Title: Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988)
Runtime: 88 minutes
Director: Dwight H. Little
As everyone knows by now, Halloween III: Season of the Witch is not canon to the Michael Myers story, and even though I love that underrated gem, I decided to skip it during this marathon just to keep everything straight.
Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers is just that: Michael Myers’ return to Haddonfield. Ten years after the events of the first two films, we pick up with Jamie Lloyd (played by the now cult legend Danielle Harris), who is Laurie Strode’s daughter. Much like Laurie, Jamie is living with adopted parents. The reason given is because her mom has been “gone” for 11 months. Unlike her mother, though, Jamie is aware that her uncle is the bona-fide “Boogeyman”. Because she is family, Michael has returned to Haddonfield to take out his remaining kin folk.
Halloween 4 and Halloween 5 are often cited by horror fans as the best of the Halloween sequels. What I love about this part of the series is how well the story flows. I honestly can’t remember much of part 5, but after revisiting this I still believe that the story is my favorite part. Danielle Harris is a wonderful child actress in this one as well.
*Spoilers for the ending of Halloween II appear in the next paragraph.*
I was curious how they’d bring Loomis back after the ending of part 2, but it was quite simple: they say that he and Michael “almost” died on that day. Is that easy to believe? Not at all. But because it’s a slasher film, and it’s Michael Myers, I’ll bite. Loomis is just as wonderful in his return as Myers is, and the duo really become the heart and soul of the series with this outing. Their screen chemistry is exactly where it needs to be, and it helps keep the marathon viewer connected to the series’ canon.
Halloween 4 is a good slasher film. Comparing this to the original is even less fair because neither Carpenter or Debra Hill wrote the story or directed, but I can’t help but wish this one did more to set itself apart from the hundreds of other slasher films of the day. I guess I need to just let that go, however, and enjoy these sequels for what they are: cash grabs that continue the story of one of my favorite cinematic villains.
Branden has been a film fan since he was young, roaming the halls of Blockbuster Video, trying to find the grossest, scariest looking VHS covers to rent and watch alone in the basement. It wasn’t until recently, though, that Branden started seeking out the classics of cinema, and began to develop his true passion for the art form. Branden approaches each film with the unique perspective of having studied the art from the inside, having both a bachelor’s and master’s degree in acting. He has been a film critic since 2010, and has previously written for Inside Pulse Movies, We Love Cult, and Diehard Gamefan. His biggest achievement as a film critic, to date, has been founding Cinefessions and turning it from a personal blog to a true film website, housing hundreds of film and television reviews, and dozens of podcasts.