halloween | rob zombie | scout taylor-compton | malcolm mcdowell | tyler mane | michael myers | remake | slasher | united states
Director: Rob Zombie
Writer: Rob Zombie
Starring: Scout Taylor-Compton, Malcolm McDowell and Tyler Mane
This film begins on Halloween in Haddonfield, Illinois in 1990. We are in the home of a dysfunctional family. The mother is played by Sheri Moon Zombie. She is married to a drunk who is currently unable to work, played by William Forsythe. They are rude to each other and vulgar, even with a baby in the room. We then meet her other daughter, played by Hanna Hall. She comes down wearing hardly anything. The final member of this family is Michael Myers, as a boy played by Daeg Faerch. We see that he has a rat that he kills, claiming it died on its own. Forsythe is especially hard on him. Faerch constantly is wearing a clown mask around the house.
At school, he gets bullied in the bathroom. We learn that his mother is a stripper and a tussle ensues. The principal, played by Richard Lynch, enters. He breaks it up, but Faerch cusses at him. Zombie is called into the office, where they show her pictures of dead animals and a cat. They claim that Faerch has done it. On the way home, he gets his revenge on the boy who put his mother down by killing him in the woods with a tree branch.
Faerch wants to go trick or treating and Hall is supposed to take him. Her boyfriend shows up as Zombie is leaving instead. Faerch is forced to go out alone. When he returns though, he duct tapes Forsythe to his chair and then cuts his throat. He kills the boyfriend with a baseball bat and then stabs Hall to death. When Zombie comes home, Faerch is sitting outside with the baby.
The boy is sentenced to a mental institution. The doctor assigned to him is Malcolm McDowell. They develop a good relationship at first, but the longer he is in the there, the more restless he becomes. He creates a lot of masks to help him cope. He finally snaps when a nurse is putting him down and he kills her.
The film then shifts 15 years into the future. Michael has grown up to be monstrous and played by Tyler Mane. He hasn’t talked since that day and his mother committed suicide as well. When he was a boy, there was an orderly who treated him good, played by Danny Trejo. He is now getting ready to retire and is helping Lew Temple to take his place. Temple isn’t nice to any of the residents though.
One night Temple is with his cousin, played by Courtney Gains. They start off raping a new resident, but Temple gets the idea to take it to Mane’s room. They start to ruin his masks and he snaps. He kills all of them and goes on a rampage. Trejo comes in for his shift and runs into Mane. He doesn’t stop there and kills him as well.
McDowell had told Mane that he would no longer be his doctor, but that night he gets a call from Udo Kier and Clint Howard, the doctors who run the place. They tell him that he has escaped.
On his travels, Mane runs into Ken Foree. They are about the same size. They square off in the bathroom of a truck stop, with Foree being killed. Mane changes into his jumpsuit and boots. He continues on.
In Haddonfield we have Dee Wallace who is married to Pat Skipper. They have a daughter played by Taylor Scout-Compton. She is a good girl with some questionable friends. Her friends are played by Danielle Harris and Jenny Gregg Stewart. Stewart is vulgar and Harris is the daughter of the sheriff, who is played by Brad Douriff.
McDowell knows where Mane is going, but can he convince everyone else before it is too late? He goes back to his home and the killing starts again, starting with Stewart and her boyfriend. What is he after? What ever happened to his baby sister? Is she one of these young ladies? What will Mane do when he finds her?
I have to say that this is a pretty good remake. This one isn’t a true remake as Rob Zombie actually goes into the past to start this film and show us Michael Myers before he was a killer. We see that he has a troubled past, issue with animals and horrible family life. It is like McDowell states, he has the perfect storm to make him what he is. I think the story is faithful to the original, yet still does its own thing. It recreates old scenes, but also creates new ones which are good for a remake. I think the acting is good and the women are attractive which is also solid for a slasher film. The death scenes are also well done. Mane is a perfect Michael Myers as well with his size. I also love that Rob Zombie brings in all of these horror film icons to play parts in his films.
Now I do have some issues with this one though. First off, I think showing Michael Myers as a child makes him less scary as a man. He is huge, which is good, but the original series makes him into an unremorseful killer that was evil from the beginning. This one makes him human, but turned into a monster. I don’t find it realistic that Temple would do what he does in the hospital. I get that he is power hungry and when he has it, feels strong, but Mane is 6’9”. I don’t care what I have as a weapon, which would terrify me. This film also does have some things that are pretty much taken from the original. I know I gave it props for doing it, but I feel that some of it also hinders it as well.
With that said though, I would recommend giving this film a viewing. If you like the original, I feel this version does the original justice. Mane is perfect as Michael and McDowell as Samuel Loomis. The acting is good, the death scenes are as well and story adds something to the original. It does come with its issues, but not enough to ruin it. The women are also easy on the eyes. This film is worth at least a viewing.
My Rating: 7 out of 10