Thursday, October 31, 2013

MR Halloween II (2009)

Movie: Halloween II aka Halloween II (2009) or simply H2
Directed by Rob Zombie
Release date 2009
Genre Slasher/Horror film
Country USA

Musician/director Rob Zombie said he originally only wanted to the original remake of John Carpenter's Halloween, but due to the immense success that followed he ended up coming back for a follow-up nonetheless.

Written, directed, and produced by Zombie, this sequel continues the further "adventures" of the serial killer slasher Michael Myers.

The movie had a very quick and short production.

Had to that numerous last minute rewrites and you get the idea of this like patchwork of a film.

You missed the remake? Worry not, the movie opens with a great chase opening scene and a recap.

Taking place right immediately where the previous episode left, we first get an opener that is not without reminding of the original Halloween sequel... then the movie takes a quick turn into something else not expected from the franchise...

Apparently Michael survived the previous film's climax - as per slasher rules.

Laurie Strode is rushed to the nearby Hospital after that night of terror, that unforgettable Halloween night in Haddonfield. Michael was unharmed and soon finds himself walking the Hospital and chasing Laurie in the corridors...

...Only it was all a dream. Left with a trauma, two years have since passed. And we find Michael Myers back. Turns out he has been killing random people and living as a homeless for a whole year.

Why was all this a dream!? How did Michael survive the first film after ending up dead in front of the police? We never get any proper answer to any of this. And why did Michael miss the "first year anniversary? Why wait on two years? No idea.. Probably just to catch on this film's release date. Killing random strangers and eating their dogs apparently.

Dr. Loomis has written a very successful book from that traumatic experience. Michael is still out there, never found.

We get some pretty weird dream sequences with a recast young Michael Myers and Sheri Moon Zombie as Michael’s mother, because it's a Zombie film and she's always in those even when her characters die.

Laurie is now living with her friend, both seem to have survived the first film pretty well actually.

The Loomis plot ends up not going anywhere.

Michael is back in town, killing more caricatures of random people. Popping up here and there wth plenty of T&A along the way.

In the end, Laurie stabs Michael both in the chest and in the face. So I guess that's it for NuMichael?

Laurie walks out the door with the mask on, which causes here to end up in a psychiatric ward.

The. End. 

While the first movie was all about Michael, this second episode is more focused on Laurie. Like in the original HII, there's a family aspect explored. Laurie learns her family ties to Michael, they're related. They're brother and sister. (remember that baby in the remake?)

H2 follow a pretty successful remake, despite some mixed opinions. But due to the many rewrites of the plot, it's like Rob Zombie wasn't sure what he wanted to make out of it.

It starts with the original Hospital setting from Halloween II... But after some characters introduction, development and dialogues, it all turns out to be just a dream!?

Since this doesn't lead anywhere, for the plot nor for Laurie, it simply takes too much screentime and wasted progression for the narrative.

Then we get a more classic "One Year Later" sequence, like the genre is used to a lot.

HII is 100% a Rob Zombie film... and yet, this doesn't feel like his movies either. When it's gore, it feels like a worthy entry in the slasher genre, but when the movie tries to be more psychological about its characters, it just falls short.

This is a Halloween in name only. At least, it's trying something different.. but all we are left with in the end us a pretty bland and bad movie.

All the mythos was reconstructed and reimagined in the first film... it's all left aside in this second entry. This is a "done-by-numbers" sequel. Trash just for the sake of being trash with a ton of clichés.

It's the same director & production crew yet the film fails to build up on anything from the first film.

Tyler Mane comes back as Michael Myers. A great impressive Michael, as hulking as ever although he is more of a hobo than his iconic self here. The rest of the cast is rounded up by the return of Scout Taylor-Compton as Laurie Strode, Malcolm McDowell as the old egomaniac Dr. Loomis, cult favorite Brad Dourif as Sheriff Bracket and the always lovely Danielle Harris as his rebelious daughter.

It's fun but pointless here, "Weird Al" Yankovic and Chris Hardwick (from the Nerdist channel!) has a cameo out of nowhere, just "because" I guess. It's easily the highlight of the entire movie for me, no doubt. In fact I'd just watch it and skip the entire rest if I were you.

The score was once again provided by Tyler Bates. As energetic as the first film, more of the same. Bates and Zombie tried to fit Carpenter's original theme song here and there.

Rob Zombie was to make HII his own vision.. now that's an understatement! The huge budget for such a simple small-scale gritty slasher was the first sign of trouble.

No wonder it got an awful reception at the time.

Overall, such a mixed bad. For such a long run time, it's probably not worth it at the end of the day.

The main  problem is that Zombie tried both making it a Halloween film and a Rob Zombie film. And while the same could be said of the previous film to some extend, at least that one mantained a good balance. Here? It's a disaster...

This went way too far from the original "The Shape" boogeyman Michael was originally known as.

The film also has the same problem as some of the original sequels, it spends most time explaining things and details, why Michael is what he is, etc. It makes for a dull backstory. Michael here isn't pure evil but just a "regular" psychopath from a broken home. Also it's a bit too out of character to see Micheal go all Jason Voorhees-violent in his kills and talking as an adult! Why? Was it really needed? It's more like Rob Zombie wanted to make a TCM or Friday the 13th film..but only had the rights to the Halloween series.

And believe me, this is nothing against M. Zombie, I personally enjoyed all of his original movies.

I read somewhere online once that it would be fun if Rob Zombie would remake Halloween 3 next.. And you know what? I actually really think it could actually be a fun idea to reimagine that idea (better than this one no doubt).

H2 ended concluding this rebooted series, and any plans for a third (or even 3D) episode have all but failed since then. Probably because of the impression this movie left in the mouth and because it would perhaps need a return of Zombie a third time to be able to bring a new clean state after part 2.

The would be-sequel simply titled Halloween 3D was originally planned for a Halloween 2012 release date.. but with no director attached or dropping out of the production and no concrete script on sight written to this day, the studios have since preferred to call it a day and let the series aside.

To this day there's no news or plans for a sequel.

I give it:
1.5 / 3 Necronomicons!

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