Archive for Halloween Kills

Halloween Kills

Posted in Updates with tags , , , , on October 16, 2021 by splatterpictures

When we first learned of Blumouse and company tackling the iconic Halloween franchise, there was that initial blush of “why?” I don’t think anyone, fans of the film or haters were truly prepared for what we got in the form of Halloween 2018. I went back to my roots for that film in terms of reviews. I felt this urge to get my feelings out in writing rather than spoken word. Now, here we are years later. My love for the 2018 Halloween film hasn’t diminished since I first saw it that opening weekend. As such my anticipation for its sequel was very high. It was an excitement I honestly haven’t felt for a movie in a long time. I remember as a teenager getting pumped for going to the theater and watching movies. I was enthusiastic and energetic about a great many films. Age and time have tempered me. I loath to say make me cynical because I hate cynicism. However, it’s undeniable that the trailers for Halloween Kills made me realize that along the way I’d lost something. Something that made me excited about films in a way I’m not anymore.

My initial feelings when the Halloween Kills trailers first dropped was that this was going to be the “Aliens” of the Halloween franchise. Horror fans will know that what I mean by that is simply the difference between the 1979 film “Alien” and it’s sequel the 1986 film “Aliens” The former was a melodic, suspense driven slasher in space. The sequel was a testosterone fueled action movie. I can say with no doubt that my feelings were right. The difference between Halloween 2018 and Halloween Kills is the same.

(Minor spoilers ahead)

Halloween Kills starts in 1978, where the babysitter murders first occurred. There we are met with a story of two Haddonfield cops that are hunting Myer’s all those forty years ago. A chase that will take them to the Myer’s family house. itself the location of the notorious murder of Michael’s sister in 1963. This motif of the house will come back again and again. The significance of the window in Michael’s sister’s room becomes the subject of its own sort of backstory. The scenes in 1978 are incredible. I am bshocked with how authentic they can make everything look on brand new scenes. I would swear I was watching stock footage from some unreleased version of the original film. Offering us new perspectives and insight to what happened that night. Especially important because this film continuity-wise is the third in order of events. So how exactly the police took down Michael back then wasn’t really explored. The stuff with Dr. Loomis is nothing short of uncanny. I’ll leave it at that.

The film plops us down immediately where the 2018 film ends. Up to and including the fact that it is still 2018 in the film’s continuity. Probably less jarring if it was released when it was planned but thanks to the current unpleasantness, waiting until 2021 just kept me wistfully thinking I’d accept a murderous monster in the streets if it meant I could chill out and party on Halloween.

Between Michael’s escape from the burning Laurie Strode compound to the inevitable rampage on Haddonfield itself, this film is relentless. Halloween Kills isn’t hyperbole . The body count is insane. Not only is it the highest body count in any Halloween movie ever, it is the highest body count of any slasher ever. Period. It also catapults Myers to the top of the Slasher pile with the most collective kills throughout all films. Michael will kill entire groups of people simultaneously on more than one occasion. All in glorious and brutal fashion. It’s gratuitous in the most delicious way. Some deaths are sad and some are downright hilarious. Between the massive body count and the huge cast, coupled with the fevered sense of urgency – even scenes meant to slow down the action to give backstory or to spout off some more lore about Michael seems at a breakneck pace. Your brain will constantly be readjusting to new groups of characters and new scenarios. They all more or less end the same. That night they were fated to meet the boogeyman. If Micheal Myers is a force of nature imagine in Halloween 2018, he’s a thunderstorm and in Halloween Kills, He’s a hurricane.

This film’s politics are on its sleeve much like the first one. The best and most compelling notion of this entire film is the idea of Micheal’s curse. It isn’t that he is an unstoppable killing machine. It’s that he infects everything with his fear. He brings out the worst in everyone and even if he doesn’t kill you. What he leaves behind may aswell have. Perhaps those who are personally killed by Michael are the only ones granted true mercy. This film also talks about mob mentality and the role of police. The notions of control of society are meaningless against the mob and chaos that violence brings. There is a truly heartbreaking scene at the Haddonsfield hospital that will stay with me for awhile. There is a flashback scene during the aftermath of a police officer’s misconduct when he gave in to his own fear that seems all to real in this day and age.

If I were to find fault with anything is that because of the huge cast of characters I felt there were scenes and people not given nearly enough time to grow or to really even enjoy. I felt like some people were offed pretty unceremoniously to be brutally honest and I can see that rubbing people the wrong way. The other fault I feel is what is always the faults with films that are meant to be a bridge between the middle and the end of a story. You leave right on a climax. The 2018 film was a sequel but also felt like its own contained story. Beginning middle and end. This one straight up feels like middle. Middle from start to finish. Ending on a truly soul crushing moment. Even though I feel this way about certain character deaths I realize that is only because in my mind i decided they deserved better than they got. But, real life is usually never so generous. No matter how important people may be. Death will come. Whether it’s by disease, or accident or Micheal Myers.

Halloween Kills will be divisive. It’s only been out a day as the time of this writing and already I see people saying that it’s either the greatest the franchise has ever seen or its absolute nadir. No middle ground. Ironic for a film that is all middle. I think in time that my love for this film will only grow but as it stands I feel that it will only be truly appreciated when the films final installment comes next year in 2022’s Halloween Ends.

The films motto is “Evil dies tonight” What it actually teaches us is that evil cannot be simply destroyed. Meeting it on its level will only service it and destroy you, I anticipate that before the end many more people will need to learn this. Although, I do wonder if there will be anyone left alive when this is all over.