Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers Preview

Mud splashes in Young Jamie’s face and Jamie and Patrick fist bump and laugh as they watch the dirt mingle with his tears. The youngsters hopped on their own motorbikes in an attempt to battle their older counterparts’ sick moves. Alas, without the years of professional dance under their belts they couldn’t keep up. “Who… who are you guys?” asks Young Patrick, sniffling sadly at his own lack of motorbike skillz. Patrick throws up his hands. The youngsters shouldn’t worry about who they are. “The short and sweet of it is that we are who you could become if you learn the three R’s: reading, writing, and total radness.” Boom. A look of wonder and self-reflection cross the faces of the younger versions of themselves. They predator high five and vow to read, write, and be super rad by being kind and inclusive to others. Boy, that was easy. Jamie and Patrick nod at each other and prepare to head back to the time machine. They were certain this would take at least eight or nine short adventures to achieve their goal. “Hey wait,” the youngsters say, “Aren’t you going to stick around for dinner?” Patrick is about to explain that they don’t make it a habit to dine with children because they are adults and kids are boring when Young Jamie chimes in, “Yeah, and then afterwards is trick-or-treating!” Jamie and Patrick look at each other in shock, a shared feeling about this moment flooding back to them. They may have turned their lives around with their rad tricks and sage advice, but something about Young Jamie’s words make them think they have one more thing left to do. Halloween, late 90’s, tricks and/or treats… something monstrous is on the horizon. That’s right! We’re heading on through another horror franchise and boooooyyyyy howdy do I love franchises. Halloween might be the most critically disappointing of the major franchises. Started at the highest of highs and then really tanked starting with Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers. And that’s where we start and pick up a bonus in Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers. Both under 90 minutes. Let’s go!

Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989) – BMeTric: 60.3; Notability: 26

StreetCreditReport.com – BMeTric: top 1.2%; Notability: top 17.6%; Rotten Tomatoes: top 6.7%; Higher BMeT: Police Academy 6: City Under Siege, Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan, A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child; Higher Notability: Tango & Cash, Troop Beverly Hills, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, A Nightmare on Elm Street 5: The Dream Child, See No Evil, Hear No Evil, Fletch Lives, Harlem Nights, Leviathan, Pink Cadillac, Family Business, Lock Up, Millennium, Police Academy 6: City Under Siege, Three Fugitives, Dead Bang, Renegades, Let It Ride, Slaves of New York, The Karate Kid Part III, Who’s Harry Crumb?, and 24 more; Lower RT: Dream a Little Dream, Police Academy 6: City Under Siege, Kinjite: Forbidden Subjects, The Horror Show, The Toxic Avenger Part II, Stepfather II: Make Room for Daddy, Night Game, Wired, Wild Orchid, DeepStar Six, No Holds Barred, Rooftops, She’s Out of Control, Winter People, Millennium, Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan; Notes: Huh … now that I look at both of these plots together, both of the ratings tick down at the same time. Much have been a purge of fake / suspicious votes or something. Maybe some misguided marketing attempt for the new film? Maybe a backlash to the new film? Maybe robots running wild? Who knows. This rating is more like it though, we’ve seen all of the other higher BMeT films as well.

Leonard Maltin – 1.5 stars –  Slightly more plot than before but still just a sequential slaughter of teenagers as Michael Myers (Shanks) again sets out to kill his young niece (Harris). Routine and plodding, with too many endings and unnecessary setup for a sequel.

(Interesting. There is a sequel. But from what I remember the sequel is barely connected to this film. Doesn’t it jump forward a bunch of years to the child of the kid in this one? I honestly can’t remember the setup now that I think about it.)

Trailer – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j37xXYWN7rc/

(Hate the beginning with the “help me, help me.” Also they weren’t ready, and he’s not unmasked. What a bizarre ad campaign!)

DirectorsDominique Othenin-Girard – ( Known For: Beyond Desire; After Darkness; BMT: Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: From Switzerland. Evidently attempted to make a transition to Hollywood in the late-80s, but is more well known on the European indie scene.)

WritersJohn Carpenter – ( Known For: Halloween Kills; They Live; Halloween; Escape from New York; Halloween; The Fog; Escape from L.A.; Prince of Darkness; Halloween H20: 20 Years Later; Assault on Precinct 13; Assault on Precinct 13; Eyes of Laura Mars; Dark Star; Black Moon Rising; Future BMT: Halloween; Lockout; Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers; Halloween: Resurrection; BMT: Halloween II; Ghosts of Mars; Halloween III: Season of the Witch; The Fog; Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Still kicking around Hollywood, although he hasn’t actually written a film since 2001’s Ghosts of Mars. He likes to make his own synth-heavy soundtracks.)

