July 12, 2002
Larry Brand, Sean Hood
Jamie Lee Curtis as Laurie Strode
Busta Rhymes as Freddie Harris
Bianca Kajlich as Sara Moyer
Sean Patrick Thomas as Rudy
Daisy McCrackin as Donna
Katee Sackhoff as Jen
Luke Kirby as Jim
Thomas Ian Nicholas as Bill
Tyra Banks as Nora
Hollywood pumps out disappointments on a regular basis. It’s not a shock to discover a film that’s toted some intrigue ends up being a dud of dramatic magnitude. But the bombs that really hurt, that ache deep down in the belly, are the one’s you really, really root for. Those features that have forced you to count the days away in anticipation of arrival. The ones that have the required talent to be something seriously special.
Those stinkers are the worst kind. Sadly,Halloween: Resurrection is one of those movies.
Rick Rosenthal, who did a damn fine job directing the very first Halloween sequel sits in the chair for Resurrection, the seasoned David Geddes is on hand as director of photography, Sean Hood (who went on to write Cube 2, Masters of Horror Installment Sick Girl and the Conan reboot) co-writes. By all accounts this looks like a lineup destined to produce an engaging, quality feature.
Hell, they even infuse some early meta techniques in the film… but it’s all to no avail.
Halloween: Resurrection is a disaster of the grandest nature. It’s a Super Bowl won, before the winning run ends in a turnover, fumbled at the one yard line. A hike up the Vernal Falls only to discover the path to the summit’s been closed due to a recent rock slides, quarter mile from peak. The perfect joke with a botched punchline. Halloween: Resurrection is the winner that never was, and unfortunately, it ranks as just about the worst Halloween film in the entire franchise.
Geddes seems the only one capable here, as he gives us some great shots and works wonderfully with lighting. But Rosenthal pulls no magic from the production, and Hood and co-writer Larry Brand cook up a half-baked idea that feels an awful lot like the plot of Halloween: Curse of Michael Myers, just fleshed out. Remember Curse’s radio personality Barry Sims and his design on broadcasting live from the Myers house? Well, that’s exactly what happens here, it’s as though Spoon and Brand decided they’d pick up that idea and put it in motion, this time allowing the fame hungry executives to work their way into the building, set up a few cameras and a handful of gags, toss head-cams on a group of “random” (most know each other) volunteers and let them loose in the house. Great TV right? Damn right, that’s Dangertainment!
This is one miserable idea that backfires on all involved parties. The script feels not only recycled, but horribly contrived, the on-screen chemistry isn’t exactly memorable and there isn’t a single sequence in the film that echoes the idea, vibe or atmosphere associated with Halloween. I think we see a Jack-o-Lantern… that’s about how Halloweenish Halloween: Resurrection is. It’s an embarrassment to a brand that’s entertained viewers for decades and deserved far, far more.
Perhaps the idea of playing off of the reality TV craze could have been properly spun, and the idea of utilizing hand-held technology to communicate between the characters wasn’t exactly ahead of the curve, but it was a fresh enough concept at that point that it could have worked. But these elements of the film don’t work. They feel cheesy, completely hokey and face-palm worthy. Sometimes it’s best to keep a story functioning inside its natural soil; it’s too bad Rosenthal and company exhumed this one and dropped it right into a giant pile of fecal matter and maggots.
The characters we meet are all cardboard cutouts who don’t even manage to entertain as walking talking caricatures. The few personalities that offer any depth whatsoever – Aspiring culinary stud Rudy, portrayed by Sean Patrick Thomas and the paradoxical Donna, played by Daisy McCrackin – aren’t given anything to work with. Just as they’re on the verge of surfacing as likeable personalities, they’re offed in typical fashion. Our survivor girl, Sara (Bianca Kajlich) isn’t bad per say, she’s just a bit flat. Sure, she can scream, but the general emotion and response she brings to set is sorely underwhelming. Surprisingly, Busta Rhymes could have been a fun addition to the cast, but he’s so over the top it’s tough to root for him and his emanating energy. Tyra Banks is a complete non-entity in the film, and was likely brought on for name value alone. Oh, and if you were hoping to see more of the charming funny that Thomas Ian Nicholas dished out in American Pie, forget about it: his character Bill lacks a pulse and he’s gone and done away with so quickly it’s hard to pretend ever caring about his participation.
The lone quality of the film, and the only thing anyone will ever remember about Halloween: Resurrection is the inclusion of Jamie Lee Curtis and the imminent death of the beloved Laurie Strode. Even that brief sequence is skimmed over like a filthy pool, what should be an impacting moment just a neglected blip on a murky radar screen.At least there are a few fleeting moments to treasure, it’s unfortunate they occur inside the first 10 minutes, leaving viewers with another 80 of senseless garbage to stomach.