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The reality programmers at DangerTainment (Rhymes, Banks) have selected Rudy (Sean Patrick Thomas -- SAVE THE LAST DANCE), Bill (Thomas Ian Nicholas -- AMERICAN PIE 1&2), and a group of thrill-seeking teenagers to spend one fun-filled night in the childhood home of serial killer Michael Myers. But the planned live broadcast turns deadly when their evening of excitement becomes a night of horror as Michael himself decides to crash the party!
For more about Halloween: Resurrection and the Halloween: Resurrection Blu-ray release, see Halloween: Resurrection Blu-ray Review published by Martin Liebman on April 30, 2012 where this Blu-ray release scored 3.0 out of 5.
Starring: Jamie Lee Curtis, Thomas Ian Nicholas, Katee Sackhoff, Luke Kirby, Ryan Merriman, Busta Rhymes
Director: Rick Rosenthal
» See full cast & crew
Halloween: Resurrection Blu-ray Review
As horror goes online, a franchise turns off.
Reviewed by Martin Liebman, April 30, 2012
I'll see you in Hell.
There was once a series of commercials begging viewers to "stop the insanity!" That's sort of like the reaction Horror and Halloween franchise aficionados might have after viewing Halloween: Resurrection, a crummy, borderline direct-to-video quality Horror sequel that dumbs the genre down to the lowest common 21st century denominator. A silly reality television (or reality Internet) premise houses a movie that's nothing but regurgitated elements from the Horror Handbook. Basically, it follows a few teenagers promised fortune and glory if only they manage to survive the night exploring the old Michael Myers house. Busta Rhymes provides the comic relief, Tyra Banks serves as some eye candy, and Michael Myers takes care of the hacking and slashing. This is thoughtless, generic Horror filmmaking at its most average. Lost in it all is a random wrap-up of the Michael Myers-Laurie Strode story arc that covers the first 17 minutes of the film that will leave fans disenchanted with a terrible conclusion to the franchise's bread-and-butter plot.
It's been three years since Laurie Strode (Curtis) thought she had dispatched Michael Myers for good. But as always seems to be the case, Michael survived the ordeal, and he's out to finish his work. Though confined to a sanitarium, Strode has a plan to take on her deranged brother one last time. Following their confrontation, Michael returns home where he comes to learn that his humble abode's been invaded by a reality Internet program being webcast on the Dangertainment website. Hosted by Freddie Harris (Busta Rhymes), the show aims to place six college students in the Myers home on Halloween night, each equipped with a POV camera, and offer audiences a pay-per-view first-hand look into the house of a living legend. Nobody knows what they will find, but...Myers house...Halloween...hello...piece it together, people. Of the six participants, only Sara (Bianca Kajlich) has doubts, but peer pressure and the promise of fame and fortune lead her to follow her friends, not her inner voice. What awaits the cast is a night of bloodshed and terror as they must not only fight off the legendary Michael Myers, but do so on his home turf.
Halloween: Resurrection updates a franchise which began in 1978 for a 21st century audience, but "up"date means dumbing "down." This film kinda-sorta forces itself to continue the story that's the backbone of the franchise, wrapping up the goings-on from I, II, and H20, though it does so as sort of a bonus short film that has nothing to do with the rest of Resurrection. There's the opening act that sees the resolution of the Myers-Storde conflict, and then there's the bulk of the package which deals in Michael Myers slaughtering a new group of random teenagers. It's disappointing that the entire film couldn't be built around the superior plot element, but it feels so tacked on that one must wonder if it wasn't added only in the interest of boosting runtime and having something to pitch to fans to garner attention and distract from the fact that the movie is otherwise a cash-in on the franchise name and its lead character's presence. The film in its primary presentation just goes through the motions with the obligatory jump scare at the end, capitalizing on cheap "gotcha" filmmaking that insults audiences rather than satisfies them.
