Halloween (2007)

Horror
Scout Taylor-Compton, Malcolm McDowell, Tyler Mane, Brad Dourif
After being committed for 17 years, Michael Myers, now a grown man and still very dangerous, escapes from the mental institution (where he was committed as a 10 year old) and he immediately returns to Haddonfield, where he wants to find his baby sister, Laurie. Anyone who crosses his path is in mortal danger.
Rob Zombie doesn't bring many new ideas to the table in Halloween, making it another bloody disappointment for fans of the franchise.
  • 31 Aug 2007 Released:
  • 18 Dec 2007 DVD Release:
  • $58.2M Box office:

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Trailer:

Hack-o-ween, a terrifying experience1/10
I have always been a big fan of the Halloween series. I've seen every one, and even though some of the sequels are cheesy, I thought it was still a good watch. When I found out that Rob Zombie, supposedly one of the best new horror directors was making the next film, I was actually pretty psyched because I thought it may revive the series. But let me tell you. This is the not only the worst Halloween movie, this is in my top ten bottom movies. Rob Zombie completely misses the point of Michael Myers. Not knowing what makes him tick IS WHAT MAKES HIM SCARY! The original Halloween is frightening because the child Michael myers has NO REASON to kill his sister, he just does and never speaks another word. He's evil by nature, not by nurture. This plot line makes it seem more horrifying because its not personal, and the audience feels like it could happen to THEM! When I watch a horror movie, I don't want to see how the killer had a hard life, and really could of been a good guy. Why would a director make an audience sympathize with a serial killer? I can only see that succeeding in a dark comedy, but in a horror movie it just does not work.

Another problem with this movie is the gore. Gore can work in certain scenarios, but when you uses it excessively in a movie there are few cases when it makes the movie scary. In this "reimagining" not only are there unnecessary character deaths that destroy any sort of realism, but there is no creativity in the death scenes. Every time a girl got killed she was in the process of having sex or just finished having sex. By the third time you see a couple get murdered, I was like "Alright we get it, they're crazzzy teenagers having sex and they're gonna get killed!" I mean I know it's never been done before but it got to be old the third time. At some points I wondered if it was actually a snuff film.

The dialogue was some of the weakest I've ever heard, even for cheesy slasher films. And the sad part was, this film was trying so hard to be serious that it was hard to ignore. I know the dialogue in other Halloween's is rough but for a film that had so much hype, and was supposed to "reinvent" a legend, I'd expect a little more than immature lines about sex that are awkwardly delivered. I am a teenager and I know teenagers talk about sex, but nothing like that. This film had some of the weakest writing I have ever seen.

There are some good performances, particularly by Malcolm McDowell, who plays Dr. Loomis, but his part is profoundly damaged by the script, so even he looks foolish in the film. Brad Dourif also was good, but didn't have a lot of screen time. Other than that there were some good cameos(Danny Trejo, Ken Foree) but they're barely in it. Unfortunately, Rob Zombie confuses Michael myers with Jason and makes an 11 year old normally sized boy into a 26 year old 7 foot monster. Conveniently he gains amazing physical prowess staying in a mental hospital.

Avoid this movie at all costs. I actually paid my friend a couple dollars to stay to the end, because it was that bad. I was hoping it would get better it but it did not. I mean I tried to like this movie, but it was just so terrible. The movie wastes so much time trying to develop Michael myers, that it barely develops the victims that he stalks. You just don't care about the teenagers he kills because you barely know them when he catches up with them. It's basically a movie about a killer killing random people. Seriously, just rent the original and watch it again, it's cheaper and even if you've seen it a thousand times its better than this. Rob Zombie is a terrible writer, and a terrible director who likes to show off his wife. (Who's a stripper in this movie of course). He is a hack and is only acclaimed because some people think excessive violence is cool. I doubt there's many people scared by his techniques. I'm just trying to forget this movie ever existed, and no matter what anybody says, I plan to never see another rob zombie film again. I think the fact that Saw IV is premiering in October, and Halloween is coming out in August really should tell you how bad it is alone. Trust me though, even die hard Halloween fans, this is not worth a watch.
Way, WAY better than I expected9/10
I'm not a big fan of the recent trend of remaking all the classic horror films of the '70s and '80s, but I decided to go see the new "Halloween" anyway, if for no other reason than I'd never seen any of the original films in a theater. (That, and I figured they couldn't do much worse than the god-awful "Halloween: Resurrection", the most recent entry before this remake.) IMHO the original "Halloween" is one of the greatest horror films ever, and certainly the best "slasher" movie (unless you count Hitchcock's "Psycho", but that's another topic.) I really expected to be let down, even though I haven't seen any of Rob Zombie's other movies.

