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Review Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998): This is all they could come up with?

genre: horror, slasher, thriller

As you can see in the title, this part is a direct sequel to Halloween II which ignores every part made after. And that is perfectly fine. But this is all they could come up with?

A lot of reviewers keep saying how this part is ripping off Scream but that's not true. Atmosphere wise, maybe. But trope and plot wise, it fails to deliver the misdirection. It's there in some scenes. Only it's incredibly underwhelming. Especially since this film does seem to take its sweet time to get to the conclusion. This conclusion however fails to deliver. A fight between Michael Myers and Lauri Strode should be creative and epic.  Here it feels like an afterthought. Not once are you made to doubt whether The Shape is truly Michael Myers. Not even about Lauri's perception. Every time, in the beginning of the film, you simply know it's not Myers. So any tension and suspense that could have been is squashed. 

The murders themselves feel uninspired and lazy. None of the killings had impact, nor were they creative. I get that the originals were serious films but if one went the Scream route why not also incorporate comedy. The perfect actor for that is LL Cool J. In here, he plays a security guard / aspiring writer who keeps reading his stuff to the girlfriend over the phone. The setup seems funny, but it's not. One fun running gag could have been that Michael Myers keeps trying to kill him but keeps failing because LL Cool J has a subconscious survival system that kicks in whenever he is in danger. Of course, ultimately, Michael Myers would win eventually, but it would have offered something different and fun. 

There are some elements that could make it more fun if you are aware of them. Like the references to older films. For example, Psycho, one very obvious one and one less so. I liked these. They are a feast for the horror film fan. But they will be lost on the people who haven't seen these films or don't like the genre. Granted, if you don't like this genre, you shouldn't be watching this film in the first place.

I couldn't remember why I had no fun memories of watching this film the first time. But now, after having seen it, I know why. This film is pointless, boring and doesn't add anything new. Actually, one could argue that this film diminishes the message that Michael Myers is pure evil!

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