31 DAYS OF HALLOWEEN – DAY 3
Rob Zombie’s Halloween (directed by Rob Zombie, 2007) Right from the opening scene, this re-telling of the John Carpenter classic grinds on the nerves. You instantly hate every character except for Michael, and his mother. Even the beloved Dr. Sam Loomis character in the original (Donald Pleasence), quite frankly, is an asshole in this story.
Most horror re-boots are not effective because audiences are desensitized to the subject matter, and also because most re-boots suck. I believe Rob Zombie did a commendable job with giving Michael a back story, and manufacturing some sympathy for a character that has never spoken a line of dialogue since his inception in 1978. The juxtaposition between the young, bullied Myers boy and the savage killing machine he becomes is a nice touch. The story is much the same at the very core as the classic. As a child, Michael kills his sister, becomes institutionalized, and escapes years later, then returns to Haddonfield to finish of his only remaining relative, his sister Laurie. Where Zombie’s vision differs is in the amount of corpses left Michael’s wake, and the amount of bloody violence that we see on screen. The original is void of blood, and relies on atmosphere and shadows to give us the chills. 2007’s Halloween uses abrasive characters, brute force, and violence to tell the story. The effect is not the same, as Carpenter’s Halloween will always be the champion slasher film. If Rob Zombie would have “re-made” Halloween, it would have fallen flat on its face. Instead, he chose to “re-tell” the story, adding elements to make it a very watchable film. This updated version even keeps the Michael Myers legacy alive more so than six sequels (not including the original Halloween II, because that movie kicks ass) ever did. Actress Scout Taylor-Compton plays the part of Laurie Strode (made famous by Jamie Lee Curtis), and is great as a more contemporary, sassy sister to the maniac, Michael. Something else I really enjoyed, and is prevalent in all of Zombie’s films, is a great mix of 70’s rock as the soundtrack. Any movie that kicks off the opening scene with Kiss’ ‘God of Thunder’ is bound to be a good time. Love it or hate it, the film is polarizing, and bloody enjoyable. Give it a watch. You may like it. After all, it is Halloween.
Cool fact – Danielle Harris, who played Michael’s niece, Jamie Lloyd, in Halloween 4 and Halloween 5, plays the character of Annie Brackett. A nice bit of nostalgia for us horror nerds.
- Day 1 – The Conjuring
- Day 2 – You’re Next
- Day 3 – Rob Zombie’s Halloween