I would love to tell you whether Rob Zombie’s sort-of remake of John Carpenter’s horror classic Halloween was worth your time and money. I’d also love to tell you that I had a fun time watching it. But, this just isn’t the case. Instead, I got to endure my all-time worst theatre experience and, for the first time, actually asked for my money back. Rumor has it: the film blows, but would I know? Nope. Such rude distractions of stupid teenagers voicing, at a high volume, what they thought of what was transpiring onscreen and a real-life embodiment of Regina Hall’s Shakespeare in Love death scene in the first Scary Movie (unfortunately without the death) kept me from even processing what little I saw in front of me. Aesthetically, it’s exactly what you’d expect from a Rob Zombie remake; it’s smutty, greasy, and vulgar: a trailer-trash remake of a rather classy and scary original. But that’s all I can say.
I probably should be blaming myself for this fiasco, for I chose seeing a gore-fest on opening night at 9:30 pm at the teenyboppers’ mall instead of seeing Once with a bunch of Jewish old ladies on caffeine at the Landmark theatre. Neither sounded pleasing, but I made my decision, and it was the wrong one. So, I ask now, do people actually go to the theatre to see films any more? Or has the theatre-going experience turned into a $9-entry fee to your own fucking living room? I thought of telling the fifteen-year-old brats behind me that the Weinstein Company would be calling them later for work on the DVD commentary, but I decided a more concise “shut the fuck up” would fare better. Sometimes, I’ve found that the theatre experience can be a wonderful one, all with interruptions. When I saw A History of Violence, the film’s quieter moments were laughably offset by the roaring praise music of The Gospel, which was showing in the big theatre. When I saw Grindhouse, the other theatre patrons seemed to be enjoying the film as much as I was (except for the guy who didn’t get the memo that Planet Terror was only half of the film), and it actually felt nice. Now I wasn’t expecting church silence when going into Halloween, but it became my grudge that expecting common decency was a huge mistake.
I suppose I’m kind of glad that I avoided the crowds with both Neil Jordan’s The Brave One and Paul Greengrass’ The Bourne Ultimatum, two films I would have paid to see if I weren’t assigned to review them before their release. Sure, The Bourne Ultimatum was loud enough in parts that I might not have noticed a couple behind me asking each other who the bad guy was. But still. I guess I’ve learned my lesson the hard way… and I thought going to the DMV was tedious.