what i decided to do is rent every movie i could find with the word halloween in it. This is what i got:
Halloween 3: Season of the Witch
Halloween: The Curse of Michael Meyers
Now, as my regular readers know old vern has been out of the picture for a while. This is my first halloween in many years so it is a special treat. i cannot remember the last time i watched a scary movie for halloween, let alone 6 in a row. I think i have seen the first halloween movie before but this is the first time i have been able to watch the whole trilogy.
And let me say, a lot of people don’t know this but the first one is usually the best, and this is NO exception.
Now what halloween is about is a dude named michael meyers. At first he is a little kid who kills his sister, but then it goes to ten years later he is locked up in an asylum (know what thats like brother, no just kidding man).
The good guy of halloween is a dude by the name of Dr. Loomis. This is one of those english dudes that fights evil, sort of a vampire hunter, with the one exception that he hunts michael meyers instead of a vampire. I think it was a good move to make him a doctor instead of a cop so you can root for him more.
Loomis has been studying michael meyers for a LONG fucking time and he has a good idea whats about to happen. and yes, this motherfucker escapes and goes back to steal tombstones, eat a dog and kill people right and left in his home town of haddonfield, montana.
Now, it is exactly at this same time that a dude in a CREEPY white mask is in haddonfield. It is HEAVILY implied that this is michael meyers. Loomis, for one, believes it is. BUT, in the credits he is called “the shape”, and he is referred to as “the evil” and “the boogeyman” including by Laurie who is the main star of the movie, a babysitter played by jamie lee curtis. Also it is pointed out that michael never learned how to drive, yet the guy in the mask DOES drive. I guess this is one of the main mysteries of the series.
What i like about this movie is its sort of what i would call an american gothic type of thing. it starts out in the day time and “the shape” is walking around the town, even driving. You only see him from the shoulders down but personally, i am pretty fucking sure this nutball is wearing the mask! And if you think about it driving around WEARING A HALLOWEEN MASK in broad daylight is some pretty fucking weird shit, even for a dude who dressed up as a clown to kill his sister and then never talked again. The dusk slowly falls and eventually its night, giving it a real time sort of feel thats always good for horror.
There is one scene where the mask comes off but unfortunately loomis is not there to give an id on michael, IF it is him under the mask.
The ending is not very clear and i really like this. it could mean that the shape got up and walked away, or it could also mean that he just disappeared into the air, and is haunting the shit out of the place. Who knows?
before i move on to part 2, i should mention that the BEST thing about this movie is the music. Now you guys can vouch for me, i got dudes that can vouch for my fighting as well, i am a tough dude for my age in my opinion. BUT, this music scares the piss out of me. Usually a guy like me prefers a classical orchestra type shit for a horror movie but here is an example of where one dude with an old keyboard can make the scariest fucking music of all time.
PART 2 continues right after part 1 and thats why it starts out good. There is VERY fucking good atmosphere and you get a feel that the shape really is sneaking around in the shadows when they have point of view type shots through a window of an old lady in her kitchen. i like when you see the shape hiding and he is listening to what loomis is saying about a block away. you feel like your standing there. the atmosphere is also strong at the end, a foggy morning where you feel like you really have stayed up all night. and there is a VERY fucking funny part where a different dude in a mask (not the shape) gets hit by a car.
BUT, laurie spends most of the time in a hospital bed helpless. i’m no feminist but i’m not sure having a girl in a coma is a good heroine. sorry. And come on man, laurie is michals sister and thats why he tries to kill her? don’t these motherfuckers know that the WHOLE reason why halloween is scary is because we don’t know why he’s killing, or even if there IS a why?
PART 3 is confusing. Now, i may have picked up the wrong video or it may have been the wrong video in the box, i’m not sure. but this one is totally different. it is about these evil robots that wear funny halloween masks. it has kind of a creepy foreigner type of feel. not that bad but WHAT does the robots have to do with michael? I am still trying to figure out for sure if it is indeed michael wearing the mask. this one does not help.
CURSE OF MICHAEL MEYERS. this is the one that proves michael meyers is the one wearing the mask. But this movie is fucking terrible. They try to make it so you hate the people michael kills and so you root for him. Okay, good move. But it makes it not scary. Also, there is some stupid shit about a thorn cult of druids who’s doctor is michael meyer’s boss? I would say, don’t rent this one. there’s no number on it anyway so as far as i know its not even an official sequel. This may have been an unused tv special or something i’m not sure.
PART 5. I fast forwarded through most of this one but there is one scene where MIchael is in jail. They tried hard to make it accurate but as an insider, i noticed one minor mistake that they made. in my experience, when a dude wearing a halloween mask gets arrested, the pigs take off the halloween mask. I wonder if they took his mugs wearing the mask? that would be a good scene they should put back in for the dvd. I would also like to see a scene before he gets caught where they do a sketch of him, but wearing the mask. Or maybe he takes off the mask and his real face underneath looks exactly the same. There are many things you can do with a mask in my opinion.
