This is the version of Halloween II that should’ve been released in theaters. Rob Zombie’s director’s cut of Halloween II is out now with fleshed out story lines, more face time for Michael Myers, and a nihilistic ending much better than the pitiful one haunting the theatrical version. Two years after her last encounter with Michael Myers (Tyler Mane), Laurie Strode (Scout Taylor-Compton) is an emotionally crippled pill head quickly sliding into madness. Her relationship with Annie (Danielle Harris) is more explosive than nitro and the two former friends frequently engage in bitter arguments. Michael Myers, believed dead even though his body is missing, roams the countryside living off garbage and dog meat until the voices in his head tell him it’s time to go back home to reunited his family with a glorious bloodbath.
Rob Zombie’s commentary reveals the production/filming of Halloween II was one giant cluster fuck of mistakes, studio tampering, sudden cuts in budget and shooting days, bad weather, and an insane race to finish the film before the August theatrical release. Zombie also explains plot points that confused fans, making clear Debra Myers (Sheri Moon Zombie) is just a hallucination produced by Michael’s diseased mind, not a real ghost. Some of the anecdotes about the actors and locations are pretty humorous, especially the one about residents in Georgia calling 911 when they saw the fake signs for Haddonfield’s most famous strip club. Considering all of the behind-the-scenes drama involved it’s amazing Zombie managed to finish and release the film on time.
The deleted/alternate scenes special feature shows a mask-less Michael killing the stripper, Big Lou, and a delivery driver. A deleted scene involving one of Laurie’s hallucinations shows Michael hanging a girl from a tree in front of a playground full of children. It’s a disturbing scene that should’ve been left in the final version. Danielle Harris fans will enjoy her additional scenes including an encounter with a comic book geek trying to seduce her with promises of tickets to a comic con.
Other special features include audition footage, make-up test footage, blooper reel, a music video of Captain Clegg and the Night Creatures, and all of Uncle Seymour Coffins’ stand up routine at the Halloween party. There are plenty of previews for other Sony releases but none for Halloween II. The blooper reel footage is entertaining but short. Uncle Seymour’s bit is really just the ramblings of a sad drunk too wasted to know it’s time to get off the stage. At least there are plenty of strippers on stage to distract the viewer from the bad jokes.
If you hated the theatrical version I doubt there is much here to change your mind about Zombie’s handling of the franchise. I know all of those fans angry over Laurie’s sudden evil turn in the theatrical version will hate to learn she is pretty much bat shit crazy at the beginning of this version. Both versions of the film suffer some of the same weaknesses. Malcolm McDowell’s Loomis is still an unlikable prick and that damn white horse is still a stupid plot point that should’ve been deleted. Overall, though, the director’s cut of Halloween II is a much better film than the theatrical version. If you loved, liked, or thought the theatrical version had some promise, then you should really enjoy the director’s cut.