Halloween Fifteen #2: Halloween H20 (Featuring Caffeinated Joe)

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You might know Halloween: H20 as a return to form for the series, a step back towards what made the original film so powerful – Jamie Lee Curtis. Steve Miner directs this 1998 film, and it’s fairly obvious that H20 has studied up on both horror movies in general and its predecessors. Caffeinated Joe takes a look at Laurie and Michael’s return to see if Halloween: H20 is candy corn or razorblades.

Caffeinated Joe‘s Take

I was very happy to be given the opportunity to review Halloween: H20 for Ryne Barber and his Halloween Fifteen this year. I love this film, I think it is a great reunion flick for the Halloween series and does a great job in what it set out to do. The best way to watch it is as part of a trilogy, with the original film and Halloween II. It is confusing to try and fit parts 4, 5 and 6 with this one (even though I love a couple of those films), and it undoes the great ending her to include the film that follows this one, Resurrection. Take it as a trilogy and it is a good watch.

So, for my review, I am recapping the scenes and then adding whatever I found interesting or special about them afterwards, in italics. I apologize if this is lengthy, but as I said, I love the movie and, really, you wouldn’t be here yourself if you didn’t have a love for horror flicks. So I hope you enjoy! And thanks again to Ryne for this opportunity!

Halloween – H20

The movie starts off with the “Mr. Sandman” song playing, a couple of days before Halloween. Nurse Marion (from the first two films) is arriving home and finds someone has broken into her house. She runs next door for help, which ends up being in the form of her teenage neighbor, Jimmy, and his friend. Jimmy goes next door and checks out the house, finding no one inside, but the office room has been turned upside down. He tells Marion the house is empty and leaves, she goes inside and explores the mess with a flashlight. We see evidence that the office was used by Dr. Sam Loomis. Marion then hears a noise and finds her front door open. She shuts it and then sees the back door swing open and a shadow pass by. She runs out and back to Jimmy’s house, but finds both teenagers dead. Michael Myers enters and proceeds to follow her through the house as the cops finally arrive next door. Marion attacks Michael and they struggle, but before she is able to alert the police, Michael kills her. He then slowly drives away from the house, unnoticed by the police. Later, the detectives explore the crime scene and ponder the idea that Michael Myers could have been the perpetrator. As the opening credits roll, the camera pans around the office, across files, articles and photos all concerning Michael Myers, Laurie Strode and the Halloween murders. Dr. Loomis’ voice is heard, repeating the speech he gave to Sheriff Brackett 20 years ago.

Wow, I love this opening! We are given a great call back to the original film and characters with Nurse Marion and Dr. Loomis’ office and all his obsessive paperwork on Michael and Laurie. The scenes are spooky, eerie, with Michael in the background or as a shadow until he attacks and Marion, knowing full well his capability, does all she can to survive. The voice over by Dr. Loomis is also great, but I still wonder why they didn’t just use Donald Pleasance’s original speech instead of rerecording it with a new actor. Would have been a good way to put Pleasance into this sequel, but that isn’t a major quibble. We do get to see a picture of Pleasance as Loomis, so there is that. Anyway, great opening!

We are then given a strange tour of Hillcrest, a posh boarding school, and the office of Head Mistress Keri Tate. As the clock changes the date to Halloween, the tour turns nightmarish, with memories of Halloween 1978. A teenage boy wakes his screaming mother from this nightmare. She is Laurie Strode, living in Summer Glen, California as Keri Tate, having faked her death in a car accident. The boy is her 17-year-old son, John. They have a disagreement about his wanting to go on a camping trip that his mom refuses to give him permission to attend. He knows the day – Halloween – is tough for her, but he wants to put that in the past. She pretends the day means nothing, but he knows better.

Interesting seeing Laurie 20 years later and realizing she hasn’t ever really escaped her brother, that he haunts her every day. In fact, the trauma has even affected her son, who wasn’t even born when the murderous attacks happened.

Later, John and his friends head off to class, as Laurie/Keri sees an image of her masked brother in the window. The face fades and she heads off. John, his girlfriend Molly, and their friends Charlie and Sarah all make plans to spend Halloween together since a few of them can’t go on the trip.

We can tell bad things are heading our way. Laurie and her relatives shouldn’t ever make Halloween plans! The teens her, by the way, are all quirky and fun. Good casting!