For the first five minutes, I thought, "Great, they took this classic American slasher flick and turned it into a white trash festival." But once Michael started talking (which he never does in the original film) something clicked, and I was hooked. The new film takes the Michael Meyers "mythos" (if you will) and fleshes it out, giving the audience a frightening insight to the true horror that exists all around us before eviscerating us with the shocks and gore we really paid to see.

The movie loses some of its momentum when it jumps to the present day, when too often it reverts back to simply restaging some of the trend-setting scenes from its predecessor - Laurie staring out the window at school and seeing the weirdo in the coveralls and the white mask staring at her, only to vanish seconds later. But hold on, friends - just when you think you know what's coming, the new "Halloween" veers off on its own course, and from then on all bets are off.

One of the most significant updates to the "Halloween" legend is the development of Dr. Loomis, the Van Helsing to Meyers' Dracula. The original Loomis (played memorably by the late Donald Pleasance, who kept returning for sequel after sequel despite his age and - in later years - ill health) was little more than John Carpenter's answer to Captain Ahab. Each film saw him trying to convince another group of skeptical law enforcement officers of the imminent slaughter, never to be believed until the bodies started piling up. The new film's Loomis, however, is a more complex character; he's not the selfless hero the old Loomis was, but he's not quite a villain either, as long as one can forgive him for giving up on Michael to turn his experiences into a cottage industry of "true crime" books and public speaking engagements. When Loomis and Michael are reunited later on, there's more going on then can be seen in a first viewing.

Zombie's "Halloween" succeeds on all fronts. It brings modern touches to a format that had long since fallen into cliche without changing it so much that it becomes unrecognizable. It manages to restore the menace and dread of the iconic Michael Meyers character in an era when masked psychopaths usually prompt the audience to laugh rather than gasp. Most importantly, it delivers the goods horror fans demand but includes enough depth and subtext to make it more than just cinematic junk food.

In short, I was pleasantly surprised with this new version of "Halloween". Like Zach Snyder's redo of "Dawn of the Dead", the 2007 "Halloween" could never replace its predecessor, but does make for a very admirable companion piece to a horror classic, blending the old and the new into an entertaining and thought-provoking fright film.
Rob Zombie, I am a forgiving person, but this is going to take a very long time2/10
OK, now my problem with Halloween(2007) is this is a film that DID NOT need to be remade. Halloween('70's) was absolutely perfect in every aspect, in my opinion, it's the scariest movie of all time. But when I heard that Rob Zombie was on to direct this movie, I actually thought for a minute there was a possibility this may be a good remake. I saw it this morning at the theater, I am in absolute disgust. Just it's not like he just re-made the movie into his own idea, no, he took some of John Carpenter's excellent ideas and just made them into crap. Now I'm separating this from the original, Halloween(2007) was actually by itself a bad film. Which really disappointed me since The Devil's Rejects was done so well, this was just a typical stupid unoriginal slasher movie. Now, Rob had a good idea where he developed Michael's character in the beginning, where we had a better idea on why he became Michael Myers. But after that, everything went downhill, because Rob just rushed all the other IMPORTANT characters, so they got no development what-so-ever.

Mike Myers is a tormented kid, his mom is a stripper, his step dad is an alcoholic jerk, his big sister treats him bad, and he is picked on at school. But he kills small animals as well, leading him to go onto bigger things, like humans. He massacres his family, excluding his mom and his baby sister, he is taken to a mental institution and escapes 15 years later and is going after Laurie, his baby sister who is now grown up and is preparing her and her friends for a night of hell.

