Review – Halloween: H20 (1998)

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crycjdhrvpqyzeqyrytizkipnzkAs promised, I’m back to Halloween land, venturing back into the classic franchise with Halloween: H20. This was my wife’s favorite of the series, and I was curious to find out why this, of all movies, would be the best. It’s not common for a seventh film to be “the one” to go to – and based on the average critic score of 51% on Rotten Tomatoes, my curiosity strengthened. Because even with a poor score, it still admits this is the best of the sequels. So I’m here to figure out what the deal is. Let’s get into it.

On Halloween in 1963, Michael Myers murdered his sister, Judith. In 1978, he broke out to kill his other sister, Laurie Strode. He killed all of her friends, but she escaped. A few years later, she faked her death so he couldn’t find her. But now, in 1998, Michael has returned and found all the papers he needs to find her. He tracks her down to a private school where she has gone under a new name with her son, John. And now, Laurie must do what she should have done a long time ago and finally decided to hunt down the evil one last time.Written by Will (IMDb)

Okay, so this movie is interesting. For one, this movie acts like a third movie, not seventh. It completely ignores the events of films 3-6, ignores the notion that she had a child (Jamie) before, and only recalls events from the first two films. Right off the bat, that was a good idea. Throwing out all of the supernatural explanations the 3rd-6th film fumbled around with was a terrible idea and just made things worse. This film kept Michael grounded, returned the creep factor that the first film had, and changed the overall tone of the movie.

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I keep watching horror franchises, and the most common denominator in each film is that they change things up in each film. Freshening up the franchise is just what horror films need to do in order to stay afloat and keep audiences returning. The Halloween franchise never really did that all that much, all they did was create plot holes to fill past plot holes in order to make another movie. There was zero creativity and really just more of the same in order to make everyone’s favorite movie villain return. Halloween: H2O brought back Jamie Lee Curtis – which also meant creating Michael’s equal. Now, she’s fighting for herself. Now, she’s given up the title of victim. Now, she’s fighting back. Joss Whedon would have done great had he directed this one. Curtis as a tough heroine is a beautiful image.

This movie gave purpose to the franchise, breathing just enough life into it in order to end it for good (if they had actually ended it, that is). You can keep breathing life into a dead franchise,  but there’s a point when your breath is stale and what you create is an abomination – that’s ultimately what Halloween: Resurrection is, which is also my next review. As it is, Halloween: H2O really is the best sequel, and in my opinion, the best Michael Myers film of the original franchise, tying with Halloween III, which isn’t Michael Myers – so take that as you will. Check this one out!

RATING: 7.2/10

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