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Blumhouse Halloween: True Sequel or H20 Remake?

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We’ve been doing a lot of reporting on the upcoming Blumhouse sequel to John Carpenter’s original classic Halloween. So far we know that the new film will be co-written by Danny McBride and David Gordon Green, and on top of that, we heard a few months back that Jamie Lee Curtis will be returning to the series as her classic character Laurie Strode.

Not only that but we learned that in this new film, Laurie will have a daughter played by Judy Greer. We also know that the film will be a direct sequel to Carpenter’s original 1978 classic, and we know that the new film will change the ending of the original film. If only “slightly.”

It’s with all of this talk about the new film being the true sequel to the original Halloween, and the casting of Jamie Lee Curtis and Judy Greer, that a question pops up into my head; did everyone involved with this new film just forget about Halloween: H20?

I wouldn’t blame them if they did. But all perceived cynicism aside, let’s talk a bit about the upcoming Halloween (2018) and see if we can decipher if the new film will be the true heir apparent sequel to John Carpenter’s Halloween… Or merely a remake of Halloween: H20.

Let’s get to it, shall we?

First, I want to say that I’m excited about the new film. McBride has been dropping updates all over the place and his comments have rubbed me the right way, especially his recent comments about how the new film will return to the “tension and dread” of Carpenter’s film, and side-step the “violence and ultra-gore” of some of the other sequels.

Basically, I’m all in for McBride and Green’s Halloween. But why is no one mentioning Halloween: H20? Sure, McBride and Green’s intentions are pure enough, but didn’t we already get the “true sequel” to Halloween back in the 90’s? One that included the return of Jamie Lee Curtis, and her child. Yes, we did. And while H20 wasn’t terrible, what do the new filmmakers plan to do differently? What makes this more than a remake of a sequel?

For starters, it seems as if they are going to a more adult story this time around, which is interesting. Instead of casting a teenager (or a 30-year-old playing a teenager) like Josh Harnett in H20, this new film cast Judy Greer as the child of Laurie Strode. What this seems to indicate is that McBride and Green aren’t interested in making a straight slasher movie.

Instead of making Strode’s daughter a teenager – like they did in H20 – they are opening the door to more adult matters. H20 made Josh Harnett a younger character so they could cast a bunch of young hot teens as his friends, thus making a typical teen slasher out of the Halloween franchise. Blumhouse’s Halloween seems to be taking a more mature route.

Now I understand the reasoning for the teen casting of Josh Harnett in H20. It made sense for Jamie Lee Curtis’ age at the time. Sure, they could have cast someone a bit younger, or a bit older, but age was a factor in the casting and writing of H20. Same with this new Halloween.

Jamie Lee Curtis couldn’t really have a teenage child in this new entry, could she? I guess if it was an adoption and/or they changed the timeline to be a few decades earlier, sure. But Jamie Lee is, truthfully, old enough to have an adult daughter at this point. So let’s go with that, McBride and Green must have reasoned. Sounds good to me.

But how will this new plot work? Let’s look at the major clue we know thus far. The film will act as if none of the other sequels – including Halloween 2 – existed. And you want to know something interesting about that? This means in Blumhouse’s Halloween, Laurie Strode DOES NOT have to be Michael Myers’ sister. Crazy, I know, but stick with me here.

It was only in the sequel, written by Carpenter and Debra Hill, that we are given the twist that Michael and Laurie are brother and sister. This connection does not exist in the original film. Retroactively it makes sense sure; this is why Michel came back to Haddonfield, this is why he set out after Laurie. But the baseline fact is that if the rest of the Halloween movies NEVER existed – the Michael and Laurie sibling connection would NOT EXIST.

Sure it might be something Carpenter and Hill mentioned later in the years, and it would probably be the subject of many YouTube Fan Theory videos. But if there were John Carpenter’s Halloween and John Carpenter’s Halloween only, Laurie is merely another teenage girl in Michael’s path that Halloween night. Nothing more.

