Stars: Jamie Lee Curtis, Judy Greer, Andi Matichak
The High Noon of horror
Oh look it’s that time of year again! Because nine sequels, one remake and a sequel to that remake wasn’t quite enough, Blumhouse have only gone and produced another bleedin’ horror featuring the William Shatner mask-wearing madman, Michael Myers. In fact, this sequel makes all the other Halloween movies obsolete by totally ignoring their existence. It’s a very wise move considering that Jamie Lee was unwisely bumped off in 2002 so that a cliché-ridden teen slasher film could follow. This sequel could’ve been equally as terrible, however I’m relieved to say that it’s not.
I’ve seen every Halloween film so I consider myself quite a fan and it excites me to say that this is unquestionably the best sequel in the franchise and may even be as good as the original. David Gordon Green has put all the tired slasher tropes in the corner and actually focused on making a good film. It opens fairly bizarrely with a couple of Brits visiting old Michael in his maximum security asylum for their podcast, hoping that he’ll have something to say for himself after over forty years of silence. Spoiler alert, he doesn’t. Then the title hits the screen and John Carpenter’s beautiful score fills the air and you realise that this film really has got back to the basics, in the best possible Scream 4 kind of way.
We then get to see the ultimate final girl, Laurie Strode who’s looking quite different to how she was imagined in H20. To say that the events in 1978 traumatised her would be an understatement. This Laurie is utterly obsessed with the idea of Michael returning so she’s created a little fortress in the middle of nowhere and laden it with traps to capture him once and for all. This has understandably put a strain on the relationship with her daughter, but her granddaughter seems pretty groovy with it. The new characters are all interesting and relevant to the story, however the film doesn’t take long to get into the character we really want to see.
As if by fate, Michael manages to escape after some bright spark decided it’d be a good idea to transfer him and a load of other loons to another loony bin. Seeing him wondering around the streets and heartlessly butchering random people is thrilling and chilling in equal measure. Out of all the Halloween films, I’d say that Michael definitely gets the most screen time in this one, which is fantastic news. He’s also never looked better, Halloween proves to be a masterclass of lighting and camerawork. It’s incredibly well-made for a slasher film and David Gordon Green isn’t afraid to show some creative flair behind the camera.
In the style of High Noon, however, the film is basically one big build up to the showdown between Michael and Laurie. It’s very well executed and when the climax does arrive, it’s every bit as thrilling and unpredictable as you could hope for. The suspense and intensity levels are very high and less hokey than the fight in H20. In the end, you couldn’t have asked for more in a Halloween sequel. You couldn’t really have asked for a better face off.
Horror fans will also be pleased to know that the body count is very high and pretty violent at times. Of course this doesn’t make it a better film, but it makes it far more entertaining to watch. It’s also not afraid to make you laugh and I was surprised to find myself laughing amongst moments of dreadful horror. It’s also worth noting that Jamie Lee brings her all into the role and it’s humbling to see that she hasn’t forgotten the character that turned her into the superstar we know her today as. Halloween isn’t just the best sequel in the franchise, it also proves itself to be one of the finest slashers to come out in the past two decades.