Tag Archives: Halloween franchise

Review of A Nightmare On Elm Street, Halloween and Friday the 13th franchises

4 Jun

When people talk about slasher movies, unless, they are complete idiots there are only three titles that should be the first thing to pop up in your mind. If you think these titles are I Know What You Did Whenever, Scream or Wrong Turn movies, you probably are either a moron or 14 years old. The titles you should be thinking of are, of course, Friday the 13th, Halloween and A Nightmare On Elm Street. Not necessarily the best movies ever, far from it, but that is not the reason why they are what they are. They are the history of modern horror.

Since this is my 100th post here, I figured why not do something special. So what I’m going to do here is three lists of the movies in their respective franchises (excluding the remakes) in order of my least favourite to most favourite with some comments on why they take the place they do, the franchises are in the same order. I could have skipped the clumsy explanations of how the lists work and just let you figure it out by yourselves in a couple of seconds, but that’s not how I roll. So let’s do this.

 

Halloween


8. Halloween: Resurrection (2002) – This abomination of the movie is not only the worst Halloween movie, but also the worst movie of all three franchises and the only one that I would count as one of the worst movies I’ve ever seen and not in a good way. It’s so bad, it’s bad.

7. Halloween II (1981) – I just really didn’t care for this one. After original Halloween this seemed incredibly bland and contradictory to the way I perceived Michael Myers in the first one. Don’t get me wrong, just because it is next to Resurrection, it doesn’t mean they are even comparable, this movie is so much better, but I can remember only two scenes from it and that’s what this movie is to me – forgettable.

6. Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995) – this movie is interesting in a way, but more in how they tried to twist and bend the Halloween mythos and less in an ‘interesting to watch’ way. It has its bright moments, but overall it’s a pretty dull movie.

5. Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982) – That’s right. I debated whether even include this on the list. If I hated the movie, I probably wouldn’t have, but I found it a very enjoyable movie. Not really a Halloween movie, but still. It is silly and campy and whatever else, but it is also very atmospheric. Despite its absurdity it is a fun watch, more fun than most of the Halloween movies. But fun doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a good horror or Halloween movie.

4. Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998) – It is a very solid movie, actually better than it had any right to be, however, I must say that 20 years later, it is feeling a bit stale. You can feel the weight of the series pulling it down, no matter how they tried to ignore the parts without Jamie Lee Curtis. This movie is just them saying: „Hey, we got Curtis back and avoided anything really stupid or interesting, hope you’re nostalgia kicks in.”

3. Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988) – They tried to start fresh after the failure of Season of the Witch and we get some interesting stuff. A crippled and crazy Loomis, the amazingly cute Jamie Lloyd and an intriguing ending. It’s not a great movie, but it’s a decent watch.

2. Halloween 5 (1989) – I almost put this as number one. It’s hard to explain, but I found it very enjoyable. Loomis is utterly insane, Jamie is just as cute, but doesn’t speak and then there’s  the absurd character Tina, who I enjoyed even though she was so over-the-top. These are the only three characters I’ve ever cared about in a Halloween movie. The movie has a bunch of flaws, but it is entertaining. When most Halloween movies take themselves too seriously, making it seem like they don’t know what type of movie they are, this one hits the right balance.

1. Halloween (1978) – So here we are. This movie is considered a horror classic by most. And even though it isn’t in my favourite movie list, it’s influence on the horror genre is immense. What makes this one different from the rest of the Halloween movies? It’s actually a good movie. This is the only one, which deserves to take itself completely seriously and benefits from it. I don’t know what can I say, that hasn’t been said. It’s a good movie.

 

Friday the 13th

10. Friday the 13th: A New Beginning (1985) – This movie tried to execute an idea, that was destined to fail from the start and even the attempt wasn’t very good. Add some idiotic comedy, absurd characters and you get this thing. That’s just it, it’s a failure, a misstep on the filmmaker’s part.

9. Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981) – Again, almost the same case as Halloween II, the second part is just bland. I remember the guy in the wheelchair and Jason wearing a potato bag on his head. That’s basically it. And when I say I don’t remember a lot from it, remember that I have watched all these movies within the last year, so if it can stay in my memory for that long, then it’s not worth remembering.

