2018’s ‘Halloween’ is terrifyingly stunning

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Jamie Lee Curtis returns in the role of Laurie Strode to fight off Michael Myers in the David Gordon Green-directed “Halloween.” Where many of the other sequels fall flat or come across as cheap, the 2018 sequel is a cinematic masterpiece with fantastic performances across the board. The decision to ignore the sequels is a great helper in reviving “Halloween” as a respectable film rather than a novelty.

“Halloween” starts off with two podcast friends entering the psychiatric institution where Michael Myers has been held for the past 40 years. This opening scene is filled with beautifully disturbing shots. As the scene ends with the podcast friends yelling at Michael, the title screen appears with John Carpenter’s “Halloween Theme” playing as the cast members’ names appear beside the glowing face of an inflating jack-o-lantern.

The story of Laurie Strode being alienated from her family and written off as a basket case after years of paranoia surrounding Michael might seem trite at first. However, the way the writing comes together and the amazing acting makes one forget all of that. It might not be surprising when Laurie reunites with her daughter at the most intense point in the movie, but the way it is done is touching and heartfelt.

A lot of surprising scenes and plot points come out of this movie, like with the portrayal of those inside the psychiatric facility. It is often that horror movies like to make out all psychiatric patients as victims, but “Halloween” doesn’t fall for that trap. The movie makes it clear that Michael Myers is completely different than the other patients who escape the facility. The trope of the survivor girl in a slasher flick surviving off of pure luck has been left behind with “Halloween.” It is incredibly exciting to see female characters thrive and survive off of their skill, not luck or the grace of some man.

The characters are all well written and there were no real weak points in the acting department.  It can be truly awkward and frustrating watching the scenes that happen at the Halloween dance between Allyson and her date. There are plenty of great side characters who help lighten the mood and crack jokes like the kid Vicky babysits and the police officers.

There is no need to view any film other than the original before seeing the 2018 sequel. Even if you skip the original, it is easy to understand the film as the background is all pieced together in the first few minutes.

A general feeling of anxiety accompanies the viewing of this movie as every scene feels like the one where Michael Myers will pop up. The haunting music of John Carpenter sends chills up one’s spine as they are being warned of the evil’s presence. This haunting music is used interchangeably with pure silence, bringing a truly ominous and mysterious feeling to the theater.

 

If you love horror films, it is undeniable that the 2018 “Halloween” is a must. From beginning to end you will be on the edge of your seat. David Gordon Green’s “Halloween” is exactly how you should do fleshed-out, terrifying horror.