The acting on the teenage girl's parts was just horrendous, like extremely bad, I was actually hoping for them to get killed, how sad was that? Laurie was just a whiny little priss, not at all likable like Jamie's performance, same with the other two girls, they couldn't live up to the other performances. These girls were just annoying, not likable at all, while the other actresses at least had that going for them and made them likable vicitims. But it just seemed like they wanted their 15 minutes or some kind of big break, because it didn't even take them 10 minutes to take their tops off. On a movie on it's own, it's just too unoriginal and I'm disappointed in Rob because I thought he was really improving. Comparison to the original Halloween, perhaps Rob should have read the tag line THE ONE, THE ONLY, HALLOWEEN, because this was a huge slap to John Carpenter's face on his brilliant classic.

2/10
Rob Zombie tries to give a monster a soul.4/10
On paper, a "Halloween" remake looked interesting. Zombie tries to go back to the character's origin and reinvent him - it's a recent trend in Hollywood ("Batman Begins," "Casino Royale," the upcoming "Incredible Hulk," etc.), so it's not quite surprising that Hollywood greenlit the project and it got the push it received.

But the problem that arises while doing this with "Halloween" is that it comes into conflict with the concept of Michael being purely evil. Although I can understand what Zombie was trying to do by exploring Michael's background, it contradicts the whole point of the original. By providing a reason and displaying a human character on screen, you give the character a soul - and despite what Zombie may claim, this does NOT make Michael scarier. It makes him an average movie serial killer: a guy with a messed up life as a kid who snaps one day and goes on a killing rampage.

Is it scary? No. Gory? Yes. Realistic? At first. And if it were a movie about a serial killer, it would work. But it's not. This is a movie about a monster, a soulless creature; a boogeyman, as per the original film. Monsters aren't scary when we know they're flesh and blood.

Carpenter had a way of framing the action in the original movie. Michael stalks Laurie in her hometown, but we never see any real flesh behind the mask, we never really see him moving around like a normal human being. But we do here. He stands in the middle of an open road, in front of three teenage girls walking home from school, and they all see him. He stands there for a few moments, then trudges away off-screen. We actually see him walk away, instead of just appearing and disappearing as he did in the original film. Which method is scarier? The answer is clear.

Zombie spends 40 minutes or so building up Michael's character before he escapes from the ward. We see him killing animals as a child (and torturing them, too), a stupid subplot with his mom as a stripper and a typical school bully, and a promiscuous sister. The sexual talk is frank and disgusting - the mom's boyfriend (husband?) is talking about how cute her daughter's butt is, and at this point in the film we're not sure whether he might even be the father. It's just shock for shock value. Zombie has a tendency of this - blunt violence and blunt dialogue combined - and in a film like this, it seems cheap and fake and unnecessary. The heavy emphasis placed on the swearing - and I mean this literally (as in, the actors place a noticeable emphasis on the profanity they use) is almost unintentionally funny. Zombie cast his wife in the role of Michael's mother, and she can't act at all.

Donald Pleasence got stuck with the most unfortunate lines from the original film, but we were willing to forgive bad dialogue because of how well-made the film was otherwise. Here, Malcolm McDowell gets the worst of two worlds: he gets to handle an under-characterization with bad, bad, BAD dialogue AND a generally weak film to boot. The sequences with McDowell's version of Loomis are all completely cliched - Zombie clearly writes his dialogue based on other films' dialogue. The "intimate" scenes at the mental ward between Loomis and Michael are awful. McDowell struggles with typicalities of the genre, such as the Dr. Who Wasted His Own Life By Devoting It To Someone Else's (he explains to Michael that his wife left him and he has no friends because of how involved he became with the case - and the dialogue itself is straight from any cop-vs.-killer flick). The recent film "Zodiac" had a similar theme of men losing their personal lives due to obsession over a murderer, but it was handled better. The whole Loomis character should have been dropped from the remake if all Zombie wanted to do with him was use him as a deus ex machina, by the way.

Overall, this feels like a redneck version of "Halloween," which is going to offend some people, but I can't think of any better way to describe it. It's trashy, vulgar, and silly - and hey, that's fine, if that's Rob Zombie's motif and he wants to make movies pandering towards that sort of audience. I have nothing against it, and I think it may work with some films - I can imagine him making a good re-do of "Natural Born Killers" (although I hope it never, never happens!).

However, when you're remaking an iconic, legendary, incredibly influential horror film - don't cheapen it by "reimagining" it with horror movie cliches and shock-value material. The very worst aspect of this remake is that it simply isn't scary at all - it's a typical slasher flick, a homicidal-man-on-a-rampage flick, which ironically is exactly what Zombie said he wanted to avoid.

