Thursday, June 7, 2012

Halloween: H2 ... Oh...

The Halloween franchise has a nasty habit of kicking itself in the teeth. From Halloween 3: Season of the Witch which made no mention of Michael Myers using the "Halloween" name to cash in on the franchise to the recent removal of executive producer Moustapha Akkad's name being removed from the Halloween 2 Blu Ray. (because of his rumoured ties to Libya's leader Mommar Gaddafi) So should it be any surprise that Halloween H20 is what it is? In fact it's a small miracle that it's not worse.

Halloween H20 takes place 20 years after "the night HE came home". "He" being Michael Myers and "came home" meaning murdered a whack of fertile teens. 20 years on he still after Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) aka The One That Got Away. Laurie Strode's faked her death, changed her name and cut off her hair. She's trying to lead a normal life through prescription medication as the principal of a private school. She's got her son (Josh Harnett in his first film) a boyfriend and a lot of demons. When a school trip leaves a nearly deserted school Michael Myers strikes attacking Laurie, her son and his son's friends who are too cool to go on the school trip. Oh, and LL Cool J is trying to write a romance novel.

This was marketed as the final Halloween film and it ignored parts 4-6. Say what you will about 4,5 and 6 but at least they were bat-shit crazy, Halloween H20 is dull at best. It truly is a watered down, corporatized, Hollywood-ized reboot which followed in the wake of Scream. H20 even boasts treatment work by one Kevin Williamson. The goal of H20 was to assemble the original team which meant Curtis and director/writer John Carpenter. Producer Akkad balked at Carpenters' directing fee of $10 million and was replaced by Friday the 13th series  producer/director Steve Miner. Part of Halloween's endurance in popular culture is the sense of dread that Carpenter created with a masked man called the Shape. The summer camp counterpart was far more slice and dice rather than dream haunting imagery and attacks on the American dream. H20 becomes a turgid mess by winking so hard at the audience that the in-jokes become nonsensical.

Lest We Forget: The CGI Mask
 Jamie Lee is working hard in this film. She works in imbue Laurie with strength and resilience but it all seems for naught. Once Laurie and Michael come face to face, it's a pretty wimpy. There's a boring repetitive patterns in which Laurie and Michael lock horns, break free and run after each other. There's also 4 deaths. 4! Only one is truly disturbing and it involves a leg, or lack thereof. But surely a horror movie icon can do better than that. He's meant to strike fear into the hearts of the next generation of movie goers but all he served to do was keep me awake for 80 minutes. Mainly because the movie was so unnecessarily loud.  

Despite H20's many, MANY short comings it's world better than Halloween Resurrection, which I think every horror fan has collectively willed out of existence. Halloween H20 falls prey to its own need to generate business. It was a hastily put together and falls apart just as easily. 


  1. I've got to admit that I've always kind of liked H20. I can't really argue with anything you said though. It's not scary, but I still get that rush of fanboy delight at the return of Jamie Lee Curtis (and the Janet Leigh cameo).

    Oh, and Michelle Williams is adorable.

  2. That was my main problem with it, it was bland. Jamie Lee is awesome and Michelle Williams is adorable and pretty good in it too. But it was too loud and clumsy to pay homage to the original. Stupid MTV generation.