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Jeri Jacquin

Coming to theatres this Friday just in time for the spooky season from Miramax and writer/director David Gordon Green, Danny McBride and Jeff Fradley from the characters created by John Carpenter and Debra Hill is the return of HALLOWEEN.

It has been forty years since Lorie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) has had to deal with the likes of Michael Meyers in Haddonfield. When two documentary filmmakers come knocking on her door to ask about the night all that long ago, she gives her opinion and throws them out of her fortress laden house.

Strode has been living a secluded life much to the dismay of daughter Karen (Judy Greer) who still holds a grudge about her childhood and granddaughter Allyson (Andi Matichak) who wants a relationship with her grandmother. The problem is Strode believes that a time will come when Michael will return.

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Her fears are actually being relocated to another facility and Dr. Sartain (Haluk Bilginer) isn’t happy about it at all. When other patients along with Michael are loaded onto the bus, the good doctor makes it clear that he will see his patient checked into the new facility. Sheriff Frank Hawkins (Will Patton) knows about the transfer and sees how it is affecting Strode.

When the bus mysteriously crashes, the carnage begins immediately as Michael makes his way back to the place where it all began. Surviving the crash is Dr. Sartain who makes it very clear that Michael is the property of the state and can’t be harmed. One call after another leads Sheriff Hawkins to body after body with no sign of Michael.

Strode isn’t about to sit around and wait for something to happen and joins in the hunt to find the psycho killer. Granddaughter Allyson is at a high school party but after being upset by boyfriend Cameron (Dylan Arnold), she takes off towards home escorted by friend Oscar (Drew Scheid) and within moments she learns how cruel Michael can be.

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Strode gets daughter Karen and her husband Ray (Toby Huss) back to her fortress while the police try and locate Allyson. When everyone else is knocked down one by one, it is up to the women in the Strode family to come together and finish what was started over forty years ago.

And this time pour some gas on it!

Curtis as Lorie Strode jumps into character without missing a beat. It is ridiculous how good she jumped back in and how much I believed that this is how it would play out. Admit it – we all wondered where the character would go and now we get to see it for ourselves. Oh I’ll just say it – I just love Curtis as an actress and a person. Having listened to her speak about her career and embracing the success that the HALLOWEEN franchise brought her then and now is a testament to just how frakken cool she is.

Greer as Karen is a big of a downer for me in that she has totally moves away from understanding her mother. Instead she lies to her own daughter about communication and basically treats Mom Lorie like a whack-job. Of course she jumps on the whiny ‘oh my poor childhood’ band wagon but hey, suck it up chickie, your mother taught you to survive – remember that!

Matichak as Allyson is the screamer of the family apparently. Strode in her younger years didn’t scream as much as this kid does. I mean serious, stop running down the empty street screaming like a banshee – it’s like ringing the dinner bell for a starving lion for gawd’s sake. Other than that, you did a good job kid and if there is another HALLOWEEN I’m sure you’re on the menu again so keep those track shoes handy.

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Patton as Hawkins is a cop who remembers what happened forty years ago just as much as Strode does. Once the word is out that Meyers is on the loose, he doesn’t waste any time hitting the streets and doesn’t mind when Strode steps in with her loaded weapon to do what needs to be done. I’m a Patton fan in case anyone was curious about that.

Bilginer as Dr. Sartain is a doctor who needs a doctor. His agenda is pretty much the reason there are boards that take away your license – know that!

Shout out to the two gentlemen that brought us the scares both mentally and physically – James Jude Courtney and Nick Castle – thank you sirs for your valiant successful efforts in freaking us out forty years later. Well played sirs, well played.

Other cast include Rhian Reese as Dana Haines, Jefferson Hall as Aaron Korey, Virginia Gardner as Vicky, Miles Robbins as Dave, Jibrail Nantambu as Julian and, of course James Jude Courtney and Nick Castle as Michael Meyers.

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HALLOWEEN is an epic horror film that doesn’t hesitate to nod here and there to the original 1978 film that scared the living acorn candy out of most of us. Of course you can once again expect Michael Meyers to get creative in the way that he disposes of those who get in his way and this time age doesn’t seem to matter. He gives equal horror to all!

I jumped, hollered a bit, put my hand over my mouth, said ‘ewwwwwwww’ a lot, applauded, said ‘daaaaaaaaaaang’ many, many times and cheered. Lorie Strode and family had to make a few sacrifices but darn it if Michael doesn’t make them all work for ever second of survival.

After the film I can honestly tell you that everyone, and I mean everyone at the screening was talking excitedly about the film. Look, this isn’t rocket science but it’s enough rocket fuel to make those who remember 1978 happy and horror fans giddy to once again remember why we freak out seeing rubber Shatner masks coming our way.

This is a fun, spine chilling film that is a bloody run down memory lane and I can’t wait to see it again – with my hands off my face this next time!

In the end – believe in the Boogie-man!

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