Movie Review: Halloween (2018)

Since I saw this on Saturday, I figure, I should review it while it is still fresh (but not too fresh). This is my favorite new horror that I’ve seen in a while: the new Halloween (2018), set in the original universe as a direct sequel to the first movie (well, maybe and allowing for 2). They don’t attempt to handwave away the other movies: they’re just totally ignored.

That said. Wow. I liked it. It wasn’t perfect — there’s only one perfect movie, after all — but it delivered. It was also a good take on re-visiting the series forty years later and re-visiting the characters. I could throw out a lot of suggestions for this (a sequel to Friday the 13th II? A new Michael Keaton Batman?)… but back to the movie.

There’s a bit of gore, and Michael Myers seems a little more pissed than usual. He’s also extraordinarily strong for a guy who has spent forty years locked away in his silent misery. There’s no attempt to understand Michael, he just is. He’s a force of nature with a goal.

My biggest gripe with this movie was the dialogue from the teenagers. I’ve been a teenager, and I live with a teenager, and it struck an off chord — at times close, but mostly unrealistic. And none of the teenage characters were in any way likeable except the secondary character herself. This isn’t an unusual turn of events — most of these movies make me root for the slasher because the teenage characters are insufferable. Maybe that’s why I like this genre so much.

It was also nice to finally see a set of characters who weren’t total idiots, bumbling through the attack from the slasher: Laurie Strode went through this once, and she is determined not to be a victim again. She’s spent her life in fear of the day Michael Myers gets loose — and because the movie is called Halloween, that’s exactly what happens. But the main characters are never carrying the idiot stick: Michael causes them trouble purely from his own abilities to cause trouble.

He’s not just an idiot with a knife, after all. He’s super damn strong, he’s fast, he’s quiet, and he’s had years to think about what he did wrong the first time around. Well, I’m assuming the last part. Michael Myers isn’t a serial killer sending letters to the police bragging, so we don’t get into that. But he’s seemingly ready, even if the world around him has changed. None of those changes really seem to matter to Michael.

Some characters do carry the idiot stick, mostly the side characters. Michael Myers hates them as much as I hate them, so they suffer for it. But the main characters are mostly free of that, and that makes for a quite interesting movie. I hope they’ll do more like this, more where the characters aren’t self-sabotaging morons. It makes the villain better when he has to work for it.

It isn’t the original but it is one of the better sequels. Or reboots. Or whatever it is.

Running Time: An hour and forty-five minutes.
Acting: Pretty damn good.
Effects: Other than the blood and gore there weren’t a whole lot, but what was there was excellent.
Violence: And then some.
Gun Use: Somewhat realistic for a Hollywood movie.
Gore: Yes. More so than I can recall from the general series.
Creepy? Not really.
Monster Type? Human.
Funny? There are a few lighthearted moments.
Nudity: It’s actually a recycled scene from the original, so: (Yes. Brief female toplessness.)
Pacing: I enjoyed the pacing of the movie.