Written by: Matt Molgaard
Directed by: Dominique Othenin-Girard, Dwight H. Little
Cast: Donald Pleasence, Danielle Harris, Ellie Cornell
What I respect and admire about Halloween 5 is that it makes a very honest attempt at being a true sequel, and it does so very well. Halloween 5 feels like it picks up just shortly after the events of Halloween 4. In a sense it functions in the same custom of Halloween and Halloween 2. I’ve always carried the ideal that a sequel directly follows its predecessors, even though we rarely see that from horror films these days.
Another thing I really got a kick out of was seeing so many players from the previous film returning to the town of Haddonfield. Dr. Loomis, Jamie Lloyd, Rachel Carruthers and even Sheriff Ben Meeker is present and accounted for… and no doubt hoping to never see Michael Myers again in his life. Seeing so many familiars just makes the film far more embraceable as a franchise piece. There’s nothing worse than seeing an entirely re-arranged cast from one film to the next.
What I don’t like about Halloween 5, is the complete disregard of festive visuals, first and foremost. The setting just doesn’t look like Halloween. It doesn’t even look like fall. The leaves are green, the yards almost glowing with life they’re so green; perfectly kempt. Don’t look for too many Jack o’Lanters, either, as you won’t spot many of those. It just feels nothing like a seasonal film (there’s a shift as the day stretches to night, but it takes a while, it never builds to any great measure and I’m a little unclear how the town completely transforms in a matter of hours.
The other aspect of the film that has never sat well with me, is the strange direction the film begins to take as the second act nears. The locations are all over the place, the pursuit (I don’t really need to tell you what this movie is about, because chances are extremely high you know, but – drumroll – it’s about Myers chasing down Jamie and anyone close to her… the same design we’ve seen repeatedly through the series) feel uninspired, and we never feel all too concerned for Jamie’s life. Those that do die are cardboard characters that we couldn’t begin to care any less about. And, I really don’t want to get into the strange occult twist thrown in the mix… I’ll harp on that for a year straight.
So, the pros of the film come in the form of the returning cast, a very limited number of eerie moments and of course, just having the chance to see Myers in action again. I just went through the many faults of the film, but I do believe that I forgot to mention how terrible Michael’s mask in this installment. Good god that was hideous.
Ultimately, you probably have a place in your heart for Mike and even Halloween 5. I have that same place, and even though I know Halloween 5 isn’t much more than a mediocre B-movie, I still enjoy watching it, and I wouldn’t dare skip the film while binging a Halloween marathon.