Halloween Ends proves that Michael Myers can’t do sequels

Halloween Ends may of divided the horror fandom, but we can all agree on one thing: sequel horror movies just aren't Michael Myers thing

Halloween Ends: Michael Myers holding a knife

Halloween, directed by John Carpenter, is one of the best horror movies of all time. Telling the story of the masked killer Michael Myers as he stalks the town of Haddonfield and butchers every sexually active teen in his way, the film is an undeniable classic and has ushered Michael into iconic slasher villain status.

But despite the franchise’s acclaim and die-hard fandom, since its beginnings in 1978, all of its follow-up Halloween movies have been divisive and sometimes downright hated by the horror community. David Gordon Green’s latest addition to the IP, Halloween Ends, is the newest example of the Halloween sequel curse.

Halloween Ends is the conclusion to Green’s trilogy, which began with the film Halloween (2018) – a sequel to Carpenter’s first film. The film currently holds only 39% on Rotten Tomatoes, and is being demolished on Twitter, with people vocally sharing how “terrible” they found Michael’s latest outing to be.

After being imprisoned at a mental institute for decades, Michael Myers returns to Haddonfield and faces Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) – a survivor from the events of the ‘70s – once again. Halloween Ends shows Michael in hiding after his rampage in Halloween Kills, where he meets Corey Cunningham (Rohan Campbell) – a bullied man who soon begins his own killing spree under the silent influence of Michael.

Many fans felt the conclusion of Halloween Ends wasn’t punchy enough, focused too much on new characters, and in short, didn’t do the iconic killer justice. However, are any of us really surprised?

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Now, don’t get me wrong, I love some good old slasher fun as well as the enjoyable yet goofy horror movie. And while it isn’t my favourite film in the franchise, I don’t hate Halloween Ends either. But I will say, that seeing the criticism for the movie and taking the IP’s history into account, the flick has proven one thing to me as a massive Michael Myers and Carpenter fan – we need to stop with the sequels because we will never be happy.

What made the original Halloween work was its simplicity. Michael Myers is the embodiment of evil, yet he is still a man. He is a real human who we can’t understand or stop, single-mindedly stalking his prey and killing without thought. It is an effective concept, and although simple, it proves to be chill-inducing as we wait for Michael to jump out from the shadows to grab Laurie. But, as much as I love the character, let’s be frank, Michael loses his scare factor the longer he is on screen.

It’s a known fact that the more we know about the bogeyman, the less afraid we will be. Once we get used to him or try to explain him, we lose the fright factor and that feeling of terror as we put reason to the unknown. This fact alone explains why every Halloween sequel we’ve had either goes one of two ways: either kill and action movie focused or suffering from an unhinged backstory with hints of supernatural goings on.

Halloween Ends: Michael in the shadows

Yet none of these follow-up movies have been as unsettling or genuinely scary as the original – and they never will be, despite how much we want to relive that first viewing of Michael again. If you have forgotten how ridiculous some Halloween sequels are apart from Halloween Ends and Kills, let me break it down for you.

In Halloween 2, released in 1981, we got the worst story reveal of Laurie and Michael being related as brother and sister – oh and a creepy nurse that hovered around the scream queen, who had also turned into a roll-your-eyes damsel in distress. Sorry, Halloween 2 fans, we understand that the blood and gore is top tier, but we just can’t get behind the script of this thriller movie.

The rest of the sequels in the original timeline went from bad to worse. We had comas, child possession, and the Cult of Thorn turning Michael into a supernatural being – making him a run-of-the-mill slasher villain among the likes of Freddy Krueger and Jason Voorhees.

Halloween Ends: Michael in the sewer holding a knife

Now looking at the sequels from the other Halloween timelines, we saw Busta Rhymes roundhouse kicking Michael Myers in the follow-up to H2O, Halloween Resurrection. And finally, Rob Zombie’s second Halloween movie stripped all of the exciting build-ups from his remake by demystifying Michael and turning into Jason Voorhees of the Friday the 13th movies instead, with the appearance and influence of the ghost of his mom (played by Sheri Moon Zombie) on a white horse.

So yeah, in short, every sequel to every Halloween movie, reboot or not, has been cursed. The closest successful sequel – though some fans may wholeheartedly disagree – is Halloween (2018) simply because it went back to the basics: Laurie and Michael in a cat-and-mouse game, stalking each other in a darkly lit house.

Halloween Ends: Michael and Laurie fighting in the kitchen

It had the essence of Carpenter’s original and dominated the box office earning $255 million worldwide. But again, like the 1970s movie that its structure felt so familiar too; Michael Myers as a character has a time limit, and the more he is on screen, the more the franchise begins to unravel.

Halloween Ends is a sign. We can reboot Michael Myers, place the same dynamic and story into different settings, but Hollywood should have a one-movie limit. Michael isn’t Jason or Freddy. He isn’t a ghost with a backstory or thirst for vengeance. Michael is terrifying, just like every serial killer, because he is a man who can’t be explained – and every sequel that tries to is doomed to fail.

You can now watch Halloween Ends in cinemas. For more thrills, here are our guides to the best ghost movies and best monster movies of all time.