Where would horror be today without John Carpenter’s masterpiece? The Halloween Movie 1978 low-budget film gave way to the slasher subgenre and a whole slew of terrible attempts to replicate its success. Of course, that success also meant sequels, remakes, and reboots galore for the franchise.
Like all great horror franchises, the series has had highs and lows, but we currently appear to be in something of Halloween renaissance with the new batch of Blumhouse-guided films. With Halloween Kills on the way sooner rather than later, now is a good time to get started on the strange cinematic maze that is the Halloween series. Here’s where to watch all the Halloween movies online.
11 Halloween (1978)
The one that started the whole thing, John Carpenter’s seminal slasher is one of the most beloved horror films of all time. Almost universally respected, the simple story explores the horrifying story of Laurie Strode as she is stalked and terrorized by Michael Myers, who is quite literally a living boogeyman. Curtis is still as watchable as she was in Halloween 1978 in her debut role, the iconic score remains unbelievably eerie, and the clever ways Carpenter frames Michael all help the original Halloween retain its spooky power over forty-years on. Here’ where you can see it.
10 Halloween II (1981)
A direct follow-up to the original, Halloween II is the film that established much of the initial lore surrounding Michael Myers. Thankfully Jamie Lee-Curtis and Donald Pleasance returned to finish out the Laurie Strode storyline (for the first time, that is).
A much more outwardly bloody and gory film, Halloween II is far from an embarrassment, but it has little of the same creeping dread of its predecessor. Perhaps most notably, the film reveals that Michael and Laurie are, in fact, siblings. Of course, this relationship would return in later installments, to increasingly diminishing returns.
9 Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982)
After Halloween II attempted to wrap up the arc of Laurie Strode and Michael Myers, a curious choice was made to attempt the continuation of the franchise as a yearly anthology installment. What resulted from the risk was something of a noble failure. Halloween III is a bizarre film that borders on being so-bad-its-good, but long stretches of nothing going and the damning mixture of bad acting meeting bad writing make the film fairly unwatchable. The film was poorly received and is now defended by a small group of followers. For completionists only.
8 Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988)
Ditching roman numerals and the anthology strategy, the series returned six years later with Michael Myers back as the villain. There are lots of fans of the series that have fond impressions of this film, but by this point the cracks had begun to show. Laurie Strode has been killed off, and the film suffers from Jamie Lee-Curtis’s absence.
Thankfully, Donald Pleasance once again came back to pursue the now fully supernatural being that Michael Myers has become. Far, very far, from the worst the franchise has to offer, Halloween 4 nevertheless is still a pretty bad movie.
7 Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (1989)
Released the following year, Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers follows-up on the events of its predecessor by continuing the story of Jamie Lloyd, the niece of Laurie Strode and Michael Myers. This film is the first in the series that produces some truly unintentional humor. As Jamie develops a telepathic connection with Myers, scenes of Michael killing people intercut with Jamie’s supernatural seizures are some seriously schlocky stuff worth watching with a group of horror buffs one night over beers. Continuing the franchise’s descent into complete nonsense, this one is super hard to take seriously.
6 Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995):
After another six-year gap, Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers is another episodic installment in the Michael Myers saga that had by this point, become a slasher soap opera. There is some fun 90s nostalgia-themed laughs to be had with this one, but the absolutely insane druids/cult storyline mixed with the unsatisfying death of the previous protagonist Jamie Lloyd makes this film fade into the melodramatic background. Additionally, there are some really odd stretches the film takes to connect it to the original film, all of which fall flat.
5 Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998)
One of the more respected of the Halloween sequels, H20 brought back series heart Jamie Lee-Curtis as Laurie Strode. The film is actually a fairly fun watch, competently directed and elevated immeasurably by Strode’s return.
After revealing Laurie’s death was a ruse to get her out of Michael’s grasp, the two meet again to hash out their unfinished business. What largely amounts to the best of all possible course corrections given the state of the series at the time, H20 is a nice reprieve from the muck of the last few movies.
4 Halloween: Resurrection (2002)
The film that effectively killed the original series, leaving it in shambles until Rob Zombie brought his C-4 to the mix, Resurrection is a misfire from the get-go. Directed by the man who helmed Halloween II, Resurrection is a direct sequel to H20. Jamie Lee-Curtis appears briefly before Laurie Strode is, once again, killed off. A mind-boggling plot involving webcam broadcasts of Michael’s murders, Busta Rhymes doing whatever he’s trying to do the whole time and a tone that is confounding as it is graceless all combine to make one of the very worst offerings of the series.
3 Halloween (2007):
The only saving grace of this Rob Zombie-helmed remake is Malcolm McDowell’s deliciously overacted turn as Dr. Loomis. Other than that, this film is not much more than torture porn. Zombie’s skill behind the camera as demonstrated in The Devil’s Rejects is largely lacking in his take on Michael Myers.
When he attempts to adapt elements of the original, they pale in comparison. However, worse than that is his attempts to weave in his own origin story for Michael Myers. Bloody, nasty, poorly acted, and overall unpleasant experience, the film still managed to be a minor box office hit.
2 Halloween II (2009):
Somehow this sequel manages to be even uglier and purposeless than the first go-around. Representing a more nihilistic and detached style than its predecessor, Halloween II continues Zombie’s revisionist take on the struggle between Laurie Strode and the savage Michael Myers. Myers is a frightening figure throughout both of Zombie’s films, but the rest of the elements never come together to create anything more than a particularly brutal big budget fan-film.
The most recent film, and latest attempt to revive the series, indie darling David Gordon Green’s take on the material brings back Jamie Lee-Curtis as Laurie Strode. A direct continuation of the original classic, the new film disregards everything that comes after. The resulting retooled vision is lots of fun to watch and Green is able to capture a lot of the independent spirit of the 1978 classic. Additionally, Lee-Curtis is absolutely wonderful as Laurie as she presents a woman permanently affected for the worse by what happened that fateful Halloween night forty-years prior.
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