Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers

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Halloween 5:
The Revenge of Michael Myers
Theatrical release poster
Directed byDominique Othenin-Girard
Produced byRamsey Thomas
Written by
  • Michael Jacobs
  • Dominique Othenin-Girard
  • Shem Bitterman
Based on
Music byAlan Howarth
CinematographyRobert Draper
Edited by
  • Charles Tetoni
  • Jerry Brady
Distributed byGalaxy Releasing
Release date
  • October 13, 1989 (1989-10-13)
Running time
98 minutes
CountryUnited States
Budget$5-6 million[1][2]
Box office$11.6 million[1]

Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers (also known simply as Halloween 5 and Halloween V: The Revenge of Michael Myers) is a 1989 American slasher film and the fifth installment in the Halloween film series. It was directed and co-written by Dominique Othenin-Girard and starred Donald Pleasence, who again portrayed Dr. Sam Loomis, and Danielle Harris, who reprised her role as Jamie Lloyd. The film focuses on Michael Myers returning to Haddonfield to murder his niece, Jamie, who first appeared in Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers. Dr. Loomis tries to stop him with the help of Sheriff Meeker.

The film's on-screen titles do not display "The Revenge of Michael Myers" subtitle which was used in all of the promotional material, TV spots, trailers, and merchandising; it simply says "Halloween 5". A sequel, Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers, was released in 1995.


On October 31, 1988, Michael Myers is shot and falls down a mine shaft. Escaping into a nearby creek, he stumbles upon a local hermit and falls into a coma, placing him in the hermit's care, and being nursed back to health. One year later, on October 30, 1989, Michael awakens, kills the hermit, and returns to Haddonfield to find his niece Jamie Lloyd again, who narrowly avoided being killed by him the year before.

Jamie has been admitted to a children's hospital, having been rendered mute due to psychological trauma suffering from nightmares and seizures, and being treated for attacking her foster mother under Michael's influence, though her foster mother survived. Jamie exhibits signs of a telepathic link with her uncle. Dr. Sam Loomis becomes aware of Jamie's psychic link with Michael, and tries to convince Sheriff Ben Meeker that Michael is still alive. Meanwhile, Michael kills Jamie's foster sister Rachel by stabbing her in the chest with a pair of scissors, and begins stalking their friend Tina, also killing Tina's boyfriend Mike with a sharp rake to his head.

Later that night, Tina and her friends Sam and Spitz go to a Halloween party at a farm. Sensing that Tina is in danger, Jamie, having regained her ability to speak, goes to warn her. While Sam and Spitz are having sex in the barn, Michael murders them. Michael then leaves the barn and kills two deputies and finally Tina. Jamie finally agrees to put herself in danger to help Loomis stop Michael for good.

With Jamie's help, Loomis lures Michael back to his abandoned childhood home. In the house, Loomis creates a set-up with the police. However, most of the police are called away, leaving only Loomis, Jamie, and Deputy Charlie Bloch. When Michael arrives, Loomis tries to reason with him, but Michael subdues him and then goes after Jamie. Bloch attempts to escape with Jamie out of a window using a rope ladder but they are unable to escape in time and Bloch sacrifices himself to save Jamie.

Jamie races upstairs to the attic where she finds the bodies of Rachel and Mike. Michael finds Jamie, but before he can kill her, she tries to appeal to her uncle's humanity. At Jamie's request, Michael takes off his mask and he sheds a tear. However, when Jamie touches Michael's face, he goes into a fit of rage. Loomis appears, using Jamie as bait, and lures Michael into a trap to weaken him with a tranquilizer gun. After beating Michael unconscious with a wooden beam, Loomis suffers a stroke and collapses. Michael is locked up in the sheriff's station, to eventually be escorted to a maximum-security prison by the National Guard. After Jamie is escorted out to be taken home, a mysterious "Man in Black" arrives and attacks the police station, killing the officers, including Sheriff Meeker. Jamie goes back inside the station, and discovers her uncle's cell empty. Jamie begins sobbing in terror.



Drunk off the success of Halloween 4, we began production on Halloween 5.

—Moustapha Akkad on Halloween 5[3]

The success of Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers had revived Michael Myers' fame as the 1980s slasher movie craze had begun to subside; 1980s-started film series like Friday the 13th and A Nightmare on Elm Street were also in decline. While the previous film was still in theaters, Moustapha Akkad had already laid out plans for Halloween 5. The producers wanted to screen the film in October 1989, just one year after the previous sequel.


