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John Carpenter's Halloween scared the living daylights out of 25 million people and set a precedent in smashing box office records for a horror film. But the nightmare is just beginning...Picking up precisely where its predecessor left off, Halloween II follows the same ill-fated characters as they encounter the knife-wielding maniac they left for dead in the first Halloween. It seems the inhuman Michael Myers is still very much alive and out for more revenge as he stalks the deserted halls of the hospital where his sister lays waiting. As he gets closer and closer to his terrified target, Dr. Loomis discovers the chilling mystery behind the crazed psychopath's savage actions. Written by horror masters John Carpenter and Debra Hill, Halloween II is a spine-tingling dark ride into the scariest night of the year.
"You can't kill the boogeyman," explains John Carpenter in Halloween, and to prove it he brings Michael Myers back in this handsome but grisly sequel. Jamie Lee Curtis returns as Laurie Strode but spends most of her time cowering in a hospital gown, and Donald Pleasence runs around like a maniac as the panicky doctor desperate to hunt down Myers before he kills again. Carpenter writes and produces with partner Debra Hill, and together they replace the mystery and uncertainty of the original with an exponentially bigger body count and some strange tales about the Druids and pagan ceremonies, and the now-familiar family ties between Michael and Laurie. First-time director Rick Rosenthal (Bad Boys) paces the film at a brisk jog and directs it with a clean, crisp style, taking the murders out of the dark to display them in all their nasty detail. --Sean Axmaker
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Additionally, HALLOWEEN II leaves off of from the cliffhangers end of its predecessor HALLOWEEN pointing out that the most brutal mass murderer in Midwest history is still alive and still on the loose in a fictional small remote Midwestern town called Haddonfield, Illinois with the obsessed overzealous Dr. Sam Loomis(Donald Pleasance)still hot on Michael's trail as he continues to stalk the hapless victim Laurie Strode(Jamie-Lee Curtis)killing everyone else who gets in his way leaving a much higher death toll than the original did making HALLOWEEN 2 a little more sophisticated and a tad more upgraded than the original HALLOWEEN was with even more blood and even more violence than HALLOWEEN I had, since the body count in HALLOWEEN II was much higher than the body count in the original was.
In addition to that, HALLOWEEN 2 reveals to us that Laurie is Michael Myers's orphaned kid sister, which was never mentioned in this films predecessor explaining Michael's desperate motive for wanting to kill Laurie in the first place since Michael had already maliciously killed his big sister(Judith Myers)at the beginning of HALLOWEEN I in 1963 like they indicated at the beginning of HALLOWEEN 2 by showing us scenes from the shocking cliffhangers end of the original HALLOWEEN when Michael wanders off unexpectedly after being shot 6 times by Loomis and then starts off the continuation at the very beginning of HALLOWEEN 2 when Loomis finds blood on the Doyle's lawn and tells the Doyle's next-door neighbor to call the police to alert all local authorities that the relentless Michael Myers is still on the loose, which simply indicated and proved to us that the nightmare and horrific ordeal of Halloween night of 1978 in Haddonfield simply and obviously wasn't over yet and that it was simply more of the night Michael Myers came home just like the motto or slogan for HALLOWEEN II was "More Of The Night He Came Home", just like the motto for the original HALLOWEEN was "The Night He Came Home" as opposed to HALLOWEEN III-THE SEASON OF THE WITCH with Tom Atkins(Dr. Challis) which used the slogan of "The Night Nobody Comes Home" since it had absolutely nothing to do with Michael Myers, Dr. Loomis, Laurie, or the concerned but skeptical Sheriff Brackett(Charles Cyphers), or even with Haddonfield either since John Carpenter & Debra Hill only agreed to produce HALLOWEEN 3 if it was unrelated to its predecessors HALLOWEEN I and II, but after HALLOWEEN 3's theatrical release on Friday October 22, 1982; the producers finally decided to make a 4th sequel 6 years later and had changed the story around a little bit about what really happened to Myers and Loomis at the end of HALLOWEEN 2 on Halloween night of 1978 when they released HALLOWEEN IV-THE RETURN OF MICHAEL MYERS in the Fall of 1988 since they decided to bring Michael Myers back in a big way after HALLOWEEN 3: THE SEASON OF THE WITCH tanked at the box office in the Fall of 1982.
