Halloween Revisited

Last night, I watched the new Halloween remade by director Rob Zombie. I’m a fan of Mr. Zombie’s music but not his films. Therefore, I was not expecting much from the new Halloween. Wow! Sometimes it is good to be wrong. The original is certainly a classic, but this may be even better. The film is bloodier than the original, but it is not over the top like the overwhelming majority of the horror crap of today. I particularly like how Michael Myers’ childhood was portrayed, giving you answers to the questions not addressed in the original.

I viewed the unrated version, which has many scenes that would offend (including a fairly brutal rape scene). I think the film did a particularly good job of portraying the moral decay and perversion of our normal, daily society and not just focusing on the psychotic Myers. In the early portions of the film, you almost have some sympathy for young Michael. By the end, however, the director has done a great job of shattering any attachments you could have for the character.

The movie stays very true to the original, with many scenes duplicated in homage. It was very cool to see familiar events with the added benefit of a higher budget and some background story to set the stage. I found it like watching an old favorite with new eyes and seeing it again for the first time.

In the end, the movie is no more socially redeeming than the original. The plot really boils down to a freakishly strong psychopath goes berserk and starts killing people. However, this is a strong representation of the genre and a carefully crafted retelling of a classic. I also liked how one of the characters was portrayed by an actress who starred in several of the middle films of the series. Well done, Mr. Zombie, well done.

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