Halloween II Film Details
Overview: While Sheriff Brackett and Dr. Loomis hunt for Michael Myers, a traumatized Laurie is rushed to hospital, and the serial killer is not far behind her.
Tagline: The nightmare isn’t over!
Review: The sequel to John Carpenter’s “Halloween” doesn’t surpass the original. Freshman director Rick Rosenthal creates only a handful of suspenseful moments, but “Halloween 2” suffers from a weak script that was unfortunately penned by Carpenter and co-producer Hill. Michael Myers gets up and walks away after Dr. Loomis bangs off six shots into him. We never learn what makes Michael such an unstoppable demon. In “Halloween,” Michael embodied a supernatural evil, but in “Halloween 2” doesn’t develop his character. No matter how many times people pump bullets into the guy, he just doesn’t stay down for the count. The problem is Rosenthal’s comatose direction. This chiller generates a body count but it doesn’t generate horror. Instead, it becomes monotonous with Michael trudging into and out of scenes like a wraith. The action picks up where it left off in “Halloween.” Michael plunges into the yard, hard enough to leave an impression of his body, after Loomis opens fire on him. When Loomis goes to confirm his kill, he realizes to his horror that Michael has gotten up and vanished. Meanwhile, the paramedics haul Laurie off to the hospital. Futilely she pleads with them not to give her anything that will put her to sleep. Of course, the doctor ignores her request and administers an injection designed to knock her out. Although Laurie is deadly afraid of Michael and what he is capable of doing to her, “Halloween 2” doesn’t develop a strong sense of fear. The best scene finds a hospital guard investigating noises. When he opens a cabinet, an avalanche of items topples onto him. When he turns around, Michael is there waiting for him. Earlier, the guard had spotted blood in a trash dumpster and a shrieking black cat flew out at him. Everything else unfolds in a matter of fact fashion. Of course, “Halloween 2” is just a mindless horror movie, but the idiocy gets out of hand. The movie lacks a sense of humor, much less a sense of irony. Michael himself doesn’t speak, but he seems to know exactly what to do in every given situation and where to go. You cannot fool this bogyman. Sometimes, like in the hydro-therapy, you have to wonder if Carpenter and Hill aren’t going a bit off the deep end. I mean, Michael holds the poor nurse’s head under the scalding water, but the scorching water exerts no visible effect on him. When he casts the nurse aside, her face looks hideous. If this is supposed to show that Michael is invulnerable himself, then you have to wonder why Carpenter and Hill behave so inconsistently. Later, in the final confrontation in the hospital, Loomis blasts Michael multiple times again but the guy gets back up. Finally, when Laurie—who shouldn’t even be able to climb out of bed—blows Michael’s eyeballs out, the guy begins to behave like he is mortal. Clearly, Loomis should have shot Michael’s feet to ribbons so that he couldn’t walk. Imagine how much blood that this guy has lost after being shot—twelve times—but he displays virtually no signs of slowing down. Michael Myers is the equivalent of a Steven Seagal hero. He is indestructible until Loomis sacrifices his own life in the hospital and incinerates him. The end credits show us Michael burning to a crisp. The other thing that bothered me about this mute murderer who escaped from the asylum is his innovative ways of killing people. He stabs a surgeon in the eyeball with a pair of scissors. He buries a claw hammer into the guard’s head. He drains the blood from a nurse. He guts another nurse on a scalpel and then hoists her so high in the air that her shoes fall out. Michael acts like he is a scenarist’s puppet, killing people in imaginative ways rather than with his brute strength and knife. Another problem with “Halloween 2” is the way that Rosenthal force feeds us exposition. The entire scene in the back of the sheriff’s cruiser when the nurse informs Loomis that Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) is really Michael’s baby sister and all the stuff about the sealed records struck me as too contrived and obvious. Mind you, I know that this is supposed to be a different kind of horror movie with an impervious killer, but there is just no excitement. It looks slick when the nurse’s boyfriend is killed behind the marbled glass in the hydro-therapy and it is neat when the nurse believes that Michael is her boyfriend, but afterward things go flat with Michael drowning her. The idea that Michael can stroll around unnoticed and people can bump into him without recognizing him seems contradictory. We are never told why Michael decides to kill who he does and then ignores everybody else. “Halloween 2” does something different in that there are no teenagers getting naked and then dying at Michael’s hands. The idea that a hospital would be as deserted as the hospital in the movie seems far-fetched. Neither Carpenter & Hill nor Rosenthal make any of the victims look sympathetic. Michael seems far too clever to be doing what he gets away with. “Halloween 2” is predictable because we know Michael cannot be killed in an ordinary way, but it is also predictable because we know that his victims will die horribly but pose little threat to him. Altogether, “Halloween 2” has all the dramatic impact of a flat-line on a heart monitor. The dialogue is strictly expository with nothing in the way of memorable or quotable lines. Indeed, Michael here is such an inexorable source of evil that he is neither interesting nor intimidating. He emerges as a one-dimensional character that you don’t care about any more than you sympathizes his cardboard victims. “Halloween 2” qualifies as an exercise in nihilism.
Duration: 92 min
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