Halloween Ends Review: A Lackluster Conclusion to the Franchise
The Anticipation and Disappointment
Halloween Ends, the latest installment in the Halloween movie franchise, fails to embrace its identity as a Halloween movie, and suffers as a result. Director David Gordon Green’s consideration in naming the movie made it easy for me to create a review title from it. The film falls short of reaching its potential, leaving me with low expectations. Sequels to horror movies often struggle to capture the same level of excitement as the original, and Halloween (2018) was no exception. Halloween Kills, serving as a middle act, included a mob mentality propaganda that felt out of place. With diminishing returns from previous films, all I hoped for from Halloween Ends was a satisfying conclusion. One that would finally resolve the long-standing feud between Laurie Strode and Michael Myers before another inevitable reboot.
Corey’s Arc: A Story of Vilification
Set four years after the events of Halloween Kills, Halloween Ends introduces Corey Cunningham, who unintentionally takes the life of a child he was babysitting on Halloween night. This tragic incident casts him as a monster in the eyes of the townsfolk, leading to relentless blame and isolation. The theme of vilification dominates Corey’s story, raising thought-provoking questions about the aftermath of accidental crimes. Does someone who unintentionally causes harm deserve a second chance? How do the victim’s family members cope with the societal uproar surrounding them? What are the consequences when the perpetrator is pushed too far? Corey’s journey addresses these questions with consistency, offering a compelling exploration of crime and its repercussions.
A Juxtaposition of Two Stories
While Corey’s arc presents potential for an engaging story, Halloween Ends struggles to find a seamless balance between his narrative and the ongoing feud between Laurie and Michael. It often feels like the film abruptly switches between two different stories, leaving neither fully satisfying. The movie missed an opportunity to unite these narratives through Laurie and her family, who have also become outcasts due to Michael’s rampage. Exploring how people respond to blame in different ways could have provided parallels between the two plotlines. However, the focus shifts to Laurie’s granddaughter, Allyson, as the main connection to Corey. Unfortunately, Allyson’s character lacks depth, and her rushed emotional connection with Corey feels implausible.
Strong Moments and Missed Opportunities
Despite its shortcomings, there are instances when the intertwining stories in Halloween Ends manage to create empathy and tension. Corey’s influence on Allyson, leading her down a darker path, reveals the consequences of a world that has pushed him towards evil. Laurie’s increased screen time compared to Halloween Kills is a welcome change, although she still doesn’t receive the spotlight she deserves. The execution remains flawed, with the connection between the characters feeling forced and the overall narrative feeling clunky.
Aimless Implementation of Michael Myers
One of the significant letdowns of Halloween Ends lies in its portrayal of Michael Myers. Unlike Halloween Kills, where Michael had significant screen time and impactful moments, here, it takes over an hour into the movie for him to make his first kill. While some horror movies successfully build tension by delaying the introduction of the main scare, Halloween Ends fails to provide a substantial buildup. Each appearance by Michael feels arbitrary, lacking purpose or narrative impact. Rather than portraying him as an indiscriminate force of evil, Halloween Ends presents Michael as a mere mascot character, making his actions feel aimless and obligatory.
A Disappointing Climax and Conclusion
The film’s ultimate downfall occurs in its third act, as the narrative abruptly shifts away from Corey’s story, leaving it unresolved. Halloween Ends transitions into a climactic showdown between Laurie and Michael, lacking proper development and cohesion. Unlike the previous film, where Laurie’s preparations and knowledge of Michael made their conflict more meaningful, here, Laurie is caught off guard, learning about their final encounter only as it unfolds. The underwhelming final fight scene suffers from poor lighting and quick shots that hinder the viewing experience. In the end, it feels like an anticlimax without a story to culminate.
Halloween Ends, with its halfhearted implementation of Michael Myers and disjointed narratives, fails to deliver a satisfying ending to the Halloween franchise. Director David Gordon Green’s lack of passion is evident, making this film the weakest entry in the new Halloween trilogy. While it’s not outright bad, it lacks the excitement and dedication needed to make it truly memorable. Hopefully, Green will have the opportunity to pursue his true interests in future projects. Until then, Halloween Ends marks a significant disappointment and tarnishes Green’s directorial credibility within the franchise.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is Halloween Ends a standalone movie or part of a trilogy?
Halloween Ends is the concluding chapter of the recent Halloween trilogy, following Halloween (2018) and Halloween Kills. It serves as both a sequel to the previous films and a culmination of the Laurie Strode – Michael Myers feud.
2. Can Halloween Ends be enjoyed without watching the other movies in the franchise?
While it is possible to follow the events of Halloween Ends independently, having prior knowledge of the Halloween (2018) and Halloween Kills will enhance your understanding of the characters and their relationships.
3. Was Halloween Ends successful in concluding the feud between Laurie Strode and Michael Myers?
Opinions may vary, but for some viewers, Halloween Ends may not offer a fully satisfying resolution to the long-standing battle between Laurie Strode and Michael Myers. The film’s handling of their showdown and its overall execution may leave certain expectations unmet.
4. Does Halloween Ends explore any new themes compared to previous films in the franchise?
Yes, Halloween Ends delves into themes of vilification, post-crime aftermath, and societal response. Through Corey’s storyline, the film raises thought-provoking questions about accidental murderers, the impact on victim’s families, and the consequences of pushing someone to their limits.
5. Can I stream Halloween Ends online?
Halloween Ends is available for streaming exclusively on Peacock, along with its theatrical release. Make sure to check the availability on the streaming service in your region for accurate information.