We all know him as the sadistic, unemotional, and creepy psychopath Michael Myers, who was hellbent on stalking and murdering the residents of Haddonfield, Illinois along with his little sister, Laurie Strode. His quest for blood was chronicled in a total of eight films and a remake with its own sequel. Spanning over the course of 27 years, Michael Myers' body count has only increased since he first came on the horror movie scene. Below, I've decided to create a ranking of the "Halloween" films from best to worst. From the creepily suspenseful to the absurd, "Halloween" has seen its fair share of good films and total stinkers. Let me know your favorite "Halloween" films in the comments below!
1. Halloween (1978)
We were first introduced to Michael Myers back in 1978, when director John Carpenter crafted one of the most memorable slashers of all time. The film's subtle eeriness and haunting score added the overall sense of dread and terror felt throughout the film. I chose this one as my favorite "Halloween" film because it maintains the "less is more" approach. We don't need to see constant blood and guts to be scared of this movie. It's just the thought of a psycho stalking people that makes this film creepy enough. Not to mention, in this film, we were introduced to scream queen Jamie Lee Curtis as the psychopath's younger sister, Laurie Strode. Laurie would go on to face her murderous brother in three more films.
2. Halloween II (1981)
"Halloween II" takes place right after the events of the first film and continues on with our heroine Laurie (Jamie Lee Curtis) as she tries to escape her brother's wrath while stuck in a hospital. Donald Pleasance reprises his role as Dr. Loomis and tries to stop Michael. The thing I admire about this film is that it complements John Carpenter's original film and it feels like it belongs in the same universe. The body count is much higher this time around as Michael has a plethora of doctors, nurses, paramedics and security guards to kill.
3. Halloween: H20 (1998)
Taking place 20 years after the original film, after various other sequels, we finally go back to the Laurie Strode storyline. Laurie now works at a prep school that her son attends and still has horrible memories of the events that transpired in Haddonfield. But when Michael returns to kill her and any one who gets in her way, it is up to Laurie to end things once and for all.
The reason why I enjoy this movie so much is that as much as I enjoyed the other sequels, this one seemed like it had a better story. Plus, it was awesome to see Jamie Lee Curtis come back to face Michael Myers. Among Michael's new prospective victims were Josh Hartnett ("Pearl Harbor", Showtime's "Penny Dreadful"), LL Cool J (CBS' "NCIS: New Orleans"), and Michelle Williams ("Brokeback Mountain", TV's "Dawson's Creek").
The film seemed to up the ante when it came to blood and gore and it was no doubt a scary film. (WARNING: SPOILER ALERT) Who can forget the final scene when Laurie decapitated Michael's head with an axe? In my opinion, that would have been the perfect ending to the "Halloween" franchise, but that unfortunately would not be true.
4. Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988)
This film was an acceptable entry in the "Halloween" franchise. This time around, Michael goes after his niece, Jamie Lloyd (Danielle Harris). Her foster sister Rachel (Ellie Cornell) must now try to protect Jamie from her crazed uncle. It's dead bodies galore in this film that sees the return of Dr. Loomis (Donald Pleasance).
Full of some crazy death scenes, this fourth film showcases the talent of actress Danielle Harris. That poor kid goes through a lot of stuff in this film. Donald Pleasance is awesome as usual. Overall, with its gore and somewhat eerie atmosphere, this film isn't bad.
5. Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989)
This film continues the Jamie Lloyd storyline and finds Michael back once again out to kill another family member. Seriously, this guy has issues. The film, itself was good, but definitely had some upsetting moments. (WARNING: SPOILER ALERT) The most notable moment was the horrific death of Jamie's foster sister, Rachel (Ellie Cornell). That for me, was really unfortunate. To survive one movie only to die in the other was terrible.
Now...on to the next film...
6. Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers
Michael Myers strikes again! Unfortunately, this film isn't really on-par with the previous entries. Donald Pleasance kills it as usual as Dr. Loomis, but even he can't save this mediocre film. I admire the film's creepy atmosphere and inventive kills, but I just wish it had more to offer.
At least one good thing came out of it: we were introduced to actor Paul Rudd ("Ant-Man", "Knocked Up", "Clueless"). Here, Rudd plays Tommy Doyle, whom you may remember was one of the kids that Laurie Strode was babysitting in the first film.
