PLOT: Rob Zombie’s remake of the horror classic. Decades after murdering his family, Michael Myers returns home to terrorize the residents of Haddonfield.
For the first time last year, I watched The Devil’s Rejects, the first Rob Zombie-directed film I had ever seen. The movie is pretty schlocky, but it works for the story it’s trying to tell. Unfortunately, while I think Rob Zombie is able to make his remake of Halloween his own, I’m not particularly sure it’s a place that Halloween needs to go.
I don’t really need to go into a plot description for this film, as it does follow, more or less, the same plot points as the original. The main difference is that, in this one, Michael Myers gets a full backstory, which unfortunately is pretty stock. Michael comes from the biggest white trash family cliché that any writer has put to paper, which I guess is why he winds up murdering an incredible amount of innocent people. Or maybe it’s the obvious signs of being a complete sociopath; it really could be either, and the backstory is the main reason why this film just doesn’t work, despite the director’s best intentions.
The problem with giving Michael Myers a backstory is that we’re unsure of what to get out of it. Are we supposed to feel sympathy for Michael? Then why make him a sociopath that kills cats? And if we are supposed to feel something for him, then he shouldn’t go around killing everyone he sees. He even kills the janitor from the mental institution (played by Danny Trejo), the only guy that ever showed him some compassion. Kind of makes the kid hard to like. After that, we’re treated to the same beats of Halloween, only told in the sleaziest way possible. One of the brilliant things about the original film is how subtle it is; Rob Zombie doesn’t get subtlety. In turn, what we get is a version of Halloween that feels like it takes place in the same universe as his other movies.
Through the roof. It’s what Zombie loves to do: fill the frame with blood. Comes off as pretty cheap, if you ask me, at least in the context of the original.
Gore Rating: 5 out of 5
I would consider the original film a scary movie. It does for the slasher film what Jaws did to the shark movie. This one, on the other hand, just tries to shock and it comes off as cheap and the opposite of scary.
Scare Rating: 1 out of 5
Again, this is another thing that Zombie tends to do. The sex is amped up here and we get three separate actresses going, at least, topless.
Sex/Nudity Rating: 5 out of 5
Rob Zombie loves to make exploitation films, and this is what we have: a version of Halloween for the grindhouse enthusiast. I appreciate he sets out to make a movie that is uniquely his own, but I wish it wasn’t a Michael Myers movie. I’d say that this film ranks up there with some of the better horror remakes of the past two decades, but I feel like Carpenter’s original still deserves better than this sleaziness.