Maybe what McBride meant by “changing the ending of the original film slightly” might have to do with Laurie finding out that she was Michael Myers’ sister. This would get the twist back out there and back into canon without having to retread the hospital massacre from Halloween 2. Let’s say they do that. And then let’s say that they don’t…

Chances are they will. To remove the family connection from the Halloween series might be too much for some. That said, we’ll dive into what it could mean if Laurie and Michel aren’t related more in-depth below. But for now, let’s focus on the version where McBride and Green keep the family ties.

Let’s start at the beginning. Or the end, actually. The original film ends and now this new film will jump forward in time with Laurie now has an adult daughter played by Judy Greer. But why does Michael Myers, after all this time, choose this Halloween to return?

Maybe it is because – you guessed it – Judy Greer’s character is pregnant. Or maybe she just had a baby. Point is, Micheal has returned because of this new blood. Why didn’t he return when Judy Greer was born? I have no idea. Maybe he did. We’ll see.

But more than likely Judy Greer being pregnant or having a baby is going to be the crux of the new film’s plot. Maybe it will even go like this: her son is now the age Michael was when he killed Judith all those years ago. Ooooh, that sounds about right, right? This is a fresh idea. Sure the Jamie Lloyd arch trod this ground, but to have THE Laurie Strode in on the game of “will he or won’t he go bad?” is a killer premise.

To sidetrack a bit here, let me ask: Does Judy Greer know about her mother’s past? This is another issue. If she doesn’t, and Laurie changed her name following the events of that Halloween back in 1978, then we are treading on H20 remake territory again.

So let’s say to distance themselves, the new filmmakers decide to make Greer aware of what happened to her mother. This could make for some very interesting material. Greer growing up in a household with a famous final girl. Maybe Curtis became a minor celeb for her brush with death incarnate. Could be interesting.

Anyhow, this means Greer is aware of her mother’s past and she is aware of the connection she – and her child – have with the notorious Michel Myers. Her son, as of this Halloween, is Michael Myer’s age when he stabbed Judith to absolute death. And grandma is keeping a close eye on the boy…

Perhaps Grandma is watching too close. It’s making Greer nervous. And as Jamie Lee Curtis begins to fall further and further into the Polanski rabbit hole of “Is he or isn’t he?” she starts seeing signs of Michael’s return. He’s in the backyard, he’s in the bushes, he’s outside the windows. He is getting closer. Never moving. But always closer. But when Laurie investigates, he is always gone. Just like in the original. He’s a ghost. Poof.

But here we have the added element: what if Michael is just in Laurie’s imagination? Sure they could go the route that Laurie is Michael’s sister and thus could be turning evil herself. But this is a well played-out scenario. Let’s hope they only mention this in passing in the new film. Laurie and those close to her can be worried that the evil is dormant in herself, but let’s not dig too deep. We’ve been down this road before.

Instead, let’s focus on the theme of “What do we pass along to our children?” Can we, in fact, pass on crazy? Sure we can. How about evil? Possibly. How about hauntings? Brr… And just like any trait, maybe it can skip a generation. And thus Greer’s child could be the new evil incarnate.

This is a way the new film can side-step being merely a remake of Halloween: H20. But not the best way. Think about this: what if there isn’t the family connection in this new film? This I believe is what could make the film not only the true sequel to the original Carpenter classic but a fresh take on the Halloween franchise from the inside out. Here Michael Myers isn’t a slasher that stalks members of his family. Or his family home.

All of this motivation was planted in the sequels. Only the sequels gave motive to Myers. The original proved we don’t need Myers to have a motive. Don’t we agree that Michael Myers is the shark from Jaws, prowling the night, setting his sights on someone and then heading toward them with blind bloodlust is a much scarier idea than an older brother looking to murder members of his family?

Not that Michael Myers as the crazy older brother doesn’t work as a plot. It’s just that we have seen that version time and time again. In fact, every film in the series has been that. Other than the original classic. Other than, debatably, the only truly terrifying entry in the series. Sense the connection?

