Halloween II (1981)

USA, 1981
35mm, Panavision, “color by MGM”, 2.35:1
recorded in Dolby Stereo

An American horror film, directed by Rick Rosenthal, a sequel to Halloween (1978). John Carpenter is said to have directed additional footage to add more gore and violence to the film. It was intended that it would be the last Halloween film to feature serial killer Michael Myers, but the character was brought back to the series after the commercial failure of the follow-up film, Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982).

Plot Summary

Although shot by Dr Loomis, Michael Myers survives his fall and continues to terrorise the small town of Haddonfield, Illinois. His intended victim, Laurie Strode has been taken to a strangely deserted hospital and Michael is after her – and Loomis learns the terrible truth behind his fixation with this particular girl…


Directed by: Rick Rosenthal
© 1981 Dino De Laurentiis Corporation
Moustapha Akkad presents a De Laurentiis Corporation film. A John Carpenter, Debra Hill production
Executive Producers: Irwin Yablans, Joseph Wolf
Produced by: Debra Hill, John Carpenter
Written by: John Carpenter, Debra Hill
Director of Photography: Dean Cundey
Edited by: Mark Goldblatt, Skip Schoolnik
Music by: John Carpenter
Sound Mixer: Tommy Causey
Costume Supervisor: Jane Ruhm
Make-up Artist: Michael Germain
Hair Stylist: Frankie Bergman
Make-up Technician: John Chambers
Masks by: Don Post
Special Effects Supervisor: Larry Cavanaugh
Special Effects: Frank Munoz
Production Designer: Michael Riva

Donald Pleasence (Dr Sam Loomis)
Jamie Lee Curtis (Laurie Strode)
Charles Cyphers ([Sheriff] Leigh Brackett)
Lance Guest (Jimmy [Lloyd])
Pamela Susan Shoop (Karen)
Hunter von Leer (Gary Hunt)
Tawny Moyer (Jill [Frances])
Ana Alicia (Janet)
Nancy Stephens (Marion [Chambers])
Gloria Gifford (Mrs Alves)
Leo Rossi (Budd)
Ford Rainey (Dr Mixter)
Jeffrey Kramer (Graham)
Dick Warlock (The Shape)
Cliff Emmich (Mr Garrett)
John Zenda (Marshall)
Catherine Bergstrom (producer)
Alan Haufrect (announcer [Robert Mundy])
Lucille Benson (Mrs Elrod)
Howard Culver (man in pajamas)
Dana Carvey (assistant)
Bill Warlock (Craig)
Jonathan Prince (Randy)
Leigh French (Gary’s mother)
Ty Mitchell (young Gary)
Nancy Loomis (Annie [Brackett])

Alternative Titles

Halloween II The Horror Continues
Halloween II: The Nightmare Isn’t Over!
– advertising title

Sequel to
Halloween (1978)

Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982)
Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers (1988)
Halloween 5 (1989)
Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1995)
Halloween H20: 20 Years Later (1998)
Halloween: Resurrection (2002)

See also
Halloween II (2009)

Includes extracts from
Night of the Living Dead (1968)

Extracts included in
Terror in the Aisles (1984)


New Musical Express 6 March 1982 pp.20-21
In Halloween II the audience gets just what it wants, in spades: an increased body-count (ten, not counting The Shape himself, who may or may not be dead, depending if it’s financially worthwhile to resurrect him in a year or two), several gallons more of the red stuff, and an increase in the variety (and detail) of stiffing techniques utilised by The Shape, an undeniably imaginative chap when it comes fond farewells. [….] The acting throughout is functionally stylised, which is perhaps only to be expected from Curtis and Pleasence, but as regards the plot – yes, there is one but only just – one thing which doesn’t work is Carpenter and co-author Debra Hill’s limp, half-hearted dredging up of druidic notions to explain away little incongruities like The Shape’s invulnerability. Tie up a few loose ends it may do, but it completely neutralises that chill of possibility given by a common or garden escaped loony with a knife. Humans are believable; Forces of Good and Evil are for kids – which is why the most unpleasant moment in the entire picture has nothing to do with The Shape, but features instead the little boy who discovered too late the razorblades embedded in his Halloween apple. Now that’s really horrible. – from an illustrated review by Andy Gill



  • The Dark Side December 1990 p.26 – review
  • The Dark Side no.60 p.18 – review
  • Halls of Horror no.27 p.22 – note
  • The Killing Moon no.4 pp.18-19 – review
  • New Musical Express 6 March 1982 pp.20-21 – illustrated review (by Andy Gill)
  • Scapegoat no.1 pp.11, 12 – censorship note


  • Anatomy of the Slasher Film: A Theoretical Analysis by Sotiris Petridis pp.51-52, 65, 135, 141, 149
  • The Aurum Film Encyclopedia: Horror by Phil Hardy (ed.) p.365
  • A Critical Guide to Horror Film Series by Ken Hanke pp.283-285; 290
  • English Gothic: A Century of Horror Cinema by Jonathan Rigby pp.294
  • Film Review 1982-1983 by F. Maurice Speed (ed.) p.152 – credits, review
  • The Films of the Eighties by Robert A. Nowlan and Gwendolyn Wright Nowlan p.234
  • Horror and Science Fiction Films II by Donald C. Willis p.472 – credits
  • Horror Films of the 1980s by John Kenneth Muir pp.180-185 – illustrated credits, synopsis, review
  • Order in the Universe: The Films of John Carpenter (2nd Edition) by Robert C. Cumbow pp.65-67; 253-254
  • The Pocket Essentials: John Carpenter by Michelle Le Blanc & Colin Odell pp.135-136
  • The Pocket Essential Slasher Movies by Mark Whitehead pp.40-41
  • Retro Screams: Terror in the New Millennium by Christopher T. Koetting pp.51-59; 383 – illustrated essay; credits
  • Sci-fi Chronicles by Guy Haley (ed.) pp.298
  • Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror Film Sequels, Series, and Remakes by Kim R. Holston and Tom Winchester p.246