Welcome to scary season! Okay in actuality it is film festival season and with the Toronto International Film Festival in full swing, over 300+ will be showcased over the course of the week. One in particular is arguably more anticipated than the rest: David Gordon Green’s Halloween, the “true sequel” to John Carpenter’s classic slasher. The film welcomes back actress Jamie Lee Curtis to the role of Laurie Strode as it completely ignores all of the Halloween installments that followed. So, what did critics think of the newest entry into the legendary franchise? In short, it is being called the best Halloween film since the original!
The film has an incredible 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes based on early reviews with critics praising the performances, music and, of course, the kills. Check out Talkies Network’s official review round-up below! And make sure to stay tuned of our review of the film, coming soon.
Halloween is a shining example of what any other budding slasher reboot or sequel should strive to be, a film that doesn’t just lean on what made the character popular to begin with or explain that character away with backstory to the point that you obliterate the scare factor entirely. This Halloween movie is a near perfect blend of craft, character growth and nostalgia.
I don’t know if this will be the last Halloween film, but I sincerely hope that it is. After several shaky (and sometimes terrible) sequels, the 2018 Halloween gives Michael Myers and Laurie Strode the respect, and closure, they deserve. It makes them seem real again, and concludes their 40-year journey in a satisfying, thrilling way.
/Film rating: 8 out of 10
There’s no getting around some of the messy staging and clunky dialogue that keeps “Halloween” from reaching greater heights for the bulk of its running time. But Carpenter’s own “Halloween” was itself a bumpy ride, made on the cheap, but carried along by the director’s firm grasp on his potent themes. The new one works overtime to keep them intact, while communing with the first installment in every possible way — from that famously creepy synth score to the blocky orange credits that bookend the story. The unchanged title may suggest the markings of a remake in disguise, but it actually makes sense in context. The 2018 “Halloween” is a kind of cracked mirror variation on its precedent, caked in dust, but reflecting the same deep-seated fears. Yet in an intriguing twist, Green has revisited this familiar turf less to exhume an old nightmare than to chart a path toward waking up from it.
By contemporary horror standards, the original Halloween was actually quite tame, featuring just five (human) deaths, whereas this one more than triples the body count — and it does so with style, borrowing several of Carpenter’s classic devices (including a direct lift from the original’s famous first-person p.o.v. tracking shot for use as a flashback) before getting into the more prosthetic-heavy mayhem that follows.
Continuing one of the strangest careers ever to start in the arthouse, George Washington director David Gordon Green gets to live a fanboy’s dream with Halloween, clearing the franchise of decades of crud and starting over with a sequel that pretends no movies ever happened after John Carpenter’s geek-beloved, genre-launching original. (Why isn’t it Halloween 2, then? Who knows.) The kind of gig hitherto reserved for JJ Abrams and few others, it’s one Green fairly leaps into, delivering both fan service and honest-to-god moviemaking of the sort rarely seen in horror spin-offs.
Green and company update the material in some interesting ways (Michael’s case is the subject of a Serial-like podcast!) and let Curtis – who, nearing 60, remains a formidable screen presence – bring some genuine tension to her scenes with Greer. It takes a little too long to get going, but the only thing that really matters is whether this new Halloween can deliver a satisfying climax, and it absolutely does. Maybe a decent follow-up is the one thing that can put the boogeyman to rest.