starring Jamie Lee Curtis, Judy Greer, Andi Matichak, Anthony Michael Hall
written by Scott Teems & Danny McBride & David Gordon Green
directed by David Gordon Green
by Bill Chambers Depending on your perspective, Halloween Kills, David Gordon Green's follow-up to his 2018 Halloween, is the third Halloween II, or the second Halloween III, or the twelfth entry in a long-running serial with a compulsion to press the reset button. Though other horror franchises have splintered into manifold continuities (you'd need Ancestry.com to outline the various branches stemming from The Texas Chain Saw Massacre), Halloween is unique in that it's not (just) a cash cow getting milked to death by new content farmers--no, a fairly consistent chain of ownership has made a habit of calling a mulligan whenever the consensus is that they've strayed too far from the beaten path. After a failed bid to rebrand as an anthology with the John Carpenter-backed Halloween III: Season of the Witch, whose reputation has since been reclaimed, the series resurrected Michael Myers and his Ahab, Dr. Loomis, only to fly too close to the sun with Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers. Halloween H20 followed, and in bringing back Jamie Lee Curtis as Laurie Strode, Michael's sister, it wallpapered over the events of Halloweens III through VI. Then Halloween: Resurrection undid all of that movie's goodwill, so Rob Zombie wrote and directed a remake of the first film. Zombie returned for a sequel that was roundly rejected despite being the ne plus ultra of Halloween movies for the misfit fans like myself, and the unlikely team of Green and Danny McBride took the reins, making the somewhat unconventional decision to do a legacy sequel to Carpenter's 1978 original alone, again with Curtis but without the early retcon that Laurie and Michael are related.