The first film was eerie, spooky, and unnerving because Michael's motivations were cloudy and we weren't sure whether Laurie was right or wrong when she said he was the boogeyman. We only knew one thing: he wasn't entirely human.

But ever since that original movie, the filmmakers have attempted to keep expanding upon Michael's history: the second film developed a motivation for his killings (Laurie was his sister), the fourth offered more clues at his background, and now we come full circle with a complete remake of the original film.

Michael's true demonic core - the natural horror element of the series - is stripped bare and all that is left is a disturbed, abnormally tall redneck with greasy hair who hasn't showered in years wearing a silly mask going around killing people because he had an abusive family life as a child. Some things are better left unexplored.
A Gory Bastardization of a Horror Classic1/10
The basic problem with Rob Zombie's remake of the classic horror flick Halloween comes from its purpose. The only reason he should have even considered attempting such a feat is if he seriously felt he could service the film by giving it an update and improving some of its shortcomings that result from the tests of time. Sadly, Zombie not only does nothing to improve the film, he hacks and slashes away all of the mystique the original had and rips open brand new gory, messy, and pointless holes throughout.

The character of Michael Myers in the original film came from a fairly well-to-do suburban family, yet inexplicably turned out a rotten, merciless killing machine. It is pretty essential to Michael's "Boogeyman" persona that he appear as something almost supernatural, and certainly nothing the audience could ever sympathize with. Yet Zombie drags a newly fashioned back-story out for half of the movie, trying to give reasons for why Myers does what he does, stomping all over the mystery that surrounded the original character and struck fear into all members of the audience. It is also a major part of the character of Dr. Loomis that Michael be the impossible case study, one that even the most accomplished psychologist couldn't comprehend. Instead, Zombie (in typical fashion of his God-awful career) makes Michael the product of a run-down, white trash environment. Any movie-goer would find it difficult to not laugh at the ridiculous caricatures Michael's family members portray, if they were not already bored to death by Zombie's fetish with white trash, and his predictability as a director.

Zombie saw it fit to remove almost all of the classic scenes that made the original so memorable and replace them with blood-strewn bodies of naked women at every turn. I'm not sure who exactly thinks "porn + gore = horror", but I'll tell you that there is a major difference between a creepy, mysterious mask-wearing man chasing after a scared babysitter and popping out from behind every corner and one bashing in someone's head with a baseball bat repeatedly to no one's amusement. It's fine if some people in the world enjoy goriness every once in awhile, it's not fine if Hollywood directors begin to confuse this with horror. Repeated sadistic killings are not what scares an audience, they're what sickens them. Mystery, suspense, and the creepy aura of the unknown are what make up a good horror film, and the original Halloween is THE classic example of this. Also, as a side-note but something that needs to be mentioned, who the hell talks like Laurie and her two friends in this film? These three girls, the blonde friend in particular, converse as if high schoolers find it extremely cool to drop the f-bomb every other word and sound as annoyingly immature as possible. The entirety of the dialogue written for their parts suggests no one involved in the making of this film has any idea what teenage girls talk like, so one of them decided to make it up and make them all look like total fools. I had already given up on the film by this point, but it seriously made me and everyone I came with kind of concerned that a film could get all of the way through the editing process and into theaters with such odd dialogue that would actually cause us to look at each other with quizzical faces.

My one piece of advice to moviegoers everywhere is, instead of putting more of your hard-earned money into the pocket of a hack director like Zombie and fueling the fire of awful modern horror films and terrible remakes, stay at home, dim the lights, and watch the original classic to remind yourself of just what makes a horror movie tick, just how great movies of that genre once were, and just what it feels like to truly be scared - heck, that's exactly what I'm going to do to try and push this steaming pile out of my memory. It's bad when a horror movie comes out that's filled with lots of cheap gore, overused expletives, and pointless nudity, it's far worse when it's done as a remake of a classic. The only people this film will strike horror into the hearts of is fans of the original, and sadly this is not the type of horror they paid to see - they, like myself, will be absolutely horrified at just how bad the abomination of a remake that is Rob Zombie's Halloween truly is.