At long fucking last, they managed to make a sequel to a classic that doesn't suck balls (in a bad way, I mean).
I like Rob Zombie and his mastery of his own boutique poor white trash genre that he's carved out; loved House of 1,000 Corpses and Devil's Rejects. Both were disturbing and made you feel unclean afterwards sort of like me after Swinging Richards on the weekends (shut up). Okay, Tuesdays too.
But Zombie dropped the ball when he was given Halloween. I actually was looking forward to it due to his name being attached but he didn't white trash it up; in fact, aside from using some of the same actors (which actually got somewhat typecasted in the other two movies and felt like retreads in Halloween), there was no real Zombie signature to his version; it's as if he got in awe of the franchise and wanted to be respectful or something. Fuck that.
Now, having gone back to Carpenter they have returned to basics: each killing matters, they build up the victim somewhat first so it isn't just utterly meaningless, the doctor has a distrubing fascination that leaves you unsure how to feel about it, and the thing that most performers and performances forget in every genre: IT'S ALWAYS ABOUT HUMAN RELATIONSHIPS. That goes for everything from stand up comedy to pro wrestling to acting to singing; if you can't connect it to an EMOTION of some kind all you are left with is jokes, moves, tones, or dialogue. Who cares?
What is needed is CONNECTION and they pull that off in this one. You can understand grandma's obsession (Curtis once said she'd refuse to ever be seen on screen after a certain age because she hates to see herself looking old on screen; I guess she made the exception here since they made her so haggard that she looks younger IRL). You can understand the daughter's resentment. And most delicious of all: you DON'T understand Michael's killing urges. I mean their backstory is given a nod, but it doesn't become a psychological profile like Zombie's (of all people). Jesus Christ, JUST KILL. Stop trying to make everything relatable. If you have human emotion in the film, that's enough. I don't need a rationalization for every killer's every instinct. Maybe he's just a sick fuck. That makes him scarier. Sort of like Kane when he first arrived, before they overexplained everything. The unexplained conveys mystery and darkness and fear and an inability to extract sympathy. Fuck a hug.
And, again like is the case in other genres, they stuck with the basics, maintained tension, and relied on headlocks rather than dives. Patience both in the storytelling and the camera work and in the scenes added up to make this an enjoyable, solid installment. Finally.