Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Halloween

This is pure Rob Zombie. I loved The Devil's Rejects, and was...well...fond of House of 1000 Corpses. It's tough to take an essentially dead franchise, in an essentially dead genre, and make a vital movie. Zombie manages to do this by taking the Halloween empire back to its roots in a foul mouthed, ultra violent remake. I'm just thankful that he didn't make yet another sequel following the likes of such "gems" as Halloween Resurrection, or Halloween H2O, or even Halloween 3 (the one that didn't have Michael Myers). It's still a slasher movie, and not quite as good as the original, but it's nice to see someone have the balls to make an actually horrific horror movie.

For those of you not familiar story, Michael Myers is one of your standard sociopathic serial killers. It started when he was a small boy and killed his sister (and a few others in this version). He is imprisoned for 15 years until he escapes, and goes after his other sister, Laurie. This was Jamie Lee Curtis's breakout role in the 1978 version; this time Laurie is played by Scout Taylor-Compton. In Michael's attempts to get to her, he of course, goes on a murderous rampage through the sleepy hamlet Haddonfield. Meanwhile, Dr. Samuel Loomis (played with a comical seriousness by Malcolm McDowell) was his psychiatrist, and is trying to track him down before he gets to Laurie.

This time, the movie focuses much more on Myers' childhood, actually developing his character much more than in the original. It goes into his abusive parents and older sister, and him being an outcast at school. All this desensitizes him, and leads to some violent tendencies, even before it all breaks down and he kills his sister, her boyfriend, and his father. These early scenes are the most disturbing of the movie, with his negligent parents, and a foul mouthed young Michael (played terrifyingly by Daeg Faerch).

It's not even until the half-way point where the obligatory "15 years later" slate appears. Once it gets over that hump though, it starts to go down a little bit. Here it boils down into your typical slasher flick. It's clear he's going after Laurie, but there's no explanation as to why he goes after the other random people. I know there's not supposed to be an explanation as to why a psychopathic killer goes after his victims, but I thought that with such in depth development in the first half, they'd continue along those lines. Oh well, Zombie can't take the high road on everything. It still is a slasher movie after all.

I kind of wish they'd gone with their original plan, and made this a prequel instead of a remake. Focus entirely on his childhood, and leave all the later stuff out. We've seen the slasher thing done to death, and the first half about his youth was so much more compelling (and actually scarier). Faerg and Sheri Moon (who played his mother, and happens to be Rob Zombie's wife starring in all of his movies) were the two best performances in the movie. They had internal conflict, and character arc. I know this may be a bit much for a slasher movie, but they were pulling it off so well.

The first half of the movie is just magnificent. It's difficult to watch, but you're compelled to. The second act, though not nearly as strong, is certainly no worse than any other horror movie you'll be seeing.

3/5

2 comments:

Camiseta Personalizada said...
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Anonymous said...

I found out that the version of the movie on the internet is the working cut (or something like that) and doesn't reflect the final copy in theaters. Apparently Rob Zombie cut out a bunch of stuff between the working cut and the final cut. The one guy I know who's a huge fan of the movie said everything that got cut was all stuff that people would have wanted to see.