Debra Hill – ( Known For: Halloween Kills; Halloween; Halloween; The Fog; Escape from L.A.; Halloween H20: 20 Years Later; Future BMT: Halloween; Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers; Halloween: Resurrection; BMT: Halloween II; The Fog; Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Died in 2005, she was well known as the frequent collaborator and producer with John Carpenter on his most well known films.)

Michael Jacobs – ( Known For: Certain Fury; BMT: Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Hasn’t written anything since the late-80s … that is until the upcoming documentary about the surveillance state in the United States? Yeah, that’s in post-production.)

Dominique Othenin-Girard – ( Known For: After Darkness; BMT: Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Was educated in London and has directed across the globe, although most well known for his work in Switzerland.)

Shem Bitterman – ( Known For: The Job; Out of the Rain; BMT: Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Trained as an actor, he also produces plays which appears to be what he is most famous for.)

ActorsDonald Pleasence – ( Known For: The Eagle Has Landed; The Great Escape; Halloween; Escape from New York; You Only Live Twice; The Greatest Story Ever Told; Phenomena; THX 1138; Fantastic Voyage; Prince of Darkness; Soldier Blue; Escape to Witch Mountain; Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band; Wake in Fright; The Last Tycoon; Dracula; Alone in the Dark; Malachi’s Cove; The Hallelujah Trail; Watch Out, We’re Mad; Future BMT: Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers; BMT: Halloween II; Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers; Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Started acting in the 50s, oddly in television films. Obviously became most well known for his role as Dr. Loomis in the Halloween films.)

Danielle Harris – ( Known For: Once Upon a Time… In Hollywood; Free Willy; The Last Boy Scout; City Slickers; The Town That Dreaded Sundown; Stake Land; Hatchet II; See No Evil 2; Victor Crowley; Hatchet III; The Wild Thornberrys; The Victim; Blood Night: The Legend of Mary Hatchet; Camp Cold Brook; Chromeskull: Laid to Rest 2; Shiver; Havenhurst; Poor White Trash; Super Capers: The Origins of Ed and the Missing Bullion; Left for Dead; Future BMT: Don’t Tell Mom the Babysitter’s Dead; Halloween; Marked for Death; Halloween II; Rugrats Go Wild; BMT: Urban Legend; Daylight; Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers; Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Still working, including in shows like Creepshow true to her horror past.)

Ellie Cornell – ( Known For: Married to the Mob; The Specials; Room 6; Free Enterprise; All Souls Day: Dia de los Muertos; The Thirst; Future BMT: House of the Dead; BMT: Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers; Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers; Notes: Was supposed to be in A League of Their Own but had to drop out when she became pregnant.)

Budget/Gross – $5,000,000 / Domestic: $11,642,254 (Worldwide: $11,642,254)

(Just going down and down and down. It isn’t a surprise they scrapped whatever plans they originally had for the sequel and only finally made it six years later. What a disastrous franchise performance.)

Rotten Tomatoes – 12% (3/25): Halloween 5: The Revenge Of Michael Myers finds the series embracing crude slasher conventions with pedestrian scares, disposable characters, and aimless plotting.

(Spoiler alert: it always did. That was the issue. The issue was they created the best original film of the bunch and then had nowhere to go but the unstoppable killer / horrible lore route. Even the second one was a pretty nonsensical rehash of the original’s ideas.)

Reviewer Highlight: A prime example of the principle of diminishing reruns. – Richard Harrington, Washington Post

Poster – Sklogoween 5: The Revenge of Slithers the Friendly Snake

(I like this one a little better than #4. It’s a little more artistic with the knife and the girl and thankfully they made the mask a little smaller instead of weirdly huge. Still not great. C)

Tagline(s) – Michael Lives, And This Time They’re Ready! (C+)

(Yeah, OK. I can get with this one at least. This time they’re ready… sure… I mean, it’s not true, but there’s no law against a tagline being wrong, right? RIGHT?! THAT’S NOT A LAW, RIGHT?!)