Therefore, when HALLOWEEN 4 was released on Friday October 21, 1988; the conclusion to what supposedly happened on Tuesday October 31, 1978 after the firey explosion at the Haddonfield Memorial Hospital was that Dr. Loomis and Michael Myers presumably didn't die in that fire after all, but had nearly burned to death instead and that Michael had supposedly been in a coma in an institution for 10 years ever since the aftermath of the horrific ordeal on Halloween night of 1978, but had suddenly awakened to relive his trecherous killing-spree in Haddonfield on Halloween night of 1988 with Loomis back on his trail again, except in HALLOWEEN IV, Michael Myers(George Wilbur)goes after his orphaned niece Jamie(Danielle Harris)instead of Laurie who presumably died in a car accident in 1987.
I also liked the Halloween theme music and music score that they used in HALLOWEEN II also, which was mostly like HALLOWEEN I, except HALLOWEEN 2 used a more sophisticated variation of the kind of creepy music scoring that was used in the original HALLOWEEN with the help of music associate(Alan Howarth)since HALLOWEEN II used a sinthesizer instead of a piano which was used in the original HALLOWEEN along with the fact that both HALLOWEEN I and II scared the witts out of me when I saw both of them for the very first time, except I noticed that HALLOWEEN 2 didn't seem to have as much creepy music scoring as the original did although HALLOWEEN II seemed just as suspenseful as the first one even though I noticed that in this movie you wouldn't see Michael Myers one second and not there the next like you did in the original, which was something else that made HALLOWEEN I such a successful shocker of a movie.
I also like the way they showed the movie trailer of the previews shown of HALLOWEEN II like they were shown before it's theatrical release back in the Autumn of 1981 just like the John Carpenters HALLOWEEN DVD had a movie trailer of its previews shown before HALLOWEEN 1's theatrical release in the Autumn of 1978.
The truth is most sequels nowadays are cheesy, but you could say that HALLOWEEN 2 was one of the few sequels that was extraordinary, since you could say HALLOWEEN II was almost as successful as John Carpenters original Halloween that was released back in October of 1978, which was actually made 3 years before HALLOWEEN 2 was, even though Laurie, Dr. Loomis, and Michael Myers were so-called still dealing with the same gruesome ordeal on Halloween night of 1978 in HALLOWEEN 2, since HALLOWEEN II was simply just the conclusion to HALLOWEEN I.
Unfortunately, they don't make sequels like they used to and the last spectacular sequel to any movie that I can recall at the moment was PSYCHO 2 back in the Summer of 1983 along with the fact that FRIDAY THE 13TH-PART 2 made an excellent sequel as well back in the Spring of 1981 during the same year HALLOWEEN 2 was released along with the fact that HALLOWEEN II was definitley one of the most phenomenal sequels of all times.
So director(Rick Rosenthal)certainly knew what he was doing when he made this sequel to John Carpenters original HALLOWEEN and I give Rick Rosenthal just as much credit for his film making of HALLOWEEN 2 as I do for John Carpenter's film making of HALLOWEEN I, but John Carpenter had declined to direct this sequel even though it was offered to him since Carpenter didn't want to do a sequel, so the directors job was given to Rick Rosenthal instead, so John Carpenter only co-wrote and co-produced this sequel with his now late-great ex-girlfriend(Debra Hill).
In addition to that made this HALLOWEEN II DVD so cool, I also liked the movie trailer the HALLOWEEN II DVD provided of it's previews that were shown before HALLOWEEN 2's theatrical release back in October of 1981 too, which was mighty cool, which takes me back to memory lane to when we had all those budgets cuts going on from the recession we had back in 1981-1982 when Ronald Reagan was president along with the fact that I was 9 years old in the 3rd grade and living in my hometown(El Centro, CA)at the time as well since I was an Imperial County resident for 21 years.
Even though HALLOWEEN 2 was an awesome sequel as well as a wonderful horror film, I have to admit that the original HALLOWEEN is still the best of them to this very day, especially since John Carpenter's 1978 horror film of HALLOWEEN is what started the Halloween phenomenon in the first place.
So if you loved John Carpenters original masterpiece HALLOWEEN, you'll like HALLOWEEN 2.