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Film Review: Halloween (2018)

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SYNOPSIS:

“It’s been 40 years since Laurie Strode survived a vicious attack from crazed killer Michael Myers on Halloween night. Locked up in an institution, Myers manages to escape when his bus transfer goes horribly wrong. Laurie now faces a terrifying showdown when the masked madman returns to Haddonfield, Ill. — but this time, she’s ready for him.”

REVIEW:

*NO SPOILERS* I just cannot do it. You HAVE TO SEE IT! “This Boogeyman is real and now he is back.” Laurie Strode (GOOSEBUMPS and so many feelings.)

It has been forty years since we saw Michael Myers and Laurie Strode. “Halloween” (1978) written by John Carpenter and Debra Hill. Directed by the legendary mastermind John Carpenter.  From Blumhouse, “Halloween” (2018) is directed by David Gordon Green and written by, David Gordon Green, Danny McBride, Jeff Fradley and John Carpenter and Debra Hill listed as “characters.”

As a lifelong Horror fan and a fan of the “Halloween” films in general. I feel as if I have been waiting for this film as long as Laurie Strode has been waiting for Michael Myers. The film stars the incomparable, undeniably and all-around amazing, Jamie Lee Curtis who portrays our legendary survivor and bad ass Laurie Strode.

We also have Judy Greer who plays Karen, Laurie Strode’s daughter, Andi Matichak (Laurie’s granddaughter), James Jude Courtney who plays The Shape/Michael Myers, Nick Castle who played The Shape/Michael Myers in “Halloween” (1978).

Haluk Bilginer portrays Dr. Sartain – which I spent several minutes wondering where the name Sartain came from and if maybe it was a play on Samhain (I am weird, I already know this.) Will Patton plays Officer Hawkins who is just a mess but also strong and trying his best not to have a nervous breakdown. I would not blame him though. Rhian Rees (Dana Haines), Jefferson Hall (Aaron), Toby Huss (Ray), Virginia Gardner (Vicky) whom I would say she would have made Annie (Nancy Kyes)  proud.

Dylan Arnold, Miles Robbins, Drew Scheid, Jibrail Nantambu, Michael “Mick” Harrity and more.

I will not giving spoilers but I wanted to do this because I have loved “Halloween” and like I stated, I have waited for this film. It starts out intense. The intensity is coming from one man. NICK CASTLE. You will have to watch the film. Seeing Nick Castle on the big screen in a movie theater and the amount of terror, fear and intensity was overwhelming but so satisfying as a horror fan. He makes certain movements that can inflict terror in you and cause goosebumps. I had goosebumps as soon as you see him.

The two that come in to the asylum to interview Michael’s/The Shape’s doctor and possibly get some type of reaction from Michael doesn’t go as planned. The reaction they did get was psychologically messing with so many people. The cast was so good. The only thing more intense is seeing Jamie Lee Curtis onscreen as Laurie Strode again. She plays Laurie fiercely. After all these years and dealing with all of this. She may be in a PTSD mind frame and knowing that Michael Myers is out there may be terrifying but it is also something that is fueling her.

Her family which consists of her daughter Karen (Judy Greer), her granddaughter Allyson played so well by Andi Matichak. You imagine that Laurie Strode is hidden away and tormented but she is prepared. I feel this film not only addressed the original “Halloween” (1978) but it also gave us Easter eggs to watch out for. During the film, I noticed several things. I am not going to share them because I feel you need to see the film for yourself. You will not be disappointed. I feel the route they went with Michael not being Laurie’s brother was rather interesting.

Michael Myers is also brutal. He is a force of nature if nature was simply hurricanes, tornadoes, wrath and destruction. He feels like a walking storm that is annihilating everything in his way. We also get some insight on why he is not her brother and they make some light of it. There are also quick wit comic relief moments because what is a really good Horror film without a few funny moments. Then Michael shows up and it is not fun anymore. (All fun and games until Michael Myers kills the buzz.)

When we left the theater we all walked out together and checked the backseat of our car. (It felt mandatory) I also found Will Patton to be so good. He made me nervous and on edge throughout the film. He did such a good job in this movie. I think the real perception and what people looked at was how Jamie Lee Curtis took charge and she may have gone through hell but she was not taking any shit from one person including Michael Myers. This felt like the first Horror (I say this because I don’t think it is often discussed and mentioned in the type of way where you understand what a person is really going through.) But, this felt like Jamie Lee Curtis truly portrayed Laurie Strode as someone who may have anxiety, PTSD and yet she is prepared, not crazy and she knows what she is doing.

