In 1978, audiences were frightened by the new horror film everyone was talking about, “Halloween”. They were then shown more of that terrifying night in 1981 with “Halloween II.” In 1988, the infamous killer returned for another outing in “Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers.” Although all three of these films were scary, had characters the audience cared about and presented a terrifying Michael Myers, these elements were missing from the awful “Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers”.
“Halloween 5” picks up where “Halloween 4″ left off with the Haddonfield Police shooting Michael into a mineshaft. Instead of returning the audience to the house where Jamie stabs her stepmother, we are shown a little bit more of what happened once Michael met his alleged fate. The police officers threw dynamite into the mineshaft. Surprisingly, Michael makes it out before it exploded. He then falls into a river and is saved by a man who lives in a nearby house. Michael passes out on the floor and takes a one year nap from reality.
One year has gone by and little Jamie is in a clinic for stabbing her stepmother. Little Jamie has not said a word since that Halloween night in 1988! Also, she can now view Michael’s every move due to touching his hand in the conclusion of “Halloween 4″ (don’t ask!). Michael wakes up from his year sleep and decides to go “trick or treating” once again!
This Halloween film is missing so much that made the previous installments special. “Halloween 4″ successfully established a loving relationship between Jamie and her stepsister, Rachel. Both of these characters were developed so well, it was inevitable audiences would care for them.
*SPOILER BEGINS* In “Halloween 5″, we are given one scene between Jamie and Rachel. Approximately ten more minutes into the film, Michael murders Rachel. One of the main elements which made “Halloween 4″ better than most horror films is quickly destroyed in the first act of this film. Although this can never be changed, I’m glad Moustapha Akkad spoke about his regrets on killing Rachel off so early in the film.*SPOILER ENDS*
We are then introduced to a new batch of characters, mainly Rachel’s close friends. Every one of the characters are underdeveloped, uninteresting and quite honestly, very annoying. None of them serve a purpose in furthering the story this time around. They seem to be thrown into the middle of this fiasco for a few unsatisfying reasons…to look clueless, have sex and be murdered. The film also introduces two dopey police officers as the comic relief…but I didn’t find myself laughing at all!
There are a couple of twists in this film, which open doors for more sequels. But I found the revelations disappointing as they ruined my overall perception of the previous installments. *SPOILER BEGINS* The fact Michael Myers was a killer who murdered his victims…ALONE…made him more terrifying. Now, we are introduced to a man in black clothing, who has been helping Michael. The introduction of this character not only raised many questions, but now makes Michael seem weak and not as scary as he was first perceived. Was this man helping him escape all of the other times or was this Michael’s first call for help? *SPOILER ENDS*
One of my pet peeves with films is continuity. “Halloween 5″ raised many continuity questions; Why is it when Jamie stabbed her mother in the ending of “Halloween 4″, she looked like an evil child…but in this film she has all of a sudden gone silent and is now a victim? Why is it the Myers’ house has grown tremendously since “Halloween” and “Halloween II”? Wasn’t Michael burned to death in “Halloween II”? Then why is it his face looked perfect when he took off his mask in this film? I guess there are some things we were never meant to know!
Donald Pleasance (Dr. Loomis) and Ellie Cornell (Rachel Carruthers) give solid performances this time around. But this film belongs to Danielle Harris (Jamie Lloyd) as her portrayal as a mentally unstable child is superb. Harris showed much depth and strength for her age in this film, given the fact of what her character encountered in the previous entry and her new powers (don’t ask!) in this installment. It was a shame she exited the Halloween franchise after part 5. As for the new actors, their acting was mediocre at best and they were definitely not up to par with the three aforementioned actors.
Dominique Othenin Girard did a horrible job directing this film. Was this his first directing job? He had no idea whatsoever on how to build suspense. The last time I checked, the audience was supposed to be frightened as to where the killer would be hiding. Here, the director showed the audience Michael’s point of view in just about every scene he is in, which leaves the audience with nothing to think about regarding where he is hiding and pretty much destroys any hope of suspense build up. I thought this was a horror film. I might have jumped once or twice, but this film was far from being scary or suspenseful.
Overall, “Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers” is the weakest installment of the franchise. There were practically no scares, no suspense and no characters to care about. Donald Pleasance and Danielle Harris did all they could to save this film…but it wasn’t enough. I would recommend this film if you are a Halloween fan, just to see the beginning of the end of this franchise