H2: Halloween II (2009) Movie Review

39 Comments

IRS auditors and repo men have encountered cheerier faces than those seen leaving a screening of Rob Zombie’s latest magnum opus. Where is Michael Myers, and what has Zombie done with him? Instead of a horror icon, we’re given a shambling hulk who looks like a homeless man with a pituitary problem.

“Halloween II” picks up just after Laurie Strode blasted Myers point blank in the face. Found covering in blood and wandering dazed on the road, she’s taken to the hospital. In a reverent nod to the original sequel, Michael Myers reappears to wreck bloody havoc upon the nursing staff–then on the parking lot attendant when he runs out of nurses. But in a flash it turns out to be only one of Laurie’s nightmares; two years have elapsed and she’s gone from being a good girl to looking like she buys her outfits from vendors at rock concerts. She’s in therapy, haunted by Myers and the death of her parents; her therapist must have been working wonders since she works at a beatnik bookstore and has a mouth an ocean of Scope wouldn’t wash out.

Michael Myers has been busy as well. Despite being presumed dead, he’s apparently taken advice from Henry David Thoreau and living in an abandon farm in the woods. Now sporting a mountain man beard and doing God could only guess what to occupy his time, he gets a call to action. It seems ever since his mother died, she’s appeared in visions leading a white horse imploring him to kill Laurie so the family can be reunited. The past two years have now been kind to Dr. Loomis, he’s turned into a media whore in order to promote his new book on Myers no matter whose wounds are reopened.

The inevitable happens and Michael Myers is back in action, intent on slaying Laurie and warming up by leaving a gory trail in his wake. Laurie reads Dr. Loomis’ book, and learns something that she could really do without knowing; meanwhile said author finally comes to the realization his behavior has been, to put it kindly, wretched. All three paths are on a collision course that will end in a deserted shack. Only one will walk out, but will never be the same.

If there are any therapistist looking for some high profile pro bono work, Rob Zombie would be an ideal candidate. His insane fixation with white trash culture was tolerable in his first two films and his “Halloween” remake, but now its’ simply become tiresome and at times repellant. A scene in which two ambulance drivers discuss necrophillia goes on way too long, as if Zombie was trying to convince eHarmony to add a new dating category. With any Rob Zombie film there’s the requisite past their prime players showing up for one last film that’ll get theatrical release, a Felliniesque parade of faded stars from the 70s and 80s there to snag a paycheck even though they serve no purpose to the film. Weird Al Yankovic, Margot Kidder, Howard Hesseman….they’re all in the this film for roughly 3 or 4 minutes. Naturally, you can’t have a Rob Zombie film without Sheri Moon-Zombie, once again playing Michael’s mother. Since’s she died in the previous film, she appears now as an apparition leading the Lone Ranger’s horse around and imploring Myers to kill a sibling. While she tries to look cold but etherally beautiful, she only succeeds in looking like the understudy to the White Witch from “Chronicles of Narnia”.

While Rob Zombie may have failed as a writer, there’s a chance that he could succeed as a director. Those hope are dashed pretty quickly, while he can stage a few well crafted scenes, on the large he make the leap from helming a five minute sequence to being responsible for a full length feature film. With this being Zombie’s fourth film this is bordering on inexcusable. With him planning on remaking “The Blob”, it verges on criminal.

But what is even worse is Zombie’s treatment of Myers. For practically all of Michael Myer’s return to Haddonfield, he shambles around wearing an old parka with the hood up. Since his mask is mainly obscured, the killer ceases to be the iconic Michael Myers; this is a massive problem since everyone in the theater came to see Michael Myers. If we wanted to see a big guy in a hooded parka, we could go to the park after dark and see one for free–or at least for a dollar if he asked for one. Hasn’t anyone learned from the debacle of 1998′s “Godzilla”, that you don’t re-imagine an icon? It’s bad enough we’ll have to suffer the sight of Dwayne Johnson as “The Tooth Fairy”, this this keeps up there’ll be a run on tranquilizers.

Malcolm McDowell and Brad Dourif give fine performances with the material they have, which isn’t much. Tyler Mane has little to do under a mask and hidden under a hood, but does have a spectacular moment near the film’s climax. Face to face with Laurie, both with knives, he gives her a pleading look to release him from an existence of constant butchery. The monster has a soul, and Mane finds it despite all Zombie does to hide it.

