Halloween is now in theaters, after what seemed like the longest wait of all-time. Well, to me anyway. I very much enjoyed the film, especially after repeat viewings this week (check out my review here). They have also helped solidify some things that I thought after the first showing. From here on out: there be SPOILERS afoot.
Seriously, SPOILERS everywhere
Okay, so let’s start with the twist with Michael’s doctor, Dr. Sartain (Haluk Bilginer). After Officer Hawkins (Will Patton) runs Michael over with a car, he approaches Sartain tending to Michael…who proceeds to thrust a blade of some kind into Hawkins neck, killing him. He then puts on Michael’s mask for a second to “see what it feels like” and loads Michael into the back of the squad car with Allyson (Andi Matichak). He then talks about how he needs to study Michael “in the wild” as Loomis once did, and that there is just too much to still learn from Haddonfield’s least favorite son.
When I saw this the first time, it was so jarring that it took me a minute to wrap my head around it and it made me mad. It felt kind of lazy, but after thinking about what was said at the beginning of the film and how what we thought were throwaway lines about Michael being”taken better care of here” (referring to Smith’s Grove), and how over 50 specialists have all been there to study Michael and only Loomis wanted him dead, it made sense. Halloween has always had its fair amount of shall we say interesting twists, and this one is no different. When else would someone like Sartain get an opportunity like this? To see Michael openly killing, dying himself and getting back up again, only one goal and purpose. To see him destroy. I get it. Michael of course kills him anyway (by far the goriest death in the film), but it is a shame Hawkins had to perish too.
Let’s talk that showdown at the end of the film. So many homages to the first Halloween! The most obvious and fist-pumping one was when Michael threw Laurie (Jamie Lee Curtis) off the roof and she lands in the yard. Michael hears Allyson enter the home, and when he looks back, Laurie is nothing but an imprint in the grass. Awesome shot to mimic the ending of the classic. When Karen (Judy Greer) tricks Michael to shoot him, and Laurie appears out of the darkness (Happy Halloween, Michael!) to stab Michael and send him into the basement, my theater has lost its mind every time.
So, they trap Michael in Laurie’s basement/bunker/prison, set the house on fire (like, a LOT fire), and stow away in the bed of a passing truck. That final shot of Michael looking up through the bars is going to haunt me for weeks. “You think THIS is going to stop me?” his eyes say. And he is right. When we are shown the basement again, Michael is nowhere to be seen. Since this is Halloween we are talking about, clearly he survives somehow. But I want to discuss the last thing we see.
The last thing we see are the three Strode women in the back of the truck, as the camera pans down to the bloody knife Allyson is still clutching in her hand as we smash to the credits and more John Carpenter soundtrack goodness. This whole film, and what they have been stressing in the press leading up to it, is that this film is about trauma and how people respond and deal with it. What if Allyson’s brain is broken now, after seeing her friend die, her other friends dying, and Michael attack her family yet again? What if she goes a little mad, and she becomes a killer herself? No, not like the Jamie story line in Halloween 4/5 (she opened a psychic link by touching his hand? COME ON. People MISS this continuity? For the record I do like those films.) But it is extremely plausible that could happen, and it would make for an interesting sequel.
She could be the killer, and then Michael shows back up…
***END OF SPOILERS!
Anyway, that is how I saw it. What do YOU think? Did you enjoy that twist? Hate it? What about the last half hour, was it satisfying for you? What about that last shot, does it mean anything? Let us know below!
Halloween is now playing in theaters everywhere.