Halloween: H20: Twenty Years Later (1998)

Directed by: Steve Miner

Written by: Robert Zappia & Matt Greenberg


Jamie Lee Curtis .... Laurie Strode / Keri Tate
Josh Hartnett .... John Tate
Adam Arkin .... Will Brennan
Michelle Williams .... Molly Cartwell
LL Cool J .... Ronny Jones
Jodi Lyn Keefe .... Sarah Wainthrope
Adam Hann-Byrd .... Charlie Deveraux
Chris Durand .... Michael Myers

Special Appearance:

Janet Leigh .... Norma Watson

Release Date: Theatrical: August 5, 1998




Laurie (Jamie Lee Curtis) of course is all grown up and a single mother with her name changed to Kate Tate as her and her son are living in the small town of Summer Glen, California at the Hillcrest Academy and is still being tormented by her nightmares of Michael Myers and cringes of her son being out on Halloween but her son believes that Michael has been dead for 20 years since the fire bombing at the Haddonfield Hospital but Michael is far from dead as he goes on a search to kill his sister since she moved far away from Haddonfield as she can.
However, Michael (Chris Durand) tracks her down by finding information on her whereabouts as she tried to one time fake her death in a car crash.
Her son John (Josh Hartnett) and his girlfriend Molly (Michelle Williams) decide to throw a Halloween party while the rest of the Hillcrest Academy heads off on a field trip.
Michael heads to the Academy to try and put away his sister Laurie/Kate and her son John at the Academy and it's a finale battle between Laurie/Kate and Michael to see who will survive.


The beginning of this film seemed promising by showing the character Marion Chambers (Who was in part 1 & 2) appearing and realising that her house was broken into. Right away you have a feeling that Michael could be behind this in which the film brings on a nice suspenseful mystery.
There's some unfunny corny slapstick moments when she asks two delinquent kids to check out her house which the writing and performance here looked very stale. Yet, one of them wears a hockey mask which seems to pay a tribute to you know who.
The opening credits were classy showing a flowing misty feel to it which was effective and necessary for a flick taking place right after part 2. Then right afterwards, a thunderstorm occurs after a murderous incident with detectives and paramedics searching out a house with newspaper clippings on Myers and Laurie Strode which was a total classic by having all of this revealed along with discussing what happened to Loomis since it doesn't leave this film as an unsolved mystery.
Then we go to Laurie Strode waking up from the same nightmare when Michael tried to kill her that Halloween night which was impressive to the fans who remembered her as Michael's biological sister. I for sure got a kick out of that scene.
Next, we see her new lifestyle as a divorced Mom working as a headmistress at an academy behind a locked gate which makes you wonder if she's trying to keep safe after all these years and living miles away. To top it off she's a heavy drinker which you can't blame after what she's been through those past 20 years. I found that moment necessary to be thrown in showing how more paranoid that she is now and trying to lead a different life as well as disguising her name.
There's another creepy moment with Michael waiting near a washroom while a mother and daughter make a stop which seemed creepy wondering if something terrible will happen to them since the setting scene is too quiet along with Michael watching them and planning something.
Then the plotlines really fall into a slump since most of it takes place at the academy but there's some fun touches like Ms. Strode seeing hallucinations on Michael or when there's a heated rage by her to her son sneaking out of the academy and catching him on Halloween day and he tells her off saying that Michael is dead from that fire 20 years ago proving that this film ignored the other one's after part 2. Oh.. and there's a moment with two girls in their bedroom at the Academy watching one of the Scream movies which offered some good comedy scenarios since Scream was a tribute to those old school horror films like Halloween.
There's a great painful situation with a victim in the academy with her leg mangled while trying to escape from Michael and trying to stay alive and is pretty much helpless, making this scene very terrifying.
Plus there's impressive moments with Laurie telling her boyfriend who she really is and the story on Michael which was great to watch. Then the story really gives you the chills when she panicks thinking that Michael is still out there and finding a way to see if her son is okay as this was a nice psychological scene imagining if you were the worried parent and had a terrible incident before and then it comes back to haunt you.
Later on in the story there's some repeated lines that was used in the first film as well as Laurie ready to battle Michael and telling others to learn how to stay alive which really gives you the chills too wondering if the survivors will get killed off one by one.
The ending scene was the best in the film which really seems to close the page of the story after all these years of the sequels but then a few years later another sequel arose which was a disappointment even if it was a bit better than this one. Afterwards a Rob Zombie remake came out following sequels after that one.
To most fans though, they consider this one to be the last of it's kind.
Bottom line is, although many fans said that this one was terrible I disagreed but it could've been better I must admit since most of it just takes place at the Academy. Some of the same producers from the recent sequel helped out on this one too.
The film was on a bigger budget too.

