The writing of David Gordon Green and Danny McBride was exactly what the franchise needed! You can tell the script was handled by people who truly cared about it. There had been so many bad sequels and re-imaginings (except part 4). So as a life long fan who has been watching the original since he was four years old, I sincerely appreciated this film.
The film does a great job with paying homage to original scenes like the bus crash, while also creating new original moments such as the scene where Michael is hiding in the closet waiting to kill the babysitter Vicky (Virginia Gardner).
The opening credits were simply beautiful. In the original, it was a very slow close up shot of a Jack-o-lantern as the opening credits rolled. The newest version does the same, but instead the camera zooms in on a deteriorated pumpkin that has the same design. As the camera gets closer, the pumpkin rises back to life symbolizing that the pure evil that happened in Haddonfield 40 years ago was coming home.
Michael’s first on screen kill was the best way to say “this guy doesn’t give a fuck”. Right from the beginning they let you know they aren’t pulling any punches. The father and son who come across the crashed bus are soon met by ‘The Shape’ and die very gruesomely. The dad, dying off screen, getting his neck broken worse than Lui Kang in Mortal Kombat: Deadly Alliance, and the kid getting choked out like Laurie’s friend Annie. But at least that kid got his neck snapped, as opposed to Annie who got choked and then her throat slashed.
Almost every character came off as likable. Which was shocking considering there’s usually one shitty teen. And there was one of course but surprisingly, he didn’t die. Michael going house to house killing random people for no reason was terrifying. Oddly enough, that made him feel more real. Michael isn’t like Jason or Freddy, he can die, he’s a normal man.
They did a great job with the little Easter eggs and references. It was fun catching little musical ques like the kids that were trick or treating, singing the same song that opens the original movie. The references were never overdone or felt cheap. Each one made sense and was subtle.
The choreography during his neighborhood massacre was shot so well. If i’m remembering correctly it was all one camera shot with no cuts. His kills were brutal but never over the top like Rob Zombies. He acted like a real boogeyman hiding in shadows and closets.
I only have two complaints about the movie. Side characters not getting enough love, and reveals not hitting as hard as they were meant to. I really enjoyed the character of Vicky. Her conversation with Julian, the kid she was babysitting, was priceless. By far the funniest part of the movie. I wish we got more of her. It was very reminiscent of Annie babysitting Lindsey in Halloween 1978. So having her die pretty quickly was a slight let down. But that was also a good way to show that Michael is going to kill anyone and everyone. They don’t have to be in his way to die.
The reveal of Dr. Sartain being evil and essentially letting Michael loose fell flat. On paper it sounds like a really cool idea. A former colleague of Loomis willing to let Michael loose just to study him. Essentially an evil Loomis. I get what they were going for. But his antics after killing Officer Hawkins felt very corny. Putting the mask on was more cringey then unsettling. Maybe that was the point? Definitely a part that missed it’s mark. But then Michael stepped on his head like a grape so I was able to get over it pretty quickly.
The final showdown between Michael and the Strode family was good. It felt earned. Michael laying waste to the patrol cops outside and making Face-o-Lanterns out of there skin was disturbingly awesome. Some precise cutting by big Mike. Then he killed good ol’ Ray, the goofy dad and jiu-jitsu specialist. Only leaving the three Strode girls to put an end to Michael’s killing.
It was very cool to see something different for the final act instead of seeing the cliche “final girl” part of a horror movie. Instead you had three strong female characters who could hold their own. Judy Greer had on of the most bad ass moments in a horror movie with her final shot. The audience in my theater blew up with joy as she pulled the trigger and tricked Michael into thinking she was weak. All three worked as team and were finally able to put an end to Michael’s madness. Or did they?
They definitely left it open for a sequel by not showing Michael die and playing his iconic breathing at the end of the credits. And it was also being reported that the studio was kicking the idea around. It’s not something I need but not something i’m totally against. I love the story of Michael Myers and would love to see more. Especially this version of him. But again, it doesn’t need to happen.
I would love to see Blumhouse do what they did with Halloween 2018 with other horror titles such as Nightmare on Elm Street, Friday the 13th, Hellraiser, and even Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Giving these classic horror movies to people who genuinely care about the properties like McBride, Green, and Fradley is a win win for everyone.
This is definitely a movie you should go see. It’s refreshing to have a good horror movie, as opposed to a scary movie. (because yes, there is a difference)
“Was that the boogeyman?”
“As a matter of fact, that was.”