8. Jason X (2001) – Jason in space. I don’t think I even have to say more, it’s just so ridiculous. The movie certainly has it’s moments, but overall it’s just too cheesy and just too hard to swallow. How could anyone think it’s a great idea? And Jason being located in outer space isn’t even the most absurd thing about it.

7. Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday (1993) – This an odd movie. Again, it seems they didn’t learn anything after the fifth part. At this point people see these movie for Jason. I didn’t hate the movie itself, it’s just not a good Friday the 13th sequel. It has some really enjoyable performances, but other than that the whole concept is a downer.

6. Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989) – I enjoyed the part where Jason is in Manhattan, that is great, but the whole boat trip is kind of lame. And the ending sucked as well, if I had to talk about things I didn’t care to see in Friday the 13th movies, zombie Jason turning into a kid is definitely somewhere on that list.

5. Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood (1988) – Jason vs. Carrie. I don’t know, I found this one pretty mediocre. I also felt let down after the sixth part, which I enjoyed quite a bit. It’s not bad, but it is also neither here or there.

4. Friday the 13th Part III (1982) – This is probably the outright campiest Friday the 13th movie. I mean watching it not in 3D, it is kind of absurd when you get a yo-yo, pot joint and popcorn stuck or thrown in the camera for no reason. But it is kind of fun when you see a head crushed so that an eye can jump out towards the camera. And the first time Jason looks like we know him. Stupid fun this movie is.

3. Jason Lives: Friday the 13th Part VI (1986) – This is what I’m talking about, Friday the 13th franchise at its best. Entertaining, well-paced, silly and Jason kicking ass after being resurrected.

2. Friday the 13th (1980) – This is where the endless copying of Halloween started. But this was interesting in its own right, the POV shots, the killer’s motivation, the killer itself, Kevin Bacon getting arrow-stabbed in the neck. Great stuff.

1. Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (1984) – I debated whether to put this as number one or two, but then I remembered Crispin Glover dancing and decided this must be number one for me. This one has it all. Comedy, gore, thrills, nudity, Glover, Jason-hunter, horror obsessed kid, “Ted, where the hell’s the corkscrew?” scene. Just great.

 

A Nightmare On Elm Street

7. A Nightmare on Elm Street: The Dream Child (1989) – Why this is the last one? Because the few things I do remember about this is either really stupid special effects or something that is probably from Dream Master. It’s forgettable and stupid, not awful, just something you start forgetting while you’re watching it.

6. A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master (1988) – Also a very forgettable one. There’s some weird choices. Like Tuesday Knight replacing Patricia Arquette. And weird scenes, like that chick turning into a bug. It’s just a big whatever of a movie, which decides to bring back the characters from Dream Warriors and just throw them into the garbage bin.

5. A Nightmare on Elm Street Part 2: Freddy’s Revenge (1985) – What can I say. Yeah, the homoeroticism was kind of odd, but, hey, what’s wrong with that? At least Freddy hadn’t turned into a caricature yet. This is psychological movie and it’s pretty good at that. But on the other hand the stuff with the S&M gym teacher is kind of jarring. Some wrong choices were made by some knowingly by others unintentionally, but the result is a weird sequel to A Nightmare On Elm Street, unique in its own way. Even if it’s not the best way.

4. Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare (1991) – By this point I had accepted that Freddy is just this cartoon character and this movie completely embraces it, it doesn’t even attempt at being a serious movie. I mean, there’s a scene where Freddy plays a NES game using Power Glove. You can’t get more ridiculous than that. But at least the movie wasn’t bland. It’s more of a dark comedy than horror movie and if you take it that way, it’s not so bad.

3. A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987) – This is where the asshole comedian Freddy began, yet wasn’t as over-the-top as he later became. Great special effects, interesting characters, Heather Langenkamp, John Saxon. It’s very entertaining and cool. A favourite of a lot of people and for understandable reasons.

2. New Nightmare (1994) – Wes Craven came back and set it right. Freddy is creepy again, Langenkamp is back and there’s some meta stuff. Rarely the sixth sequel is a good movie, but this one is. It’s self-referential, yet restrained enough to not feel too gimmicky. A cool movie.

