Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers kicks off with a recap of the end of the previous movie, but like a 1930's serial cliffhanger events are 'subtly' changed so that Michael is seen to escape via an underground tunnel, and get whisked away in a river.
Like a scene from a Frankenstein tale, he ends up at an isolated hunter's cabin and falls into a coma.
For no readily apparent reason - unless it's a sex thing - the hermit (Harper Roisman) keeps Michael's body on a table in his cabin for a full 12 months.
Until the next Halloween eve, when Michael wakes up, kills his host in gratitude for looking after his corpse, and - unsurprisingly - heads back to Haddonfield.
In the meantime, Michael's niece, young Jamie (Danielle Harris) has been rendered mute by the traumatic events of the last film and confined to a children's clinic because of the whole "stabbing her stepmother" incident.
She has also developed some kind of psychic bond with her uncle and is able to get glimpses of what he is getting up to.
While Halloween V leans heavily into the idea of Michael being human, this mental link with Jamie - possibly forged when she held his hand before he was gunned down at the end of Halloween IV - adds credence to my own headcanon that Michael is possessed by some kind of rage demon that only awakens around the Halloween holiday.
Always hovering around Jamie is the increasingly creepy and disturbed Dr Loomis (Donald Pleasance clearly embracing every opportunity to chew the scenery), but most peculiar is the introduction of an enigmatic "cowboy" figure (who, it turns out, is played by the same actor tasked with portraying Michael this time round, Donald L Shanks).
I really had high hopes that it was the gonzo doomsday preacher who'd given Dr Loomis a lift in Halloween IV, Rev Jackson P. Sayer (Carmen Filpi), but the seemingly random conclusion of this film suggested otherwise.
It's clearly important - presumably for the next movie - that this "man in black" was shown to have an identical tattoo on his arm as seen on Michael. Waitaminute, Michael has a tattoo? How? When? Hasn't anyone watched the previous movies? At what point in Michael's life would he have been able to get a tattoo? Or allowed anyone to give him one? Or found someone willing to ink his skin?
Halloween V is 96 minutes long but feels so much longer. On one hand there's so much going on, and so many secondary characters flitting in and out, that it's hard to keep track of everything, yet on the other hand the script by Michael Jacobs, Shem Bitterman, and director Dominique Othenin-Girard is so tiresome and nonsensical that it really drags heavily in places.
Don't get me wrong, there are some neat touches: such as stores in Haddonfield selling Michael Myers masks for Halloween (classy!), the bizarre shrine Michael builds, and the calming effect Jamie manages to have over him when she convinces him to take his mask off (and the way that's handled in shadow).
Conversely, we won't even talk about the comedy police duo (introduced with their "funny" musical theme). They might as well have been wearing Red Shirts as their fate was sealed from the moment they appear.
Perversely though I'm intrigued to see where Halloween VI: The Curse of Michael Myers goes after the jail break at the end of this movie.
Halloween V - The Revenge of Michael Myers is the last of the Halloween movies currently available on Netflix in the UK, but I have been inspired to invest in a cheap DVD box set of the next three movies (two of which spin off into an alternate timeline where Laurie Strode is back in the land of the living!).
FILMS WATCHED: 12
NEW TO ME: 9