Michael Meyers was cooked medium-well at the end of the last installment of the Halloween series, yet he’s still thriving well into old age. The masked marauder returns to terrorize Haddonfield, Ill, in a bloody, frenetic, funhouse mirror of a film that will satisfy your lust for terror and gory gags.
Longtime protagonist Laurie Strode is in the ER with a very gnarly stab wound as the mayhem begins. Her relief at having burned Meyers to a crisp at the end of the previous film is short-lived as reports come in that he’s stomping through town gouging eyes out and stabbing fools to death.
Beloved characters from the very first film return in dramatic fashion, with Anthony Micheal Hall, Kyle Richards and Marion Chambers reprising their iconic roles 43 years after they first appeared. What starts as a night of storytelling and drinks for the returning trio turns deadly when Meyers shows up in the parking lot with his typical demure, understated approach to making new friends.
The terror in this film is two-fold. Our A story is of course the murderous rampage through Haddonfield, but there’s also a freakish mob scene unfolding at the hospital where Laurie is bruised and bleeding. There’s an allegory here about groupthink and the contagious nature of fear, and it’s delineated with impeccable and incredibly inventive direction by David Gordon Green, whose only other horror title is the previous Halloween movie.
The cinematography is breathtaking, and the kills are…beautiful? They’re both ultra-realistic and campy, sight gags made for maximum on-screen impact.
Curtis is tremendous as ever in a sort of Long Days Journey into Night role, confronting demons and trying to hold her family together. You can’t take your eyes off her deeply human portrayal of a woman who’s been terrorized for decades by an obsessive, deranged man.
I left the theater desperate to see the next chapter unfold. This is gonna be the longest year of my life.
Watch my interviews with the cast above!