No doubt, Zombie will release a “director’s cut” on dvd, and everyone will suddenly have enormous respect for whoever responsible for the cutting. In the meanwhile, it has been announced that next summer will bring “Halloween 3D”. Hopefully, it’ll undo all Zombie’s damage, and do it right in your lap.

Rob Zombie (director) / Rob Zombie (screenplay)
CAST: Sheri Moon Zombie … Deborah Myers
Scout Taylor-Compton … Laurie Strode
Brad Dourif … Sheriff Lee Brackett
Caroline Williams … Dr. Maple
Malcolm McDowell … Dr. Samuel Loomis
Tyler Mane … Michael Myers


Buy H2: Halloween on DVD

Author: Joseph Savitski

Joseph is a contributing writer for BeyondHollywood.com and ScifiCool.com, where he critiques movies, television, and books. He lives in PA, and obsessively loves movies, books, and the New York Yankees.
  • harosa

    I dont know, I was sorely disappointed in this in that I actually liked Zombie’s take on Halloween, despite what he said about it being restrictive to him creatively(hillbilly asylum rape aside) and looked forward to him letting loose with his ideas. This felt more House of 1,000 Corpses chaotic as opposed to Devil’s Rejects focused. All i got out of it was Michael’s brutal ass killings and grunting which I liked as showing him being human and frustrated, and I know Zombie doesn’t want to go glamorous and funny on the killings but it becomes ridiculous when it looks like Myers is trying to stab the floor underneath the person he’s stabbing. By the end I laughed at how Loomis seemed to teleport from watching the siege on tv to the sheriff’s side. And Weird Al’s cameo was hilarious.

    • last

      you’re a fucking idiot!

  • harosa

    I dont know, I was sorely disappointed in this in that I actually liked Zombie’s take on Halloween, despite what he said about it being restrictive to him creatively(hillbilly asylum rape aside) and looked forward to him letting loose with his ideas. This felt more House of 1,000 Corpses chaotic as opposed to Devil’s Rejects focused. All i got out of it was Michael’s brutal ass killings and grunting which I liked as showing him being human and frustrated, and I know Zombie doesn’t want to go glamorous and funny on the killings but it becomes ridiculous when it looks like Myers is trying to stab the floor underneath the person he’s stabbing. By the end I laughed at how Loomis seemed to teleport from watching the siege on tv to the sheriff’s side. And Weird Al’s cameo was hilarious.

    • last

      you’re a fucking idiot!

  • http://www.beyondhollywood.com/h2-halloween-ii-2009-movie-review/ Kati Leggett

    I don’t really like horror movies at all. But I have see that Hallowenn movies and I have to say that I was disappointes too.

  • http://www.beyondhollywood.com/h2-halloween-ii-2009-movie-review/ Kati Leggett

    I don’t really like horror movies at all. But I have see that Hallowenn movies and I have to say that I was disappointes too.

  • Adrian

    Anyone seen that used video, blood on my hands? kind of reminds me of the movie in a bloody, gory kind of way hahaha. check it out on their myspace: http://vids.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=vids.individual&videoid=61130701

  • Adrian

    Anyone seen that used video, blood on my hands? kind of reminds me of the movie in a bloody, gory kind of way hahaha. check it out on their myspace: http://vids.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=vids.individual&videoid=61130701

  • http://beyondhollywood.com/ Marc

    I don’t know what’s wrong with everyone and why this movie is geting such bad reviews. Ive been a huge fan of michael myers films since i was 5 years old, and i have to say i love this movie. Give zombie a break. Because he didnt make an original structured, cheesy, omg i fell and cant get up horror film, everyones going into a critical rampage. I liked Michael Myer’s journey back to find laurie, I especially loved Sherri Moon Zombie’s role in the movie as the apparition, it connects the audience to michael and what he’s seeing and why he’s doing this. In the old movies, Myers had no reason, we as viewers just assumed that he wanted to kill his family and that’s it, but now becasue zombie actually gives us a reason for michales journey, people are caught off guard and hate it. People look way too into the fact that he doesnt have his mask on for a good portion of the movie. Im sorry, do you see tyler manes eyes when he looks at people without the mask? That too further inhances the understanding of his rage. I thought the film was infact brilliant. The way everything was peaced together i stood there in the theatre with my jaw dropped. ESPECIALLY THE ENDING. Come on she finally “kills him” tells him “I love you brother” (which by the way i loved that too) but yet she puts his mask on and walks out the barn. Just when you think all is going to be fine its not. I could go on forever on why this movie was great and more in depth but im not going too. I would have loved for Zombie to make a 3rd one but that’s completely out of the question because all this crap the critics and Dimension is giving him, it isn’t worth the agony and i agree with him.