On a highway in Northern California, a woman and her daughter stop at a rest area to use the bathroom. Michael Myers, having been stranded when his car broke down, steals her keys and her car and continues on his journey.

Another awesomely creepy scene! Michael looking at the woman via reflection in the mirror is eerie and the way he just leaves and doesn’t harm them reminds me of when he stole the knife from the old lady’s home in part II, yet never actually harmed the woman.

Back at the school, Laurie/Keri is addressing the students about the camping trip to Yosemite. John and his friends firm up their plans to spend the night partying together. Keri and Will, the guidance counselor, meet up at her office and, after avoiding her secretary, Norma, have a little make-out session of their own. They make plans for lunch, but Will knows something is off with Keri.

Fun stuff here, with us seeing Laurie in her job as teacher and head-mistress, not a surprising line of work for the once-studious bookworm. Casting Janet Leigh as her secretary is great, not only since Leigh is Jamie Lee Curtis’ mother, but also because they continue allusions to Psycho, as was done in the original film, with Leigh’s character being name Norma and her car being the same one her character drove in Psycho. And Adam Arkin is good as Laurie’s co-worker/boyfriend. Again, good casting.

At the guard shack for the school, the security guard Ronn
y is on the phone with his wife when John and Charlie scare him and then plead for him to let them off the grounds for lunch, so they can get supplies for their dates tonight. Ronny refuses at first, but relents and lets the boys out.

Ronny and his wife are funny, and I like how he has a big brother type relationship with the boys.

In town, Keri is unnerved by the Halloween decorations and trick-or-treaters, and again she thinks she sees her brother. Turns out it is Will, and they have lunch, Keri downing a few glasses of wine to help her cope. Keri wants to come clean with Will about her past and mentions all the ways she has tried to overcome the trauma she has only alluded to with him. Will offers to listen and try to help. She says maybe, some day.

We see Laurie hasn’t confided into anyone other than her family about her past, as Will knows something but nothing specific about her past. We also get a further glimpse into how Laurie has tried to cope with everything. She has survived but she hasn’t overcome the events of 20 years ago.

John and Charlie are on the sidewalk, Charlie just having shoplifted a bottle of wine. The boys run into Keri, surprised to see them off-campus. She yells at John, wondering what he was thinking, wandering around on Halloween. They continue to argue as people stare. John tells her Michael Myers is dead and she needs to get over it, that he can’t deal with it any longer. Twenty years is enough, he would have shown up by now. In the car, Mr. Sandman plays on the radio as Laurie/Keri drives off. The car Michael stole is parked across the street. He then follows them back to the school, watching as Ronny opens the gate and lets them inside. Keri scold Ronny for not knowing the teenagers got off the school grounds. Michael drives off.

Laurie’s fear is expressed in the anger she takes out on John. She is worried that this is the year Michael will attack and we come to realize she has probably been expecting every Halloween to be the Halloween he comes back. That can wear you down, as we see it has done to her and to her son. Adding the song when she starts up the car is a good signal, since we see Michael has finally found her, at last.

At school, Molly is washing dishes to help defer her tuition costs. The dumbwaiter rings and when she opens it she finds flowers and a hand-drawn map, which she follows to the basement. Someone jumps out at her, but it is just John, showing her the decorated room him and Charlie have put together for their Halloween celebration. He tells her he has never celebrated Halloween, offhandedly mentioning the serial killer in his family. They kiss.

Molly and John are a cute couple in that 90s-horror-flick way. The flippant way he mentions his serial killer uncle shows us that he has lived with his mother’s nightmare his entire life.

Later, in a class Keri teaches, John and Molly flirt. As Keri talks about the novel Frankenstein, Molly turns and sees a white-masked face standing, watching her, at a gate in the school wall. Keri calls on Molly for her thoughts on the book, thoughts which eerily parallel Laurie’s own struggle with her brother and her past. The bell rings, class is dismissed and Molly sees the face has gone. Keri calls John to her and gives him the permission slip for the trip, having changed her mind. He doesn’t want to go now, but she insists it is good for them both. He tells Molly, but crumples the slip, preferring to stick with their plans.

Another scene that is a direct homage to the original film, but with Laurie as the teacher this team and Molly in Laurie’s role as the student who expresses insight into the book they are discussing that also parallels what is going on story-wise. AND Michael watches her as he did Laurie back then. Great scene. We also see Laurie talking Molly’s words about Frankenstein to heart, giving John her permission to go, showing that she is at least attempting to finally move forward.

