No Concessions: ‘#Halloween’ is classic slasher fare

I’m not one for horror. I don’t play horror/survival games. I never do haunted amusement parks. I’m still frightened by Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark and some episodes of Are You Afraid of the Dark. So my cousin inviting me to see the new Halloween reboot/sequel this weekend was bold. My acceptance was even bolder. I think I could handle it because it wasn’t scary. A few jump scares here and there and the haunting Michael Myers theme, but nothing to scream about. With that in mind, Halloween was a satisfying experience. Jamie Lee Curtis’s reprisal of Laurie Strode – the victim who got away – 40 years later was excellent. And while the film may not have bowled a strike with its allusion to the gravity of the #MeToo movement, it did shine light on how trauma affects victims. Forty years to the date of Myers heinous crime, the silent serial killer escapes during a prison transfer. Meanwhile Strode exists in perpetual paranoia with bated breath for Michael’s return. It’s only a matter of time before the two adversaries meet again – a showdown for the ages. In between Michael racks up an extensive body count – including a nosey father and son; a pair of obsessed true crime podcasters; several police officers; and, a rapey high school teen. His stealth skills are impeccable, silently bobbing and weaving through lives before reigning death on victims. As he stoically searches for Laurie, she prepares in a wooded fortress stocked with an array of arsenal, and a secret bunker straight from A Quiet Place. The film illustrates how her surviving affected her, as well as her daughter and her family. Three generations of women all touched by this bloody fiend’s blade. It actually makes for an awesome team-up I would have loved to have seen more of. It wouldn’t have been a true slasher film without certain tropes. The promiscuous teen couple. The too-close-for-comfort doctor. The all-too familiar bro boyfriend. They’re all present. However one trope defecter I silently cheered for was the survival of a black youth named Julian. Actually all three of the film’s black characters survived. That’s a horror genre win for the ages.

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