REVIEW // 'Halloween: Michael VS Michael' offers fun spooks with fresh premise
With a Halloween deadline looming, best friends and self-proclaimed horror geeks Bobby (Ben Seideman) and Nick (Kyle Geriak) team-up to create an ambitious high school science project on the eve of Halloween. But when an unusual geomagnetic storm hits, it unleashes evil times-two into their small Midwestern town. With the help of their friends Audrey (Ellie Ash) and Willow (Samantha Bauer), the teens find themselves in a race against time to stop two very real and potentially invincible versions of Michael Myers before it’s too late... with a surprise ending you don't want to miss!
What truly sets “Halloween: Michael VS Michael” apart from much of the Halloween fan films released is its fun setup. MTO Film & Television mixed elements from “Halloween”, “Weird Science” and “A Nightmare on Elm Street” into one fun fan film that sets Michael face to face literally with himself in an epic face to face encounter. There is also a heavy “Creepshow” influence as essentially the film itself has a comic book wraparound.
Considering most of the cast is younger, it’s even more impressive that the film manages to have some of the strongest fan film acting I’ve seen in the past few years. There’s some definite appeal to those who are fans of the dynamic of hit Netflix show “Stranger Things” and the older but still revered series “Goosebumps”. In fact, given the young cast and the premise at the beginning is strikingly similar to the setup of a “Goosebumps” episode, in all the best ways. But don’t let that fool you, as the film progresses, so does the body count.
Michael T. Lombardi, writer and director, set out to make an original take on Halloween by providing an out of the box premise. Lombardi explains, “I made this film out of love for John Carpenter's Halloween, but I didn't want to do what other fan films do, by not straying far from the original source material and having the characters related to Laurie, Brackett, or Loomis. That has been way overdone, and my feeling was if I'm going to do a Halloween fan film, I wanted to go batshit crazy! I believe we delivered on that, and also delivered a fun film. But I also strongly support all fan films, and love watching them”.
Don’t expect the Michael that you’re used to either, as these are original takes on both versions of the character that will make more sense when you’ve watched the film. Lombardi notes, “this was in essence, an alternate reality version of the character, and I didn't want to do the exact same thing that everyone else has done. You will understand why we did that when you watch the film”. This film is at its core a love letter to John Carpenter and the character that he created 40 years ago. The opening of the film begins with a quote by Carpenter himself about how Michael Myers transcends being a simple character in a horror film.
“Michael Myers is not a character. He is a force of nature. He’s not a person. He’s supernatural, part human. He’s like the wind…an evil wind.” – John Carpenter
"Halloween: Michael VS Michael" is a fun Halloween tale in a "Stranger Things" world, with some great acting and high production values that will leave you looking forward to more in this world. Make sure to stick around to the very end for a surprise that will surely give you Nightmares.
Watch the film below.