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Review: Michael Myers returns for ‘Halloween’

After 40 years of being locked away in an insane asylum, Michael Myers makes a sudden and unexpected return to the unsuspecting town of Haddonfield, ready to ruthlessly butcher all who cross his path.

Only this time around, Laurie Strode (played by Jamie Lee Curtis), the only person who managed to escape his original reign of terror, is prepared and awaiting his arrival.

This modern remake of a horror movie classic has America reminiscent and truly in the spirit of Halloween. The movie begins with two British journalists visiting Michael in his captivity in an attempt to elicit a response from the mysterious serial murderer.

After failing to do so, the journalists turn to a traumatized and paranoid Laurie Strode, who’d spent the last 40 years hidden away in preparation for what she felt would be Michael’s inevitable return.

It is at this point in the movie where we discover that Laurie is twice divorced, and has been estranged from her daughter, Karen Strode (played by Judy Greer), for the perceived cruelty of her attempts to prepare her family lest Michael were to ever return.

Later in the movie, we discover that Michael’s bus transfer took a horrific twist, ultimately resulting in his escape and the beginning of a series of gruesome murders.

The scenes in this new “Halloween” failed to create the same eerie foreboding as the original franchise. Green catered more to the gore-hungry appetite of today’s horror fans, and as a result, took away a good bit of the mystery surrounding Michael Myers. Instead we are left with your typical slasher and murder scenes that appear a bit rushed.

We are also provided with underdeveloped supporting actors and secondary plotlines that do little to further the story rather than adding on to the number of casualties.

On the other hand, Director David Gordon Green finds several ways to allude to the classic, and these references are the most successful aspects of the movie. With babysitter murder scenes, having Michael perform his infamous slow-paced walk of terror and backseat lurking, we are reminded of the true terror surrounding Michael Myers.

His inexplicable, insatiable need to kill and the lack of empathy he feels for his victims is truly unnerving to watch.

In addition to this, the resurgence of Jamie Lee Curtis into a truly iconic role assists in capturing the essence of what made “Halloween” so influential. Gone is her role of the terrified teenager, as we are met now with a survivor fully prepared to face her greatest rival.

And the showdown is worth the 40 years of anticipation. Green references the classic once more during this final confrontation between Michael and Laurie by having similar shots from the original, ironically, with Michael as the hunted, and Laurie as the Hunter.

So if you go into the movies expecting to see the same “Halloween” you did 40 years prior, you will naturally be disappointed. And candidly, it is wishful thinking for any director to believe they would be able to successfully conjure up a sequel that could contend with this 1978 classic.

However, after 40 years of being held in captivity and some flimsy sequels here and there, viewers will be pleased to see Michael’s return to Haddonfield this Halloween.

Story by Ashlyn Simons. Gif courtesy of Fanpop.

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