Do you believe in the Boogeyman? I sure do after watching Halloween.
It’s been 40 years since the original Halloween and Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) is back, and when Michael Myers is set loose after a bus accident, Strode has her shot at vengeance against the man who terrorized her so long ago.
What baffles me the most when reflecting on this movie, is how it is possible that Michael Myers was able to deliver, and the film still not be that scary. Michael Myers in his most recent feature is once again an intimidating presence, a force to be reckoned with, just a straight up awesome horror antagonist. The film excellently builds up to his escape, with a riveting opening scene and multiple references to how evil he is. And once Myers is free and begins his killing spree, the body count begins to climb. In the film, Myers is like a killing artist, making each death unique within his own pronounced violent nature (although largely, most deaths are off-screen). But despite the praise I give the movie for creating an old, battered but still plenty capable Michael Myers, the film never struck fear into my heart. Halloween is a lot of fun, but it never becomes more than that and fails to accomplish that great horror experience.
Outside of Michael Myers, Laurie Strode is the only other character that matters. Her new, paranoid, tough-as-nails persona is a compelling reflection of Michael’s own corruption; when we finally reach the final showdown between her and Michael, it is quite the event. Jamie Lee Curtis crafts the perfect kind of protagonist for the film, not perfect, not totally sane, but understands what to fear and who to take seriously. Curtis is the top of the cast when it comes to giving energy, intrigue, and depth to her character. Otherwise, the majority of the characters are there to be killed and we’ve seen them before in other slashers.
I loved the return of the iconic Halloween theme, featured prominently in the film. I never felt as if the light humor in the film took away from the movie. There’s a twist (I guess you could call it a twist) involving the “new Dr. Loomis” which felt out of place and could’ve been subtracted from the film; otherwise, the pacing seemed fine but could’ve been smoother had the film introduced fewer throw-away characters. The ending is vague in what it’s trying to tell us, but no doubt after the box-office success of the film will it lead to a sequel. All in all, Halloween isn’t on the level of classic horror pictures but is still a good time and will satisfy as you leave the cinema. Despite Halloween having past (I saw the film Halloween night myself), if you are a horror fan and haven’t seen this movie, you should go see it – I’m not sure how much more actually good horror you’re going to get until next year. 7.5/10