1. A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) – Well, this one is no doubt a classic. Original, creepy, tense, sexual. It has so many memorable scenes. Robert Englund really brings something to the Freddy Krueger character, it’s a horror masterpiece. I love this movie. From all these 25 movies I’ve listed here, this is without a doubt my favourite one. Classic.

So here you go, my countdown of the big three of horror franchises. An arbitrary list since I’ve reviewed most of these movies anyway, but I wanted to do make clear my personal preferences. If you want to, let me know your list.

Review of Halloween: Resurrection (2002)

19 Apr

Halloween: Resurrection (2002) is a slasher/horror/thriller film and it’s the eighth film in the Halloween movie franchise and the final one before Rob Zombie’s remakes.

Directed by Rick Rosenthal (Halloween II (1981), Bad Boys (1983)).

Written by Larry Brand (Christina (2010), The Drifter (1988)) and Sean Hood (The Crow: Wicked Prayer (2005), Cube 2: Hypercube (2002)).

Starring: Jamie Lee Curtis, Brad Loree, Busta Rhymes, Tyra Banks, Bianca Kajlich, Thomas Ian Nicholas, Katee Sackhoff and others.

I won’t waste much time, this movie is a piece of shit. I wish I felt like my job here is done, but I have to pretend that I have at least a tiny bit of professionalism in me.

So we start with Jamie Lee Curtis in a mental hospital with long hair (she looks younger already). Wait, what? I didn’t know she was in this movie. Why? But, of course, because she fucking dies 15 minutes in!

It is explained that Michael didn’t die at the end of the previous movie. Well, the explanation for it I thought wasn’t bad, except that the final shot of H20 doesn’t make sense, however, it still made a lot more sense then this movie’s existance as a whole. So Curtis is in the loony bin, killed an innocent man, waiting for Michael to come after her and growing hair. And he does come and kills Laurie Strode. That’s it, his job is done. Naturally there’s nothing better left for him to do, than to come and hang around in his old house, because it surely doesn’t make more sense that he would go after Laurie’s son.

Then we switch to some stupid college kids and then I realise why this is a horror movie as I see Tyra Banks and Busta Rhymes in the same frame in a Halloween movie. I thought „Oh god, what have I gotten myself into?” and the answer was the steaming pile of anal-raped whore shit that Resurrection is.

And the fucking title. Yes, H20 was a stupid title, but this is definitely at the top of the most generic sequel subtitle list.

We find out that Rhymes and Banks has the genius idea to have a live reality show (ah, yes the early 2000’s when people would actually watch a show that is in lower quality than that of the built-in modern laptop webcams) in the old Myer’s house. I guess they didn’t know that the owner is home.

And that’s the main problem here, you should care about the teenagers, but here they are just so completely unlikable and also trespassing while Michael just wanted to chill after almost 25 years of going after his sister. I’d be pissed off as well. When back in the 80’s Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert were concerned with people identifying with slasher villains, they talked about this movie, because here the other characters are so despicable, that I couldn’t help but root for good ol’ Mike.

Sadly, soon you realise that Busta Rhymes is nowhere near the worst actor in this. That is until, of course, he runs into a burning room, spewing bad one-liners and throwing Wat Chun Lee inspired karate chops at Michael. In a way this sounds equally absurd as Jason in space. “Oh, shit. Who’s knockin’ on my door this late? Whoever this is, is distracting me from seeing Wat Chun Lee whoop some ass. ” I’d also rather see this, I guess, made up actor whoop ass than this.

I have to mention this as well, when did cellphones display text messages letter by letter? Who has ever been stuck waiting for the end of their message to finish appearing? No one, that’s who, you stupid assholes. That is not how you create suspense.

Overall, this is a really bad movie. From all the Halloween, Friday the 13th and A Nightmare On Elm Street movies, this is the only one, that I just completely despise and plan on never watching again. It’s a worthless fucking movie equivalent of an abortion gone wrong and still living as a disfigured shadow of what it could have been. Not recommended.

"Michael? You know what, he's a douchebag! All these years going after me in his stupid onesie and that shitty Star Trek mask. He's standing right behind me, isn't he?
Hey Mikey, wait, you know I didn't mean those things!"

