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*** This review may contain spoilers ***
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.