Halloween Kills review: uninspired sequel leaves franchise dead

The disappointing sequel calls into question the future of the franchise. Universal / Blumhouse

It’s hard to go to the movies these days; they hardly seem to exist.

Instead, we have episodes, chapters of sagas that advance in perpetuity. James bond pining for a lover sent four movies earlier. Superheroes rumbling over ‘The Blip’. Avoided is the challenging process of tension and release, of structuring stories worth telling, of creating memorable moments. The filmmakers – mostly producers and marketers – simply use the lever mechanics to meet the shrinking expectations of the unlucky ones who trudged closer to the latest installment.

Halloween deaths
(.5 / 4 stars)
Directed by: David gordon green
Written by: Scott Teems, Danny McBride and David Gordon Green
Starring: Jamie Lee Curtis, Judy Greer, Andi Matichak, Anthony Michael Hall and Will Patton
Execution time: 105 minutes.

It is depressing to think about it and even more so to be a witness. Rarely will you see a product of this tragic operation more overwhelmingly empty than Halloween deaths, a film that so completely absorbs the vibrancy of John Carpenter and Debra Hill’s original vision that one would be tempted to call it a desecration if that didn’t make it sound more fun than it actually is.

Like a running sentence that needs punctuation, the new movie, the twelfth in the franchise that began in 1978, begins in the same seconds after the last one, the one in 2018. Hallowe’en, completed.

Before we can catch our breath, Officer Hawkins (Will Patton) is bleeding from a knife wound to the neck, a boy’s head is impaled on a wrought iron needle, and Laurie Strode (OG series Jamie Lee Curtis) is being, he was rushed to the hospital with a wound in the abdomen. Meanwhile, Michael Myers, having survived the fire in Laurie’s basement, is once again on the prowl for his old neighborhood. (He, over the course of the proceedings, will similarly survive numerous gun shots and knife throws, as well as a beating from a baseball bat and a pitchfork to his back.)

At a local bar, survivors of the original attacks, including a new Anthony Michael Hall who plays the grown-up version of the boy Laurie cared for so many years ago, start an informal support group that transforms into a bloodthirsty. mob as they learn of Michael’s latest rampage. In more capable hands, the idea of ​​Myers’ evil infecting a horde of revenge-minded citizens (a devastating assault on a local hospital brings shadows from January 6) might have been promising; landing on a movie deeply disinterested in ideas of any kind, it comes off as half.

Having to attend to all this furious action, the director David gordon green it must shed the tension-generating atmosphere that made the original films so scathing. As a result, a boogie man’s bland and unsubstantiated presentation of the ever-increasing body count is almost terrifying to watch a middle-aged weekend warrior tick off his to-do list at Home Depot. It doesn’t help that the movie’s pacing is as heavy and heavy as Myer’s slow, aging offensive lineman.

Written by Green, his Quick pineapple contributor Danny McBride and Scott Teems (2020 The quarry), the script is a collection of superficial aphorisms about evil that never dies and the nature of terror that seem ripped from a collection of gothic-themed Dixie cups. No one in the talented cast can overcome the deep void of the script, not even the great Judy Greer, who returns from the last film as Laurie’s daughter. A brilliant performer capable of elevating almost everything she wears, here Greer is dazzled by the Christmas sweater she wears in every scene.

Which leads us to saving grace in Hollywood kills, currently scheduled to be followed next October by Halloween ends (We Should Be So Lucky) – Jamie Leigh Curtis’s furiously unhinged take on the screen queen’s surviving guilt. She is wonderful in a scene, in which she injects herself with a pain reliever so she can join the gang that hunts her stalker.

Otherwise, Curtis is completely lost, spending most of the process on a hospital gurney recovering from the wounds acquired in the last movie. Hopefully, they will give it time to heal before taking it out for another round. If the series’ original ‘final girl’ is not in full force and unable to master every scene, all this effort, drained of her ability to surprise, engage, or even upset us, has no reason to keep coming back. from the grave. .

Observer reviews they are periodic evaluations of new and outstanding cinema.

'Halloween Kills' leaves the franchise cold and dead

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