The students board the buses for the trip, Laurie/Keri feeling anxious about her decision. She turns and runs into Norma, who repeats the Sheriff Brackett’s line, about it being Halloween and everyone being entitled to one good scare. Keri says she has had her share. Norma tells Keri to concentrate on today instead of the past. She wishes Keri a Happy Halloween before leaving the school, as do all the buses for the trip. Up the road, Michael sees the buses leaving and heads back towards the school.

More callbacks here, with Norma repeating Sheriff Brackett’s line climbing into her Psycho car. Also a bit creepy to me that Michael was just sitting on the side of the road, waiting to pounce on the school. Eerie.

Ronny the guard is reading his latest novel over the phone to his wife when a strange car pulls up to the gate. Ronny goes to greet the person, but the car sits, empty. He opens the gate to investigate and fails to notice Michael Myers slip right past him and onto the school grounds. Ronny turns off the car and shuts the gate, heading back into his shack. Michael walks around the shack, stalking Ronny. Suddenly, the phone lines go dead.

Again a great scene, reminiscent of the scenes with Annie in the original, walking back and forth before the window as Michael stalks.

Keri/Laurie is closing up her office for the weekend, feeling uneasy, since it is Halloween night. She walks back across the grounds to her apartment and spies what she believes is another hallucination of her brother walking towards her. She closes her eyes, wishing the vision away, but he keeps coming nearer and nearer. Suddenly, she is scared by Will, who is checking on the kids left behind. They make plans to meet at her apartment. When Keri leaves, Will spots someone disappear around the bend.

Love how Laurie is sure Michael is always a hallucination now when we know that this is really and truly him. Will saves her, inadvertently, for now at least. And again we get a creepy shot of Michael disappearing into the shadows. Love stuff like that.

In their room, Sarah and Molly are preparing for their dates when Will comes to check on them. They exchange jokes about their plans and soon the girls are meeting their boyfriends to head to their basement Halloween party.

Again, some 90s horror movie behavior, the kids and their guidance counselor exchanging quips I never would have dreamt of when I was a kid!

Keri/Laurie waits at her apartment for Will, downing some liquid courage to pass the time. Will arrives with a jack-o-lantern for them to carve.

Will and “Keri” are a cute couple. Dysfunctional, for sure, but cute. Poor Laurie can’t ever find lasting love, can she, though?

Charlie and Sarah gather the feast of foods for their party and head to the basement where John and Molly have little dozens of candles and are dancing. Charlie leaves the group to find a corkscrew in the kitchen.

Wow – that is a lot of food! Quite a party they are planning!

Keri and Will kiss a bit before she begins to reveal her past to him, telling him her real name and who her brother is. Will thinks she is kidding at first, then is shocked when he realizes she is the real Laurie Strode, sister of the infamous Michael Myers. Laurie gets the vodka to share with Will, who says Michael wouldn’t still be coming after her after all the years, would he? When Will asks how old Laurie was then, she realizes she was 17, the same age John is now. She panics and goes to check on the kids on the trip and finds the phones dead. In John’s room, she seems his camping gear and realizes John never left for Yosemite. She grabs her gun and heads out to find John. Opening the door, she pulls the gun on Ronny, who tells her about the strange car. She tells him to get the phones working while her and Will search for the kids.

Love how Laurie slowly spills her secret to Will and he is at first thinking it is some sort of prank before realizing she is actually the person at the center of
this famous murder spree. Wouldn’t we all react as he did, shocked that not only is this semi-Urban Legend true, but that his girlfriend is that survivor girl! My only complaint is that it all goes too quickly. We finally get Laurie talking about it all to someone and in no time, it is over and she is off on Michael’s trail. Would have loved more insight into what life has been like for her. Ah well.

Sarah goes looking for Charlie and he surprises her, giving her some wine glasses. He heads up the dumbwaiter to look upstairs for a corkscrew. In the upper kitchen, he drops the corkscrew into the garbage disposal. As he gingerly fishes it out, Michael approaches from behind. Charlie turns and comes face-to-face with the killer and says “Hi.”

Creepy, as we know Michael is about and Charlie is sticking his hand down the chute, but the CGI’d mask on Michael’s face when he confronts Charlie is just horrible. Not sure why they felt they had to resort to this, but it is a jarring scene for the wrong reason. Charlie’s little “Hi.” is funny, though. He just has no clue.