Review of Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998)

14 Apr

Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998) is a slasher/horror/thriller film and the seventh film in the Halloween movie franchise, which marks the return of Jamie Lee Curtis.

Directed by Steve Miner (Friday the 13th Part III (1982), Forever Young (1992)).

Written by Robert Zappia (5ive Days to Midnight (2004 mini-series), Christmas Is Here Again (2007)) and Matt Greenberg (1408 (2007), Reign of Fire (2002)).

Starring: Jamie Lee Curtis, Josh Hartnett, Chris Durand, Adam Arkin, Michelle Williams, LL Cool J and others.

So it opens with a great opening sequence, where as an instant mood setter „Mr. Sandman” by The Chordettes is used. Fallen leaves, a nice 50’s song and a pumpkin being violently carved. The mood is set at the perfect balance of innocence and violence.

A middle-aged nurse arrives at her house, when she understands somebody has broken in, she goes to her neighbour’s and gets two boys, Joseph Gordon-Levitt and nobody. Levitt appears with a hockey mask. Oh, I wonder what that is referencing so subtly? Maybe I should ask Steve Miner, the director of two Friday the 13th movies? They check out the house, don’t find any tall man in a Shatner mask, so they leave. Needless to say the nurse is fucked.

Then we get a title card and I just have to comment on this. This is might be the most idiotic title they could’ve come up with. I know it’s the nineties, when the trend of poor literacy being cool really started, but seriously, what the fuck is that? H20: 20 Years Later. The „H20” makes it look like the chemical formula for water or the 20th Halloween movie there is. I suppose it sounds a bit like „age 20”, but if the „H20” makes it so clear why do we have this „20 Years Later” shit added, in case you still don’t get it?

We get back Jamie Lee Curtis and she has a son now and she is also his teacher. People say the filmmakers ignored parts 3-6, but I say Laurie Strode is an asshole and chose to have a son instead of a daughter. A young Michelle Williams is cute as her son’s girlfriend. Besides Curtis we see her real life mother Janet Leigh not being stabbed in the shower.

This movie is really a surprising one, when else do you get to see the 7th movie in a slasher franchise, that is not totally absurd, doesn’t have bad acting and tries to be a legitimate mainstream movie. I guess when you ignore four of the six movies in the franchise. And I suddenly realised that this exact same thing applies to the A Nightmare On Elm Street franchise as well.

Ok, so a long story short, Curtis is now a paranoid alcoholic, seeing Michael Myers everywhere and pouring wine down her throat. Her son and his friends are having a little party. You guessed it, it is going to be interrupted by Michael. There’s one guy who deserved it for riding an old service kitchen elevator. Which then is surpassed by the classic stroke of genius in sticking your fingers in the sink’s garbage disposal. Laurie can’t help to rescue her son’s friends from their stupidity, but she can try to rescue her son from Michael, so finally in the last 20 years there actually is a reason to act insane and she goes after Michael with her „I told you so… for the last 20 years… What? You don’t believe me? Who the fuck is „the boy who cried wolf”?” face.

So Michael is back and despite being even older than Curtis in what I call her lesbo-hair stage of life, he can keep lifting people up and even more, lift himself completely above a pipe, on which he is holding with one hand and somehow then slowly and silently descend himself behind Curtis’ back. You could say, he’s in the best shape of his life. See what I did there?

I’d say that this time Michael’s last „death” is pretty cool and probably should be considered the definitive end of him, although as we all know there is this one last sequel, who did a lot of things and none of them good.

Overall, a decent Halloweenmovie, I think one, that even non-Halloween fans might enjoy, although for me, except for the ending, it seemed to lack impact and for most of it was still kind of bland. Recommended, still one of the best slashers the 90’s have to offer.

At least I'm not the only one who thinks that Jamie Lee Curtis with each year looks more like an old man.

Review of Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995)

10 Apr

Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995) is a slasher/horror/thriller film and the sixth film in the Halloween movie franchise.

Directed by Joe Chappelle (Phantoms (1998), CSI: Miami (2002 TV)).

Written by Daniel Farrands (The Girl Next Door (2007), The Tooth Fairy (2006)).

