Halloween offers a satisfying showdown between Michael Myers and Laurie Strode with the two meeting after 40 years. Currently available on Digital, you can own the Halloween 4K Ultra HD, Blu-ray, DVD, and watch it On Demand come January 15, 2019 (courtesy of Universal Pictures Home Entertainment).
I was provided a copy of the Halloween home release for review. The opinions are my own.
The first Halloween movie was released way back in 1978 and became a classic horror film. It was followed by a number of sequels which didn’t do the franchise much of a favor. So, I was glad when the true sequel to Halloween was released on October 19, 2018. Laurie deserved closure and the latest entry gave it to her.
Here’s the official synopsis:
Forty years after the events of 1978’s Halloween, Laurie Strode (Curtis) now lives in a heavily guarded home on the edge of Haddonfield, where she’s spent decades preparing for Michael’s potential return. After being locked up in an institution, Myers manages to escape when a bus transfer goes terribly wrong, leading to chaos in the same town he preyed on decades earlier. Laurie now faces a terrifying showdown when the deranged killer returns for her and her family – but this time, she’s ready for him.
Master of horror John Carpenter (Halloween (1978), The Thing) joins forces with director David Gordon Green (Joe, Pineapple Express) and producers Jason Blum (Blumhouse), Malek Akkad (Trancas International Films) and Bill Block (Miramax) for this follow up to Carpenter’s 1978 classic horror film. Halloween also includes a stellar cast including Judy Greer (Ant-Man and The Wasp, Jurassic World), Andi Matichak (“Underground”), Will Patton (Armageddon, The Punisher), and Virginia Gardner (Project Almanac, “Runaways”).
Halloween does its own thing to develop the 40-year-old legacy while making sure to pay homage to the entries which came before it. I liked getting to learn more about Michael Myers. I don’t know about you, but to me he came across as scarier than he did in the original. Director David Gordon Green made sure not to show us his full (unmasked) face, opting for quick shots and intense angles instead. We can tell Michael has grown old, but he is still an incredibly driven killer. This film is definitely the ‘Michael vs. Laurie’ show (and that’s how it should be). However, there was a scene near the end where I thought the narrative was going to change in a very interesting way, but then it didn’t. Maybe we will return to the tease in the sequel being developed? Who knows.
You can tell Green is a fan of the original. There are numerous visual similarities thrown in and I couldn’t help but smile when I noticed them throughout the 106 minutes runtime. The film kept the original score and I was impressed by how it still came across as scary in modern times.
As for Jamie Lee Curtis, she gave a wonderful performance as Laurie Strode. The way Laurie has been traumatized for decades and how her trauma affected two generations of her family felt real. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder or PTSD isn’t talked about enough in movies. So, I appreciated Halloween tackling such an issue.
My only gripe with Halloween is I would have liked Laurie to have a grandson instead of a granddaughter. It would have helped change things up narratively instead of showing Michael going after three women from the same family.
As for the Halloween home release, the front of the packaging has the main image while the back has a synopsis and details about extra features.
The video quality is crisp and clear, which is expected from 4K UHD and Blu-ray releases. While the difference between the 4K UHD and Blu-ray aren’t much, I did notice the environments, faces, and objects offering a bit more definition in 4K Ultra HD to the Blu-ray (1080p) resolution. There are a lot of scenes taking place at nighttime and the UHD presentation, along with the Blu-ray, worked well to make sure you could tell what was going on.
I didn’t experience any issues with the audio quality. Again, the reproduction of the original score is the true highlight!
As for the extra content, the Halloween 4K UHD disc contains all the supplements present on the Blu-ray. A Movies Anywhere digital copy code is included as well.
- Deleted/Extended Scenes (2160p, SDR, 12:35 total runtime): Included are Extended Shooting Range – Deleted Suicide Thoughts, Shower Mask Visit, Jog to a Hanging Dog, Allyson and Friends at School, Cameron and Cops Don’t Mix, Deluxe Banh Mi Cops, and Sartain and Hawkins Ride Along. The deleted scenes are kind of fun to watch, but you can tell why they met the chopping board during the editing process.
- Back in Haddonfield: Making Halloween (2160p, SDR, 6:05): This is an enjoyable (yet short) discussion of how the latest entry in the franchise pays respect to the original.
- The Original Scream Queen (2160p, SDR, 2:32): This is a quick exploration of Jamie Lee Curtis’ character Laurie Strode, comparing how she is in this film and how she was in the original.
- The Sound of Fear (2160p, SDR, 3:19): How Carpenter’s original score was used as the foundation for the sequel’s new music.
- Journey of the Mask (2160p, SDR, 2:33): A discussion about Micheal Myers iconic mask.
- The Legacy of Halloween (2160p, SDR, 4:24): Jamie Lee Curtis, John Carpenter, David Gordon Green, and Jason Blum offer a brief chat about making the latest entry, why the original still has fans, having Laurie Strode return, and more.
I would have loved for the extra features to include some audio commentary, but oh well.
All in all, Halloween is a very enjoyable installment in the long-running franchise. While Laurie Strode was able to protect her family from Michael, the film does give a hint he is pure evil and thus, possibly more than human. With a sequel in development, I am interested to see how Michael or his legacy continues to survive.
Halloween, produced on a reported budget of approximately $15 million, has gone on to gross more than $200 million. The home release is only going to add to the profits. You should pick up a copy to see Laurie and her family doing what they can to stop Michael’s killing spree.
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Farid has a Double Masters in Psychology and Biotechnology as well as an M.Phil in Molecular Genetics. He is the author of numerous books including Missing in Somerville, and The Game Master of Somerville. He gives us insight into comics, books, TV shows, anime/manga, video games, and movies.
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