Murder of a franchise

halloweenrisesHalloween Kills, 2021, 105 mins, Digital

I’ll keep this as short as I can, this film deserves no more. There’s was a point during this film where I felt like damning John Carpenter for ever making the 1978 film that spawned this wholly lamentable horror franchise. Halloween Kills is so horrible it almost outweighs the positives of the 1978 original ever existing at all. Halloween Kills is badly written, badly acted, badly directed. Only the other day I was praising Ghostbusters: Afterlife for demonstrating how to resurrect a film franchise,  how to make a sequel befitting and honouring its original. Well, here comes Halloween Kills to demonstrate how not to do it. It is such a disaster I can’t quite put it into words; to be brutally honest I wasn’t expecting much, if anything at all, and yet it still managed to disappoint.

Actually, it made me quite angry. How do films, as demonstrably cynical and badly made as this get made? Of course, the answer is money, which I’ll come to in a few paragraphs, but bear with me here, because the question is nonetheless valid. There are so many continuity errors, factual errors, clumsy mistakes, it was one of the laziest, most ineptly made films I’ve ever seen, and I’ve suffered through plenty of them. Its so bad it feels almost deliberately bad, there is so little indication anybody really tried at all. There were so many moments that my jaw dropped at the crass stupidity of characters or plotting, the film increasingly edging so close towards parody and farce, it felt almost insulting, like the film-makers were physically slapping me in the face.

So lets get to the money, and the scariest thing about this film. It cost $20 million to make, grossed over $130 million worldwide, so there will be another Halloween film. And possibly another after that. Where will the horror end?

Which gets me worried; knowing how money attracts Hollywood attention, and recent rumours circulating, there’s surely a cautionary lesson in this film- that John Carpenter should, by all things Holy, somehow, if he has it within his power, veto any attempt to reboot/remake his 1982 classic The Thing, because nobody, surely, wants that film sullied like the way Halloween has been over the decades – with Halloween Kills, it has plummeted to stygian depths Lovecraft never considered. Worst film I will see this year, I expect (and sincerely hope).

4 thoughts on “Murder of a franchise

  1. Matthew McKinnon

    Really?
    Did you see the predecessor to this a few years ago? I thought that was OK in a passes-the-time kind of way. In what way is this worse?

    The director is an (occasionally great) journeyman – a kind of Richard Linklater type but who slums it far too often. I guess this is another off-day.

    I’m not a huge fan of the original, so I don’t really have any skin in this game at all.

    BTW, if I remember right, this was shot back-to-back with the next one, ‘Halloween Ends’.

    1. Well this is the problem with being spoiler-free, sometimes you’re ill-informed and left wanting. I didn’t realise this was a direct continuation (literally the very next minute) from the last one. I didn’t mind that one quite so much, although it was daft our heroine going all Sarah Connor when she was so endearingly ordinary in the 1978 film. So anyway, it took me a bit to get up to speed with it, what with The Shape taking out several fire-fighters and intrusive fan-service thru flashbacks/recreations of the 1978 film being a bit confusing.

      It really is bad though. The stupidity of the characters, the hysterics, everything is just nuts.

      Like you I could care less about the films (the 1978 film is far from my favourite Carpenter) but its still painful watching this cinematic car crash happen. This is a really bad mess. And they already shot the next one? Yikes. I doubt they’ll be faithful to the title and really end it, there’s too much money in rebooting it or something.

  2. I was also insulted by this. Your review isn’t brutal enough. I enjoy the original film and its sequels, so I’m biased, I guess. The confusingly titled requel is decent enough, but this one goes totally off the rails. Like you said, a cinematic car crash. Myers killing not one but two mobs of people with ease was the stupidest thing I’ve seen in a long while. The point of these movies is the intimacy, the suspense. There’s no suspense here. The only bit of good was the flashback with the Loomis impersonator. I found it amusing and well done.

  3. I bought this out of some sick need to see it but have yet to actually watch it. I have heard more negative than positive. And given my feelings on the last one I need to ask myself why.

    On The Thing I think they have said it will adhere much closer to the story which birthed it than either of the three preceding films.

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