Halloween Kills divides critics in first reviews

·3 min read
Photo credit: Universal
Photo credit: Universal

The first reviews for Halloween Kills have landed, and it looks like critics are divided on whether the sequel is a terrifying treat or a dreadful dud.

According to an early aggregation, the sequel to 2008's Halloween is currently rated Rotten on Rotten Tomatoes as of Wednesday evening (September 8).

Jamie Lee Curtis returns in Halloween Kills as Laurie Strode continues her desperate attempt to outrun serial killer Michael Myers, who somehow survived seemingly being burned alive in the previous film.

But, as any fan of the Halloween franchise knows, it will take much more than a house fire to put Michael Myers down for good – and this time, he's coming back for the children (Anthony Michael Hall and Kyle Richards) he terrorised back in 1978, too.

Photo credit: Universal
Photo credit: Universal

Here's a look at what the critics are saying about Halloween Kills following its premiere at the 78th Venice International Film Festival on Monday (September 6):

The Good


"For all the deep and troubling psychoanalysis of this film, it's also a textbook Halloween movie. Curtis remains the perfect Final Girl, showcasing a range of emotions in a single frame: tired, resilient, resourceful and terrified."


"Halloween Kills suffers from being the second chapter in a trilogy, but it still delivers gory fun, fantastic performances, and an electrifying score from John Carpenter. There are enough callbacks to the original film to satisfy Carpenter fans while also expanding the mythology around Michael Myers and the town of Haddonfield in meaningful ways."


"Just watch the corpses pile up in Halloween Kills! Never was there a film truer to its name. They’re sliced up with kitchen knives, hollowed out with a fluorescent strip light, bisected with a chain saw and impaled on banisters. The body count is phenomenal. We love this stuff. You know we do."

The Guardian

"Forty years after John Carpenter made the defining slasher movie, director David Gordon Green has made a creditable stab, as it were, at reanimating the title."

Photo credit: Universal
Photo credit: Universal

The Bad

The Hollywood Reporter

"'Evil dies tonight,' shout the inflamed townsfolk of Haddonfield, Illinois, more times than you can count in Halloween Kills. Or maybe it's 'A franchise dies tonight'? I might have misheard. Either way, this latest installment is like a latex ghoul mask so stretched and shapeless it no longer fits."

The Telegraph

"Halloween Kills certainly feels like more Halloween. But the game board is left exactly as it was found it in readiness for round 13; the only thing that advances is the body count."


"Halloween night may be Michael Myers' masterpiece, but Halloween Kills is no masterpiece. It's a mess — a slasher movie that's almost never scary, slathered with 'topical' pablum and with too many parallel plot strands that don’t go anywhere."


"Halloween Kills inadvertently opens a window into its own screenwriting challenge, forcing you to ask: How do you make characters pop just enough to liven up a scene or two, but not too much that the viewer will feel torn about seeing them impaled on a halogen light bar? How do you weave a tapestry with one hand while tearing it apart with another?"

Earlier this year, Digital Spy spoke with Halloween Kills star Kyle Richards about what it was like to reunite with Jamie Lee Curtis over 40 years after the groundbreaking horror film.

Photo credit: Kevin Winter - Getty Images
Photo credit: Kevin Winter - Getty Images

"We joked and laughed on the set with Jamie because when I was a child, and the day I wrapped, she carried me to my dressing room. So I said, 'Are you going to carry me to my dressing room again?' She picked me up the last day, I was like, oh my gosh, this is hilarious.

"She's amazing. She's just an incredible woman. The fact that I've maintained this friendship with her all these years, and we help each other out [raising money for] Children's Hospital Los Angeles. We have that in common. We have Halloween in common."

Halloween Kills premieres on October 15, 2021, and will be followed by Halloween Ends on October 14, 2022.

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