The first draft of the script was written by Shem Bitterman. Bitterman's idea was that Jamie Lloyd would become evil after stabbing her stepmother while The Shape was after her. This idea was rejected by the studio and Akkad, who brought in Michael Jacobs to write the script.[4] After reviewing the script, director Dominique Othenin-Girard added some new aspects like Jamie's inability to speak and her visions.[5]

Veteran actor Donald Pleasence had disagreements with Akkad and Othenin-Girard, citing that Jamie should have been portrayed as "all-evil" after stabbing her stepmother. Akkad disagreed, thinking that fans wanted to see more of The Shape. In an interview, Danielle Harris explained what she thought of the idea. Harris said,

The way Halloween 4 ended, I thought I was going to be the killer. I thought it would have been fun to come back as the killer, or Michael's sidekick. Scary, but fun.[6]

The Hermit, who was shown in the beginning of the film as living in a quiet shack outside of the river with his parrot, was originally supposed to be a young man who tried to bring The Shape back to life after finding him.[4] His shack was supposed to be filled with ancient runes, tablets, and other items for resurrection. This scene was filmed, but was re-shot with an old man, instead of a younger man.[4]

The script included "bumbling" cops, Deputies Nick and Tom, with their own "clown theme" to pay homage to Wes Craven's The Last House on the Left.[7]

Dominique Othenin-Girard attempted to have audiences "relate to 'Evil', to Michael Myers' 'ill' side". Girard wanted Michael to appear "more human [...] even vulnerable, with contradicting feelings inside of him". He illustrated these feelings with a scene where Michael removes his mask and sheds a tear. Girard explains, "Again, to humanize him, to give him a tear. If Evil or in this case our boogeyman knows pain, or love or demonstrate a feeling of regrets; he becomes even more scary to me if he pursues his malefic action. He shows an evil determination beyond his feelings. Dr. Loomis tries to reach his emotional side several times in [Halloween 5]. He thinks he could cure Michael through his feelings."[8]


Returning from Halloween 4 was veteran actor Donald Pleasence as Dr. Sam Loomis, along with Danielle Harris, Ellie Cornell, and Beau Starr, as Jamie Lloyd, Rachel Carruthers, and Sheriff Ben Meeker, respectively. Starr would later appear in an un-aired Halloween 5 television spot.

Ellie Cornell was keen on returning as Rachel in Halloween 5, although she became disappointed to learn that her character would be killed off early in the film. Originally, Michael was to shove the pair of scissors down her throat, but Cornell felt that this would be too gruesome, and requested that the writers change it; as a result, she is instead stabbed in the chest.[9]

Karen Alston, who portrayed Darlene Carruthers in the previous film, reprised her role in the beginning of the film showing the anonymous person in the mask stabbing her as she falls into the bathtub of water. Her voice-over was recorded by Wendy Kaplan. Kaplan won the role of Tina Williams, the loud and wily friend of Rachel's. After Rachel's demise, Tina inherits the role of Jamie's protector.

George P. Wilbur, who had portrayed The Shape in the previous film, did not express interest in returning to play the role (although he did work as a stunt player on the film). Don Shanks was cast to play the speech-less, white-masked murderer. Shanks had already played a similar character in the first two Silent Night, Deadly Night films. Shanks also played the Man in Black. Wilbur, who had to wear hockey pads to appear to have a bigger build, would later portray the Shape again in the next installment, Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers. Shanks did not have to wear the hockey pads because he already had a larger build.[10]

Max Robinson would play Maxwell Hart, the doctor who assists Jamie when she is having one of her nightmares in the beginning of the film. Betty Carvalho appears as his assistant, Nurse Patsey, who has a "motherly" feel to Jamie. Jeffrey Landman portrayed Billy Hill, Jamie's best friend, who has a stuttering problem. Landman worked with a coach who taught him about stuttering to help him prepare for the role.

Newcomers such as Tamara Glynn, Matthew Walker, and Jonathan Chapin appear as Samantha Thomas, Spitz, and Mike, who are friends of Tina and Rachel. Walker would later appear in another slasher film, Child's Play 3 (1991).


Debra Hill, who had written and produced the first two films, had sold her and John Carpenter's rights to the series before Halloween 4. She had met director Dominique Othenin-Girard at the Sundance Film Festival and liked his style.

She arranged a meeting with Othenin-Girard and Moustapha Akkad. Akkad liked Othenin-Girard and he became the director. This was Debra Hill's last involvement in the franchise. Othenin-Girard wanted to bring the franchise closer to the original, but wanted more blood in the film. The original uncut version of the film featured more explicit blood and violence. Akkad did not like this decision, as he felt that the original and Halloween 4 had worked better without showing as much detail.[10]

After filming for two weeks, Donald Pleasence gave his much bigger trailer to Danielle Harris once he left set. Harris' mother had been complaining about the small size of her daughter's trailer and Pleasence decided that she should have his.

Danielle Harris and Don Shanks became good friends over the course of filming, reportedly spending a lot of time together while off set.[11]

The film began production on May 1, 1989, and was filmed in and around Salt Lake City, Utah, just like its predecessor. The bus that the Man in Black gets off of stops outside exactly the same store where Jamie and Rachel went to get a Halloween costume in Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers.