There is one part where michael takes off his mask but you only see his eye this time. But i’m pretty sure it is michael. a tear comes out of his eye and to be frankly honest that’s kind of corny. but i am not against a sentimental mass killer, that’s not a bad idea for a movie. i would like if in future halloween movies he always takes the mask off and a tear comes out every time he kills somebody. Or he could pour a little on the curb or whatever. Something to show he has a little human in him.
Well, maybe not. Sorry about that guys, that was a bad idea.
Anyway, i should also mention that a guy comes wearing black boots and blows up the jail so mike can get out. Kind of like dukes of hazzard how their friend would come tie a rope to the bars and drive off. i guess its kind of cool that even a guy like michael meyers would have at least one close buddy. i mean, if you think about it the biggest assholes you ever meet usually do have a bunch of friends and women. I mean shit for all we know michael could be very popular wherever he lives during the rest of the year.
H20 Halloween. I don’t know WHAT is up with this one as far as numbering but as far as i know it is the last one. This is definitely the best besides the first and really, it might be smart just to watch those two. This one returns to the story of laurie, who is now a professional babysitter at a boarding school.
This one’s about some teens and its done better than the other ones, even with orchestral music like i like. BUT the real heart of this one is the last 20 minutes or so. after 15-20 years of hiding under a false name, DRINKING (i know about this territory, sister) and afraid of her own reflection to turn into mike meyers, finally this gal decides to face up to the negativity and clean up her life.
What this means is once shes gotten away, she says, “No… on second thought…” and turns right back around ready to kick this motherfuckers bitch ass to kingdom come. “MICHAEL!” she yells, and kicks open a firebox to arm herself with an ax.
i don’t want to give anything away, but she chops the dudes head off. this is after a long struggle through the school, a stolen ambulance chase, crash off a cliff and more. This last 20 minutes is non stop action, the die hard of horror. It is the perfect end to the series.
Now let me tell a brief story. When i was inside, there was a dude by the name of Benji Thick. This dude had a halloween tradition of telling this ghost story, mostly to rookies. the story goes that kenny chicago was executed at our joint on halloween night. kenny chicago as you know was a hitman who took the fall for an epic gangland slaying. he was from chicago i believe. well the story goes that when they went to arrest kenny, they found all kinds of weird satanic and voodoo type stuff all over his apartment, and best of all: a human heart inside a vase in the dudes refrigerator.
Now in my opinion thats going too far. Anyway, kenny was busted for his gang killings but nobody ever knows where the heart came from, so rumors spread about him being some kind of ed gein/jeffrey dahmer type cannibal motherfucker.
So Benji tells these rookies that every halloween, the ghost of kenny chicago comes out of death row and roams the whole building moaning, looking for a human heart to eat. the day someone leaves him a heart as an offering, he will be resurrected to finish slaying his rivals.
So of course what Benji does, after hes got all the rookies all riled up, he saves a piece of bread from his lunch. Then he chews it into a paste and spits it out. With this he molds himself a crude mask thats supposed to look like skin taken off some other dudes face.
Benji comes down the hall, “MY HEART… GIVE ME MY HEART… MUST… GO BACK… TO CHICAGOOOOOOO…” He was real dramatic and good at this shit, and always made the rookies look like their about ready to piss their pants.
But he did this every year, and as he got old, he started to lose his touch. He forgot the original spirit of the thing and starts adding all this dumb shit to the story. Kenny chicago works for the government. kenny chicago is part alien. once in every generation theres a kenny chicago. And he didn’t even do the old shit very good anymore. His hands were getting shaky so his masks started getting really lame and he was easy to recognize and nobody fell for it anymore. people start telling him to stop. “Please Benji, not this year.”
Finally about five years ago, he tried to pull it again even though everyone told him to stop. The rookies are getting tougher at this point and they laugh the story off from sentence one. Nobody buys it and the motherfucker still puts on the chewed up bread mask.
well, needless to say, three different people were ready to shank poor Benji just to get him to quit embarrassing himself. he was transferred to a different facility and later died of unrelated heart problems.
The reason i bring this up: cause some motherfuckers never learn. According to my sources, the producers of this series are planning YET ANOTHER halloween, even after they had a perfect ending. now i guess theyll have mike meyers with no head, which in my opinion just isnt the same, because whats he gonna do stretch the mask around his shoulders? Actually that might be cool but some people might not take it as seriously. If any of you producers of this movie read my column, please bud. Listen to vern. He knows what hes talkin about. you gotta quit while your a head, leave this thing behind and move on to a new lifestyle.
Anyway, have a happy halloween. And if any of you motherfuckers try egging my house or any of that other trick or treat shit, please know that your playing with fire. i have had years to plan my defense. You have been warned.
VERN has been reviewing movies since 1999 and is the author of the books SEAGALOGY: A STUDY OF THE ASS-KICKING FILMS OF STEVEN SEAGAL, YIPPEE KI-YAY MOVIEGOER!: WRITINGS ON BRUCE WILLIS, BADASS CINEMA AND OTHER IMPORTANT TOPICS and NIKETOWN: A NOVEL. His horror-action novel WORM ON A HOOK will arrive later this year.