After all, adding the family element to the franchise is one of the major elements that negated the tension, dread and primal fear of the original film. The terror that it could happen to you. Michael Myers could be walking down your street right this minute. For no reason at all. Once we found out that Michael was after Laurie, and then later Jamie Lloyd, and then Laurie again in Rob Zombie’s films, we lost that bit of primal fear.

Subconsciously we all knew that as long as we didn’t have Michel Myers in our family tree we were now safe from his knife in the night. And as long as we checked the family histories of our friends, spouses, and neighbors while we were at it. After all, you don’t have to be related to Myers for him to super-kill you. Merely being in the same proximity to one of his relative is means for instant death as well.

But all jokes aside, you see what I’m getting at. By removing the family connection the film will be rewarded with the primal fear: It. Could. Happen. To. You. Twice. But what are the chances that Myers would find Jamie Lee again? Well, it’s not like it didn’t take him 40 f*cking years to do so, right?

And speaking of which, Michael Myers was, what, 21 when he went on his rampage back in 1978? So this new film taking place in 2018 (we assume) means that under the mask, Myers is now 61 years old… Interesting… I don’t quite know what to make of that, but considering Myers wears a mask all the time, imagining a 60-year-old man underneath is even creepier in my opinion.

But that’s not the point. Michael finds Laurie again because it is fate. It is Laurie’s destiny. No brother. Just blind, horrible luck and fate. Carpenter laid all of this out in the original film. Let me reset the scene for you. Laurie daydreams in class. We move slowly across the room towards her. She sits in the back of the classroom. In the background, an unseen adult (a teacher) drones on about fate. Let’s look at this a bit more in-depth.

The teacher says, “Fate caught up with several lives here. No matter what course of action Collin’s took, he was destined to his own fate. His own day of reckoning.” Creepy music begins. Laurie looks out the window and sees Michael for the first time. In the background, the teacher drones onward. “The idea is that destiny is a very real, concrete thing that every person has to deal with.” She then asks Laurie to elaborate.

“Costain wrote that fate was somehow only related to religion,” Laurie replies. “Whereas Samuels felt that fate was like a natural element, like Earth, air, fire, and water.” The teacher then finishes the scene off by saying, “Fate never changes.”  

That should be the new film’s tagline.

This is how I believe Blumhouse’s new Halloween film can be the true sequel to John Carpenter’s original Halloween, and not just a remake of Halloween: H20. Respectfully remove the family connection. Return Myers to the random great white shark he was in the original. Sure, the Laurie connection is a bit of a stretch, but Michael’s return was foreshowed in Carpenter’s original.

In the end, whichever direction McBride and Green choose to take their new Halloween movie, I have faith they will do it justice. Green is an utterly fantastic filmmaker and knows the art of the understated. Add a new/revisited score by John Carpenter himself, and here’s hoping Halloween (2018) is the true sequel we have all been waiting for.

Will Blumhouse’s Halloween be the true sequel to John Carpenter’s original film? Or merely a disguised remake of Halloween H20? What do you think? Let us know below!

Halloween hits theaters October 19, 2018.

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The Crow Reboot Begins Location Scouting

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Corin Hardy’s reboot of Alex Proyas’ The Crow has begun location scouting in Detroit and today we have some pics from the scout via director Corin Hardy.

Hardy posted the pics on Instagram saying: “I’ve waited half my life to visit Detroit & it was 100% raining. Which was beautifully fitting for my scout. But you know what they say…. #TheCrow

Come, everybody. All at once now: “It can’t rain all the time!

You can check out his posts below and then make sure to hit us up and let us know what you think in the comments below or on Facebook, Twitter, and/or Instagram!

The Crow Reborn is directed by Corin Hardy from a script he co-wrote with Jon Spaihts. Jason Momoa stars and the film is produced by Samuel Hadida, Kevin Misher and Ed Pressman.

Principal photography begins in early July 2018.

