Setting: Summer Glen, California, October 29th 1998
Ignoring all films since Halloween II, Michael returns to find and murder the now-alive-again Laurie Strode's son John. He begins by ransacking Dr Loomis' assistant Nurse Chambers' house, stealing the file on Laurie, killing her and her neighbours whilst there.
He then travels to Summer Glen, where Laurie Strode has changed her name to "Keri Tate" and is now Headteacher at Hilcrest School, an isolated boarding school in the middle of no-where. Over the Halloween weekend, most of the teachers and pupils had left on a school trip, leaving only Laurie, her son, three of his friends, councillor Will Brenan, and Ronny the security guard.
Michael soon arrives, kills John's friends and Will, who Laurie was in love with, and attempts to kill John. Laurie makes sure John and his girlfriend Molly escape before grabbing an axe and returning to confront Michael.
In the enusing fight, Laurie stabs Michael with a flag, and is prevented from repeatedly stabbing him by Ronny, the security guard, who had survived being shot by Will, who had thought he was Michael. When the police and medics arrive, Laurie steals Michael's body, drives off a cliff and chops his head off.
|1.||Jimmy||Ice skate in face||off screen|
|3.||Nurse Marion Chambers||Killed||Loomis House|
|4.||Charlie||Garotted off screen||Hilcrest School|
|6.||Will Benon||Stabbed||Hilcrest School|
|Jamie Lee Curtis||Laurie Strode|
|Chris Durand||Michael Myers|
|Nancy Stephens||Nurse Marion Chambers|
|Josh Hartnett||John Tate|
|Adam Arkin||Will Brennan|
|Michelle Williams||Molly Cartwell|
|LL Cool J||Ronald 'Ronny' Jones|
|Jodi Lyn O'Keefe||Sarah Wainthrope|
|Adam Hann-Byrd||Charles 'Charlie' Deveraux|
|Janet Leigh||Norma Watson|
|Joseph Gordon-Levitt||Jimmy Howell|
|Brandon Williams||Tony Allegre|
|Beau Billingslea||Detective 'Fitz' Fitzsimmons|
|Matt Winston||Detective Matt Sampson|
Those with names in italics are recurring characters.
Ignoring everything since Halloween II, contradicting the previous plotlines and abandoning the characters from Curse, 1998's Halloween H20 is a disappointment. Although it brings back Jamie Lee Curtis' character of Laurie Strode, she lacks the charisma of Tommy Doyle and the others from Curse, and is accompanied by mere typical teen stereotypes.
Since Curse Of Michael Myers was made in 1995, a new slasher craze had swept the world, led by films such as Scream in 1996, and I Know What You Did Last Summer. Halloween H20 comes across as an attempt to cash-in on that fashion, especially with the involvement of scribe Kevin Williamson, writer of both the Scream and I Know What You Did Last Summer series. It should therefore come as no surprise that, abandoning the risky, original approach of Curse, Halloween H20 instead comes across as a mere re-make of a re-make. It is a carbon copy of I Know What You Did Last Summer which was in itself a copy of Halloween. This point is reinforced by the characters in Halloween H20 watching Scream, a film in which the characters watch Halloween.
Halloween H20 spends its time trying to make you jump, rather than actually scaring you. Although it has dispensed with the ridiculous death rates of the previous Halloween films, you still do not feel as if you connect with any of the characters, none of which are more than vague stereotypes. It would not have hurt if there had been more deaths; although Ronny was shot several times by Will, he survives. The film would have been more realistic if he had died,
particularly as he is an annoying character.
The plot that Michael only kills his members of his family when they are 17 years old on Halloween Night is interesting, but little else. Although it ties in with Judith's death and his attack on Laurie 15 years later, and indeed why he has now returned to kill John, you are never told actually why 17 is such an important age. Nor are you given a satisfactory explanantion of what Michael
Myers has been doing for the last 20 years.
Halloween H20 spends its time trying to look clever, when in reality it isn't. The sweeping camera movements make you feel more sea-sick than scared.
It does have cameos of the history of the Horror genre, nodding at the pre-Halloween horror in the form of Hitchcock's Psycho, and the post-Halloween in the form of Scream as we have seen. Jamie Lee Curtis' mother Janet Leigh, who starred in Psycho, appears, having a conversation with Laurie Strode that is
equally about what happened to her in Psycho with the classic soundtrack playing in the background.
Although not as bad as Revenge, it is a disappointing sequel to Curse. In fact, the lasting impression the film has on you is to cause you to wonder; For a film set in 1998, why do none of the main characters own a mobile?