Halloween: A Return to Traditional Horror


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Image Courtesy of Variety/ Halloween

Ashton T. Livingston, Entertainment Editor

Halloween, a franchise that has gone through its ups and downs (but mostly downs) has finally had a return to its roots. Halloween ignores every film but the first and presents us with true, back to its roots slasher horror. This film was so well made and such an ode to the original that they actually got John Carpenter, the director of the original, to come back and do the score.

Halloween brings back fan favorite Laurie Strode played by Jamie Lee Curtis who now suffers from PTSD due to the Halloween night of 40 years ago. She overprepares and even trained her daughter for these events which ended in her being taken away at a young age. Now Laurie has a granddaughter, Allyson played by Andi Matichak who kinda takes over as the main character more than she should. The story of Laurie being a closed off doomsday prepper is extremely interesting and seeing the relationship she has with her daughter was one of the highlights of the film!  

Allyson was one of my major problems with the film. She seems to kinda just be thrown in to add more and for the franchise to continue through her. The stuff with high school is your run of the mill high schooler horror cliches. She has a bad relationship with her mother, is slightly rebellious, has a good-for-nothing boyfriend, and that one friend who doesn’t know he’s in the friend-zone. As far as her writing goes it’s not necessarily bad, it just needed more to it for me to be genuinely interested. I would have much rather had her as a side character and focus more on Laurie.

The director of the film is known for his comedies and dramas and this is his first time helming a horror movie, so he doesn’t necessarily go straight-faced horror all the way through as maybe John Carpenter or James Wan would. There are moments of levity sprinkled into the film. There’s a scene with one of Allyson’s friends babysitting this kid and shes on the phone talking about not so legal activity for a minor and the kid she’s babysitting catches on. This kid is unbelievably hilarious. Julian, played by Jibrail Nantambu, has some of the funniest delivery and timing I’ve seen in a child actor. But when it comes time for Michael Myers to start slicing up people the humor should draw back. I think the director liked the kid a lot so he put him in more scenes then he should, so when it’s supposed to be scary we have Julian cracking a joke.

These moments of levity come sometimes out of nowhere. There’s a scene right after a rather important one that includes two cops, talking about their lunch. This scene is funny but I feel it could easily be replaced by a serious scene talking about something regarding the issue at hand.

The slasher aspect of the film is of course superb. Michael Myers, of course, comes back to slash and stab away at unsuspecting victims. His looming and silent presence haunts the viewing while occupying very little of the screen or hiding. This films skills are a lot more relentless this time around, and they definitely own up to the R-rating.

Halloween is a faithful and amazing continuation of the franchise that takes the best elements of the bad films and puts them in a good film. The throwbacks to the original are not shoved down your throat and are fun enough for new viewers. The story is relatively simple but interesting enough for you to be invested. The characters are mostly well written and are acted well. My one major complaint is we didn’t get as much Laurie Strode as I would have liked but the movie was still fun. I’ll give Halloween a B. Halloween is rated R for nudity, use of drugs and alcohol, and violence.