7. Halloween: Resurrection (2002)
Where do I start? This crapfest was full of absurdity. The premise, itself was kind of lame. The plot revolves around a group of people chosen to participate in a reality series where they are tasked to search through Michael Myers' childhood home. Of course, things don't go as planned because I'm sure Michael doesn't take kindly to strangers in his home. Jamie Lee Curtis briefly reprises her role in this film. (WARNING: SPOILER ALERT) Unfortunately, this film does character Laurie Strode the disservice of killing her off within the first 20 minutes! Definitely a bit aggravating to say the least, it just seemed like a poor way to send her character off. In this film, it is revealed that Laurie did not kill her brother at the end of "Halloween: H20". Instead, she accidentally killed a paramedic who involuntarily switched outfits with Michael after he was attacked by him. Ultimately, Laurie was sent to some sort of mental institution for what she did. I like to pretend that this movie never happened and "Halloween: H20" was the final film in the franchise.
The only reason why this film is above "Halloween III: Season of the Witch" is because Michael Myers is in it.
Speaking of the third film...
8. Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1983)
This film is enjoyable, I'm not going to lie. It just needed Michael Myers. The concept was quite interesting and with talent like actor Tom Atkins in this film, it's a so-bad-it's-good kind of movie.
The film revolves around a man who sets out to stop an evil mask-making company that plans on killing lots of people.
Blood and gore commence, and believe me, there is no shortage of it. There's even some sort of robot-thing in it. It was kind of all over the place, but its part summed up to something not so bad. Still, as much as I despised "Halloween: Resurrection", I ranked it above this one just for the mere fact that our favorite homicidal maniac Michael Myers was nowhere to be seen. Maybe he was too busy planning the death of another family member?
9. Halloween (2007)
Now we move onto the 2007 remake. Director Rob Zombie, who's better known as the director of such macabre murder tales "House of 1,000 Corpses" and "The Devil's Rejects", packs on the blood and gore and heightens the brutality.
The plot is relatively the same as the original film: Dr. Loomis tries to stop Michael Myers' reign of terror.
This film was a step in the wrong direction for various reasons. Violence-wise, the movie delivered, offering a variety of harsh and grisly kills. What it didn't seem to get right was the background and story of Michael Myers. Zombie attempted to bring us an origin story to explain why Michael was the way that he was. That seemed to be the only deviation from the original film's premise. The origins are interesting yet seemed to be unnecessarily disturbing. It seemed like shock for mere shock value. Their seemed to be no good reason for it. I like being disturbed in a movie just as much as the next horror fan, but there has be a good-enough reason for it. Some people love this movie and some people hate it. I'm somewhere in between. I admire Rob Zombie's ambitions with this movie, but it seemed to be handled the wrong way. It lost the magic that the original film's have.
There were some good things about the film, though. Zombie managed to put together a great cast of genre actors. We had Malcolm McDowell ("A Clockwork Orange") playing Dr. Loomis very well, Danielle Harris ("Halloween 4 and 5") as Laurie Strode's best friend Annie Brackett, Brad Dourif ("Child's Play" series) as Sheriff Brackett, and brief appearance by Ken Foree ("George A. Romero's Dawn of the Dead").
10. Halloween II (2009)
Finally, the last of the bunch. The worst "Halloween" film to date would most definitely have to be director Rob Zombie's sequel to his remake. This time, we follow survivor Laurie Strode (Scout Taylor-Compton) as she struggles to maintain normalcy after the events of the remake. Michael returns for her in this film and Zombie retains his use of brutalized violence to shock the viewer.
This film wouldn't have been so bad if it weren't for the character of Laurie. In the remake, her character was tolerable, but in this film she is utterly annoying and seems to be in an emotional slump which makes her a total buzzkill every time she appears on screen.
I may get some flack for this, but I find Rob Zombie to be a skilled filmmaker. I highly recommend his latest film, "The Lords of Salem". It contains a vast amount of hauntingly beautiful cinematography that usually isn't seen in his films. "Halloween II", however, does not really showcase Zombie's talents. Yes, he's good at crafting bloody as hell horror films with no shortage of graphic content, but the way he goes about this sequel is unfortunate. It's hard to sympathize with our heroine Laurie in this film, and even the return of Malcolm McDowell as Dr. Loomis doesn't even seem to help this film.
That's my ranking of the "Halloween" films!
On a side note, I'd say that it's definitely safe to assume that the "Halloween" franchise isn't out of life yet as a third film is on its way very soon. Hopefully, with a change in director, the "Halloween" franchise can reclaim it's former glory and instead of being a total gorefest, it can actually be suspenseful and scary again.
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