It’s been 20 years since Laurie Strode witnessed Michael Myers burning to death. The year 2008 brought us Halloween H20, a movie that decided to ignore the previous entries and only focus on the first two movies. To some, this is a good thing, but to others, it was like a kick to the groin. I’m not really bothered too much by the decision, as the movie stands out to be a great sequel, with an extremely amazing ending…

Short nitty-gritty plot description from IMDb is as follows: Laurie Strode, now the dean of a Northern California private school with an assumed name, must battle the Shape one last time and now the life of her own son hangs in the balance.

The history behind Halloween H20 is definitely interesting. John Carpenter was supposed to direct, but wanted $10 million and was denied, so he walked. In waltzed Steve Miner, who you might know as the director of Friday the 13th Part II & III. Music was originally done by John Ottoman, but after some dissatisfaction from the producers, was changed to use cues from the Scream movies (bad idea). The original screenplay was written by Kevin Williamson (Scream), but later rewritten by someone else. The mask originally used, proved unlikeable by test audiences, so a new mask was made and several scenes where re shot. Although some had to use horrible CGI, as the scene couldn’t be re shot. See where I’m going with this? Halloween H20 had a troubled production and it’s surprising that we got the film we did, instead of a steaming pile of turds (although some of you may think it’s just that).

A few stars return from the original, most notably Jamie Lee Curtis, who returns to play Laurie Strode, or rather Keri Tate, as she has changed her name after faking her death. Curtis does a pretty good job, but you might find that she is playing herself and not embodying Laurie Strode. That’s understandable though, as people do change and don’t forget, it’s been 20 years. Another returning actress is Nancy Stephens, who played Nurse Marion Chambers in Halloween & Halloween II. We get to find out that she has been taking care of Dr. Loomis, ’til he passed away (remember, this film ignores the previous entries). As for our required teenage victims, we have Josh Hartnett, playing Curtis’ son, John Tate and Michelle Williams, playing John’s girlfriend. I thought they both did a great job and have no complaints with their roles. Honestly, there really is only two important people in this movie, Laurie Strode and Michael Myers. Everyone else is fodder, especially LL Cool J’s character (yes, he’s in this one as well, but surprisingly he isn’t bad).

Michael Myers is now played by Chris Durand, who does a fantastic job. Michael is pretty damn pissed in this film, and Chris pulls off some great looks and maneuvers. I especially love the scene where he is flipping the tables in a maniacal frenzy, looking for the terrified Laurie. As for the masks, like I mentioned before, it went through several changes, with the original being made by KNB FX and looking like a weird alien. The final mask was created by Stan Winston studios and in my opinion, was a hell of a lot better looking, although I still have a hard time getting over seeing his eyes. Fun fact! At the beginning of the movie, Michael is wearing a recast of the mask from Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers.

Winston Mask

 

Awful CGI Mask
KNB FX Mask

Watching Halloween H20, you can certainly see plenty of influences from the Scream movies. More so when you consider the music (don’t worry, the Halloween themes are still present) and writers were all directly related to said movies. Still, Scream was inspired by the original Halloween, so it all works out in the end. Trust me folks, when the moment comes and Laurie Strode grabs the axe, walks out into the courtyard and screams “MICHAEL!” and the Halloween theme kicks in, you’ll completely forget any problems with this movie and just be smiling ear to ear, I know I did. Plus, the ending is amazing! Absolutely freaking fantastic! Forget any sequel after this one, as Michael Myers reign of terror ends here. I remember sitting in theatre, wondering what kind of cliche ending they’ll be using, but colour me surprised, when they threw the book out the window and went with what they did. My jaw dropped to the floor. If you somehow don’t yet know what happens at the end, stop what your doing, go put in the movie and give it a watch. You need to see this ending without any spoilers. (Also, avoid my Chop 10: Halloween Michael Myers Kills, ’til after you watch it.)

Even though Halloween H20 had a troubled history and may not have been the end all be all of Halloween sequels, it certainly has a furious Michael Myers, a returning Jamie Lee Curtis and one of the best endings in a horror movie to this day. Personally for me, the Halloween series ended with this one and it ended on a high note.

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