By Santiago Brion | October 24, 2022
Photo Credit: Peacock
“Halloween Ends” is another entry in the decades-long horror franchise which follows a mysterious masked man who stalks and kills people in the town of Haddonfield, Illinois. The film is the conclusion to the new trilogy, preceded by “Halloween” (2018) and “Halloween Kills” (2021), all of which were written and directed by David Gordon Green. Spoilers ahead.
“Halloween Ends” was originally marketed as the final showdown between Laurie Strode and Michael Myers. It opens with a time jump, with the movie set a year after Michael’s return, and we are introduced to Corey, a young man babysitting a kid named Jeremy. The pair watch a movie called “The Thing,” a reference to the movie Laurie watched with the kids she babysat in the original “Halloween” (1978), called “The Thing from Outer Space.”
The movie begins with one of the most shocking opening sequences in any horror movie: Jeremy plays a prank on his babysitter by “going missing,” and blocks the door to the attic. Corey kicks the door open and accidentally hits him, causing Jeremy to fall to his death as his parents enter the house.
It’s so unexpected that Corey and Allison become main characters of this movie, with Laurie and Michael taking a backseat. The original “Halloween” movie perfectly establishes that Laurie is the true main character of the franchise, with her character following the famous “final girl” trope in slasher movie history, in which she is the only survivor of Michael’s reign of terror in Haddonfield.
Corey and Allison meet for the first time after Corey visits the clinic that Allison works at. Sparks unexpectedly fly between Corey and Allison when they meet again at a junkyard where Corey works so that he can fix Allison’s car. Allison abruptly says, “I don’t care about the muffler, I care about you.” This was said after only meeting twice; the character’s did not get any development together.
Not only does Corey become an unexpected new antagonist for this movie, but he becomes too much of a main character, that both Laurie and Michael take a back seat in their own movie. The film has more scenes of Corey than scenes with both Laurie and Michael combined, which makes “Halloween Ends” a glamorized character study of a psychopath than a conclusive showdown movie between Laurie and Michael. While I understood what David Gordon Green was going for by putting his own twist on the “Halloween” story, it did not work because this is not a movie titled “Corey & Allison.”
The impressively made direction and another final confrontation between Laurie and Michael doesn’t even come close to making the film decent. To top it off, the film has over-the-top corny dialogue like, “if I can’t have her, no one can.”
I also want to point out that Michael Myers became such a side character. For the past four years, he’s been living in a sewer and doesn’t kill people until the third act of the film. People who love these movies watch it for Michael performing inventive kills, not living in a sewer. There’s a baffling scene in the film where Corey was somehow strong enough to tussle Michael to the ground to steal his mask; that’s how unnecessarily weak Michael became.
Laurie also deserved a better movie to end her character arc. Instead of Michael Myers going out in a blaze of glory, he gets crucified on the kitchen table, then there was a lame parade of the Haddonfield citizens all going to a junkyard where he’s put into a meat grinder. What could’ve been more dramatic is if Michael were to grab Laurie’s leg and pull her in.
There are just so many things that could’ve been done differently and making this into a character study on a new character that would take on the iconic Michael Myers role was a bad decision. This movie is currently dividing the fanbase, with some fans praising the experimental take on the story, while others are disappointed that their expectations for the ending of a 40-year-old movie franchise were not met.
In recent years, there have been sequels that bring back franchises with new trilogies that don’t exactly stick the landing.
For example, in 2015, “Star Wars” came back in a big way with “Episode VII: The Force Awakens.” The film had new characters taking the spotlight and returning characters like Han Solo having supporting roles. In 2017, “The Last Jedi” came out with a polarizing reception. The “Star Wars” sequel trilogy ended with “The Rise of Skywalker,” a movie that had zero plot, terrible plot decisions, and a twist that made no sense.
The “Jurassic Park” franchise also came back in 2015 with “Jurassic World,” which starred Chris Pratt. The film was followed up with “Fallen Kingdom,” which also sparked mixed feelings among fans, and the third film, “Dominion,” was another finale movie that disappointed many. The film didn’t even have enough dinosaurs or plot development to make the film interesting, and the golden trio, Alan Grant, Ellie Satler and Ian Malcolm had no reason to be there.
Point being, if Hollywood is going to keep bringing back franchises, they need to have a definitive plan to write out a trilogy first. Don’t write out a fantastic first movie with a terrible ending. I think the ending of a movie is more important than the beginning of one.
The recent “Halloween” trilogy is another addition to Hollywood’s failed sequel trilogies. If “Halloween” (2018) is the equivalent of “The Force Awakens,” then “Halloween Ends” is “The Rise of Skywalker.”
“Halloween Ends'' is now playing at both Regal Crossgates and Regal Colonie Center, and streaming on Peacock.