Reviewed by: Alexander Malsan
Sadistic, psychopathic murderers
What are the mental and emotional effects of viewing very violent, bloody, gory movies
Living with PTSD (Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder) and how to overcome it
Effects of hatred
Mother and daughter bond broken by holding on to obsession, fear and hatred
Jamie Lee Curtis … Laurie Strode
Judy Greer … Karen—daughter of Laurie
Andi Matichak … Allyson—daughter of Karen, and granddaughter of Laurie
Will Patton … Officer Hawkins
Nick Castle … The Shape / Michael Myers
Haluk Bilginer … Dr. Ranbir Sartain—Michael’s psychiatrist
Rhian Rees … Dana Haines—a British true-crimes podcaster
Jefferson Hall … Aaron Korey—a British true-crimes podcaster
Toby Huss … Ray Nelson—Karen’s husband and Allyson’s father
Virginia Gardner … Vicky—Allyson’s best friend
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|Director||David Gordon Green—“Stronger” (2017)|
Rough House Pictures
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Brutal and gory slasher-film sequel
It’s been 40 years since the infamous, cold-hearted, serial-killer Michael Myers murdered Laurie’s (Jamie Lee Curtis) 5 friends on Halloween Night, October 31, 1978 in Haddonfield, Illinois. No, he didn’t escape and wreak havoc in those really awkward sequels over the past 40 years. For continuity purposes, let’s say the “REAL” Michael Myers (as I think those others were just phonies) has been quietly locked in a mental-health rehabilitation facility for criminals. For the past 40 years, Michael still hasn’t said a word. Not…one…word. Two hard core podcast journalists really want to know why, though, and get Michael Myers’ side of what happened. Little do they realize how little a spark is required to make a fire…
Enter our heroine, Laurie. Laurie hasn’t moved on since the events from 1978. Oh sure, she’s been through two marriages, had a daughter that was taken away from her due to her “unfitness to parent” and even a grand-daughter, Allison. Yet, still, Laurie’s PTSD (post-traumatic-stress-disorder) has led to a life of preparation in hopes that Michael someday returns. “I’ve prayed for 40 years that Michael escaped so that I can kill him myself,” she says. Careful what you wish for.
For indeed, during a prison transport, Michael DOES escape to return to his home, his killing playground of Haddonfield. It’s Halloween in Haddonfield. Lock your homes down. There’s no treat tonight…
Okay, it goes without saying, as stated before, this new “Halloween” has absolutely nothing to do with any of the sequels that came after the original 1978 Halloween. Nothing. For those who are a fan of the original, or who even were slightly intrigued by the first film (such as myself) that’s a good thing, as I feel that even remotely tapping into the sequels would have ruined the essence of the 2018 “Halloween.”
What made the original “Halloween” film iconic, as had the original “Friday the 13th” (as I read in articles and had spoken to those who remember when it came out after having viewed both films recently), is that these films would lead the way for the horror films that would come to follow. Eventually, though, because these slasher films were so revered by some, the desire to be EXACTLY like them led to copycats in one way or another, whether it was the “Halloween” sequels or other films that followed.
I state all this as a point of reference to that fact that the 2018 “Halloween” is the truest and best sequel to the ORIGINAL and is the only film that has the right to be considered a real sequel. There are even some interesting homages to the original that put an occasional smile on my face (you have to pay attention though, as they are quick). If it weren’t for the obvious in your face extremely graphic violence, I would say this is a tribute to the “Halloween” franchise. The pacing never slows, the character development and performances are strong in every aspect (apart from Judy Greer’s performance. Her character is just childish and dismissive, which got to be annoying).
That’s not to say, “Halloween” isn’t without its caution, and trust me, there is a LARGE amount of it to come…
* Warning: Please be aware that the content below details some graphic violence. Spare yourself by consulting this list only if you are actually making a decision about viewing this film. *
Violence: Extreme and brutal. Horridly, viewers witness a young child being strangled to death from behind by Michael (I mean, really, do children have to die on screen?). We witness a male corpse whose neck is seen twisted. We also witness a male corpse with his jaw ripped open and blood pouring out. Someone’s hand is partly blasted off by a close-range shotgun. A character is graphically thrown against walls and beaten to death by Michael. Michael strangles the life out of a female character. Michael bludgeons someone to death. Michael stabs someone in the neck to death. A character is stabbed and hung against a wall. Another teenage character is stabbed in the back and skewered through a metal gate (we see his body impaled). Another character is stabbed, and another’s face is smashed against the wall. Michael stomps on a person’s face to the point where it is completely squished (we see the results, innards and all). A police officer is stabbed to death in the neck. A character is pushed off a balcony, and another is incinerated in a fire.
Profanity/Vulgarity: Very Heavy. Profanities include “J*sus Chr*st” (1), “J*sus” (1), “G*d-d*mn” (1), “D*mn-it” (1), and “H*ll” (2). Vulgarities include “motherf****r” (1), other f-words (25+), and an obscene gesture is given, “sh*t” (8), “b*tch,” “a**” (2), “dumb-a**” (1), “b***rd” (1), and S.O.B. (1). The words “p*nis,” “horny” and “sexy” are used, as well as a reference to an erection (“got me all chubbed out”).
Sex/Nudity: There is a flashback to a scene the 1978 “Halloween” film in which Judith is being murdered by the young Michael Myers. Judith’s breasts are fully exposed twice in this scene (once from the side and one as she is dead, flat on the ground). Two teenagers begin to have sex, but are interrupted. Couples kiss. One female is shown in a “sexy nurse” costume. A female is seen on the toilet (nothing graphic is shown).
Other: Teenagers talk about how they have gotten drunk at a party. There is talk of smoking pot. Michael Myers drops someone’s teeth over a bathroom stall before attacking the victim.
Laurie is obsessed with her past and seems unable to move forward. She does not seek to find strength through Christ to get through the pain of the past. The bond between Laurie and her daughter is broken. Although Laurie lost her due to her obsession over Michael’s return, Laurie’s daughter could have tried harder to forgive her mother and help repair their relationship.
Yet the theme I really want to focus on is fearing evil and the Evil One. Michael Myers, wholeheartedly, represents pure-unadulterated evil in the film—and what ultimately happens when the Evil One takes hold of one’s life. Yet, we as Christians never need to fear evil or the Evil One, so long as our strength and our trust relies solely on the Lord Jesus. The Bible says:
We know that we are children of God, and that the whole world is under the control of the evil one. —1 John 5:19
But the Lord is faithful, and he will strengthen you and protect you from the evil one. —2 Thessalonians 3:3
So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. —Isaiah 41:10
Although this film has some slick cinematic qualities (writing and performances), this does NOT mean it is worthy of viewing. I saw teenagers in the theater tonight, which I thought was very inappropriate. There is far too much extremely graphic violence—much more than there ever was in the original—enough to make me a little nauseous this evening. This, plus the graphic nudity and frequent bad language, most assuredly make this film unacceptable for viewing by any audience, Christian or otherwise. Save your money.
“Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.” —Philippians 4:8
See list of Relevant Issues—questions-and-answers.