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Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers
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Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988)

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Plot Summary:
"Michael Myers returns to Haddonfield to terrorise the family living in his childhood home."

Review by
Phil Davies Brown
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Review Date: 28 October 2003 My Rating: out of 5


One of the best and most commercially successful sequels is this one which brought back Michael Myers for his 10th anniversary.

This time the boogeyman is in pursuit of his niece Jamie (excellently played by Dannielle Harris) but for the residents of Haddonfield Illinois, it's going to be a night to remember.

The film starts with a creepy and atmospheric prologue on a local farm and then kicks into gear with the welcome 'Return of Michael Myers'.

This thrill a minute sequel has some of the eeriest and scariest moments of the series, the highlight being the roof-top chase sequence where Jamie and Rachel try to flee the evil Michael Myers.

The deaths are increasingly gory and the characters are all wonderfully likeable with Ellie Cornell earning a special place amongst the hearts of fans.

John Carpenter's wonderful score remains, and is given a good treatment courtesy of long time collaborater Alan Howarth, and the direction is very good too.

A definite highlight in the series. Once again the small town atmosphere is complimented by a great cast and crews wonderful efforts.

Reviewer: Josh Winning @horrorasylum
Review Date: 31 October 2001 My Rating: out of 5

# This was the first ever Halloween movie that I saw. The inadequate and laughable Horror section at my local video store had only Parts , and , and I was later forced to purchase the remaining titles in the series in order to fill in the gaps. Still, seeing as this turned out to be a sort of non-sequel sequel, with only Michael Myers returning to the scene of the crime, it was a pretty good starting place for my Halloween viewing.

The first time I saw Halloween was a few years ago when I was first being introduced to the genre, and I can honestly say that I had never seen anything like it before in my life. To say that I was scared witless would be an understatement - the box cover alone with Michael's mask creeped me out, and so seeing a living, breathing version of the image had me on the edge of my seat the entire film through! Of course, since then I have become something of a Horror Buff, and rewatches of the film don't effect me in the same way, but it's fun to reminisce and remember how completely creeped out I was the night I crawled into bed and popped this classic horror into the machine.

One of the reasons that this movie effected me the way it did when I watched it was Danielle Harris, who I had only ever seen in TV guest spots, and hardly knew anything about then. Her heart felt and completely mesmerising portrayal of Jamie Lloyd worked a charm, and at the time she was most probably the best child actress to have graced our screens. The audience immediately relates and sympathises for Jamie and her situation, and Danielle Harris showed that her range of emotions goes way beyond that of most adult actors, let alone children. Teamed up with the equally-beautiful Ellie Cornell, they made a great on-screen duo, and the chemistry between them seemed genuine. They were both involved in some great suspense-filled scenes - particularly a scene in which they are chased over the roof of a house with almost no escape.

One of the things that comes across in Halloween is how inventive it is. Instead of taking the same formula as the first Halloween, we are given new reasons to fear Michael. Dwight H. Little's direction gives the film a gritty darkness that is claustrophobic to the fullest, and a feeling of imposing doom is evident. The opening scene, with an accompanying revamped and brilliantly-realised new version of the 'Halloween Theme', is one of the more memorable scenes, but the final scene is by far the most chilling, and is something of a statement on violence in society and how it effects those too young to take it.

Chock-full of jumps and scares, this is a worthy sequel to its predecessor. The movie has a great sense of style and originality, and the atmosphere in the halloween night scenes is overpowering and unnerving. Danielle Harris and Ellie Cornell are flawless in their roles, as are the other cast memebrs (including a be-scarred and raving Donald Pleasence!) Add to this an ending that chills the blood, and you've got a great night's entertainment.

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