Keyword(s) – killing-spree

Top 10: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (2011), Venom: Let There Be Carnage (2021), Antlers (2021), The Dark Knight (2008), Scream (1996), Malignant (2021), Deadpool 2 (2018), Goodfellas (1990), Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark (2019), The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

Future BMT: 64.7 The Crow: City of Angels (1996), 62.7 The Hills Have Eyes 2 (2007), 61.0 When a Stranger Calls (2006), 54.4 Eye of the Beholder (1999), 45.9 Jeepers Creepers 2 (2003), 41.5 Hell Fest (2018), 41.1 The Purge (2013), 40.5 Hollow Man (2000), 40.2 The Forsaken (2001), 39.9 Ghost in the Machine (1993)

BMT: London Has Fallen (2016), Conan the Barbarian (2011), House of Wax (2005), Queen of the Damned (2002), Red Riding Hood (2011), The Lawnmower Man (1992), Friday the 13th Part III (1982), Species II (1998), Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter (1984), Dracula 2000 (2000), Jason Goes to Hell: The Final Friday (1993), Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988), Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989), Vampire in Brooklyn (1995)

Matches: Halloween (2018), Friday the 13th Part III (1982), Idle Hands (1999), Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988), Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989), Christmas Evil (1980), Silent Rage (1982), Meeting Evil (2012), Who’s Watching Oliver (2017), Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, Part 2 (1996), Dahmer vs. Gacy (2010), Heavy Mental: A Rock-n-Roll Blood Bath (2009)

(I should have just done Halloween again. Let’s see though, When a Stranger Calls is definitely one of those films we should have watched six years ago and still haven’t. Same goes for Hollow Man, which is a real weird film.)

Welcome to Earf (HoE Number 15) – The shortest path through The Movie Database cast lists using only BMT films is: Donald Pleasence is No. 1 billed in Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers and No. 2 billed in Halloween II, which also stars Jamie Lee Curtis (No. 1 billed) who is in Christmas with the Kranks (No. 2 billed) which also stars Tim Allen (No. 1 billed) who is in Jungle 2 Jungle (No. 1 billed) which also stars Leelee Sobieski (No. 6 billed) who is in Here on Earth (No. 1 billed) => (1 + 2) + (1 + 2) + (1 + 1) + (6 + 1) = 15. There is no shorter path at the moment.

Notes – After filming for two weeks, Donald Pleasence gave his much bigger trailer to Danielle Harris once he left set. Harris’s mother had been complaining about the small size of her daughter’s trailer and Pleasence decided that she should have his.

Despite the subtitle “The Revenge of Michael Myers” which appears on all movie covers and posters, it does not appear in the actual film. It only says “Halloween 5” in the opening credits.

Lowest grossing film in the entire series.

Don Shanks was originally set to wear the same mask that George P. Wilbur had worn in Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988) in order to retain consistency between the movies. The mask did not fit Shanks, so a new one was made.

KNB Effects had designed grotesque facial makeup for Michael Myers’ unmasking toward the end of the film. The producers told them to do so as an option, either showing Michael’s badly scarred face or keep it in the dark. They went for the latter.

The old hermit from the opening scene was originally scripted as a younger man named “Dr. Death” who had a fascination with the occult. His shack was supposed to be filled with ancient runes and tablets, and he attempted to bring Michael back to life after finding him. This scene was filmed, and can be seen in Inside ‘Halloween 5’ (2000).

The film’s first screenplay, which was written by Shem Bitterman, featured Jamie Lloyd and Michael Myers as dual antagonists, with a now-teenage Jamie going on a killing spree of her own, Myers attempting to kill her because she was unwittingly interfering with his own spree, and Rachel being caught in the middle. Executive producer Moustapha Akkad disliked the screenplay, feeling it felt more like a parody of the Halloween series than an actual entry in it, and also because he had already promised Danielle Harris that she would be allowed to return as Jamie, and did not think that the 12-year-old Harris would be credible as a serial killer. As a result, the screenplay was rewritten essentially from scratch by Michael Jacobs and director Dominique Othenin-Girard, though Bitterman remained credited for contractual reasons.

Donald Pleasence was very vocal about his dissatisfaction with the story and with the way director Dominique Othenin – Girard was trying to get him to play Dr Loomis as totally heavy and overbearing. Pleasence also felt that the success and the shock ending of Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988) was not being capitalized on.

In the script, Rachel had Tina’s role, and Tina had Rachel’s, with a vast change in character for Rachel. Also the script had a scene in the Myers’ house that had The Shape fall through the floor into a cage in the basement, and the end had Michael escaping with Sheriff Meeker finding an empty cell, and other drafts had Meeker dying.

Footage was added to the beginning of the movie (from that previously used near the ending of Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers) to show that Michael had actually fallen down a nearby mineshaft rather than just being “swallowed by the ground.”

The film had been fighting an X rating with the violence, blood, and gore. Some scenes were trimmed down to keep it rated R, including a shot of Mike quivering on the ground after Michael stabs him in the head with a hand rake, a shot of glass embedded in Officer Eddy’s face after Michael punches through the windshield, and Billy’s leg being hit by the Camaro, the scythe that kills Samantha was originally supposed to go through her forehead.

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