Picks and Pans Review: Halloween V

updated 10/30/1989 AT 01:00 AM EST

originally published 10/30/1989 AT 01:00 AM EST

Danielle Harris, Donald Pleasence

"Eek!" "Rachel!" "Aaargh!" "Jamie!" "Unnngggh!" "Mikey!" "Gasp!" "Tina!" "Noooooo!"

There you have the best lines from the latest installment of the Michael Myers story. As this series' psycho-in-residence, he shares with his cinematic cousins Jason and Freddy a devotion to the principle of holding grudges and an ability to withstand punishment that probably even an NFL quarterback would envy. In this case, he is for some reason especially mad at his 9-year-old niece, played with some considerable panache by Harris, who is 9. That she has to spend the whole tedious movie screaming, convulsing, shaking with fear and running up and down dark streets and corridors isn't her fault, after all.

Why anyone would want to watch her go through all this agony is another question indeed. The film was directed by Dominique Othenin-Girard, who doesn't seem to have quite gotten the idea that this sort of movie is aimed at teenagers, so it really ought to have a few jokes or topical references or at least naked and sexy young bodies to keep the kids properly aroused. Halloween V has none of the above, only the plodding pursuit of Harris and Pleasence, who has played the town shrink in this series so often he seems as demented as the killer. There is one twist to this movie: the presence of an ambiguous figure wearing a cape and boots with steel tips who hangs around on the fringes of the story and seems to be setting himself up for a role in Halloween VI, which we'll see as sure as God made little green sequels. (R)

From Our Partners