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Halloween (2007)

Rob Zombie's Halloween

Evil Has A Destiny

Starring:

Bill Moseley

Daeg Faerch

Danielle Harris

Danny Trejo

Hanna Hall

Kristina Klebe

Leslie Easterbrook

Malcolm McDowellMalcolm McDowell

Scout Taylor-Compton

Sheri Moon Zombie

Skyler Gisondo

Steve Boyles

Tom Towles

Tyler Mane

William Forsythe

Directed by:

Rob Zombie

Rating: 2/10

Running Time: 109 minutes

US Certificate: R UK Certificate: 18

On DVD

Country: United States

As anyone who’s seen my skull display full of Showtime’s “Masters of Horror” series knows, I’m a horror fan. I’m also somewhat fond of Rob Zombie—I count House of 1,000 Corpses as one of my favorites, and though I didn’t take to The Devil’s Rejects in the same way, I appreciated what he was trying to do. I was both worried and a little excited at the prospect of Zombie meets the John Carpenter classic Halloween. Then I saw the first twenty or so minutes and my hopes were dashed. So I waited, and I watched it again—I realize now that I only made it as far as I did the first time due to the company I was with, and that now, watching it with no fun distractions, it’s even worse than I thought.

Our favorite silent killer, Michael Myers, started off as a kid (Daeg Faerch) with an abusive family and some problems with school bullies. This pre-adolescent angst leads to the brutal slaughter of his stepfather, sister, and her unlucky boyfriend on, of course, Halloween, with his mother and baby sister Laurie the only family members left alive. As one would expect, Michael’s mother (Sheri Moon Zombie) commits suicide, and for years, his only real and consistent connection to the outside world is his psychologist, Dr. Loomis (Malcolm McDowell), at the Smith’s Grove Sanitarium. One particularly violent Halloween fifteen years later, he escapes from the sanitarium, only to return to his hometown of Haddonfield in search of Laurie and to get his kill on.

Zombie’s “re-imagining” tries to reinvent the Michael Myers character, giving him the prerequisite abused past. Somehow, his murders are now justified because, “Hey, that kid was a bully,” or, “Hey, his stepfather was mean.” Zombie’s Michael even talks a little. Now, I’m all for creative liberty, and I admire, sort of, that Zombie took on this project out of homage and love for a classic. That being said—why was this white-trash, blood porn version necessary? As a writer and director, Zombie has proven capable of crafting his own brand of classic, but by re-inventing the entire character of Michael Myers, he has sapped him of what made him so terrifying to begin with. We weren’t scared because an abused little boy snapped and started killing people, we were scared because there WAS no reason. Myers worked because he was relentless, silent, and killed with no motivation other than destruction. I thought maybe Dr. Loomis (Malcolm McDowell) would class things up a bit, but no, the movie simply dragged on. It really just made me miss Donald Pleasence and what he brought to the role in the original. Some things are done well—the visual effects and gore are terrific, and Zombie’s trademark grainy, gritty film technique adds what could have been a frightening and disconcerting touch. Unfortunately, there’s too much shock for shock’s sake, and I much prefer my Michael Myers when he’s not saddled with issues.

It's Got: Good effects, nice grit, unnecessary back story

It Needs: For Rob Zombie to go back in time and “re-imagine” his “re-imagining,” Michael to shut up

DVD Extras Audio Commentary (Rob Zombie, writer/director; Deleted Scenes; Alternate Ending; Bloopers; “The Many Masks of Michael Myers” (explores the mask); “Re-Imagining Halloween” (covers all aspects of production); “Meet the Cast”; Casting Sessions; Scout Taylor-Compton Screen Test; Trailers

Alternatives:

Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon, Halloween, Halloween II

Summary

Zombie has shown he knows how to do his own horror right, but he should have left the classic alone; the movie ultimately fails due to the fact that it tries to justify Michael Myers by making him nothing more than a sad little boy who grew up bad.

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One Comment

  1. Cody R.
    Posted September 13, 2010 at 1:20 am | Permalink

    Rob Zombie is a great director (House of 1000 corpses,The Devils Rejects)But those were films that were completely from his own ideas and I just think that John Carpenter created the original Halloween from HIS OWN IDEAS!!! With that being said Zombie was just changing some things in Micheal’s history/past that were not his material to change (Even though at times things did change for the better)But that was one thing about Micheal that kept the film so interesting is because Micheal was so mysterious and you had a little freedom to add you’re own thoughts as to what his past might have been. But this wasn’t a rant on Zombie because he is a great director but there are some films that should just be left alone.

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