Reviewing a Cult Franchise – Halloween II (2009)

So two years go by and someone decides that a sequel to the remake of Halloween would be a good idea. For that person (you know who you are), I have a message… It wasn’t. And I can’t even tell you how pissed off I am that I have to spend the last day of my holiday talking about this bag of shit. Well, I don’t HAVE to. I’m not contractually obliged to do this but I hate leaving things unfinished and this is the final stretch. So lets have a look at this rancid offering that poses as a plot.

Two years after all those irritating characters were killed and Michael’s body goes missing, Laurie is still living with the memories and the Bracketts. Michael has been living in the woods like Big-Foot and decides to go back to Haddonfield for Halloween. Shit goes sideways from there.

That’s just a basic overview but lets face it, everyone has seen all of this before.

In the last two years, the characters have gone through what I hesitate to call ‘development’. Laurie is convinced that Michael Myers is dead and yet is still having nightmares and being generally a whiny bitch about everything. Especially being an arsehole to Annie, who is only trying to help and Laurie doesn’t seem to realise that Annie was left scarred and her boyfriend was killed.

Laurie has also gained two annoying sidekicks in the form of Mya (Brea Grant) and Harley (Angela Trimbur). Harley is an ‘eccentric character’ in that she thinks it’s funny to show her tits to pensioners and Mya speaks entirely in Facebook memes. These are the kind of characters that when they die, the audience are rooting for Michael. What happened to making sympathetic characters and you’re sad when they die. Having said that, I was sad went Annie died. I’m not sure if it’s because I like Danielle Harris or because Annie was the only character who was from planet Earth. At this point, I think it’s a bit of both.

The swearing is still an issue. I know no one who talks like this. Everyone knows that the less swearing there is, the more impact it has when it does happen. This is basic stuff.

A lot has happened with Dr Loomis as well. Since the last film, he’s got rid of his goatee and is rocking a moustache. He’s also released another book and is getting harassed left, right and centre. Dr Loomis seems to have undergone a personality change. He’s become and absolute twat. He’s rude, arrogant and money-hungry. That’s not the Dr Loomis that I remember and adore. I am of course talking about the Donald Pleasence portrayal and not the Malcolm McDowell version.

Even though Dr Loomis wrote another book about Michael Myers, people are blaming him for Michael murdering all the innocent people. I don’t see how it’s Dr Loomis’ fault that Michael is a fruity nut-bar.

He’s confronted by family members of Michael’s victims who want to kill him, he’s accused by the press and humiliated on TV shows. He tried for 15 years and failed because Michael is evil. Or maybe not.

Let’s get into this because the story really needs to decide what’s what here.

With this story, you can either go one way (Michael is human and he’s psychopath) or the other (Michael is a supernatural being and is pure evil). This plot line has gone for both and yes it has. The original movie had a plot-line of ‘Michael’s evil because he just is’ but Rob Zombie tried to put in an explanation. Well Mr Zombie, I still don’t understand why Michael went mad. He wanted to give an explanation but the best he could come up with was ‘Michael’s evil because he just is’. That’s not good enough, You’ve got two choices, pick one and stick with it because otherwise you end with a complicated and convoluted continuity where anything goes because who gives a shit. That kind of indecision really pisses me off.

If there wasn’t enough bullshit mythology last time around, well there’s even more piled on top in this film. Michael can see the ghost of his Mother with a white horse that does mean something but I can’t remember what it is or what the significance is. Also he can see his younger self and… see above.

If that’s not confusing enough for you then hold on because Laurie can see all this too. Why? Is it because she’s related to Michael? If that’s the case, then why wasn’t Judith completely mad?

I know exactly what all of this is.

It’s a load of weird imagery that the viewer is supposed to make fit which is the laziest form of storytelling. The filmmakers are supposed to create the experience for the audience. I can’t stand all this ‘DIY plot development’, it’s bullshit. I get that Michael would see all of this because he’s gone around the insanity bend a few times but I don’t understand why Laurie is seeing all this. I don’t buy that it’s because they are related.

Speaking of fucked up continuity, there are a few moments among all of this nonsense that contradict themselves. Dr Loomis shows footage of an interview with young Michael Myers in which he is told that his mother has died. In this footage, Michael is talking. But in the first film, Michael was a mute right before his mother killed herself. Also when Laurie picks up a copy of Loomis’ new book, she sees a picture of herself and she’s dubbed as ‘Angel Myers’. This is how Laurie finds out about her connection to Michael. First off, shouldn’t she have been told that she was Michael’s sister before the book was released. Also, don’t the publishers need her permission to put a photo of herself in the book? I’m sure there is a form she needs to sign? There definitely is a much more tactful way in which this could have been handled. Also, what is with the name ‘Angel’? When the other kids are called Michael and Judith. You know? Normal names. Then Angel. Symbolism? Whatever.

Aside from the continuity issues,

Let’s talk about the biggest atrocity in this movie, the ending.

After all the carnage, Michael kidnaps Laurie (because that worked out so well for him the last time) and Laurie meets the ghost of her mother. There is also a rare example of the police being competent in a horror movie as they discover where Laurie is and surround the place. Dr Loomis tries to defuse the situation because for some reason he thinks that Michael will listen to him. Michael tackles Loomis through the walls of the shack and stabs him with a massive hunting knife. Michael is promptly gunned down by the police. Laurie then appears in disillusioned state, picks up the knife, approaches Loomis’ body and she is then shot by the police. The film ends with a shot of Laurie in a crisp, white room, in a hospital gown, grinning at a vision of her mother with the horse. That’s how the film ends. Um…. What?

There are two cardinal sins that are broken in the final scene, setting aside the fact that it doesn’t make any fucking sense.

The first is that we should never see Michael’s face. At some point, Michael’s mask does come off and he looks like a mountain man as well as a man mountain. The second and possibly the most crucial is that we must never hear Michael speak. Right before he stabs Loomis, Michael says ‘Die!’. Big, big no no.

Apparently, there is another ending where Laurie survives and she’s locked up in a mental institution which is probably the ending with the best continuity but I haven’t got that ending. Just having her gunned down by the police whilst doing something that is not in her nature just seems a bit shitty.

With a budget of $15 Million, ‘Halloween II’ brought in $39.3 Million and was met with mixed reviews at best.

In my opinion, this film was completely unnecessary. The last film ended with enough finality that it didn’t need a follow up. All it brings forward is a return to characters that I don’t like and just piles more and more confusion and bollocks onto a product that was filled to the brim with confusion and bollocks. Completely convoluted, awfully written, spoiled characters and utterly pointless. The only upside is that this portion of the franchise is finished.

WAIT!

Before you all go away and digest all of this bile, hardcore Halloween fans will know that another film is coming out next year. Starring Jamie Lee Curtis and John Carpenter is returning in some capacity for the 40th anniversary film. All anybody knows at this point is that it’s doing the ‘H20’ thing again where it’s taking out a good portion of the franchise and (from what I know), it’s going to be a direct sequel to the first one. I’m not sure how I feel about that but it’s got some of the original talent behind it so there is that saving grace.

So Halloween Fans… Til next year.

2 responses to “Reviewing a Cult Franchise – Halloween II (2009)

    • Oh my God, I can’t even describe how bad it was. At least Halloween (2007) had good intentions if maybe it was executed in the wrong way but this one was a disaster from start to finish.

      Like

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