Universal and Blumhouse have yet to release a trailer for their new take on John Carpenter’s Halloween to the masses, but they showed one to a select few at CinemaCon. And it was incredibly scary, even for a trailer. Want to know what thrills and chills to expect? We’ve got a full description.
The trailer starts with a woman checking sound—“1, 2, 3, testing.” She and another man are making a documentary about a murderer, as tends to be a thing these days. It’s about a man who escaped from a mental institution 40 years ago, killed several people, and was shot by his doctor. As this is being explained, we see the crew setting up, looking at some documents and listening to audio explaining the horrific situation from 1978. There are drawings of Dr. Loomis and more.
The filmmakers walk out into a courtyard that looks like a giant red and white checkerboard. All across the area, patients have spread into their own little areas and the crew walks up to one in particular. “Hello Michael,” the man says, “I have something you might like to see.” He goes into his bag and pulls out something. First, we see hair, then, white. Yes, this is his mask. The mask. As it’s being revealed, the other patients are getting agitated, making noise, screaming, one person is chained up and banging the chain down over and over again and the tension gets incredibly high.
Cut to Haddonfield, Illinois. Kids are walking on the streets very much like the original movie and, we realize, one of these is the granddaughter of Laurie Strode, the girl who Michael Myers terrorized 40 years ago. The girl explains that her grandmother has long been traumatized by the incident and that, despite rumors, Michael is not her brother. (Which is a nod to the fact this movie ignores every other Halloween movie besides the first one).
Enter Laurie Strode 2018, played once again by Jamie Lee Curtis. She looks very rustic, think Carhartt jacket and a flannel shirt. Apparently, she’s spent the last 40 years preparing in case Michael ever returned. She’s trained, she has guns, her house apparently has secret passages and booby traps. She tells someone that she prays every night that Michael Myers would escape and they ask why. “So I can kill him,” she says. And we cut to her in the woods blowing away a dummy for target practice.
Next, Laurie learns that a bus from the mental institution crashed and that Michael has escaped. The trailer then shifts to a bathroom where a girl is sitting in a toilet stall. A pair of boots enters the room. She explains that the stall is occupied. We see that, in another room, a man in a garage has been killed. Back in the bathroom, a closed fist goes over the top of the stall and drops something onto the girl. It’s teeth. She screams. Cut to Myers finding the mask and putting it back on.
Then the John Carpenter score kicks in.
Michael has made his way back to Haddonfield. Laurie says she’s going to protect her family and we see that it’s Halloween and the streets are packed with kids. Then, she sees him in an upstairs window. Laurie takes aim and fires. But she hit a mirror.
A long montage now of knives, guns, general horror stuff. People running, people screaming. One of the shots is someone sitting down in a sheet with the eyes cut out like a ghost, much like the original movie. Finally, Laurie is creeping around, obviously looking for someone and screams “Michael!”
The trailer ends in the room of a young boy. He asks his babysitter to close the closet door. She tries, but it won’t close. She tries again. And again. Finally, she opens the door to see what’s blocking it and, yup, it’s Michael Myers. He grabs her and the trailer ends.
What we gleaned from the trailer, as well as the presentation itself, is that this Halloween is going to be really scary. It uses modern tropes, like the true crime documentary, to tell a modern story of a woman who has been scared for 40 years. A woman who had the worst night ever and since then has been dreading, but preparing, for it to happen again. And it does.
Halloween, directed by David Gordon Green, opens October 19.