To be sure, there are a few odds and ends that work in the movie's favor that don't make it a total waste. First, and most important, there's the unending appeal of the Michael Myers character. He's so well-designed and so perfectly simplistic that his mere presence in a film generates enough tension, excitement, and danger to carry the entire thing, even if the rest of it wallows in direct-to-video territory, which at least is a fate that has not yet plagued a Halloween film. Fans of conformity and routine and cinematic comfort will find solace in the darkened corners and bloody violence of Resurrection. It follows the Horror cadence to a "T," building up and then killing off characters in random ways, with the expected last girl standing making it through to the end for a big show-down with the big guy. The cast is bland and the characters they play even more so. Busta Rhymes is the surprising highlight, spicing up the movie with every scene in which he appears -- one in which he unknowingly verbally confronts Michael Myers in particular standing out -- and handling his character's mixture of deadly serious and comic relief with panache. To be sure, Resurrection brings nothing new to the Halloween legend or the Horror movie playbook. It's a generic but serviceable little picture that's as bloody as fans would want but that's sure to divide audiences both in its resolution of the Myers-Strode conflict and in its unimaginative main feature.
Halloween: Resurrection Blu-ray, Video Quality
Echo Bridge's Blu-ray release of Halloween: Resurrection isn't half bad. The image retains film grain and features only minimal speckling. However, it has an overly sharpened, processed look to it, and viewers will note the occasional edge halo. Still, fine detail is quite good. Lines on Michael's trademark mask and general facial textures impress even in the darkest scenes, save for those times when black crush rears its ugly head. Brighter scenes, notably in the early segments of the post-Strode/Myers stretch, reveal sharp, nice-looking, and very clear details. Inside the Myers house, viewers will enjoy the high resolution with which the transfer reveals crusty and cracked paint, dusty and rusty surfaces, old wooden textures, and worn down odds and ends. The color palette satisfies. Those brighter scenes offer a steady and vibrant assortment of hues, but the bulk of the film's darker scenes mask much of the brilliance of those earlier segments. Banding, blocking, and such unwanted intrusions are mostly absent. This isn't a pristine transfer, but it's quite good on the whole.
Halloween: Resurrection Blu-ray, Audio Quality
Halloween: Resurrection's DTS-HD MA 5.1 lossless soundtrack energizes the soundstage from the opening moments on through to the "shocking" final shot. Echo Bridge's lossless presentation may be described as "loud" and "potent." The familiar Halloween refrain plays with wonderful energy. The track spreads it out naturally, across the front and through the back for an immersive and seamless presentation. It's supported by a strong, deep, and balanced low end. Bass does dissolve into rattly reverberations at the very bottom, but that tight, heavy element remains through much of the movie and gives the picture a full, hefty, foreboding, dark, and powerful feel. The track delivers plenty of ambience, including creaks and structural groans and other Horror elements. Sound travels about the stage with ease, and precision placement makes for an involved presentation. Dialogue is clear and focused up the middle, playing with good balance and never becoming lost to supporting elements. All in all, this is a fine, involved, heavy, and entertaining track that helps make the movie a little more enjoyable than it really is.
Halloween: Resurrection Blu-ray, Special Features and Extras
Unlike most Echo Bridge Blu-ray releases, Halloween: Resurrection contains a fairly healthy collection of extras.
Halloween: Resurrection Blu-ray, Overall Score and Recommendation
Halloween: Resurrection disappoints, generally, in all that it does. The first act, which is more or less a separate short film set in the Halloween universe, rushes a resolution to the screen and ends a long-standing battle of familial wits with all the care and relevance of an exterminator poisoning an ant colony, and the exterminator doesn't even have the style of John Goodman. The main feature simply regurgitates old Horror movie elements updated for the online age. Busta Rhymes squeezes some life out of his part, but the rest of the cast -- and most of the movie -- just falls flat. Echo Bridge's Blu-ray release of Halloween: Resurrection features surprisingly good video and audio, and there's even some extras here, too. For the decent quality of the disc and the low asking price, Halloween fans may as well add this one to their Horror movie shelf just to get one step closer to the complete collection on Blu-ray.
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