The Crow (1994) synopsis:

The night before his wedding, musician Eric Draven (Brandon Lee) and his fiancée are brutally murdered by members of a violent inner-city gang. On the anniversary of their death, Eric rises from the grave and assumes the gothic mantle of the Crow, a supernatural avenger. Tracking down the thugs responsible for the crimes and mercilessly murdering them, Eric eventually confronts head gangster Top Dollar to complete his macabre mission.

Kung Fu Kick. Detroit. 15.04.18

A post shared by Corin Hardy (@corinhardy) on

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Brennan Went To Film School

Brennan Went to Film School: The Surprisingly Inspiring Message in Nightmare on Elm Street 4

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“Brennan Went to Film School” is a column that proves that horror has just as much to say about the world as your average Oscar nominee. Probably more, if we’re being honest.

WARNING: THIS ARTICLE CONTAINS SPOILERS FOR A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 4: THE DREAM MASTER. READER DISCRETION IS ADVISED.

The Elm Street franchise has a reputation for going downhill after Freddy gets funny, with most people fearing to venture past the high-water mark of the third film, Dream Warriors. But if there’s one Freddy film that sticks in my craw and makes me think about it more than any other, it’s A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master.

Yes, the movie with the karate dude. The movie with the soul pizza. The movie that has multiple Dramarama needle drops. Let me explain.

If you’re not familiar, The Dream Master tells the story of Alice Johnson, as played by Lisa Wilcox, who is part of a new group of friends (there’s always a new group of friends) that surround the three survivors of the previous installment. She’s a sweet, shy girl who has a tendency for daydreaming in order to escape the mundane, awful realities of life with her abusive, alcoholic father.

When Freddy Krueger returns to continue his reign of terror (this involves a fire-pissing dog named Jason, don’t ask), Alice discovers that not only do people possess special powers in the dream world, but her particular power is to absorb the skills and abilities of her friends once they are killed. After they’re all dead, she becomes the Dream Master, the only person who has a chance of conquering Freddy once and for all. Or at least until they made three more sequels and a spin-off.

It might not seem like it at first, but Alice Johnson’s character arc is probably the most powerful in the franchise. In between the cockroach weight lifting and the time loops and the movie theater vortex is a genuinely powerful story of a young woman’s self-actualization in the face of trauma.

Alice starts the movie as a beaten-down, mousy wallflower who lets her more outgoing friends lead her thoughts and actions. In fact, she’s so bland and boring that you might even start to wonder why the movie even decided to have her as the protagonist. Her whole life seems to entail going to school, going to work at the local diner, and doing her best not to stand out.

But there’s one thing that already implies her potential to be a worthy adversary to the unstoppable dream demon: she already lives in a world of daydreams, so she and Freddy share the same domain. She’s only truly at home in the dream world, as it is the place that gives her the power to carry on with her day.

As the story progresses, we see Alice literally draw strength from her friends and eventually learn to cope with the hand she’s been dealt, until she is accomplished and powerful in her own right. Not only does she defeat Freddy, but she gains her own agency, fights back against her dad, and wins the heart of the hunky guy she’s been crushing on. It’s a radical, inspiring change worthy of any high school movie, even one where a man with a charred face drowns a kid in his own waterbed.

Now that’s all well and good, but there’s a visual metaphor at the center of this that drives everything home so powerfully that it’ll never detach its vise grip on my mind. In Alice’s room, she has a mirror that’s so covered with photos of her friends there’s hardly space to check the bags under her eyes. She has literally hidden herself behind the faces and personalities of those she loves.

But as they start to die off one by one, Alice removes their pictures from her mirror. Friend by friend, power by power, Freddy’s murder spree chips away the photo collage until all she’s left with is her own reflection. Once she has become complete and ready to face her demons on her own, she is finally able to look herself full in the face and find her own identity.

It’s a powerful image, and maybe the most subtle in director Renny Harlin’s entire career. And that’s why The Dream Master never strikes me as one of the worse entries of the franchise. Not only is it a fun, cheesy supernatural slasher, it’s an uplifting tale of a girl who deserves more finally learning to respect herself and using that very respect to change the world around her for the better. I think that’s a message we could all use, even if you have to dig a little bit to get it.


