Halloween 5: the Revenge of Mike Myers (1989)

Amazing. One slasher flick convention that the Halloween franchise didn’t create (or even follow) is the one where the films get better as the series go on. Friday the 13th and Nightmare on Elm Street both hit their strides mid-series. This is usually the point when the popularity is at its peak (affording the filmmakers more leeway in going nuts) as well as being when plausible script ideas are running out (causing said filmmakers to go even more nuts). Who doesn’t remember, and love, motorcycle Freddy or Jason squaring off against a psychic?

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Halloween 5: the Revenge of Mike Myers, on the other hand, continues the sad Julie tale from Halloween 4: the Return of Mike Myers further down the short road to nowhere. Mike Myers returns again, a year or two after the last film. Jamie (Danielle Harris) has been locked up in some kind of part-time asylum; where children who murder their foster parents are allowed visitors at all hours as well being able to leave anytime they like. The kids in Nightmare on Elm Street 3: the Dream Warriors are all locked up because they’re handicapped. While Jamie ends up getting a free ride. Is matricide legal in Haddonfield?

One thing this film does have going for it, however, is loudness. I don’t think any of the other franchises can come close to how loud this film is. Almost annoying so, since if you’re watching a horror film then you’re gonna want to watch it at night. One thing you don’t want to have to do, though, is keep turning down the volume because you don’t want to wake your neighbors. This isn’t something I’d want to have to explain to my landlord (“I’m sorry, it won’t happen again. I was watching a really bad movie. Why was I watching a bad movie? Cuz that’s what I do for ‘fun…’”)

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Both Jamie and her step-sister Rachel (Ellie Cornell) give King Kong’s Fay Wray a run for her money. Hell, Rachel could’ve been on the ground floor of the burgeoning Scream Queen scene just for the Hilltop Farm Massacre alone! Granted, most Scream Queens showed more skin, but with a screech like this, I’d make her an honorary member.

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Why is it that no matter what the plot line is, I always start thinking that Loomis is secretly Mike Myers about halfway through the film? Is it because they’re rarely on-screen together? And what is Loomis a doctor of? Psychology? I’m having trouble buying that considering his actions. Take for instance, what happens after Tina’s murdered by Myers. Naturally all Jamie can do is cry, so Loomis comforts her by asking, “Now are you ready to help me?” in the sternest voice possible. He might as well just said “Because your prior reluctance is what killed your friend.”

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Easily the best, and most overlooked scene in the movie. Two cops, stationed outside a Halloween party for no particular reason, just killing time with a friendly game of “War.”

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Followed by a visual depiction of how I felt watching these films.

You’d think, as a doctor who specializes in mental illness, Loomis would have a stronger grasp on grievance consoling. Maybe Loomis secretly doesn’t want Mike Myers to be caught. Maybe he recognizes that Myers’ occasional rampages are all that stands between him and the mental ward. (In the opening escape sequence, Loomis is shown to be quite unpopular amongst mental health professionals and law enforcement. So really, Mike Myers is the only “friend” Loomis can rely on. Factor in Pleasence’s own age here, and one starts wondering where the role ends and where one desperately holding onto an aging actor’s last viable role begins.

Oh Lord, I don’t want to go all postmodern with these “reviews” and start proposing that one views the Halloween series as an extension of Loomis’ (or Pleasence’s) innermost desires. Though, if you’re as bored by the “action” on-screen as I am, I’ll give you a pass. It’s either that or make sure you watch this film with a group of friends armed with a lot of alcohol. As I believe those two were sizable factors in my friend’s recommendation.

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The film climaxes with a five minute sequence of Mike Myers trying to reach up into a laundry chute to grab Jamie. She escapes, runs to the attic which is somehow filled with Myers’ victims. (I guess the cops failed to check the whole house when setting their trap.) Jamie lays in a coffin, convinces Myers to remove the mask, and, in a “twist” that fooled no one, sees that they look the same. Which makes sense considering they’ve both guilty of matricide.

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