THE LAIR EXPERTS
Matt: Damn, it was good to see Michael Myers slicing up the screen again. After the debacle that was 'Halloween III', I think the producers knew they had to bring Michael back, and this was a good way to do it. The first big thing they did was return the setting to Haddonfield, and even though they filmed in Utah instead of Pasadena, the setting really works. Needless to say, they ended up filming the fifth film there too, so it was a nice bit of continuity.
Donald Pleasence returned as Loomis, and brought so much credibility back to the franchise. I am guessing Nick Castle joined John Carpenter in dis-associating themselves with the franchise, because the role of Michael again went to a stuntman, George P. Wilbur. Wilbur played a scary Michael, but like Dick Warlock before him, there were still some awkward moments where you could tell it was a stuntman behind the mask, and that hurt his overall portrayal. A newcomer to the franchise was Danielle Harris, who starred as Jamie, Michael's niece. Who would have thought over twenty years later, she would still be associated with the franchise, albeit in a different role in Rob Zombie's revisionings? She became as important to the franchise in its middle installments as Jamie Lee Curtis was in the first two. Supporting roles of note include Ellie Cornell as Rachel and Beau Starr as Sheriff Meeker, the new law and order of Haddonfield.
With Carpenter out of the picture, the scoring duties went to his frequent collaborator Alan Howarth, and while he brings forth a unique, scary sound, it's just not up to par with the previous entries (including 'Halloween III'). He does not make enough use of the 'Halloween' theme, as well as other key scores that Carpenter perfected in the past. The end result was something very different with a touch of 'Halloween' thrown in, instead of a very different 'Halloween' score, and that took away from the overall quality of the film. There was also no music of note added in support of the film, and and that hurt it as well.
And again, what was up with Michael's mask? There were times that it appeared to be totally different in subsequent shots, even different colors (note when Michael attacked Loomis at the school). I guess I should have seen this coming all along. Is it really that difficult to duplicate the mask from the original?
In the end, there are just too many holes in the plot for me to rate this really high. What really sticks me even to this day is that they never directly reveal Jamie is Laurie's daughter. They should have made that clear from the get-go. They never do, they just hint at it when they reveal that Michael is Jamie's uncle. They also never really come out and say what happened to Laurie (until H20, when the plots of 4, 5, and 6 become worthless). So, to me, that really hurt the franchise, and thus, a lower rating. 6 out of 10.
A.J.: I loved this movie. It was one of the first Halloween's that I bought to own and I just love watching it over and over. The only thing that kept it from getting a 10 is how they kept you in the dark about Laurie Strode and her daughter who just appeared as if a stork dropped her off at the door. Plus, it totally ruins H20, but I'll get to that later. 9 out of 10.
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