Brennan Klein is a writer and podcaster who talks horror movies every chance he gets. And when you’re talking to him about something else, he’s probably thinking about horror movies. On his blog, Popcorn Culture, he is running through reviews of every slasher film of the 1980’s, and on his podcast, Scream 101, he and a non-horror nerd co-host tackle horror reviews with a new sub-genre every month!


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Pacific Rim Uprising Hits Blu-ray This June

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As much as we covered the film, I didn’t see the new Pacific Rim movie in theaters. I figured I’d just hold out for the Blu-ray. And if you’re like me, then today we have some good news.

Steven S. DeKnight’s Pacific Rim Uprising arrives on Digital and the all-new digital movie app Movies Anywhere June 5th, as well as 4K Ultra HD, 3D Blu-ray, Blu-ray, DVD and On Demand June 19th.

You can check out the Blu-ray cover art to the right and the full list of special features below, and then make sure to hit us up and let us know what you think in the comments below or on FacebookTwitter, and/or Instagram!

The film is directed by Steven S. DeKnight and stars John Boyega, Scott Eastwood, Jing Tian, Cailee Spaeny, Rinko Kikuchi, Burn Gorman, and Charlie Day.

Bonus Features:

  • Deleted Scenes with Commentary by Director Steven S. DeKnight
  • Hall of Heroes – John Boyega takes us through the awesome weaponry and cutting-edge enhancements of the latest generation of Jaegers featured in the film.
  • Bridge to Uprising – The cast and crew discuss how the world of Pacific Rim has changed in the ten years since the events of the original film.
  • The Underworld of Uprising – Humanity won the Kaiju War, but every war has casualties. John Boyega and Steven S. DeKnight give a tour of the coastal “Relief Zones.”
  • Becoming Cadets – Step into the Shatterdome, and learn the grueling physical and mental preparation required of the young actors who portrayed the PPDC cadets.
  • Unexpected Villain – Learn the secret reason that turned one of the most beloved heroes of the original film into a villain obsessed with humanity’s destruction.
  • Next Level Jaegers – The cast and crew discuss the amazing technological advances of the Jaeger program in the years since the events of the original film.
  • I Am Scrapper – Actress Cailee Spaeny shares the backstory of Scrapper, Amara’s incredible self-built Jaeger, and its many unique abilities.
  • Going Mega – Filmmakers take us through the technical and creative challenges of creating the most deadly threat the Pan Pacific Defense Corp has ever faced: the Mega Kaiju!
  • Secrets of Shao – Meet the woman behind Shao Industries. Actress Tian Jing shares her insights on the enigmatic tech tycoon Liwen Shao.
  • Mako Returns – Actress Rinko Kikuchi and director Steven S. DeKnight explain the significance of Mako Mori’s return and her importance to the events of Pacific Rim Uprising.
  • Feature Commentary with Director Steven S. DeKnight

BUY IT HERE

Synopsis:

In Pacific Rim Uprising directed by Steven S. DeKnight, John Boyega (Star Wars: The Force Awakens) stars as the rebellious Jake Pentecost, a once-promising Jaeger pilot whose legendary father gave his life to secure humanity’s victory against the monstrous Kaiju. Jake has since abandoned his training only to become caught up in a criminal underworld. But when an even more unstoppable threat is unleashed to tear through our cities and bring the world to its knees, he is given one last chance to live up to his father’s legacy. Jake is joined by gifted rival pilot Lambert (The Fate of the Furious’ Scott Eastwood), 15-year-old Jaeger hacker Amara (newcomer Cailee Spaeny), returning veterans Charlie Day (“It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia”), Rinko Kikuchi (Pacific Rim), Burn Gorman (The Dark Knight Rises) and a talented crew of fiercely young cadets. The international cast also includes Tian Jing (Kong: Skull Island) and Adria Arjona. Rising up to become the most powerful defense force to ever walk the earth, they set course for a spectacular all-new adventure on a towering scale.

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