Why can't Michael Myers run
Rob Zombie's remake
by Christian Mester
BG editor-in-chief, wrote for Gamestar and Gameswelt, was project manager for cinema film marketing, has obviously seen too many, but still far too few, films ...
After the ten-year-old sadistic Michael Myers committed several murders on Halloween night, he was put under the supervision of the notorious psychiatrist Dr. Loomis (Malcom McDowell) in a locked institution. Around fifteen years later, the sociopath (Tyler Mane), who has meanwhile grown into a giant, manages to escape ...
Having been remakes too The Ring, The Amityville Horror and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre had set the US box office in flames, one day the Akkad house also believed that they had to take this step. The new beginning should freshen up their long-lasting slasher series for many more years, but this met with enormous skepticism in the industry. The general resentment quickly disappeared when the name of the chosen creative mind was revealed: Rob Zombie. The bearded horror nostalgic from the USA had only recently made a name for himself with the very original films House of 1000 corpses and The Devils Rejects made and was considered a headstrong, original, potent contrast to the newfangled high-gloss horror cinema of the modern age.
The fact that zombie loves the genre is already evident in the cast list, which is peppered with numerous veterans of old B-movie camels and makes every connoisseur smile: Malcom McDowell, Danny Trejo, Sid Haig, Bill Moseley, Ken Foree, Leslie Easterbrock , Sybil Danning, Udo Kier, Brad Dourif, Clint Howard, Tom Towles, William Forsythe; the list of guest stars reads like the program of a typical horror convention.
Unfortunately, you can already notice in the first few minutes of the film that, despite all the fan love, Zombie never really understood why John Carpenters was Halloween could even get its legendary status. Both versions may have the same characters and the same basic concept "masked madman chasing family, doctor comes to help", but it is the subtleties that Zombie fundamentally ignores. In this case it starts with Rob Zombie initially daring to explain why Myers likes to use the kitchen knife so much. While in the original it was decisive that an apparently normal child from a good family suddenly turns into a silent murderer, the new edition shows that the boy is just an unscrupulous sadist. It's linear and predictable, because he grows up in a desolate white-trash parental home, where everyone insults each other incessantly with the deepest gutter language and the only good soul is a stripper (played by Rob Zombie's wife Sheri Moon-Zombie). A horrible nice family with Charles Manson as Al Bundy.
The low point of his lack of understanding for appropriate melodrama is a scene in which little Myers sits sadly and alone in front of his parents' house and Nazareth's cheesy rock song "Love Hurts" yells while Mama Myers lifts her legs in a run-down strip club. What zombie tries to stir up here as a captivating, sensitive dramaturgy, at best reaps in laughter, but does not work.
The (far too long) prologue degenerates into an endless string of "F # cks" and culminates in several brutal murders that zombie like in The Devil's Rejects staged: slow, brutal, voyeuristic. The film, which was also ruthless and is about three other serial killers (who all have three roles in this film, as a guard, stripper mom and cemetery gardener), however, impressed itself with the fact that Zombie portrayed the three cold-blooded murderers as interesting nightmares and gave them space to come into their own through acting. The young Myers is now played by a slightly talented boy named Daeg Faerch, who, despite his throats open and his heads hammered in, does not seem scary or dangerous at all. It is difficult to see him as a respectable danger when he looks like he is with his Michael Myers mask at 1.40m height Honey, I've shrunk Michael Myers sprung from.
The linchpin of both times is Malcom McDowell, an actually excellent actor (Clockwork Orange), who cannot continue the basically simple legacy of Donald Pleasence. His character Loomis basically had the task of pushing the explosiveness of Michael Myers and acting as his Abraham van Helsing. However, Zombie rewrites the character, reduces fanaticism and robs him of any sympathy. This Loomis has no special connection to Myers, he is just a psychiatrist who brazenly contributes to the cult of serial killer Myers and exercises damage limitation. That makes him a pretty boring figure that nobody will remember for the next 20 years.
The best way to get away from the wreck is ex-wrestler Tyler Mane, who doesn't speak a single word, but at least looks ominous as an adult Myers. After the Rob Zombie Pilchner Opening, which takes up about half of the film, it typically continues late compared to the other films in the series. Myers begins to kill various people and works his way up to his sister (Scout Taylor-Compton) who knows nothing about her connection to her brother and is later allowed to run for her life for a long time. Many who do not like the first section of the film still find this later part good, as it is very close to the old parts. But because it takes so long for Laurie to be introduced, her role seems unimportant and like a slightly extended supporting role. Taylor-Compton screeches his way through the long showdown, but cannot turn her role into anything due to the empty script. The far too long final battle takes place in an old house, in which there are what feels like twenty scenes in which Myers breaks through walls or ceilings for minutes as if it were the Lou Ferrigno Hulk or B.A. from the A-Team.
At least one has to admit to Zombie that the film looks great, the equipment is excellent and Myer's newest mask is also one of the best. However, he cannot be forgiven for how strenuous the film is. Apart from the many unsympathetic characters who constantly insult each other or remain superficial, the entire event is staged without tension. Instead of tension, Zombie relies on pure terror ala High tension, and after three topless women make the acquaintance of Myers kitchen utensils, it starts to repeat itself. Zombie wants to shock, portray the attacks of the 2m Myers as impressive and terrible, but all the terror leads nowhere.
While the original was a subtle little horror story with a lot of tension and memorable characters, Rob Zombie's remake is a merciless sledgehammer version that breaks because none of the characters are interesting.
As part of the Halloween-Saga is Rob Zombie's version of a disaster as it has no tension at all, is terribly predictable, and misses any memorable characters. As a single film it is a relatively acceptable, but terribly exhausting terror flick ala The Last House on the Leftwhose level of violence cannot distract a minute from how insignificant everything seems.
3 / 10
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