Starring: Donald Pleasence, Paul Rudd, Marianne Hagan, George P. Wilbur, Mitch Ryan, Kim Darby, J.C. Brandy and others.

We start off with a bizarre childbirth scene in some kind of warehouse/temple sort of place, where all the walls are black and the only light sources are candles or some low power lightbulbs. Surprise, this is not a real hospital.

Then I find out that this girl, who is not Danielle Harris, yet is Jamie and she’s a teenager now, having a child and for some reason is in the care of these nice people in long black robes. She gets the opportunity to get out of this place, so she grabs her newborn child and runs. Out of nowhere comes Michael Myers. I can’t stress enough how little sense this makes. Are they telling me that Michael was just hanging around, waiting (to be fair he is good at that) until Jamie gives birth to her child, just to kill them both if they attempt to run?

Then we switch to a family who live in Michael’s old house, probably got it very cheap. We meet our heroine, who is pretty forgettable, her son, mother and asshole father.

And I realized that 90’s really don’t suit slasher films. No wonder they kind of died after 80’s. Are you used to an upbeat movie about teenagers having fun being interrupted by a killer? Well, there’s none of that here, since here it’s mostly just miserable people being put out of their misery.

And then we get the best thing about this movie – Paul Rudd. I had no idea that this is how he started his career before turning into a comedy star. And he actually does the best acting in the movie. He plays Tommy Doyle (the kid Laurie babysat in the first movie), he’s now a weird, obsessive, nerdy guy, who is into the occult and Myers, which are some things that probably mean that you’re not the right guy to find a baby and keep it. Unless, it’s Jamie’s baby, which, of course, it is. Oh, yeah Michael kills Jamie, one of the two Halloween characters I actually cared about.

This brings me to the other one. It’s Dr. Loomis. No, he’s not dead yet, which takes away some impact from the previous movie. It’s nice to see Donald Pleasence for one more time, although he doesn’t have much to do in this movie, except look old and still be oddly respected and considered sane. You can see he’s not in good health and soon after this movie Pleasence died.

The writer obviously tried to do something interesting with the series, but what we end up is the bleakest Halloween movie possible, with an irritatingly cliché cultism inserted, which offers the worst possible explanation of Michael’s source of evil power. If you’re trying to be this very straight-faced slasher, you shouldn’t bring up concepts as idiotic as semi-druid occultism.

Overall, I know I sound like I hated the movie and it wasn’t that, I just could barely find anything much to like about it. It embodies what is wrong with Halloweenseries. It throws around these absurd ideas just as much as other slasher movies, yet just because the first one is so highly regarded, it takes itself much too seriously and sucks all the entertainment out. I’m not recommending it, not because it’s bad, but because even if you watch it, you’ll probably soon forget it.

"You know Rudd, I used to do Shakespeare before all this."
"Oh, really? I'm also doing Shakespeare after this, Romeo + Juliet"
"Plus?"
"I know, shut up."

Review of Halloween 5 (1989)

3 Apr

Halloween 5 (1989) is a slasher/horror/thriller film and the fifth film in the Halloween franchise.

Directed by Dominique Othenin-Girard (Omen IV: The Awakening (1991), Crociati (2001)), whose name is misspelled in the opening credits.

Written by Michael Jacobs (Boy Meets World (1993 TV), 3:15 (1986)), Shem Bitterman (The Job (2009), Play Dead (2009)) and Dominique Othenin-Girard (After Darkness (1985), Henry Dunant: Red on the Cross (2006)).

Starring: Danielle Harris, Don Shanks, Donald Pleasence, Wendy Kaplan (Foxworth), Ellie Cornell, Beau Starr.

During the opening credits we get some brutal pumpkin carving, which leads to a recap of the previous movie’s ending, except they show how Michael Myers survived. So it picks up straight afterwards the previous one for a bit, even showing the twist ending. But then it cuts to Jamie Lloyd waking up from a nightmare. At first it isn’t clear is she just dreaming about what happened or is it her horrible nightmare. Turns out it did happen.

