“While the theatrical cut offered better kills, the Producer’s Cut seemed more coherent.”
When I was originally tossing around the idea of watching all of the Halloween movies I deferred to one of my friends who is a huge fan of the series. He informed me of all of the different cuts of the films that have been released and briefly spoke about their individual pros and cons. Me, being a purist and also a realist, decided to stick to just theatrical cuts when I could (here’s to you, Rob Zombie), and he agreed with that decision for all but one movie. I was told to watch at least the Producer’s Cut of Halloween 6 (or Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers) because he said it was the cut that changed the most out of all of the movies. he was right. So yesterday I watched both the original cut of Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers and the Producer’s cut, spacing them out so as to not get burnt-out.
Honestly, the Producer’s Cut of Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers could warrant its own post talking about specific changes made from the theatrical cut and whether or not I felt they served the movie better, but in the interest of time I’m going to fill this review with enormous blanket statements and generalizations to save you all from my incessant rambling.
So right off the bat Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers is confusing. The theatrical cut of the film doesn’t really give you a time-frame, and the Jamie recast kind of muddies things a bit. Jamie is supposed to be about 15, which makes sense in the story, but the actress looks about 20, which doesn’t. The Producer’s cut fixed this by giving idiots like me dates on the screen to latch on to, so I wasn’t so hopelessly lost.
Another change that was made was the shift of focus from the occult aspect of Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers. In the theatrical cut the opening focuses a lot on the mystical powers at be with Tommy Doyle giving you a crash-course in his opening monologue; this is swapped out for Loomis giving you a brief history lesson on the Halloween series in the Producer’s cut. And this is strange becasue that shift of focus kind of meets in the middle of the two movies, and then passes each other like ships in the night.
By this I mean the ending of the two movies are wildly different, and funny enough it’s the Producer’s cut that relies more heavily on the cult aspect of the story in its final moments. Now although I appreciated the shift away from this story aspect when the movie started, I equally appreciated its return fo the ending becasue there is no escaping the focus on the curse in the movie. So what I liked about the Producer’s Cut is that it didn’t try and make a course-correction right at the end to win over fans, which ended up giving us a stronger product in my opinion.
But enough about comparing the two works, let’s talk about the constants in both. First of all, the kills were pretty decent. Michael is once again this unstoppable force that can put his thumb through a skull without breaking a sweat (or sweating a lot, that mask is probably really hot). I will say that the theatrical cut had better kills, but that is only becasue there was less of a story to serve so there was more leeway in how characters could eat it.
And going off of the topic of Michael Myers, they finally found their footing again in terms of his look. Finally Michael Myers scares me to look at him; he doesn’t look like some asshole who walked into a Party City and grabbed the fist mask he saw. He looks older, more worn, which adds to the suspense. When you see him you can determine that he’s been at this whole killing thing for a while. And speaking of suspense, Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers nailed it. Sure the movie still had a lot of dumb moments that felt rather cheap or boring, but there are quite a few solid instances of suspense here.
The characters were pretty great as well. I was surprised to hear that people aren’t fans of Paul Rudd in this movie, when I thought he was the best part. The character of Tommy Doyle is an interesting one, and he brings a lot to the table not just by way of exposition but also how fascinating he is. Maybe it’s becasue I love Paul Rudd but I felt the character of Tommy Doyle was one of the best we’ve had in the series. And of course I couldn’t end this review without talking about one of the other great characters: Doctor Loomis. Since the first film Donald Pleasence has been giving landmark performances as Michael Myers’ former psychologist, and unfortunately this film was his last. It was nice that the Producer’s Cut of the movie focused a lot more on his character, but it is unfortunate that he didn’t get a proper send-off. Although I guess what we got was pretty nice.
Overall Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers is interesting becasue the two cuts of the movie have two distinct grades in my mind. While the theatrical cut offered better kills, the Producer’s Cut seemed more coherent. I guess I’ll just give you the highest of the two scores.
I give Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers a C