Unable to find a small Victorian house like the Myers house in Halloween, the filmmakers chose a bigger, more mansion-like house because they needed a house that could provide wide rooms, hallways, an attic, a basement, and a laundry chute.

Donald Pleasence accidentally broke Don Shanks' nose on the set when they were filming the scene where Dr. Loomis beats The Shape with a 2×4 block of wood.

Don Shanks was also injured when he was filming the scene where The Shape crashes Mike's Camaro into the tree. Othenin-Girard had forgotten to yell "Cut!" and fire was beginning to emerge from the car (Shanks put this down to Othenin-Girard being sidetracked by seeing stunts take place during his first major directing job). Finally, stunt coordinator Don Hunt told Othenin-Girard to finally yell "cut". Wendy Kaplan was also injured in this scene, as the car almost ran over the top of her.


The film had been fighting an X rating due to its violence, blood, and gore. Some scenes were trimmed down to keep it rated R. The scene in which Jamie climbs up the laundry chute was originally more graphic. Originally, Michael stabbed her in the leg. But due to the request of the Motion Picture Association of America, the scene was cut down.[5]

An alternative opening was filmed with the Hermit replaced by a younger man with all kinds of ritualistic items in his cabin.[4]

In April 2019, film reels were discovered which possibly contain the original lost opening.[12]



The film received mostly negative reviews from critics. Stephen Holden of The New York Times wrote that the film was "rather like taking another swing through the same all-too-familiar funhouse", but thought it was "a bit more refined in its details than the conventional horror movie".[13] Variety called the film "pretty stupid and boring fare" and noted that the series had become "practically indistinguishable from the 'Friday the 13th' pics".[14] Richard Harrington of the Los Angeles Times panned the film as "a prime example of the principle of diminishing reruns" and criticized Donald Pleasence for "a flat two-note performance", though he thought Danielle Harris was "actually pretty good" in her role.[15]

On Rotten Tomatoes the film has a 13% "Rotten" score based on 24 reviews, with an average rating of 3.59/10.[16] At the US box office the film took in $11.6 million on a budget of $5-6 million, making it the poorest performing film in the series.

Home video[edit]

The film has been released on VHS, LaserDisc and DVD. The original VHS was released by CBS/FOX. It has been released, along with Halloween 4, the Halloween: 25 Years of Terror documentary and the Blu-ray, DVD and Extended Edition releases of Halloween (1978) for the commemorative Halloween 30th Anniversary box set in 2008. A Blu-ray edition was released in the United States on August 21, 2012.[17] The film was released on DVD/Blu-ray on October 2, 2013 in Australia and the DVD/Blu-ray extras are commentary, on the set footage and trailer.


  1. ^ a b "Box office/business for Halloween 5".
  2. ^ http://www.the-numbers.com/movie/Halloween-5-The-Revenge-of-Michael-Myers#tab=summary
  3. ^ Moustapha Akkad (2006). Inside 'Halloween 5' documentary (DVD). United States: Trancas International Pictures. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |publisher= (help)
  4. ^ a b c d Mullins, Travis (August 21, 2017). "Interview: Robert Harders' Original Pitch for Halloween 5". Dread Central. Retrieved October 28, 2017.
  5. ^ a b "Interview with Dominique Othenin-Girard". HalloweenMovies.com. Retrieved October 28, 2017.
  6. ^ Danielle Harris (2006). Halloween: 25 Years of Terror DVD (DVD). United States: Trancas International Pictures. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |publisher= (help)
  7. ^ P.J. Soles (2006). Halloween: 25 Years of Terror DVD (DVD). United States: Trancas International Pictures. Italic or bold markup not allowed in: |publisher= (help)
  8. ^ "Dominique Othenin-Girard". Halloween Movies. April 10, 2006. Archived from the original on April 5, 2013. Retrieved October 3, 2007. Cite uses deprecated parameter |deadurl= (help)
  9. ^ Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers commentary featuring Danielle Harris and Ellie Cornell
  10. ^ a b Halloween: 25 Years of Terror DVD documentary
  11. ^ Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers DVD: Inside Halloween 5
  12. ^ Millican, Josh (April 2, 2019). ""Lost" Alternate Opening for HALLOWEEN 5 May Have Been Found!". Dread Central. Retrieved July 29, 2019.
  13. ^ Holden, Stephen (October 14, 1989). "'Halloween 5' and Sinister Rustlings". The New York Times: 13.
  14. ^ "Halloween 5". Variety: 32. October 18–24, 1989.
  15. ^ Harrington, Richard (October 16, 1989). "'Halloween 5': No Tricks, No Treats". Los Angeles Times. B2.
  16. ^ "Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved June 28, 2019.
  17. ^ "Halloween 5 Blu-ray | Free Shipping at". Deepdiscount.com. Retrieved January 28, 2014.

External links[edit]