(4 / 5)

Legendary director John Carpenter’s 1978 horror classic, Halloween set a new standard for slasher films within the horror genre and introduced the world to the chilling masked character of Michael Meyers. The world was afforded the first film in one of cinemas longest running franchises and jumpstarted the career of Jamie Lee Curtis (True Lies). Since then she has made a name for herself as more than a mere scream queen in a variety of movie roles over the years since the release of the original. Curtis returns in the eleventh instalment of this horrific neighbourhood threat. The question for many fans will be if this familiar storyline manages to age as well as its famed lead actress?

As a reminder to those who may not have seen or been born when the initial film was released, the good news is that there is nothing lost in watching the latest movie for those experiencing the terrorising trail of Michael Meyers for the first-time. Jamie Lee Curtis returns as our heroine Laurie Strode, who has managed to survive the murderous rampage of Myers in the past and is the catalyst for him being in prison. Over the years, she has prepared herself for the return of her tormentor, knowing that she cannot rest unless she knows he is dead. Along the way, she has become estranged from her daughter but still maintains contact with her granddaughter. During a mishap with a prison transport, Laurie is forced to unite with her family on Halloween as Michael begins a new rampage through the quiet township. This unleashes a new level of suspense and a subsequent body count in this tale of blood, gore and terror which leads movie-goers to its inevitable final showdown.

Director David Gordon Green (Joe) maintains the Blumhouse production house’s trademarks of capitalising on the low-budget stylings that made the original John Carpenter film a classic. Green employs the same distinctive theme music of the original film alongside the same title fonts and stylings that provide the necessary grainy look that delivers the impression that this is a direct sequel and moves past the decades of inferior sequels. This leaves the production with an intentional and complimentary nod to the masterful beginning. Jamie Lee’s portrayal of Laurie is reminiscent of Linda Hamilton’s Sarah Connor in Terminator 2: Judgment Day, whom the director James Cameron states was the inspiration for his heroine in the sci-fi gem.

Halloween is a film for horror fans and it will not disappoint. Although there is a predictability to the plot, Green and his writing team provide enough twists and turns that take audiences on the terrifying journey to a satisfying conclusion. It should go without saying that the story contains over-the-top violence and enough blood and gore to make the original film seem tame. The suspense and tension are high as well and will keep fans on the edge of their seats until the resolution of the final scenes. As a reboot, this proves that brilliant, but basic storylines can still captivate audiences and with its worldwide success it will be no surprise to see Michael Meyers rising again in the future.

REEL DIALOGUE: Do we have anything to fear?

What is the appeal of horror films? Many fans surveyed have stated that the attraction of this genre is a good scare with the knowledge that by the end there will be a positive outcome and a potentially happy ending. The expected tension of this type of film and the Halloween franchise is that Michael Myers is the embodiment of pure evil and the expectation that most of the characters are going to die gruesome deaths at the hands of this man. The only thing that possibly makes this bearable is the inclusion of a heroic saviour figure to balance out the evil. The character of Laurie is seen as the one who will rescue her loved ones and those impacted by Myers, because she has made it her mission in life to destroy the evil that he represents once and for all.

For many in the world, their lives can be a reflection of a horror film. Despite the degree of pain experienced by each person in this world, one thing that can bring solace is that mankind also has an advocate and saviour to rescue us from evil through the person of Jesus Christ.

The story of the Bible tells us that sin has caused mankind to fall out of relationship with God and into the horrific hands of eternal death. However, Jesus’ death on the cross has meant that we can be restored in our relationship with God by trusting in His death on our behalf, which leads to eternal life.

Want to find out more? Check out one of the biographies of Jesus: Luke

Trailer for the film

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Richard Soo

Richard Soo is a keen movie-watcher but also has interests in comics, aviation, and singing among other things. He has worked in the Australian Public Service for almost 30 years and enjoys his current role as a Support/Training Officer. He also loves attending his local Anglican Church in Sydney’s Inner West and serving his church family in various ministries.