Halloween : 1, 2 & 3

I hadn’t watched the Halloween movie for the longest time. It was only in May of last year that I first got into this franchise after watching the Rob Zombie remake of Halloween and a couple of weeks later I watched the sequel he made. Zombie’s movies were ofcourse a tribute & remake of the original run of Halloween movies which started back in 1978 when director John Carpenter co-wrote & directed an independent slasher-horror film with the name Halloween.And the legend of Michael Myers was born!

On Halloween 1963, young Michael Myers, all of 6 years old puts on a mask and murders his older sister Judith, after she had sex with her boyfriend, by repeatedly stabbing at her naked self with a butcher knife. 15 years later, 25 year old Michael escapes from the mental institute he was committed to, steals a car and heads back to his hometown of Haddonfield, Illinois. There, now dressed in blue coveralls and a white mask, he stalks a high school student Laurie Strode. Laurie sees the strange figure staring at her from afar but her friends dismiss her concerns. Meanwhile psychiatrist Dr. Samuel Loomis figures out where Michael is and seeks the help of Haddonfield sheriff Leigh Brackett, the father of Laurie’s friend Annie, and the took begin to search for Michael in town. That night Michael kills Laurie’s friends Lynda, Annie and their boyfriends who had come to have sex with them. Laurie is attacked by Michael and hides with two small kids she and Annie were respectively babysitting. While hiding Laurie managed to stab Michael with a  lingering knitting needle but he doesn’t die and reappears in pursuit of her. Dr. Loomis sees Tommy and Lindsey running away from the house and suspects Michael could be inside. Back inside, Michael gets up and tries to strangle Laurie, but Dr. Loomis arrives in time to save her and shoot Michael in the head, then five more times in the chest for a total of six shots. Michael falls from the second-story patio onto the lawn below. However Michael is missing when Loomis looks for the body.

3 years later the first sequel Halloween II is released, this time directed by Rick Rosenthal, and written and produced by John Carpenter and Debra Hill. It picks up directly where the first movie ends. Laurie is sent to the hospital due to the injuries inflicted by Michael Myers while Dr. Loomis attempts to track him down after he had gone missing after being shot six times and falling from a second story window. Michael hides from the police car and steals a knife from a kitchen and kills a neighbourhood girl. He learns that Laurie is taken to Haddonfield Memorial hospital via news reports and heads there. Laurie, having been sedated, is in a semi-conscious state most of the time, and her friend Jimmy looks out for her. Dr. Loomis and Sheriff Brackett continue to search for Michael, only for an oncoming speeding police car to accidentally hit and kill Ben Tramer (who was dressed for Halloween wearing a mask similar to Michael’s), in the process.

Michael reaches the hospital and cuts the phone line and kills the security guard. He begins killing off the hospital staff by whatever means come available, strangling one of the ambulance attendants named Budd and drowning his nurse companion Karen, who were naked, in a scalding hot tub. He kills the head physician Dr. Mixter and a nurse named Janet by injecting air into their eye sockets via needles. Loomis follows clues connecting Michael to Samhain and the occult which might explain his seeming indestructibility but is approached by a lady from the institute saying that he is ordered to head back there with a National Guard escort. She also tells him that Laurie is the younger sister of Michael, who was adopted by the Strode family. Realizing why Laurie is Michael’s target, Loomis fires warning shots and forces the guard to head back to the hospital. The last nurse, Jill, is killed by Michael who stabs her in the back with a scalpel. Laurie escapes to the parking area but finds all the cars with flat tires Loomis, the nurse and trooper arrive and just barely save Laurie from being killed by Michael. The nurse goes to the police car to call for help, Michael cuts the trooper’s throat, and Loomis and Laurie flee into the operating rooms. Laurie shoots out both Michael’s eyes, causing him to blindly swing at them. Loomis fills the room with ether and oxygen gas using the distraction to allow Laurie to escape. Then he ignites it, blowing up the surgery room in the process and evidently immolating them both in the fire. As day breaks Laurie is taken to another hospital along with Jimmy who also escaped being killed by Michael.

Halloween III : Season Of The Witch has got nothing to do storywise with the rest of the franchise. It is the only movie to not feature Michael or Laurie. Instead it has a standalone story set on Halloween & witchcraft being a central theme. It is the first film to be directed and written by Tommy Lee Wallace. John Carpenter and Debra Hill, the creators of Halloween, return as producers. Harry Grimbridge, a shop owner, escaping from 3 suited me in a car, approaches a filling station in bad shape and is taken to the hospital by the attendant. Harry, who kept clutching a Halloween Jack-o-lantern mask, is later killed by at the hospital by one of the suited men who then goes into his car, pours fuel over himself and sets himself on fire. The doctor who treated Harry,  Dr. Dan Challis, is perplexed by the whole ordeal and joins Harry’s daughter Ellie in investigating the incident, leading them to the small town of Santa Mira, California, home of the Silver Shamrock Novelties factory, the last place that Harry was reported to be!

The town is a strange one, ruled by the prosperous Irish factory owner Conal Cochran and that the majority of the town’s population are descendants of Irish immigrants. Ellie & Challis pretend to be a married couple who run a store and stay the night at the same motel that Harry did. A visiting store owner Marge is killed in the night when she tries to fiddle with a button on one of the masks. A day after arriving in Santa Mira, Challis and Ellie tour the factory with the Kupfers family and are alarmed to discover Grimbridge’s car there, guarded by more men dressed in suits. On returning to the hotel, they find the phones not working and Ellie is kidnapped by men in suits. Challis breaks into the factory to find her and discovers that the men in suits are androids created by Cochran. Challis is captured by the androids and Cochran reveals his plan to kill children on Halloween night. The Silver Shamrock trademark on the masks contains a computer chip containing a fragment of Stonehenge. When the Silver Shamrock television commercial airs on Halloween night, the chip will activate, killing the wearer and unleashing a lethal swarm of insects and snakes, killing those around the wearer. Cochran explains his plan to resurrect macabre aspects of Gaelic festival Samhain, which he connects to witchcraft. Challis escapes and rescues Ellie and destroy the factory when the chips all over react the androids and Coachran are killed in a blast. While driving away, Challis is attacked by “Ellie”, causing him to crash his car. He finds that she is an android copy and destroys it in a brief struggle. On foot, Challis returns to the filling station, where Ellie’s father had come to eight days earlier, and contacts the television stations, convincing all but one to remove the commercial. Challis screams into the telephone to stop the commercial as the film abruptly ends.

I prefer the Myers story and was thoroughly disappointed by the 2nd sequel which has a had storyline and bad actors. Cochran’s chips emit lazer beams and worms, insects & snakes come out of it? What the hell? All so he can sacrifice the children to the Pagan gods! Here’s my rating for the 3 movies – 7, 7.5 and 5 outta 10 respectively!

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