It picks up like a year later and little Jamie Lloyd is in some hospital/mental institution place. And she has lost her voice. Oh, those kids and their strange ways of coping with their uncle being an invincible serial killer. Actually I kind of liked that she had become mute, because otherwise I’d have to listen to her screaming and crying all throughout the movie. So again they succeed at making Jamie one of the least annoying kids in horror movies.

Meanwhile Michael shows off both his amazing ability to just wait out his injuries and his impeccable timing as he wakes up on October 30 after lying still for a year. He’s been staying at some bum’s weird shack and when he wakes up just kills the guy. Michael isn’t good at showing gratitude.

Does Loomis still have his medical license or does he just like hanging around hospitals? And nobody cares that he now acts like a complete lunatic and repeatedly screams at and shakes Jamie. He’s like a sitcom character now, who doesn’t know he’s in a sitcom. Everyone is like „Oh, look at that silly old man with a burnt face, who just keeps coming here and yelling at patients and raving about this Michael Myers guy.” And again he goes after Michael equipped with just a handgun. Seriously? Have you learnt nothing?

By the way, there’s also a little homage to Last House On The Left, when two silly cops have their own wacky theme.

There’s way too many scenes that turn out to just be dream sequences or false jumpscares.

Since he wakes up a day early for Halloween, Michael starts just creeping around, he’s very good at it, because no one ever notices the tall guy in a Shatner mask standing behind a bush. Then comes Halloween and Michael has a plan, he kills a guy, puts on his mask and takes his car. Now, I don’t know where Michael learned to drive so well, but he meets the dead guy’s girlfriend, one of our main characters, Tina. Wendy Kaplan’s Tina is considered one of the most annoying characters in Halloween movies (all the others are from Halloween Resurrection, but I’ll get to that), but I actually liked her over-the-top performance.

Then some more killings happen and Michael goes after Jamie (not mute anymore) and Tina, but turns out he’s not the best driver in the world after all and eventually hits a tree. Here we get a great scene, where they think „great, Michael couldn’t ever survive a car crash, right?”, but then the car horn stops blaring and we understand that he is lying against the steering wheel no more.

And then the action goes to the Myers house, where Loomis has organised a welcoming party consisting of a bunch of cops. Michael doesn’t exactly fall for this as his spidey-sense is tingling while Admiral Ackbar yells „It’s a trap!” in his head. But he still ends up in the house and we get a scene, where Loomis finally gives up with the shooting of Michael and proceeds with beating him with a wooden board, certainly a more effective method.

And the ending is just something unnecessarily random. Oh, and I have to mention the subtitle of this movie The Revenge of Michael Myers. I’ve never really understood Michael’s motivation for killing people, except that he’s fucked in the head. So if he kills just for the sake of it, how can you tell apart revenge from his usual „I’m going after someone I’m related to, while killing a bunch of people on the way” routine.

Overall, I enjoyed it, one of the more entertaining Halloween movies. Nothing great, but I’d recommend it.

"Hey, everybody, I'm going to blow this guy! On the street! ..."going to stab me"? Oh, you say the silliest things."

 

Review of Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988)

29 Mar

Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988) is slasher/horror/thriller film and the fourth entry in the Halloween franchise.

Directed by Dwight H. Little (Tekken (2010), Marked for Death (1990)), best-known for his work on various hit TV shows.

Written by Alan B. McElroy (Spawn (1997), Wrong Turn (2003)).

Starring: Donald Pleasance, Danielle Harris, Ellie Cornell, George P. Wilbur, Kathleen Kinmont and others.

No more picking up the next day after the previous one. This one picks up 10 years after the original and it’s cool that it is in like real-time, since 10 actual years have passed. This rather long period of time leads to Raymond O’Connor playing some security guard, who recaps the previous movies in an everyday conversation manner, which was just painful to watch. Not a good sign, when the first couple of minutes are hard to watch.

But then we hear again one of my favourite movie themes and after the Silver Shamrock song in Season Of The Witch, it’s like …um, music… to my ears.

So Michael Myers is kept in some sanitarium and is in coma (or is he just waiting?) and two things strike me as very odd about this. First is that how come Sam Loomis, who has been trying to kill him so desperately is ok with him just being kept there. Wouldn’t he try to somehow get the job done? And the second is that given how Michael can survive being shot at a bunch of times and getting burned and stuff, wouldn’t some medical scientists be interested in what keeps this guy going?

