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New ‘Halloween’ is just more of the same

October 27, 2018 GMT

To paraphrase an old automobile advertisement, this is NOT your father’s “Halloween.” OK, it may be. Perhaps our horror sensibilities have just changed. Maybe it is harder to freak (or, simply to scare) us.

Director David Gordon Green (“Pineapple Express,” “The Sitter,” “Snow Angels”) gives us the latest rendition of what has become a Halloween (the holiday) classic.

It is loaded with all of the blood and gore that we have learned to expect from your everyday slasher films, and maybe that is the problem. We enter the theater expecting a little MORE (at least, I did).

What I got was formula fiction with the same direction, special effects and basic plot. It was good, but nothing that I had not seen before (a few dozen times). They say not to criticize someone else’s flaws unless you have a solution, and I have to admit, I do not.

Perhaps, they could have gone with the outlandish; possibly Michael Myers as an alien life form, or a comedy version starring Mr. Bean as the killer. Maybe, try the solution du jour, changing the race or gender of the hero or antagonist.


What should have been tried wasn’t, and though this is “more of the same,” it was adequate. OK, maybe a little better than that.

There seemed to be a few scenes that were more “Friday the 13th” than the “Halloween” franchise as the Powers That Be went with teen victims who were seeking naughty times (pot, sex, etc.) instead of shooting for the obvious small children who were out Trick or Treating their little tails off.

Sure, I know Michael has a thing for the babysitters and not the babies, but why not mix it up a little?

Most of the scenes involving law enforcement was so idiotic that it was noticeable to even non-fans of crime dramas.

If you stop and think a bit, even Laurie’s house trap was not as logical as it could have been.

The scariest part may just have been Laurie Strode’s age.

As someone five years older than Jamie Lee Curtis, I feel that I can speak out, freely. Did they have to make her look like the Hansel & Gretel witch in the forest?

Curtis (“Trading Places,” “True Lies,” “A Fish Called Wanda”) plays her part, not as “Granny canning half-runners” nor “hot Granny reliving her 40s,” but as a hardbutt Marine Drill Sergeant type, which she has every right to become, but she is in no way over-the-top enough to be believed.

She does not appear to be “crazy” and crazy was what we (the audience) were looking for. Her mindset was horribly misplaced.

A great second banana and sounding board is Will Patton (“The Postman,” “No Way Out,” “Falling Skies”) as Deputy Hawkins, someone who also has a history with the original killings.

But, for some reason, this is barely glanced over.


Other players include (most notably) Judy Greer (“27 Dresses,” “Jurassic World,” “Ant-Man) as Laurie’s daughter Karen, who has grown up and away from her strange mother. A good role, but not very well developed.

Laurie’s granddaughter Allison, played by Andi Matichak (“Making It: The

Series,” “Evol,” “Miles”), is fine with her small role, but not enough is given to her to do.

Everyone else is just (Michael) fodder and most are disposed of in unoriginal ways, with gore, but not too much gore, and we are not made to care about any of them.

The new version of Halloween is just the movie version of sitting around earlier in the month, asking yourself “What am I gonna be, THIS year?”

Billy Summers is a freelance photographer who also reviews films for the Putnam Herald. He can be reached at