Rob Zombie’s “Halloween II”: Trick or Treat?

I will start this post off by saying that I am one of the few horror fans out there that prefer Rob Zombie’s “Halloween” to John Carpenter’s “Halloween”. I know, it’s blasphemy and I will go down in horror hell for saying such a thing. But I personally love the back story that Zombie gave Michael and feel as though everything about the film (from the acting to the directing to use of music) was just about perfect. Everything about the film really worked for me and it was with appreciation that I approached the sequel. Going in, I had heard nothing but TERRIBLE things. I mean downright AWFUL comments. “One of the worst horror sequels ever made” and “Rob Zombie will burn in hell for what he has done to this series were some of the nicer comments. So is “Halloween II” really as awful as horror fans have made it out to be?

In a short flashback, Deborah Myers (Sheri Moon Zombie) visits her son, a young Michael Myers (Chase Wright Vanek), at Smith’s Grove Sanitarium. Deborah gives Michael a white horse statuette as a gift. Michael says that the horse reminds him of a dream he had of Deborah’s ghost, all dressed in white and leading a horse down the sanitarium halls toward Michael, telling him she was going to bring him home. Moving ahead fifteen years, after having shot an adult Michael (Tyler Mane), Laurie Strode (Scout Taylor-Compton) is found wandering around in a state of shock and covered in blood by Sheriff Brackett (Brad Dourif). Brackett takes Laurie to the emergency room. Meanwhile, the paramedics pick up the Sheriff’s daughter Annie (Danielle Harris) and Michael’s psychiatrist Dr. Loomis (Malcolm McDowell), who are still alive after having been attacked by Michael, and take them to the hospital. Presumed dead, Michael’s lifeless body is loaded into a separate ambulance. When the driver has a traffic accident Michael awakens and escapes the ambulance, walking toward a vision of Deborah dressed in white and leading a white horse.

Michael appears at the hospital, and begins murdering everyone he comes across on his way to Laurie. Trapped in a security outpost at the gate, Laurie watches as Michael tears through the walls with an axe, but just as he tries to kill her, Laurie wakes up from the dream. It is actually one year later and Laurie is now living with the Bracketts. Michael’s body has been missing since last Halloween—still presumed dead—and Laurie has been having recurring nightmares about the event. While Laurie deals with her trauma through therapy, Loomis has chosen to turn the event into an opportunity to write another book. Meanwhile, Michael has been having visions of Deborah’s ghost and a younger version of himself, who instructs him that with Halloween approaching it is time to bring Laurie home; so he sets off for Haddonfield.

I know that most horror fans seem to despise this movie but I find it to be a beautiful shot, misunderstood gem of a horror film. I admire Zombie for not doing a straight up remake of the original sequel and I like how you actually are able to see the emotional grief that the first travesty has caused its characters. We are able to see Laurie and Annie as real, flesh and blood characters that are each trying to deal with this travesty the only way that they know how. It’s not a perfect film (the horse imagery is out of place to say the least) but it is an ambitious film and that’s more than you can say about most horror movies today.

6 thoughts on “Rob Zombie’s “Halloween II”: Trick or Treat?

  1. I have grown to love Rob Zombie’s Halloween 2 almost as much as I loved the first one he did, his remake of Halloween. I’m not sure however if I would feel that way without Danielle Harris in the film as Annie Brackett, as I feel she completely stole the show in both films! I’ve never been so emotionally moved in a horror movie than I was during Annie’s death scene, and in the previous one, Annie’s first attack by Michael was the most intense and gut-wrenching scene in that film as I was scared out of my wits thinking she was going to be killed off since Annie dies in the original movie.

  2. Where to begin. This was not only the worst film of the franchise it was one of the worst movies ever made. Loomis character-awful, “new” Laurie-awful, Mike as a dirty hobo that sleeps, eats, takes off mask, talks, grunts-awful, the whitehorse mama myers crap-dumbest thing Ive ever seen, not using Halloween theme music-a absolute travesty. I liked his remake of the first one but this dung pile of a movie completely destroyed that. He either wrecked this on purpose because he didnt want to do a sequel or he ate a sheet of LSD while he was writing it. Anyone that liked this doesnt deserve to call themself a horror fan.

  3. Rob Zombie’s movies are actually deep, and they are full of great symbolism!

    I guess people don’t want to think while watching a horror movie, but to me, those are the best kind of horror movies!

    Rob Zombie is a great director, and I can’t wait to see what he will do with Lords of Salem!

  4. Couldn’t agree with you more. The Devil’s Rejects is one of my favorite horror films of the past decade. Zombie’s films may not be perfect but they are made with soul and passion that is missing from most horror films today.

  5. THANK YOU! Finally somebody agrees with me!

    Halloween II is without a doubt one of my favorites! Rob Zombie has proved that he knows what he wants, he knows his vision, he strives for it, and he doesn’t hold back! This and The Devil’s Rejects make Zombie my favorite director, and I honestly feel he doesn’t deserve so much hate.

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