Of course Michael doesn’t stay in coma, which results in Sam Loomis going after him again and now we really get to see Loomis’ obsession with Michael. I didn’t really care for his character too much in the previous ones, but here I thought Donald Pleasance was just awesome. Oh, and guess on which day of the year do they decide to transport Michael and he wakes up? Halloween? Nope. The night before. Dodged a hugely improbable plot convenience right there, huh?

Danielle Harris is the cutest little girl ever. I usually hate children in movies, but Harris is adorable. And growing up she hasn’t changed much. Sometimes child stars grow up and look just weird, but she’s as hot now as she was cute then. Harris’ character is Laurie Strode’s daughter and she has an amazing hereditary trait – she is having nightmares about Michael, who she has never seen in her life.

By the way, other kids laugh about her being an orphan. Really? Is that a common thing? I mean, it’s not like she lives in an orphanage, she has a family, her clothes are nice and everything. The fact of someone being an orphan isn’t funny at any age, there’s just not that much to it. You don’t have parents. Being adopted is at least a bit funny, having no parents is not. I don’t want to read too much into a slasher movie, but I think little kids psychologically wouldn’t find not having parents funny, because we all have this fear of suddenly losing parents.

Here, watching one of the most basic horror movie clichés – lightning storm during dramatic moments, I realised that I’ve never actually seen lightning bolt light up a room in real life.

I actually kind of loved the ending, although it wouldn’t really work out if they went for the idea, it’s just like the same thing in two of the Friday the 13th movies.

Overall, it’s not bad, but Halloween movies have this problem of taking themselves seriously when they are not and ending up not all that entertaining. Still, I recommend it, even though it was a bit bland.

"Hey, Michael! I brought this gun here, I know they don't do shit for you, but don't I look like Dirty Harry or something?"

Review of Halloween II (2009)

11 Jan

Halloween II (2009) is a horror/slasher/thriller film and is a sequel to Halloween (2007), which is a remake of Halloween (1978).

Directed by Rob Zombie (House of 1000 Corpses (2003), The Devil’s Rejects (2005)), who was also the director of the previous film.

Written by Rob Zombie (Halloween (2007), The Haunted World of El Superbeasto (2009)).

Starring: Scout Taylor-Compton, Sheri Moon Zombie, Tyler Mane, Malcolm McDowell, Brad Dourif, Danielle Harris and others.

Firstly, I must say that Halloween (2007) is one of my favourite horror remakes. And I don’t understand why a lot of people dislike it so much. If I have a classic slasher film remade, I’d rather Rob Zombie does it, he might not be the best director in the world, but at least you can see he really loves what he’s doing. And with Halloween he made the right choice by not just doing a shot-for-shot remake, but he actually did something new and untraditional. Yeah, it’s not as good as the original, but what remake is?

The answer is Halloween II. Sort of. Before you say I’m an idiot, take a while and remember Halloween II (1980). It sucked. So if we say this is a remake of that one, I’d say I enjoyed this more, although it might not be technically a better movie.

Is this really a remake of Halloween II (1980)? Well, the first 30 minutes of it is. Just like with the previous one they took the original story, shortened it and inserted other stuff.

So this film does some new stuff as well, but some of it is so weird it doesn’t work all that well. As always with Rob Zombie, there’s some nice music touches used, like „Love Hurts” by Nazareth at the end.

So here we see Laurie Strode living with her friend (the sheriff’s daughter) a year after Michael Myers attacked them. And she as every other young person with some psychological problems in movies has gotten into heavy metal.

Tyler Mane is back as Michael Myers, but most of the movie he just walks around with no mask, except his beard and for some reason wherever he goes, no one is scared of a fucking 7 foot giant who looks pissed. Everyone thinks they can just take this guy who looks like he could break you in half. Also he somehow manages to move incredibly silently, but then again most serial killers in movies have perfected this skill.

Scout Taylor-Compton plays Laurie Strode and I was pleasantly surprised that her acting seemed improved, but then suddenly she just blasts into the over-the-top territory rapid-firing through the most extreme emotions. So the rest of the movie she spends in crying/yelling/sobbing/being a bitch/insanity mode and never comes back.

