Halloween II (1981)

DVD Cover (Universal)
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Overall Rating 71%
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Ranked #1,443
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Connections: Halloween

After failing to kill stubborn survivor Laurie and taking a bullet or six from former psychiatrist Dr. Sam Loomis, Michael Myers has followed Laurie to the Haddonfield Memorial Hospital, where she's been admitted for Myers' attempt on her life. The institution proves to be particularly suited to serial killers, however, as Myers cuts, stabs and slashes his way through hospital staff to reach his favorite victim. --TMDb
Review by bluemeanie
Added: April 11, 2007
Released three years after the unexpected success of the original film, "Halloween II" picks up where the original film left off. John Carpenter was originally offered the chance to direct the sequel, but turned it down, however staying very much involved with the script writing process as well as the final edit. In fact, one of Carpenter's complaints was that the film was not gory enough; so, Carpenter personally shot some gorier scenes that ended up making the final cut, despite director Rosenthal's objections. So, contrary to popular belief, Carpenter did have a rather large part in shaping the first sequel to the franchise, which I also consider to be the best sequel in the franchise. "Halloween II" is nowhere near the masterpiece of the original, but it does have the same kind of tone and the same kind of ominous feeling. "Halloween II" keeps Michael Myers scary.

As mentioned, this film picks up where the original left off. Traumatized Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) is rushed to Haddonfield Memorial Hospital, while Dr. Loomis (Donald Pleasence) and Sheriff Brackett (Charles Cyphers) hunt the streets for Michael Myers. Most of this film takes place in the hospital, with the staff and patients caught in a cat and mouse game between Laurie and Michael Myers. Unlike the original, where Michael Myers had his sites set on anyone that crossed his path -- the sequel finds him more motivated to kill one person...Laurie. This film is what sets up his obsession with Laurie Strode and his determination to kill her, at all costs. Of course, he was finally afforded the opportunity in "Halloween: Resurrection", also directed by Rosenthal.

What makes the film work is that it knows it should not stray from the formula that made the original film work. The pacing is the same, the tone is the same -- Rosenthal knew not to even try to change speeds. Jamie Lee Curtis also gets to do some actual acting this go around, and this is how her name -- "Scream Queen" -- finally cemented itself into the pop culture lexicon. "Halloween II" is one of the better sequels to attach itself to a horror film, and it far eclipses sequels to the other horror franchises, with the exception of "Hellbound: Hellraiser II". I still enjoy watching this film any time it's on cable. It is a nice companion piece to the original, and I loved how Jamie Lee Curtis had to wear a wig for the film to match her hairstyle from the original. That's what happens when you wait 3 years to make a sequel. Of course, that wait also produced a better film, I think. 8/10.
Tristan #1: Tristan - added 04/11/2007, 03:29 PM
I always thought that pumpkin cover was the coolest. Not as good as the original, of course, but a damn fine sequel just the same. I don't think I had any problems with this one at all. But after 3, it starts to go a little downhill. 9/10
Edd #2: Edd - added 04/11/2007, 10:49 PM
I think the original and the sequal is completely on par with each other. It totally compliments the other, while still being it's own film. I can't see this one being anything but a 10/10.
Ginose #3: Ginose - added 04/12/2007, 06:31 PM
Best of the series in my opinion, easily in the top ten gretest sequals of all time. 9/10
bluemeanie #4: bluemeanie - added 04/13/2007, 12:22 AM
BEST...OF...THE...SERIES? Does that include the ORIGINAL? I will leave it at that...
Ginose #5: Ginose - added 07/29/2007, 03:16 AM
Yep... better than the original. There. I said it.
Tristan #6: Tristan - added 09/25/2007, 07:55 PM
I wouldn't go so far as to say better, but I'll admit that it did a great job of continuing the series, and not making a carbon copy of the original.
Nirrad #7: Nirrad - added 02/09/2008, 01:21 PM
Meh, never really cared for this one. I liked a lot of the other sequels better, except for Resurrection, 3 and 5.
Shakes #8: Shakes - added 01/22/2009, 12:49 PM
Great sequel. I really like it a lot. it's at least a 9/10
Rest Easy Soul #9: Rest Easy Soul - added 12/22/2009, 03:16 PM
I would never say it's better but it certainly does follow the momentum of the first. Overall a great classic. 8/10
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