Review: Halloween (2018)

Let me begin by saying how bummed I am about the title of the movie.  We now have three movies called Halloween.  I guess you could say, well, the 1978 film is “John Carpenter’s Halloween and the 2007, “Rob Zombie’s Halloween”.  You know what, fuck that, they are titled Halloween, period.

As we have heard many times over, in this sequel, Michael and Laurie are not brother and sister.  As much as I love that aspect of the Halloween Saga, Franchise, whatever, it is gone.  Michael saw Laurie drop off the key at the Myers house and found his victim, his prey.  That is it, end of story.  Michael’s motivations are all to kill her and her friends, because he stalked Laurie all day Halloween in 1978.  I will not try to understand why he stole his sister Judith’s headstone in the original, to me it played into the family aspect that wasn’t introduced until Halloween II (1981).

I had so many questions going in to this film, who in the hell gave that guy Michael’s mask?  Why would they move Michael, he has been locked in the same place for, well really with the exception of about 24 hours in 1978, locked up in Smith’s Grove for 55 years, why move him?

Would my questions be answered, how close are my theories…dead on actually.

40 years later we get a Laurie Strode who has lost her family, two husbands and her daughter, no no, not Jamie Lloyd, Karen Strode.  Before I jump further, this movie does a lot of Easter Eggs from the now erased sequels, why not name her daughter after her new name in H20, calling her Keri, over Karen…that doesn’t matter.  It has been 40 years since the “Babysitter Murders” and a podcast is doing a documentary about them and trying to learn why Michael did what he did, really trying to get Laurie and Michael in the same room to get him to speak.  Both do not fall for their advances and they move on.  We see an older, somewhat broken and yet prepared Laurie Strode.  As I said, she lost her daughter after bringing her up like Sarah Conner brought up her son John in Terminator 2.  Teaching her how to defend herself, how to arm herself and what to do with the weapon.  But, at the age of 12, her daughter was taken and now has almost no contact with her mother.

Michael is being transported to a more secure location and of course, things go wrong.  Michael escapes and heads for Haddonfield.  Laurie is more than prepared, even if she is fighting through her demons.  In the midst of all of this, we are introduced to Laurie’s granddaughter Allyson and her friends, the new generation perhaps?  Laurie and Allyson have some kind of relationship, but not great, like her mother, they want Laurie to let go of Michael, stop living in the past and move on, but Laurie cannot.  She trains, shooting mannequins in woods around her compound, checking her weapons and revealing her cage, or panic room.  She is ready for Michael’s return, ready to kill Michael once and for all.

So, with that, we know the story, but we will not go in to spoilers.

Here are my thoughts…

It is a Halloween sequel by the numbers. I loved the score, it brought me back to the Halloween universe. Haddonfield did not feel like Haddonfield to me, but, it has been 40 years and I know things can change a ton in 40 years. I loved seeing Halloween night in full force.  We saw children trick r’ treating, people getting ready to go to Halloween parties, a school Halloween party and most important, Silver Shamrock masks.

Jamie Lee Curtis was amazing in this version of Laurie Strode. I liked most of the characters, especially the Strode women.  I read a few friends of mine talk about weak men and this movie empowered women.  Good.  That is fine, but I didn’t see it, I saw a broken Laurie, who is prepared.  I saw three generations of Strode women, who were all very strong and it was wonderful.  I saw a role reversal, which falls into spoiler territory.  I saw a better version of Laurie Strode than the one we got in Halloween H20. 

The Cinematography was great.  There were some shots that looked like they were almost from Carpenter himself.  Very interesting moments in the film that really brings back the feeling of Halloween, just by the camera work alone.  It was well written and did have some funny dialog, which has been a complaint, didn’t bother me all that much.  What bothered me is the amount of throw away characters.  Wow, so many you just do not care about.  Unlike the original Halloween, where you follow 6 characters really overall, Laurie, Loomis, Anne, Linda, Bracket and Myers, this one may have had too many moving pieces.

But at the end of the day, it was another Halloween sequel.  At times it did feel like it was a line of dialog away from fitting in at the end of the H20 films or even the Jamie Lloyd films.  It reminded me of the Friday the 13th remake of 2009, where you could sandwich it within the bunch of sequels and no one would bat an eye.  While it did not do too much to move me or bring me too much new, it did the job as a Halloween movie.  I do feel the kills were way too over the top for Michael Myers, must be the rage built up over 40 years, but I didn’t have a problem too much, with the Voorhees style murders.

I still prefer Halloween 4, this one didn’t do much for me, because, based on 2 trailers and 1 TV spot, I was very accurate on my theories.
The absences of Sam Loomis, really hurts the franchise in my opinion.  He isn’t really needed in this one, I just miss him.  I think Loomis is as important to the series as Michael, but now maybe, not so much.

Overall, 100% worth seeing in the theater, it has taken me some time, but after digesting, I like it more than when I left. I do want to see it again. I think Halloween 2018 is as important to the Horror genre and slasher sub-genre as the original.

IMDB.com currently has a score of 7.6 and it is dropping.  Only 13,000+ ranking so far.

I would say I give Halloween a 7.0, as time goes on I expect Halloween 2018 to end up around 6.5.  I walked out thinking, eh it is ok, but the more I think, the more I like and want to see it again.

While I haven’t seen a fan base as split as Star Wars with the Last Jedi, I think the box office numbers will do most of the talking for Blumhouse, by Monday morning Halloween will be over 100 million dollars.

I predict, the rise of the slasher film to come within the next 3 years. Maybe, a resurrection of the slasher film.

Go see Halloween, it is a Halloween sequel, like the rest, I place it somewhere in the middle…actually, here…click the titles for our reviews of each installment in the Halloween Franchise.

Halloween II (2009)
Halloween Resurrection
Halloween (2007)
H20
Halloween 5
Halloween 6
Halloween (2018)
Halloween II
Halloween 4
Halloween

Halloween III Season of the Witch is its own thing…so I omit from the ranking.

About Ray Marek III 399 Articles
I have been watching horror films since I was 6 years old. The story, one Saturday night, my mom and I were watching movies and she fell asleep on the couch. We had the channel set on HBO and the movie we were watching ended and the next one, A Nightmare on Elm Street 2: Freddy’s Revenge. This was some time in 1986. I watched then entire film, I was sitting on the edge of my seat. When my mom woke, she asked me what just ended and I told her, “Freddy”. That was all I talked about for weeks and finally she broke down and rented more horror films for me. She rented, the Texas Chainsaw Massacre part 2, Re-Animator, Friday the 13th VI: Jason Lives and Halloween II. I watched all and fell in love with horror films forever. 5 Horror Films to Watch Inferno (1980) A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) The Beyond (1981) Friday the 13th VI: Jason Lives (1986) Horror of Dracula (1958)