Sarah, impatiently waiting, sees a shadow pass by the window. She calls after Charlie and grows nervous. She opens the dumbwaiter and finds Charlie there, dead. Turning in a panic, she sees Michael coming toward her. Nowhere to turn, she climbs into the dumbwaiter with her dead boyfriend, but not before Michael stabs her leg. Climbing out upstairs, her leg is caught. Before she can pull it free, Michael cuts the dumbwaiter rope and it slams into her leg, breaking it, before smashing to the basement. John and Molly hear the crash and go to investigate. Sarah is crawling across the floor, but Michael appears and stabs her.

Sarah has a horrible death, so prolonged and gruesome. I mean, that leg? Ugh! For the film, it is great, but to be in her place, it is just tragic and shocking. Great death scene, makes up for what Charlie’s lacked.

John and Molly enter the kitchen and find the long trail of blood leading to the dumbwaiter. They think it is some sick joke until the open a door and turn on a light and find Sarah, dead, hanging from light-cord. Turning, the see Michael watching them, knife in hand. Molly asks who that is but John realizes it is his uncle and tells her they need to run.

At first, I was confused as to why Michael did this to Sarah, but then I thought about how he set up the bedroom in the first film and remembered Michael did he a thing for displaying the bodies of his victims. So it works. Also loved John’s realization that his mother had been right all the years, after all! Doh!

Outside, they stop to catch their breath and Michael jumps them, grabbing Molly. John hits Michael, freeing Molly, and continues to beat the killer. Michael pushes his nephew to the ground and then stabs the teen in his leg. Molly picks up a large rock and smashes Michael upside the head with it. Her and John again flee off across the campus, but Michael is quickly stalking them again.

More call back to the original film, with John getting the wound his mother got in the first film. Molly gets a good whack in, though. She is not going to stand idly by, that’s for sure!

At a locked gate in a small courtyard, Molly searches through her keys to open the gate as Michael approaches. She opens it and they enter, but she drops her keys. Michael reaches the duo before she can retrieve the keys, but he is unable to reach them with his knife. They bang on the windows and door for help as Michael sorts through the keys to get to them. Suddenly, just as he finds the correct key, Laurie and Will open the door and pull the teens inside. As she shuts the door behind them, Michael approaches and, for the first time in 20 years, the siblings come eye-to-eye in the small window. Both stare at each other and when Laurie goes for her gun, Michael vanishes.

Amazing scene! So tense, when the teens are trying to get into the locked gate as he approaches and then as he slashes at them through the bars. So close yet so far! And when Laurie and Michael come face-to-face, it is the moment the film has been building to. Love how they both just stop and stare, even if it is just for a moment. She has dreaded this for 20 years while he has probably thought of nothing else!

The group heads upstairs and Laurie hides the kids in a closet. Her and Will go in search of Michael, her gun leading the way. The tall doors are open, the curtains billowing. Michael could be anywhere. A shadow comes around the corner and Will panics, grabbing the gun from Laurie and firing. To their horror, they realize he has apparently shot and killed Ronny. As Will trys to explain, Michael appears from behind and stabs Will in the back, lifting the man off the ground as he dies.

Love how parts of this scene evoke Laurie trying to protect Lindsay and Tommy from the original film. And Will’s reaction is what a normal person’s reaction would be, going from Michael being an urban legend to being an actual person in a few minutes. Sad he has to pay for it with his life, though. Laurie is going to need a lot more vodka once this night is done!

Laurie heads off to get the kids, but finds the closet empty. Michael comes around the corner and, seeing the blood on the wall, breaks open the closet door. Laurie comes out from a door behind him and smashes him over the head with a fire extinguisher. Michael collapses and she runs and gets the kids out of another closet, telling them to run as Michael sits up behind her and continues his pursuit.

Again, call back to Lindsay and Tommy with Molly and John, and I like it. Also love that Michael is just as indestructible as ever, with the blow he takes to the head merely stunning him momentarily.

Outside, the groups runs down the stairs and across the grounds to Laurie’s car. She gets them inside and starts the car just as Michael reaches them. Again the siblings come face-to-face, but Laurie throws the car into drive and speeds off to the guard shack.

Tense moment, Michael again just seconds too late to achieving his ultimate goal.

Opening the gate, Laurie decides she must finally end things with her brother and orders Molly to drive herself and John to the neighbors and call the police. When the kids are gone, she shuts the gate and smashes the control panel with a rock. Outside the guard shack, she kicks in the glass door of an emergency fire axe. Walking back toward the school, axe in hand, she stops and calls out to her brother, daring him to approach.

