their horror franchises. Its the first in the franchise to retcon important events and also the first to spam John Carpenter’s classic theme tune over and over again. I can’t remember much about this movie except that I was pretty bored and I wanted to go to bed. I liked seeing the unjustifiable return of Donald Pleasance in these movies, the two main sisters weren’t too bad and I enjoyed seeing the crazy rednecks getting all gung ho for wanting to kill Michael Myers.
Halloween V I don’t really understand the dislike for as I didn’t think it was too bad. This is the film where the Halloween franchise started to get more ridiculous. At this point Michael Myers is a Jason Voorhees clone, he’s no longer just a normal guy, he’s all of a sudden really buff and has supernatural powers, such as being able to send psychic links to his young niece. What else did I like besides watching Donald Pleasance scaring young kids? I enjoyed watching the incompetent police force being fooled once again by one masked man. I also enjoyed the last half hour after all the expendables are killed and it’s just Michael Myers chasing after the little girl and it’s some tense stuff. Give the revenge of Michael Myers a chance as the only insufferable thing about it was that annoying girl, TINA!
Halloween VI is the one with Paul Rudd and the Halloween worshipping cult. Yeah, there’s a weird cult that was set up in the previous film and this movie continues to ignore that possible interesting idea by just focusing on Michael Myers trying once again to erase his entire family for the trillionth time. This movie is seriously boring, which was the case for the previous two films except it’s way more severe here. Sadly, not even Donald Pleasance in one of his last roles could salvage this one.
Finally a half decent Halloween movie! The three previous boring movies are pretty much erased from the continuity timeline and Michael’s main target is Jamie Lee Curtis’ Laurie Strode once again, hooray! It was great seeing Jamie Lee Curtis return to the franchise so she can finally carry her own Halloween movie. Her final encounter with Michael Myers was pretty damn epic I must say. I would like this movie more if it wasn’t for every character other than Laurie holding it back. Plus those bloody jump scares and fake-out jump scares, just why?
Oh look, it’s the one that every Halloween fan hates, but not me. You know when I said I was missing some fun from my Halloween movies, well this movie gave me exactly that. We get the most ridiculous excuse for retconning the ending to H2O, so we can get a plot of a bunch of teenagers wandering around Michael Myers’ house for the “Dangertainment” web show. It’s so silly, that we get a scene stealing performance from Busta Rhymes with his killer one liners and moves. It also has the most unintentionally hilarious dialogue I have seen written for teenage characters in a movie. Besides the awful handling of Laurie Strode and of course the jump scares, this movie is completely bonkers and I wish I could talk more about it, but perhaps another time.
Since they knew it was impossible to continue where Halloween: Resurrection left off, the guys at the top knew they had to get Rob Zombie to remake the original Halloween. He did that by giving us a thorough explanation into the backstory of Michael Myers, which halfway through the movie turns into a rehash of the original. For a remake there are definitely worse, but yet it still found a way to annoy me. It’s mainly because of the lack of subtlety and how bleak the tone is. I don’t normally mind violent movies, but this one was too much as I found the gore uncomfortable and it was needlessly cruel. Also I don’t like that Michael comes from a broken home and how annoying they made Laurie Strode. I have more to say, but I’m going to save that for the next Halloween movie.
Here we are, in absolute hell! First off, how dare this rubbish share the same name as possibly my favourite Halloween movie. Secondly, its a more obnoxious version of the first movie. More poorly shot scenes, loud screaming, gratuitous violence/nudity, obnoxious characters and explaining more of Michael Myers’ motives. Michael Myers is literally Jason in this with his stupid ghost mummy and horse visions, or whatever they are, and which apparently Laurie and Loomis can also see. What the hell movie, I hate you! I’ve got to mention the insulting first half hour that is only in the movie to drag it out and mess with you! The opening to this movie makes less sense and is worse than Resurrection’s beginning. Halloween II (the shit one) also committed the unforgivable sin of making Dr Loomis an unlikable character. I’m done with this movie!
It took them almost 40 years, but they finally made an actual good Halloween movie. its pretty similar to the Rob Zombie debauchery, where its another retelling of the classic everyone likes, however unlike that trash it took only the good aspects from the original. Michael Myers is no longer obsessed with killing the Strodes, rather it’s Laurie who has been waiting the last 40 years to kill him. I said 40, because this movie completely disregards the sequels, including my possible favourite, a sacrifice I can live with, if good movies like this are the result. This movie surprised me, as it’s got good camera work, Michael Myers is intimidating again, there are some good kills and gore that doesn’t make you want to barf. Plus that final showdown with the three generations of Strode women against Michael Myers was really neat, it’s a shame it wasn’t the last movie.
Finally we’re up to the most recent movie and due to the timing of how I marathoned all these movies, I saw Halloween Kills on Halloween and in the cinema, so how about that for an ending. I kind of wished the people making these movies understood the concept of endings because Halloween Kills exists to be the middle entry of a trilogy, for some stupid reason! The Strode women take a backseat allowing new characters to come in and take on Michael Myers, who is also in the background too busy doing his own thing to even care about whatever these chumps are plotting. It’s pretty exciting seeing all these towns people coming together and wanting to be rid of Michael Myers once an all. Although these guys are pretty damn dumb and it’s quite amusing seeing them all stupidly put themselves in danger and ultimately getting destroyed by this one guy who’s apparently consumed their entire lives. A disappointingly average follow-up, because there’s just no meat to keep it interesting. I’m sure they’ve got that tucked away for the next and hopefully final Halloween movie.
How about that, it’s the end of the post. This was an interesting experiment to confirm that my previous feelings of preferring Jason over Michael were correct. Who knows about next year, but I would be up for reviewing the Friday the 13th movies I think. I hope you all have a great Halloween and this has been The Blog Complainer, signing out.