The movie needed more Brad Douriff, he was great. Margot Kidder (Lois Lane from Superman movies) is a psychiatrist. Malcolm McDowell is fucking awesome in this as a totally sleazy asshole. And there’s a cameo by Weird Al Yankovic, which really felt out of place.

And they got a kid to play young Michael, who sucks so bad. In the previous one Daeg Faerch was so perfect, he was really kind of menacing. With this one, I think even a cardboard cut-out of Daeg Faerch would have provided a better acting.

So this film does some new stuff as well, but some of it is so weird it doesn’t work all that well. As always with Rob Zombie, there’s some nice music touches used, like „Love Hurts” by Nazareth at the end.

Overall, an interesting, but not very good entry in the Halloween franchise, as I said, I liked it more than Halloween II (1980), but probably won’t recommend seeing if you’re not particularly interested.

"So there I was, getting attacked by Myers, when suddenly I realised what Alice Cooper was singing about. Now I'm like really dark and depressed and... and... rock on!"

Review of Halloween III: Season Of The Witch (1982)

1 Dec

Halloween III: Season Of The Witch (1982) is horror/sci-fi/mystery film, it is the third entry in the Halloween franchise and the only one not to feature Michael Myers.

Directed by Tommy Lee Wallace (Fright Night Part 2 (1988), Vampires: Los Muertos (2002)), who hasn’t had the greatest career.

Written by Tommy Lee Wallace (Amityville II: The Possession (1982), It (1990)), many consider It his best work and that’s based on Stephen King’s novel, so that’s not really a compliment for a guy who usually writes his own movies.

Starring: Tom Atkins, Stacey Nelkin, Michael Currie, Dan O’Herlihy and others.

Sure, they wanted to make Halloween an anthology series, but how could they not realise, that if they made two tightly connected movies already, they had already basically established a franchise and releasing a sequel would have everyone assume, it is a continuation of the series. Also, I could understand if they did something like this if Halloween II had bombed horribly, so they tried to fix what wasn’t broken. And failed. I can’t imagine how many people in the age of no internet went to see this expecting Mike Myers to show up, but all they got was frustration and one of the most annoyingly catchy jingles ever.

Although it isn’t a Halloween (franchise) movie it is a Halloween (holiday) movie. And as that it isn’t a bad film. It has a creepy atmosphere right from the start. And has that overall Halloween-like feel to it. It actually felt like a remake of a cheesy 50’s sci-fi/horror flick. And of course that damned song.

The romantic storyline seemed a bit creepy, I thought “Oh, ok, they’re now staying in a motel, they will probably bond and have this father-daughter sort of relationship.” …and then they have sex. I mean, I like Tom Atkins too, but he’s literally twice Stacey Nelkin’s age.

The script is really a cheesy B-movie material, but the movie does improve on it, by somehow playing it very straight. They must have known that it is ridiculous. Although, I doubt Tommy Lee Wallace did. Some of the scenes are legitimately scary, like there’s this knitting grandma scene, which creeped me out and then scared me. Fun times. Also there was some nice eye-gouging with fingers. Another fault of the script is that the villain’s motivation is unclear, his plan is to kill all the kids. Why? Because fuck kids, that’s why. I don’t know, maybe they just wanted to have a villain who has 60’s looking headquarters with huge computers, blinking lights and robot-people.

Speaking of kids, first of all, why would you brainwash the kids, just to later melt the masks on their faces? What’s the point? Although, I get why they had to brainwash all the kids. Because, why else would all the kids buy masks from their huge collection of …3 types of masks! And are all those parents really that jaded that they’re like “Oh, those silly kids. They’re watching the same annoying commercial for the hundredth time. Today. And look how they sit so close to the TV as if they have reversed peripheral blindness.”

To be fair, most people consider it the worst Halloween movie, because it isn’t one. It isn’t as bad as it is made out to be, I quite enjoyed it. And I would recommend it for people who want something spooky and not too serious for a late october’s evening. And try not to focus on that it has “Halloween III” in the title.

Choose between the masks of a skull, jack-o'-lantern or Sarah Jessica Parker.