There’s a lot to unpack here, and I’ll start off by saying my immediate reaction walking out of the theater was that I liked it, despite definitely having some issues. So I went home, and let it simmer for a while.
The first act didn’t work with me, but once Michael obtained the mask, or for that matter anytime the Shape was on screen, I thought it was awesome. It was exactly how I’d want to see "The Shape" shift through houses and streets if I were to make my own Halloween movie. The callbacks didn’t overbear me at all. For the most part, the comedy wasn’t an issue either. I loved Jamie Lee Curtis, the tracking shots, nighttime fall vibes, John Carpenter’s score, and those last 30 minutes were genuinely tense. The journey to that final act though definitely has its issues. Namely numerous underdeveloped characters, an exposition-heavy podcasting setup that I didn’t really work, and a goofy fake Loomis “twist” that didn’t really do it for me either. There are a few other things here and there that I could be nit-picky about. All things considered, I liked it and it’s my favorite entry of the series.
So, my final thoughts on my most anticipated movie of the last several years and a direct sequel to my favorite film of all time? This is absolutely 100% a movie I’m going to go see again. The reason for that is every single "Halloween" movie after "Halloween 2" has a completely different vibe/mood. The first time I saw 4, I thought it didn’t really “feel” like a Halloween movie. The same feeling went for 5,6,7,8 etc. and that is not so much a bad thing. I like all of those movies for their quirks. I love the autumnal vibe of 4 with Ahab Loomis and crazy trucker shotgun brigade. I love the fantastique influence in 5 with the hobo in the cave and the absurd "Man in Black". I love the pre-Scream 90’s feel of 6 and the Druid cult. I loved seeing H20 in the theater, and I enjoy the absolute absurdity of Resurrection. I even like certain darker aspects that the Rob Zombie movies tried to do as well.
So much of my issues with the film didn’t click with me the first time, I think I'll warm up to them over time. I think that’s pretty cool because we all know living in the shadow of a genre monolith is daunting. Just like the numerous sequels, this 2018 offering is no exception. It is equal parts serious and silly, but that’s par for the course for a Halloween movie (as is retconning previous installments... three or four times now if I’m not mistaken?). Just like all the sequels, this one has an identity all its own. I’m looking forward to getting acquainted with it as time goes by. I bet in 5 years I’ll lovingly chuckle at silly fake Loomis, as I do at the vest wearing beer gut shotgun trucker #3 in Halloween 4.
I'm going to give "Halloween" a 7 out of 10. Long story short, I was very satisfied, Go see it. 🎃
EDIT: I’ve been thinking about this movie non-stop for 6 hours and bumped it up from 7 to 8 out of 10. For me, this is one of the most extreme occasions where the things I LOVE about this movie overwhelmingly overshadow the things I wasn’t fond of. Going to see it again soon and peel back another layer.