By Jose Jara
Full of gore & hollow on everything else
By: DANIEL GUZMAN
The newest revival to the horror franchise, Halloween, is back by Blumhouse Productions for another fall season slashing the box office. So far, the horror flick is grossing one of the highest box offices for any opening weekend in October. Two weeks ago, “Venom” set a new October box office record for the biggest opening weekend with $80 million. By the end of this weekend, HALLOWEEN seems highly likely to gut Venom and dethrone it from the top spot.
Halloween jumps into action starting back up 40 years later after Laurie Strode (Jaime Lee Curtis) had her life traumatizing met cute with the iconic boogie man, Michael Myers. Now we find Laurie who is estranged from her daughter due to do the fact that she spent her childhood battling her mother’s demons. Laurie’s granddaughter, Allyson who is portrayed by Andi Matichak, is nothing but eager to hang out with grandma Laurie and get to know her peculiar grandma. Meanwhile, Michael Myers has been confined to a mental institution and is now after all these years being transported to some penitentiary a few weeks before October 31st. As serendipity works, the prison bus has a mishap and out is Michael just in time to wreak bloody havoc in the small town of Haddonfield, Illinois once again. This time though, Laurie has been training for years like she is Sarah Connor in Terminator 2, waiting for the fateful day she has her chance to have Michael meet his demise by her own hands.
This horror flick is full of explicit bloody violence that is sure to not disappoint the horror fans. The film is at times shot with an indie look, yet other times it plays like a highly budgeted slasher sequence. John Carpenter’s influence is felt throughout the film in director David Gordon Green’s homage to the original in various ways. The score is iconic to the original film, giving this new Halloween a retro vibe makeover that brings memories back to those in the audience who met Michael as youngsters. Where the film lost me was in keeping its presentation the same as the original. Just because you had poor acting in the original doesn’t mean you have to keep going the same way. The film plays on many factors, such as the post trauma that a harrowing violent situation can plague a life. Then the film jumps to the ignorance of two psychological researchers who are eager to get into the mental psyche of Michael so much that you as the audience member know that their curiosity will obviously be their demise. You are also led to be plagued with the cliché of the mental health doctor that has been treating Michael for years and is almost his cheerleader. Finally, you are left to suffer through the overdone teenage storyline of Laurie’s granddaughter and her boyfriend, comingled with the boyfriend’s best friend who secretly has a crush on his friend’s girlfriend (Cue the Dawson’s Creek theme song).
The film was trying too many things at once and not succeeding at any. Failed attempts at much don’t equal success. As the quote from Bruce Lee goes, “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times.” I think this film should have just capitalized on more Michael Myers scenes, and less on a bunch of subplots. To sum it up, I found the slasher scenes to deliver a hefty amount of carnage that a horror fan craves, yet I kept putting too many fingers in all the plot holes I was left to poke at. The acting was subpar except for Jaime Lee Curtis who seemed to of enjoyed coming full circle with this franchise. My verdict: if you enjoy mindless gore, you will have fun at this movie, otherwise don’t stick your neck out for this predictable revamping to an iconic horror classic.