Review: ‘Halloween Kills’ Starring Jamie Lee Curtis

Halloween Kills
A scene from 2021’s ‘Halloween Kills’ (Photo © 2021 Universal Studios)

John Carpenter launched one of the most successful horror franchises, Halloween, back in 1978. In 2018 Danny McBride and David Gordon Green convinced franchise star Jamie Lee Curtis to reprise her role of Laurie Strode, now a grandmother and recovering alcoholic, to go up against the masked serial killer Michael Myers again in a direct sequel to the first film. Now comes the direct sequel to that film, Halloween Kills, with Laurie Strode once again up against the iconic horror villain.

Halloween Kills begins immediately after the end of 2018’s Halloween, with Laurie, her daughter Karen (Judy Greer), and her granddaughter Allyson (Andi Matichak) headed to the hospital after their intense fight with Michael Myers who they believe was left locked in the basement of Laurie’s home to burn to death. But the Halloween franchise loves to remind us you can’t kill the Boogeyman, a warning first issued by little Tommy Doyle near the end of the original 1978 film. So, of course, Michael not only escapes but also manages to slaughter multiple firefighters in the process.

Meanwhile, news breaks about the murders in town and grown-up Tommy Doyle (Anthony Michael Hall) quickly realizes it must be Michael Myers. Almost immediately Tommy rounds up his friends, as well as the townspeople of Haddonfield, convinced it’s up to them to stop Michael Myers. After all, the authorities have let them down time and again. “Evil dies tonight,” declares Tommy – a sentiment that becomes a running chant among the townspeople who form a large vigilante mob dedicated to killing the masked murderer.

While all this is going on, Laurie’s at the hospital recovering from her wounds when she learns Michael Myers is alive and continuing his killing spree. Laurie prepares herself, fighting through the pain of recovery to get ready to do battle with Michael Myers yet again while Allyson joins the vengeful mob to hunt down Michael and end his reign of terror once and for all.

Halloween Kills is a dark, gory, and gruesome horror movie that’s an inferior sequel. What’s it missing? Suspense, tension, and spine-tingling scares. It’s a mindless, bloodthirsty film with one-dimensional characters who only exist to add to the body count. Halloween Kills is a complete misfire that wastes the talents of Jamie Lee Curtis, Judy Greer, and Anthony Michael Hall.

One of the aspects of the film which could have proved interesting was bringing back the characters of Tommy Doyle and Lindsey Wallace (Kyle Richards), now all grown up and finding themselves hunting the Boogeyman that Laurie protected them from as kids in the original ’78 film. It’s a shame the script wastes this idea by turning Tommy into a cardboard cutout version of a vigilante constantly chanting, “Evil dies tonight!”

Lindsey doesn’t fare any better and is shown running around telling children to go home until she ends up being hunted by Michael Myers. It’s a true waste of an original idea.

The writing is dreadful, the dialogue is pedestrian, and unlike the original film, Halloween Kills is one-note, only interested in racking up a very large kill count.

Halloween Kills is a soulless, scareless, and sadistic sequel that isn’t close to being in the same league as John Carpenter’s original horror/slasher classic.


MPAA Rating: R for language, grisly images, some drug use, and strong bloody violence

Release Date: October 15, 2021

Running Time: 1 hour 45 minutes