Great call back to sending the kids to the MacKenzie’s in the original film and here it is the Becker’s (a name from the Scream film). Amazing, empowering, not-gonna-take-this-shit-anymore scene for Laurie. Enough is enough, time to end this. Love the shot of her standing with the axe, her shadow stretching across the ground.

Inside one of the buildings, she searches for him. He drops down from above and she hits him with the axe as he stabs her in the arm. She runs off, he removes the axe from his shoulder and resumes his search.

How she didn’t see Michael up there I don’t know, but that aside, it was cool how he dropped down. Again, an axe merely acts as a splinter in his arm, but the battle has begun!

Laurie hides under a table, believing she is hidden. As she proceeds across the floor, she finds Michael is standing above, waiting for her to come out. She kicks a chair to divert him and tries to escape, but he follows, turning over the tables as he follows. Laurie grabs a flag pole and stabs him, knocking him to the floor. She runs upstairs and through the kitchen, opening a drawer full of kni
ves. As Michael approaches she throws them, one after another, missing. He attempts to stab her, but she holds up the drawer and he stabs it. He then head butts her. She grabs some knives and runs out.

Good enough stuff to continue their pursuit/battle. Love her throwing the knives over and over and Michael head-butting her. Seems to me like he was hoping to kill her quickly and is a bit surprised that she is putting up such a fight. I might be reading too much into it, but that is what I do.

When Michael goes after her, she appears with a knife in each hand and attacks, stabbing at him, causing him to back up and over a balcony until he falls and collapses on a table top. Laurie goes down the stairs and into the room where Michael still lies, unconscious, a knife sticking out of his chest. She removes it, raises it and is about to stab him again when the still-alive Ronny jumps out and stops her, telling her that Michael is dead.

Love Laurie’s all-out attack on Michael, just so many years of rage coming out of her. But we know, as we see Laurie knows, Michael may be down, but he isn’t out. Not yet. Surprising to see Ronny survived, though. I was happy to see him!

Later, the police have converged on the school. Ronny is on the phone with his wife, Molly and John sit together and Laurie watches as Michael is put into a body-bag and loaded into a coroner’s van. She moves to the police car where the fire axe has been placed and picks it up. She then approaches a police officer from behind and grabs his gun before he can react. Raising the gun, she tells the police not to move and demands they load him into the van and shut the door. She jumps into the driver’s seat and speeds off as John and Molly look on in panic.

Laurie totally reacts as someone who needs a definite, no questions, no doubts final confrontation with her tormentor. No matter the risk, she needs this to be over, for everyone else, for John, but mostly, for her own peace of mind. She can’t go on wondering another 20 years if Michael will again come for her. I totally get her motivation and her need for closure.

Speeding down the road, Laurie keeps looking back, expecting her brother to be moving and coming after her. At first, she is wrong, but soon enough, the bag begins to move and the zipper is opened. She speeds, faster and faster, as the masked man moves toward her in the van. Right before he can reach her, she slams on the brakes and Michael goes flying through the windshield to the pavement.

We are one with Laurie as she drives, knowing Michael isn’t dead, just waiting to see him move and resume his pursuit. I would have been scared spitless driving with him right there behind me!

Laurie waits in the van, telling Michael to get up. Soon enough, he does, sitting, then standing. She floors the accelerator and speeds into him, pinning him against the hood. As she drive, they are once again looking into each other’s eyes.

Another great scene with the siblings inches apart yet staring, so much history between them. Determination here, with Michael looking at his sister, determined to kill her no matter what. And Laurie, looking back, determined herself that this ends, now.

She turns the wheel, causing the van to go over a cliff and down a hillside. As Michael tumbles down the hill, the van follows. Laurie is thrown out of the vehicle right before it slams into her brother, pinning him between a tree and the van.

Apparently Laurie has a little of the Myers’ indestructibility in her genes! Both siblings should be dead by all rights here, yet Michael, his spine without a doubt snapped and splintered (quite a scene!), still lifts his head and moves his arms. And Laurie gets up and walks after being thrown from a tumbling vehicle. Demented genes, for sure, but hardy!

Laurie stand up, battered and bloody, and finds the axe in the grass. She picks it up and approaches the van, flames beginning to grow beneath the damaged vehicle. Coming around the side, she sees Michael slumped over the tree. She calls to him and he responds, grabbing his head in confusion.