Laurie Strode beat the stereotypical things that people like to label people and make it into a stigma. Laurie Strode also says, “No do as I say!” This felt like you got punched in the gut. This terror came back all at once. But, Laurie Strode proved she is not one to be messed with.

Judy Greer did an excellent job portraying Karen, Laurie Strode’s daughter. She reminds you of those people who constantly tell you “I don’t watch the news. I don’t want to hear anything bad going on.” She grew up in a childhood where protecting yourself was priority. When you watch the film they give a slight impression that she may have believed she was made to “be afraid” or “not live her life.” Laurie Strode did indeed teach her daughter to protect herself. You will see this in the movie.

The notion that Laurie Strode is strong enough to not only keep herself safe but to keep her daughter and her family safe is undeniably the power of surviving. The film gave us a few scares and there have been one or two minutes where things went off track and you could hear the people go from whispering loud, “what is going on?” As Sheriff Leigh Brackett says in “Halloween” (1978), “It’s Halloween, everyone’s entitled to one good scare.”

Well, this is the “Halloween” movie we have been waiting for and everyone is entitled to their own opinion. You may think it is great or terrible. People complained slightly about the kills. Too little, too many or not enough and in between. Michael Myers was brutal. It was as if he knew his one agenda and he was handling it. Laurie’s house set up is intense. You may think if Laurie Strode sat and watched survival videos and how to survive in the wild. She also turned into a tactical expert and she could clear a chaotic scene on her own.

Back to the Easter eggs in the film for a moment. When you watch the movie if you are a die-hard fan of “Halloween,” I am positive you will see them and get the references. For someone who may have never seen it or you are new to Horror. (Welcome and enjoy the ride.) You may have to see the film a few times to see and hear them.

I found Nick Castle’s presence after being in the first “Halloween” film was nostalgic, he was a presence. Lingering, lurking, and scaring the sh*t out of people without so much as making the slightest move. He is The Shape, he is this undeniable force onscreen and you cannot take your eyes off the screen. I (I had goosebumps. Pretty much the same when I first saw Laurie Strode)

In all honesty the way they made this movie without addressing the other films. It was good. It didn’t feel like they needed it. The film also welcomed the new generation with certain music, parties and what the teenagers today may be doing. We get to see Laurie’s evolution and how strong she is. We get to hear a little more about Michael. The mask scene and watching Michael getting his weapon of choice back, I thought I would fall out of my theater chair. It was the greatest scene of the film.

James Jude Courtney who portrays The Shape/Myers also is just a terrifying. His walk, the actions and small motions he does. They are terrifying. This movie was needed so badly. This year it feels like Halloween belongs to the Horror community. We get this film to dissect, watch, and figure out and terror of knowing that now Michael Myers isn’t just some kind of thing or something to just laugh about.

John Carpenter also did the soundtrack for the movie. The music sets the mood. It is dark, alive, and intense. Each note, sound and scene that you watch the booming sounds go through you. It feels like John Carpenter is scaring your soul (in a good way.)

It has the same feel that the original had. It would not be the same at all without Carpenter making the soundtrack. I have even made friends with people simply because of the “Halloween” theme. One friend told me when she wants to relax, she drives around and plays the theme song over and over. Given the chance, I would watch this film over and over. I would check the back seat of my car for as long as it takes. I was originally going to write a full-on review but there is something about “Halloween” that you just have to see it for yourself. You have to feel the music, see Michael Myers in action. You MUST see Laurie Strode portraying someone who could have been a broken, defeated person who may have gave up or gave in. She did not though. She fought and fights. She is the epitome of a survivor in a film.

Jamie Lee Curtis, Nick Castle, James Jude Courtney, John Carpenter, Debra Hill (brilliant), Jason Blum and David Gordon Green gave us this excellent piece of film history. We now have another “Halloween” film to add to our already incredible list of “Halloween” films to watch. If you have not seen “Halloween” you NEED to see it. Michael Myers is totally not staring at you from your yard right now just waiting for you to go see the movie. So, go see it because there is an important message in the film.

Oh, and Happy Halloween Michael Myers.

www.sacredbonesrecords.com/products/sbr213-john-carpenter-halloween

FOLLOW JAMIE LEE CURTIS @jamieleecurtis

Jason Blum @jason_blum

@blumhouse

Nick Castle – @ncastlez

James Jude Courtney www.imdb.com/name/nm0183921/

@jamesjcourtney

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