“Halloween” is one of the biggest franchises of the horror genre next to movies like “Scream,” “Child’s play” and “A Nightmare on Elm Street.” John Carpenter’s creation remains the best way to open the spooky season.
What has made “Halloween” so memorable is the ability to still have its scare factor for over 44 years. Though the franchise has had its questionable moments with the storylines and mask choices, this hasn’t stopped fan bases from growing. Neither has the fright for the unintentional phenomenon Michael Myers has become, and will continue to be.
With the new “Halloween Ends” movie out, it would be appropriate to give all of you students my picks for the top five Halloween movies: from storylines to worst masks, gore effects, horror aspects, and acting. I will be excluding all movies that do not follow the original plot. The original plot would include: “Halloween,” “Halloween 2,” “Halloween H20,” the Halloween remake, “Halloween Kills” and “Halloween Ends.”
WARNING: Spoilers ahead!
1. “Halloween Kills” (2021)
As my top pick, “Halloween Kills” meets every level of gore one would expect from a slasher and serial killer movie. Director David Green made sure to elevate the return of Michael Myers from the dead, as he ressurects from Laurie’s burning home to continue his intense murders, causing more fright to the town of Haddonfield, Illinois. The movie picks up right away; there is no pause, no censoring and it is scary. This movie meets the expectation the trailer sets and the storyline is stable throughout. There isn’t a moment as an audience member where you aren’t on the edge of your seat. The critical opinion was split but as a whole, the movie was solid.
Mask rating: 10/10
2. “Halloween” (1978)
Of course, you can’t have a top five without the original. While the original started this whole franchise of never-ending sagas and sequels, it is not the best movie out of the series. I will chalk it up to merely the way it was made, I get it; it was the ‘70s. With intense screams, sexual scenes, nudity and a babysitters’ worst nightmare of the boogeyman, it has a very corny storyline. However, due to the cinematography and director John Carpenter’s stylistic choices he took at that time, Halloween completely knocked it out of the ballpark upon my third watch, which is why this movie easily landed its spot at number two.
The mask that started it all is rated: 4/10.
3. “Halloween” (2018)
This Halloween remake welcomes back the original Michael Myers actors Nick Castle and James Jude Courtney. Jamie Lee Curtis reprises her role as Laurie. This movie was iconic for its time and made a wonderful comeback for the franchise. The gore level is at 100, the horror kept the theater in suspense and the storyline paid homage to the original 1978 movie. This movie introduces new characters such as Karen Strobe (Laurie’s daughter) and Allyson Nelson (granddaughter).
Mask rating: 7/10
4. “Halloween 2” (1981)
This movie is a continuation from the night of the first Halloween film, where Laurie is at the Haddonfield Memorial Hospital due to a failed attempt at being killed by Michael. We see a series of events, including deaths of multiple staff members, as Michael makes his way to Laurie. In this movie, the viewer will soon discover the dark secret that is the relationship between Michael and Laurie, and the real reason he wants to kill her; she is his sister, and she was adopted. The film doesn’t go overboard with nudity and ominous music is in the perfect placement as he approaches each victim. There are moments of focus on the next given cause of death, as if the director Rick Rosenthal is spoon-feeding his audience the next kill. However, he does this in a smooth way to distract the viewers from the comedic and laughable moments in this horror movie. A classic killer in plain sight, but did not stick out as a sequel.
Mask rating: 0/10
5. “Halloween Ends” (2022)
Yes, the final installment has found its way all the way at the bottom of this list. This is the worst Halloween movie according to ratings, only a 39% on Rotten Tomatoes. The horror movie – I mean romantic comedy – was the after-effect of Halloween Kills, and Michael Myers is hardly in the movie throughout. This movie made the once-known power mascot, who could not be killed, look weak and helpless until the end. A disappointment to the ending of such an iconic franchise.
“Michael Myers was the personification of evil,” Jamie Lee Curtis from Halloween Ends.
Mask rating: 7/10
With all the spoilers provided above, I hope that won’t stop you from watching or streaming each movie on platforms such as: Amazon Prime, Peacock, YouTube, Hulu, and Apple TV. If you plan to be out and about, I recommend watching Halloween Ends just to finish the franchise for yourself. For all those who are celebrating this season, Happy Halloween. But to those who do not, have a good weekend!