There’s no way I’m buying that this will be the last in the “Halloween” series.

Don’t get me wrong, since 1978, these mostly have been fun, and I love Jamie Lee Curtis, although she mostly just frowns and mopes in this movie.

But the ending is so weak, that I’d almost recommend you go watch it, and then just plan on hitting the exit early. It’s no spoiler to tell you that the townspeople of Haddonfield “end” Michael Myers, but, then again, do they? Isn’t it ALWAYS possible for characters to reconstitute themselves for sequels? Anyway, the “end” is almost SNL-level overkill, and makes you wonder, if this “solution” is all it takes, why didn’t they just do this way at the first?

The 2022 installment begins well, and by that I mean, gross and uncomfortable, with a twist on the babysitter/Halloween night bloodbath that you won’t see coming. Jamie’s living with her granddaughter, the granddaughter meets and falls for an outcast kid, and Jamie realizes she doesn’t like something in his eyes. That something rhymes with Nyquil Byers.

Eventually, we are going to have another house-wrecking showdown between Jamie and Michael, which is made possible by the fact that she’s shut herself up in a darkened Victorian whose kitchen has a full knife drawer and a nice big butcher-block center island (granite really, really wouldn’t work here). Corey, the new outcast kid, and Michael seem to be tag-teaming here, but we never are shown why. Are they a couple? Father/son? Why are they a duo? Their purpose seems to be to renew the Michael obsession with Jamie Lee Curtis, but do we need an excuse for that in a “Halloween” sequel? Let’s face it, Michael has a fevah, and the only prescription is more terrified Jamie.

Honestly, the whole middle of the movie is Corey Corey Corey and it’s not the best. To summarize, no one in town likes him except Jamie’s granddaughter, and, of course, Michael, who oddly spares him when they meet in a sewer pipe. Lots of sewer pipe scenes, if you’re into that. I’m sitting there, practically trying to will the other characters back into the movie, because Corey ain’t doing it for me. There’s also a local radio d.j. who Michael Myers turns into a less-talk, more music format in a pretty entertaining way.

Horror movies cliches abound: spoiled rich kids, Goth bartender with heart of gold,  typed narration on a Macbook, chain-link fence mutilation…  You don’t mind them, they’re like seeing old friends around town. Like I said, there’s some good movie going on here, until the rushed, tacked-on ending.

Which may not even be one.

I’m betting that there will be more “Halloween”, and I actually hope so, Jamie Lee Curtis and Michael Myers deserve a better send-off than the last 20 minutes of this one.

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