It's great to see Jamie Lee Curtis (Laurie Strode / Keri Tate) back since she said goodbye to her scream queen fame years ago. She still can pull off the character and showed perfect aggression too this time as a drunk. She also shows a great firm attitude along with showing a nice jumpy type of behavior. She shows a good serious strictness too. She does a good job by scolding her onscreen son for being smart alecky towards her which looked like a realistic mother to son chastising. There is also a good aggressive moment with her towards him again by acting aggressive and vulgar towards him for leaving the school fearing for his life. A nice setting with her when she is snuggling with her onscreen boyfriend as she tries to tell him who she really is and about the Myers incident by talking in a nice and calm voice and then getting a little emotional too. Does well by panicking and trying to make a call to see if her son is okay which looked well performed. Does great screaming Michaels name with holding an axe in front of the dorm. Also shows a good still and seriouness near the end of her performance while calmly calling Michaels name to him. Basically she shows her experienced talent like she did in the bigger films she starred in much later.
Josh Hartnett
(John Tate) did a great job playing her only son in his first motion picture as he pulls his part off smoothly. He knew his stuff as a typical teenager pulling off wise ass remarks and really throwing in the punches when he gets to the point of things. He does well telling his onscreen Mom off saying that Michael is dead and time to move on. All of this was very high energised. He shows alot of fearful emotions when the terrors happens too.
Adam Arkin (Will Brennan) was quite charming as the headmaster at the academy by having an easygoing and bubbly type of personality. He made his role really likeable and believeable too. Plus he had the good looks to top it all off. Basically this guy is what you picture in a hunky type working at the schoolboard.
There is also rapper L.L. Cool J (Ronny Jones) as a security officer bringing comedy to his part as a hopeful writer. He really portrays as someone who is very outgoing too along with not really being on the ball with his job. He stood out very well for what he had to do throughout his whole scene's in the film. He showed some good hype without a doubt.
We also have a supporting role by Curtis' mother Janet Leigh (
Norma Watson) in their second film together as they both starred in The Fog back in 1980 her character Norma Watson was the same character used in Carrie which P.J. Soles played as she was in the original Halloween film. She shows a nice lighthearted attitude and really shows a good open minded type of personality and happy behavior too. She really reminds you as one of those types who tries to encourage you to forget about the past. Offers a nice sympathetic speaking on her by trying to cheer someone up which looked incredibly convincing.

Lots more graphic violence than in the first two films.
A troublemaking teen has his face stabbed by an ice skate
A teen at the Academy has his throat cut open and his girfriends leg is mangled as well she is hung later on by a lightbulb hanging on a wire with her chest cut open
Michael is decapitated by an axe or so we may all think in the end.

John Carpenter's theme is used during the ending of this flick but the rest of the music was composed by John Ottman with additional music by Marco Beltrami.
Although they tried to make it sound updated for that time period it was nowhere near as effective.
There's alot of nice echoey violin and trobone music sounding quite powerful and fast paced. Also we hear the odd heavy drum booming dsound for the surprising moments too.

There is also a songtrack during the beginning of "Mr. Sandman" by the Chordettes as it was used in part 2 so the viewers will know for a fact this one was a direct sequel to that one. The song was also played while Laurie Strode turns on her car radio.
We also have a hit song by Creed titled "What's This Life For" during the Halloween party at the Academy as well as "Happy" by Sabelle.

[Holding a Hockey Stick]
Jimmy Howell: Jimmy's been suspended five times this year all ready for gettin' a little crazy with the stick.

Ronny: Ah, Fuck Me Shit.

Ronny: Has anyone ever told you second-hand smoke kills?
Nurse Marion: Yes, but they're all dead.

[Fitz decides to contact Haddonfield about Michael Myers]
Det. Matt Sampson: Yeah, you tell them to look for a guy with a cane and Alzheimer's.
Fitz: The guy would be younger than I am, okay? I was 15 when he killed his sister back in '63.

Keri: How about you? Are you tired of my bullshit?
Will: I'm a counselor; I'm attracted to it.

John: Because today is the day. I can feel it. Today is the day you are going to realize that I am seventeen years old and your overprotection and paranoia is inhibiting my growing process.

Keri: Okay, John. I know that you get your smart mouth from my side of the family, so I'll cut you a break.

[about shoplifting a bottle of alcoholic drink]
John: I can't believe we're doing this.
Charlie: Desperate measures.
John: It's illegal.
Charlie: It's harmless and expected.

John: Mom, I am not responsible for you. That's it, I've had enough. I can't take it anymore mom. He's dead. Michael Myers is dead.

John: If you want to stay handcuffed to your dead brother, that's fine. But your not dragging me along. Not anymore.

Norma: Oh. Miss Tate. I didn't mean to make you jump. It's Halloween. I guess everyone's entitled to one good scare.
Keri: I've had my share.

Sarah: Paging Inconsiderate: Party of One. Okay Charlie, no sex kinks till I've eaten.

[to John Tate]
Charlie Devereaux: You're an Oedipal enabler.

John: It just occured to me today that I've never celebrated Halloween before.
Molly: And why's that?
John: Oh, we've got a psychotic serial killer in the family who loves to butcher people on Halloween, and I just thought it in bad taste to celebrate.

Keri: My name's not Keri Tate.
Will: Oooh, what is it?
Keri: Laurie Strode.
Will: [laughs] Strode?

Keri: My brother killed my sister.
Will: How did he do that?
Keri: With a really big, sharp kitchen knife.

Will: What should I do?
Keri: Try to live.