Review By: Christy Jedigoddess
It’s been 40 years since Michael Myers first donned the mask that would usher in a new wave of terror into the hearts of audiences.
For 1978, Halloween set the bar for the horror film genre. John Carpenter as a director takes a different approach to his horror films. He is more suspense driven with long lingering scenes filled with atmosphere that are intent on making the viewer feel uncomfortable, or even urged to question what lurks in the shadows as some fright may pop out at any moment.
What Made Michael Myers Different?
Michael Myers was a killer that was absent of logic, there was no communicating with him and he was slow and steady in his determination. Myers didn’t run, he was just there, waiting patiently for his prey to be at their weakest moment.
For ’78 this came across as immensely creepy and set Myers up to be a villain that defied the pre-established notion and predictability of the “bad guy”. Carpenter presented a villain that no one had encountered on screen before. Cold, calculating and devoid of empathy, Myers never swayed from his objective.
The lasting legacy of Michael Myers/Halloween is something that is still held up as the gold standard of a horror classic today, and it shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone.
A Return To the Original With Halloween (2018)
It’s been 40 years since Jamie Lee Curtis came face to face with the evil that is Myers. In this newest undertaking of the film franchise (#11), we see a return to the forms of the original Halloween, with one great exception, Laurie Strode is not the same young scared teenager. Instead, we see a very real, complex and broken character whose life has one goal, to end the terror that has haunted her for years, Michael Myers.
Halloween (2018) is a love letter to the original Halloween (1978) and it aims to erase the missteps that have taken place in its previous sequels. However, its strength rests not on frights but more on the shoulders of our heroine. The film explores the real depths of what happens when we are forced to face our demons from a traumatic experience while not forgetting to offer up the same chilling gore that has become synonymous with Myers.
Halloween is by no means perfect. With a lengthy build-up that seems a few scenes too long, climactic moments that felt more restrained than they needed to be, and an ending that leaves more questions than answers, the real shining beacon in these lackluster moments is Jamie Lee Curtis as Strode. Jamie portrays a hero that anyone can be proud of. She makes no bones about her struggle yet still goes head to head with one of the biggest villains of all time. In a performance reminiscent of Linda Hamilton’s take as Sarah Connor in Terminator 2, Jamie makes Laurie her own.
Halloween does its part to honor the legacy of Carpenter’s original vision, and it is one of the better productions that this franchise has to offer. While it’s not a perfect gem of a film, it is watchable and enjoyable if for nothing else but too see a heroine rise.