After “Halloween: Resurrection” was critically panned, Dimension Films recruited musician/filmmaker Rob Zombie (House Of 1000 Corpses, The Devil’s Rejects) to write, co-produce and direct a part prequel part remake of John Carpenter’s “Halloween” (Rob is also a fan of the original) exploring the origins of Michael Myers’ childhood before his killing spree commenced. Rob reluctantly visited John Carpenter to ask permission for a remake, fearing it’ll ruin Michael Myers’ image. John gave him approval to remake it under one condition, “make it his own.”
Halloween was released in 2007. Unlike the original, the remake received negative reviews from critics and fans alike. Despite unpleasant reception, it made enough green at the box office.
The remake spawned a critically panned sequel released in 2009, killing the franchise. Until a miracle happened, Danny McBride (Tropic Thunder, This Is The End, the Underworld franchise) wrote a script to revisit the series’ roots set four decades after the original. Every sequel and remake are discarded. Now that Halloween 2018 is earning good reviews from critics, I want to share my real thoughts about Rob Zombie’s remake.
The following review contains crucial SPOILERS. If you’ve never seen the original 1978 film or the remake, read at your very own risk. Is Rob Zombie’s remake on par with the original? Let’s find out shall we?
Positive & Negative Elements
Positive: Malcom McDowell, Brad Dourif, Danielle Harris, Sheri-Moon Zombie, (Rob’s real life spouse) Danny Trejo & Tyler Mane all did a good job for their respective performances.
Other Cast Members such as Sid Haig, Clint Howard, Daryl Sabara, Ken Foree & Dee Wallace also appear and they all did a good job for their respective performances.
Fun Fact: Danielle Harris, who’s known for voicing Debbie from The Wild Thornberrys, portrayed Laurie Strode’s daughter/Michael’s niece, Jamie Lloyd in Halloween 4-6. Rob later casted Bill Fagerbakke (Patrick Star from SpongeBob) in Halloween II as a deputy. I guess Rob’s a fan of Nickelodeon cartoons.
I’m giving Rob an Extra Point for allowing Darryl Sabara (Juni Cortez from Spy Kids) & Danielle Harris (Debbie Thornberry) the privilege to use “The F-Bomb.”
Loomis’ interaction with Michael is further explored, adding a new layer to the franchise’s mythology. Why couldn’t this be the opening of the film with Loomis interviewing Michael while flashbacks reveal his first kill and then cut to a fully grown Michael escaping the facility? Mr. Zombie, you missed an opportunity to craft a wicked opening.
Death Scenes are way bloodier and gorier than the original. If I were you, use a barf bag, because it’s gonna be one heck of a blood bath.
Similar to the “Friday The 13th” franchise, naked ladies are shown before the killer slays his designated victim. Mating is bad luck when it comes to a serial killer standing behind you.
We get to see how Michael acquired his boiler suit onscreen after escaping the facility. The boiler suit belonged to Ken Foree’s character, Joe Grizzly.
Songs such as “Don’t Fear The Reaper” (from the original) and “Mr. Sandman” from the 1981 version of Halloween II) are used in pivotal scenes.
Young Michael wears a KISS t-shirt. Rob stated that the band inspired him to become a musician. KISS is also one of my favorite rock bands.
Michael retains his stealthy approach to kill his prey similar to the original.
In one scene, “The Thing From Another World” is played on TV. We all know John Carpenter did a remake in 1982 which considered to be one of the best (if not the best) remakes ever made.
John Carpenter’s iconic musical score is used.
Negative: Rob Zombie did a poor job attempting to resurrect the Halloween franchise and its signature antagonist.
Michael’s family in The First Act, look like something off of “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo.” In the original, Michael’s family were mellow prior to killing his sister. To put salt in the wound, nearly every single character (excluding Loomis, Sheriff Brackett & Isamel Cruz) is an unsympathetic moron lacking redeeming qualities.
Michael unintentionally becomes the hero. His origin story which led him to become a deranged psychopath, felt backwards. The opening scene from the original, perfectly established his first kill without shoving a redneck family and a local bully in front of the viewer’s eyes. Magneto from “X-Men” had a compelling back story than Michael!
Michael’s sister Judith, is dressed like a street walker. What kind of sick person lets their daughter wear clothes like a slut? Oh I know, any member of The Kardashian/Jenner Family!
Rob nearly butchered Laurie’s personality by “violating” a bagel in front of her stepmom. Who the heck does that in front of a relative or stepparent? This isn’t “The Osbournes!”
Michael’s stepdad comments on his stepdaughter’s behind while Mrs. Myers is present. No stepfather would never say something like that in real life! Oh wait, Harvey Weinstein produced this clunker!
The origin of the William Shatner mask felt forced. He puts it on after killing her sister’s boyfriend and then proceeds to kill her, rather than wearing a clown mask from the original. It’s like Bruce Wayne wearing his batsuit at age 10 or Anakin Skywalker prematurely transforming into Darth Vader without any proper motivation.
Cinematography is extremely shaky like an uncontrollable roller coaster ride. It’s difficult to tell what’s going on. Who’s the dimwit behind the camera, a Red Bull crazed Speedy Gonzalez?
I swear to god I’m totally not making this up. Two incompetent caretakers released Michael by unlocking his door so the two can rape (not making this up) a patient. Remember in the trailer how Michael escaped by breaking his handcuffs and beating the heck out of the orderlies like Jason Bourne? Who encouraged Rob to remove this very cool scene in favor of shock value? Oh wait, Harvey Weinstein co-produced it, which pretty much explains his background. Gonna have to Triple Down this con for his involvement!
Harvey “Jeffery Dahmer” Weinstein served as a co-producer. A reminder for you folks that a rapist produced the remake.
The Final Verdict: D, FOR DUNCE!
Rob Zombie’s Halloween is a misguided cluster fudge. John Carpenter confirmed he disliked the remake by calling Rob a “POS” for ruining Michael Myers’ origin story, he also complained that Tyler Mane was too tall & muscular to play the character, destroying Michael’s ambiguity whether or not if he’s human or nearly an unstoppable killing machine lacking empathy. I have to agree that John was right. If you’re a fan of the original, I’d say skip it alongside its sequel. The 1978 version is superb.