Halloween: H20 (Twenty Years Later)

Twenty years after he first terrorized the town of Haddonfield and his sister Laurie Strode, Michael is back to strike again. This is the first Halloween film to NOT include Donald Pleseance (Dr. Loomis), who died shortly after the release of Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (Halloween 6). There is definitely a different feel to the film without Dr. Loomis in the flick. There is no one to stop Michael now!

Forget Halloween 3-6 existed, the story line does not matter, nor do any of the characters in films. Halloween H20 is meant to be a sequel to Halloween II, which was originally titled Halloween 7: The Revenge of Laurie Strode.

Debra Hill and John Carpenter are back for the first time since Halloween II to write the film. You can really tell the difference in story and plot, when truly brilliant horror writers get ahold of a film. H20 gives a sleek, sexy new look at the Halloween movies. It is not surprising that the look and feel of the movie is different because Kevin Williamson signed onto produce the movie. H20 was released in 1998, two years after Scream came out and a brand new generation of teenagers and audiences were recharged for the slasher film. H20 really has a Kevin Williamson stamp on it. When you watch the film, there is a genuine Scream feel to the movie. Not that that is a bad thing, Scream is one of my favourite films. Steve Miner, director of Friday The 13th – Part II and Part III comes in to ad his touch as a director. I think the foursome of horror veterans working on H20 really brings something special to the movie.

There is no more bullshit. No more druid, telepathic, or Michael making babies with his niece crap. H20 has none of this weird sub-plot with a lot of confusion. It is just good vs. evil, the final showdown between Laurie and Michael.

Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) returns for the first time since Halloween II. We were under the assumption since the beginning of Halloween 4 that Laurie has died and her daughter, Jamie Lloyd, is an orphan living in a foster family. Well – forget all of that, Laurie faked her own death and has been living under the fake name of Keri Tate. It sure makes a lot of sense that Laurie would just ignore her own daughter while she is being terrorized by her brother, Michael. Talk about defying motherly instincts. But hey, it is a Halloween movie and it does not need to make a lot of sense. There are a lot of holes in the story. So for all intensive purposes, just forget that there were any movies after Halloween II.

It is now twenty years later and Laurie, has reappeared in Northern California working as the head mistress at a secluded private boarding school. She has changed her name, and appears to be living a normal life; she has a boyfriend and a seventeen year old son, Jon (Josh Hartnett). However, things are far from normal. The tragic events from twenty years before plague her mind and she lives in constant fear that Michael will come back to get her again.

It is Halloween 1998, Laurie’s son Jon and his friends are supposed to be camping out with the school, but have played hookie and decided to camp out in the school. Of course this is a making for a great killing sequence for Michael. H20 does not have as many killings as prior Halloween movies, but the intense edge of your seat scenes is much more intense. Sarah Wainthrope (Jodi Lyn O’Keefe), a friend of Jon’s, has a death sequence that is more of a thriller type of scene, but it still rocks. While trying to escape Michael, Sarah travels up an elevator shaft. Michael cuts the line and ends up trapping Sarah half out of the elevator, having her leg smashed to bits. She ends up getting diced to bits with a classic kitchen knife.

When Jon and his girlfriend, Molly (Michelle Williams) realize that Michael has unleashed havoc on their campout they flea the school. The scene where they are trapped between the outside gate and the inside of the compound is chilling. The two are stuck and Michael has their dropped keys. Just in time, Laurie manages to open the door from the inside and the two are safe. The three are able to escape the school grounds, but Laurie decides to go back to face Michael one last time in a fight to the death. Laurie ends up pushing him off of a balcony, much like the first movie. When the paramedics come to take Michael away Laurie takes the coroners vehicle away at gunpoint, determined to make sure he is dead. No doubt – in the spirit of Halloween movies, Michael is not dead.

Laurie decapitates Michael and the movie finally ends. I really enjoyed the ending and the final showdown between Michael and Laurie. The plot was not overwhelming and there were some comedic elements, such as LL Cool J., who is the security guard to the boarding school. I really truly thought that H20 was the perfect ending to the Michael Myers saga. But of course – they had to come back with Halloween Resurrection. In Resurrection we find out that Laurie did not decapitate Michael, but another man he dressed up in his outfit and mask.

Michael’s mask looks completely different than the other movies. I think it looks a hell of a lot better than it did in Halloween 4 and 5, but now he just looks different. Maybe to the untrained eye there is not a lot of differences, but to an avid Halloween fan I can tell! I loved the fact that Jamie Lee Curtis signed on to do this movie, which alone makes it worth while to watch. My thoughts – H20 is that it was the appropriate ending to the Halloween movies and I was disappointed that it was not.

Cheers

Crestfallen

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~ by exploitnation on May 24, 2008.

5 Responses to “Halloween: H20 (Twenty Years Later)”

  1. When it was announced that Jamie Lee Curtis was to return to the franchise, I was exstatic! And the movie really delivers. I remember feeling relieved when I wasn´t let down by it.
    Steve Miner is a reliable director that always seems to deliver movies that are fun. I really enjoyed his “Lake Placid” but I´m not sure what kind of drugs he were on when he directed the remake of “Day of the dead”, recently.
    This one was made at the height of the ironic, self-referring, wink-wink, teenagers-in-peril-boom that took place after Williamson and the “Scream” movies but this one doesn´t fall into that trap, which I´m really grateful for. This is definitely one of, if not THE best of the sequels. It was sad that they had to go and ruin it all with “Resurrection”. In this one we got Jamie Lee but to top it all off, let´s make a new one starring… Tyra Banks! It´s a strange world we live in…

  2. It is a strange world we live in – definately that tries to bring reality television into a Halloween movie..WTF!

  3. ….I actually thought resurrection was awesome.

    -charlie

  4. this movie actually came out RIGHT at the beginning of my first ever depression. i was like, terrified of death and growing up and seeing things i love ending. and i remember leaving the movie thinking “oh my god…they just fucking cut the head off of my favorite horror villain. like….it’s literally impossible for him to come back now.” and it totally made me 100x more depressed. That and the fact that the movie closed with Creed.

    In your face, pop culture!

  5. I think my depression got worse when I realized that I just sat thru´ “Halloween: Resurrection”. But I know the feeling, I really do. I´m in a constant state of depression because of the fact that all my horror heroes are really getting old these days. I mean, will we EVER see a new movie from John Carpenter, for example? Or Joe Dante? John Landis? It´s a cruel world.
    Oh, and the fact that the movie closed with Creed couldn´t have made it easy for you, friend. I was working in a record store at the height of their popularity and one of my co-workers were carzy about them and as soon as I turned my back to the stereo he popped in a Creed record. I had to resort to threats and humiliation and as a result Social Distortion´s “White light, white heat, white trash” didn´t leave the stereo for a month… That made my life much easier.

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