    • Joseph Peter Savitski

      Marc, I wrote the aforementioned review, and wanted to write a response b/c you showed the passion for Michael Myers that I share. However, much of what we saw in H2 we’ve seen in previous films. The ending is almost the same as HALLOWEEN 4, and the Laurie’s final confrontation w/Michael is much like part 8, where she kisses him before dying. Why wasn’t the Sheri Moon apparition in the first one? Why is he seeing it NOW as well as seeing visions of himself as a child NOW?? Part 6 actually did explain why he killed, (especially the producer’s cut).I am glad you did enjoy the film and I do appreciate you writing such an indepth comment.

      • Dazza

        The reason the Sheri Moon apparition is not in the first one is because Michael Myers was shot in the head at the end of it. This is the cause of his “visions” in the second movie, he is missing a few pieces of brain.

    • last

      marc my words. You are without a doubt the man that zombie appeals to. the american idiot.

  • http://beyondhollywood.com Marc

    I don’t know what’s wrong with everyone and why this movie is geting such bad reviews. Ive been a huge fan of michael myers films since i was 5 years old, and i have to say i love this movie. Give zombie a break. Because he didnt make an original structured, cheesy, omg i fell and cant get up horror film, everyones going into a critical rampage. I liked Michael Myer’s journey back to find laurie, I especially loved Sherri Moon Zombie’s role in the movie as the apparition, it connects the audience to michael and what he’s seeing and why he’s doing this. In the old movies, Myers had no reason, we as viewers just assumed that he wanted to kill his family and that’s it, but now becasue zombie actually gives us a reason for michales journey, people are caught off guard and hate it. People look way too into the fact that he doesnt have his mask on for a good portion of the movie. Im sorry, do you see tyler manes eyes when he looks at people without the mask? That too further inhances the understanding of his rage. I thought the film was infact brilliant. The way everything was peaced together i stood there in the theatre with my jaw dropped. ESPECIALLY THE ENDING. Come on she finally “kills him” tells him “I love you brother” (which by the way i loved that too) but yet she puts his mask on and walks out the barn. Just when you think all is going to be fine its not. I could go on forever on why this movie was great and more in depth but im not going too. I would have loved for Zombie to make a 3rd one but that’s completely out of the question because all this crap the critics and Dimension is giving him, it isn’t worth the agony and i agree with him.

    • Joseph Peter Savitski

      Marc, I wrote the aforementioned review, and wanted to write a response b/c you showed the passion for Michael Myers that I share. However, much of what we saw in H2 we’ve seen in previous films. The ending is almost the same as HALLOWEEN 4, and the Laurie’s final confrontation w/Michael is much like part 8, where she kisses him before dying. Why wasn’t the Sheri Moon apparition in the first one? Why is he seeing it NOW as well as seeing visions of himself as a child NOW?? Part 6 actually did explain why he killed, (especially the producer’s cut).I am glad you did enjoy the film and I do appreciate you writing such an indepth comment.

      • Dazza

        The reason the Sheri Moon apparition is not in the first one is because Michael Myers was shot in the head at the end of it. This is the cause of his “visions” in the second movie, he is missing a few pieces of brain.

    • last

      marc my words. You are without a doubt the man that zombie appeals to. the american idiot.

  • http://myspace.com/bulletbreed JEFF

    The original Halloween 2 got panned by alot of critics and even some “fans”. I just saw the “remade”movie and sure there were parts I thought didn’t belong or should have differed, but all and all I enjoyed the film. Its a flippin sequel … even Airplane’s second film didn’t match the first!!!
    I will say there was more to this Halloween than even in the original. To some thats good and others bad. I’m not out to say you have to like this film but I did.

  • http://myspace.com/bulletbreed JEFF

    The original Halloween 2 got panned by alot of critics and even some “fans”. I just saw the “remade”movie and sure there were parts I thought didn’t belong or should have differed, but all and all I enjoyed the film. Its a flippin sequel … even Airplane’s second film didn’t match the first!!!
    I will say there was more to this Halloween than even in the original. To some thats good and others bad. I’m not out to say you have to like this film but I did.