It’s fantastic that one of the things that 2018 will be remembered for will be the 40th anniversary sequel to the original John Carpenter classic – Halloween (1978).
But as we enjoy this latest addition to the franchise, it’s quite easy to imagine that none of this might have happened, particularly when you consider the strength (or lack thereof) of the last instalment, Halloween: Resurrection, released in 2002.
I’ll level with you, I had forgotten this film existed until recently, the last enduring memory of Curtis playing Laurie Strode being in the 20th anniversary Halloween H20 film, which I saw in the cinema and enjoyed, mainly because it was ‘good enough’ and I was in the age group that it was aimed at.
But after reviving the characters in a (just about) plausible way, it would seem that another less scrupulous group of people felt it would be appropriate to continue on four years later – and somehow they even got Curtis to play a role in it.
When it turns out that Michael’s death at the end of H20 was a case of mistaken identity, Laurie is driven insane at the idea that her murderous brother is still out there somewhere and is committed to a mental hospital.
Thankfully for Strode/Curtis her role in the film doesn’t last long as the sinister psychopath pays her a visit determined to sever his family ties.
With Laurie’s loose end tied, the film switches to an entirely new angle, following 6 or so forgettable teens as they embark on a campaign to become famous by taking part in a new ground-breaking web reality show, managed by Freddie (Busta Rhymes) and Nora Tyra Banks.
While webcams are set up in the Myers family’s dilapidated former home for this live Halloween night special, it quickly becomes clear that the rest of the film will have more in common with one of the Scream derivatives than the earlier instalments of the Halloween series.
And as Resurrection limps on, it is clumsily spattered with puns, stereotyped characters, bad acting and frustrating plot holes that make it difficult to understand why Halloween 2 director Rick Rosenthal ever got involved.
Appearances by other familiar stars such as Thomas Ian Nicholas (American Pie fame) do little to salvage anything from the banal car crash that ensues.
As the teens stumble around the maze-like building, the viewer has to put up with poor lighting and a sloppily planned (by the writers) weak link to a group of teens that are remotely watching events unfold live at a Halloween party. This all helps to encourage further facepalming.
In some ways, the whole idea is a little before its time. It’s hard to believe that anyone would be watching the web-stream given the quality of the video and the fact that it would be mind-numbingly boring to watch thanks to the fact that, for the most part, Myers manages to keep all his killing off web-camera.
As the film winds down, the stupidity is added to when our uninspiring protagonist Sara (Bianca Kajlich) is eternally thankful to a web-chat buddy she has never met in person. His role? Sitting comfortably in a room and texting her while she fought for her life – no effort is made to actually rescue her.
Meanwhile the man that kung-fu kicked Myers away from Sara goes unappreciated, somehow immediately forgotten – much in the same way that this film was after its release 16 years ago.
Unless you are up for an evening of laughably bad films this All Hallows Eve, Halloween – Resurrection is one to be avoided.