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Halloween (Rob Zombie, USA, 2007) February 28, 2009

Posted by Daniel Stephens in : Horror, 2000s, Film reviews , trackback

Dir. Rob Zombie; starring Malcolm McDowell, Scout Taylor-Compton, Danny Trejo, Brad Dourif

If there’s one thing you learn from watching Rob Zombie movies apart from what your insides look like, it’s: don’t watch Rob Zombie movies. Zombie is the picture postcard of MTV-generation trash that has spilled into the cinematic mainstream. His films are eye-candy to the uninitiated (or should that be uneducated), appealing largely, and unfortunately, to the mass teen market bred on quick-fixes, episodic action-orientated TV shows, and, seemingly, naked girls.

It’s a shame Zombie should turn his creative-eye to the Halloween franchise. It would appear that, even though the series hardly requires any more instalments, Hollywood (more precisely, the Weinsteins) is happy to tread well-worn ground in the hope of appealing to a ready-made audience. The series as a whole had already lost much of the shine made by John Carpenter. His Halloween film from 1978 was not only one of the greatest horror movies ever made, but a defining moment in horror movie lore. Some of the sequels were also entertaining in their own right, especially Jamie Lee Curtis’ return to scream-queen action in Halloween H20, but as more and more movies came out, Michael Myers became just another hokey anti-hero in the mould of Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees.

Why make another is a question for the marketers. Since there seemed little more to add to the continuing story, somewhere along the line Zombie must have had the thought: remake the classic original. What he didn’t take into consideration was: remaking a film known and loved by so many is almost… [READ MORE]

Comparing John Carpenter’s original Halloween with Rob Zombie’s remake

Aside from the great gulf in quality between John Carpenter’s classic 1978 slasher and Rob Zombie’s post-Scream back story-cum-remake, the new film couldn’t be more different from the original.

The original Halloween was a benchmark in horror. It set new standards that would become convention in movies that followed like Friday The 13th and A Nightmare On Elm Street. Heavily influenced by Bob Clark’s Black Christmas, Halloween became the trend-setter of slasher movie lore. Essentially, to remake Halloween – a classic film loved by so many – was an impossible task. It’s like trying to remake Citizen Kane or The Godfather: you’d be fighting a losing battle.

Halloween circa 2007 is more a quick-fix marketing ploy, intended to hit a ready-made audience than an artistic cinematic endeavour. Employing the limited talents of Rob Zombie – the pin-up of MTV generation trash – to not only write but direct the new film, indicated the studio (read: the Weinsteins) weren’t interested in remaking quality just inventing box office profit.

I suppose you can give the movie’s producers credit for providing viewers with something new. Every remake, after all, has to add something to up the ante (that’s why I’ve always ignored Gus Van Sant’s shot-for-shot remake of Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho). Halloween 07 adds back story to Michael Myers. Unfortunately… [READ MORE]


1. ghost of 82 - March 1, 2009

I hate this film with a passion and the news that Zombie is now making a sequel to it just further reinforces my contempt for much of what Hollywood is doing these days.

2. Daniel Stephens - March 2, 2009

I couldn’t believe it when I heard they were making a sequel to this turd..! Another waste of time.

3. ghost of 82 - March 3, 2009

Indeed, it’s all just very depressing, especially when you think how much trouble John Carpenter seems to have getting a directing job these days. Sometimes I think he’s looking at what Hollywood is doing and decides he just wants no part in any of it- and who can blame him?

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