Harry Situation Reviews: Halloween Ends
"I prayed he would burn in hell, but in my heart, I knew hell would not want him."
-Dr. Samuel Loomis, Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers
Halloween Ends is the conclusion to David Gordon Green's and Danny McBride's "H40" trilogy and features the return of Laurie Strode (reprised by Jamie Lee Curtis) and Michael Myers (reprised by James Jude Courtney and Nick Castle). The story takes place four years after the night Michael Myers, the Shape, returned to Haddenfield and continued his killing spree. Laurie Strode and her granddaughter try the best they can to move forward despite losing friends and loved ones. But Michael is restless. After years of hiding, he dons his mask and arms his kitchen knife once more to feed is relentless bloodlust. Now Laurie seeks to confront him and put an end to this nightmare once and for all. Evil dies tonight.
I have absolutely been loving these new Halloween movies. They're the best that the franchise has to offer since the original, and they've helped spark a resurgence in slasher movies and sequels (for better or worse). And both David Gordon Green and Danny McBride have done a great job with both entries as these movies serve as a love letter to the Halloween franchise. They've also proven themselves to work great in the horror genre, so much so that I hope to see more horror projects from them. I heard that director David Gordon Green has plans for a new trilogy for the Exorcist franchise. If they're as entertaining as his Halloween trilogy, I'll definitely check them out.
So, does this final chapter in Laurie's and Michael's saga the epic conclusion the fans have been waiting for? Let's talk about it.
The first positive has to go to Jamie Lee Curtis as Laurie Strode. She is outstanding. I don't think the character of Laurie Strode could have been played by anyone other than her, and she has delivered a masterful performance throughout this trilogy. Her character arc has been great. In the beginning she's been paranoid and obsessed that Michael Myers would one day return to kill her once more. Now she's embracing life and telling her story of survival as a means to cope with the trauma. It's a much more lighthearted and inspiring way to deal with survivor's guilt versus the self-destructive and nihilist take that Rob Zombie gave us in his version of Halloween II. That doesn't mean she hasn't stopped thinking about Michael Myers, as when he returns, she's definitely ready for their final confrontation. And she still blames herself, believing that she may have brought this evil into Haddenfield.
Speaking of the final fight between Laurie Strode and Michael Myers was a treat. I loved how brutal and physical it got between them. Both were determined to finish the other off. It's the fight fans have been waiting for and it was spectacular.
The kills were just as great too. It's bloody. It's gory. It's creative. It's exactly what you want in a Halloween movie.
Unfortunately, this is where all my positives end. The truth is this isn't a very good movie. The biggest issue with this movie is its story. That synapsis I gave above is kind of a lie. Unfortunately, this is going to lead into spoilers because it's hard to talk about the core issue without spoiling anything. If you don't want spoilers, please skip ahead to my final thoughts on Halloween Ends.
Alright, let's talk spoilers. There's a ton of focus on this new character Corey Cunningham (played by Rohan Campbell). The film opens with Corey babysitting until things go wrong when he accidentally kills his charge. While he wasn't sent to prison the whole town despises him, viewing him as bad as Michael Myers. He later encounters Michael Myers and assists him in some murders until he decides to become the new Michael Myers. It's an interesting idea. It's reminiscent to the ending of Halloween 4 where Jamie Lloyd, the daughter of Laurie Strode of that timeline, looks like she'll become the next Michael Myers.
The problem is that I feel the story just isn't structured very well. On one hand you have Laurie and Allyson living their lives, the next you have Allyson dating Corey, and then you have Corey growing darker as he suddenly has a need to kill. Credit where credit is due the film does make you feel sorry for Corey in the beginning, having become a pariah in Haddenfield. But then it focuses on him too much and detracts from the other characters, especially Michael. I'm not interested in his story. And I don't think his story fits in this film. I get what they were trying to go with, but I don't think it fits with a Halloween movie. At least, this Halloween movie anyway.
This leads to the other issue: the lack of Michael Myers. Michael isn't in the film for very long. I get what they were trying to pull off with Corey, but we all came to see Michael do his thing. Instead, we're just slowly watching Corey develop into a copycat killer. However, when Michael is onscreen it's a huge treat. I just wished there was more screen time for him.
Overall, Halloween Ends wasn't exactly the epic conclusion I was hoping for. While this movie wasn't a huge spectacle as its first two predecessors, I do find it interesting that it tries to be introspective. Whether it succeeds or if anyone else sees that is anyone's guess. I will say that I'd still watch this over Halloween Resurrection and Rob Zombie's Halloween II. While it is a disappointing conclusion to this trilogy, there are still a few moments that I enjoyed because it reminds me why I love this franchise.
Now the question remains: does this make it the final Halloween movie? Yeah right. I don't think so. This trilogy has proven to be incredibly successful at the box office. I seriously doubt this is the last we'll see of Michael Myers. Just because this is the last film to feature Michael and Laurie that doesn't make it the end of the franchise. And honestly, I don't want the franchise to end. If anything, this trilogy is a love letter to the franchise as a whole, and it shows why Michael Myers is such an icon in the horror genre. The character is the definitive boogeyman in our reality just as he was the boogeyman in his franchise. That's going to live on forever.
With that out of the way I want to thank director David Gordon Green and Danny McBride for sharing their story to a franchise they love. Thank you Jamie Lee Curtis for returning to your iconic role as Laurie Strode, the original scream queen. Thank you Jason Blum and Blumhouse Productions for producing these films. Thank you to all the cast and crew for giving us new scares in a beloved franchise. And thank you John Carpenter for giving us, in my opinion, the best slasher villain in all of horror.
I do hope we get to see Michael Myers in future films. Maybe a crossover film with Leatherface where to two slashers fight each other, like with Freddy vs Jason. One can only hope. As the film stated evil never dies, it just takes on a new shape.
-Jamie Lee Curtis
-Laurie Strode and Michael Myers final fight
-Lack of Michael Myers
Final Grade: C
Now that I've seen the whole Halloween franchise, I think this is my ranking for each film from best to worst. Again, this is just my personal opinion. If you disagree with my ranking fill free to comment.
Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers
Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers
Rob Zombie's Halloween
Halloween 3: Season of the Witch
Halloween 6: The Curse of Michael Myers (both original and director's cut)
Rob Zombie's Halloween II
So those are my thoughts on Halloween Ends. Have you seen it? What were your thoughts on it? What is your favorite Halloween movie? Please be kind, leave a like and comment, and check out more reviews here on Prose.
Laurie Strode: "Evil doesn't die. It just takes a new shape."