I always took this as Michael’s confusion and pain, after being pinned between the tree and the van, causing a slight dementia. I mean, wouldn’t that be a hard pain to cope with, for anyone? I know the sequel to this film used his actions for different means, but we aren’t going there here. To me, Michael is just in intense pain and, for once, he can’t get free and continue his pursuit. He is like a trapped animal.

Michael reaches out a hand toward his sister. At first, she stares, then slowly she reaches forward, their fingertips brushing each other. But she looks at him again and remembers. Swinging the axe with all her strength, she chops her brother’s head off and it rolls away on the grass. Sirens approaching, Laurie stands, catching her breath. For her, Halloween is finally over.

The brief, near-bonding between the siblings is odd. For Laurie, I guess she can see him for the demented, insane person he is, but Michael wanting to touch her? I can see it as his last ditch effort to reach her, to grab and kill her, but I just don’t see it on an emotional level, for him, at least. Her final act though is great. She is doing this to end the suffering, for him partly, but mainly for herself. She needs this to be over, ended and done, with no doubt in her mind. Well done.

Overall, I think this film was a great look at the characters of Laurie and Michael and what was their inevitable, final confrontation. I love that Jamie Lee Curtis took on this role again, at least in part, to give something to the ardent, loyal fans she has had from the original film. Kudos to her. Also love the little homages or call backs to the original film. As I said at the beginning, watch the original film, part II and then H20 for a good Halloween trilogy with a fitting conclusion.

So, there you go. My recap and review of Halloween H20. I told ya it was gonna be lengthy! Thanks again to Ryne for letting me take part and hope everyone has a great Halloween this year. Remember: Everyone is entitled to one good scare!

The Moon is a Dead World’s Take

Jamie Lee Curtis returns to the defining slasher film of her career to battle her brother once and for all in Steve Miner’s Halloween H20. Like New Nightmare, Wes Craven’s metafictional resumption of the Nightmare on Elm Street series, H20 is often self-referential, no moreso than when Curtis’ mother Janet Leigh makes an appearance as Curtis’ assistant, complete with Psycho reveille playing in the background. Despite the star-studded cast and the competent director Miner, H20 never captures the slasher magic of its predecessors, and it’s easily one of the worst entries in the series – and yet I still love it.

It has been 20 years since Michael Myers’ first attack on Laurie Strode. She’s now been placed in a witness protection program with her son John (Josh Hartnett) and has become the successful director of a prestigious academy in California. It’s now Halloween, and both Laurie and her son are trying to get past the old memories now that Michael is supposed to be dead. It turns out that Laurie’s fears have been correct all along, though, since Michael comes back to stalk them through the empty halls of the academy.

For a sequel in the ’90s, H20 is strangely devoid of a high kill count. By my estimation, only five or six people are killed off by Michael, who appears a bit more focused in this outing. There are some grisly scenes of stabbings, but there aren’t many that stand out here like some do in the later Halloween sequels.

Along with Curtis, who plays the gruff Laurie well, is LL Cool J as an erotica-writing security guard. His part is stilted, but it’s easy to like him and at least Miner gives him a slightly redeemable role after making him the scapegoat after Michael finds his way into the gated academy.

It’s unfortunate that Halloween H20 features so little of the holiday it’s named for. Except for a couple of shots of trick-or-treaters or pumpkins, H20 could be set on any day of the year – the timing doesn’t really matter. The way that Michael gets to the academy takes too long; likewise, the events that transpire once he gets there feel rushed. There’s not much time spent in the moody, gloomy halls of the academy, and it almost feels like a waste to set up something so atmospheric only to rarely use it.

That’s the main thing with H20 – it lack the tension of its predecessors. It’s nice to see Laurie 20 years later, it’s good to see her taking initiative again by fighting Michael, and the final battle between the two of them is one of the best scenes. But for the most part, the rest of the movie lacks a sense of direction, skirting between John’s adolescent life and Laurie’s paranoid adult one, never really landing on a happy medium.

Any movie with Michael Myers is going to be an entertaining one because of the menacing figure he is known for, but Halloween H20 is a mediocre effort at reviving the series. The earlier sequel isn’t any better; the latter ones are worse. But one should expect more from this sequel because of its cast and crew, and it just doesn’t deliver all the tricks and treats that it should.

Halloween H20 on Rotten Tomatoes


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