Given that 1998's Halloween: H20 injected credibility, decent casting, and genuine thrills into the long-languishing horror franchise, a halfway watchable eighth installment seemed possible. Alas, it wasn't to be. Although the marketing campaign for Halloween: Resurrection promised another butt-kicking return trip for original series star Jamie Lee Curtis, her role here is relegated to a brief cameo that serves mainly to explain away slasher Michael Myers' seeming return from the dead. Curtis' character is then slain operatically, apparently because the actress wanted out of the series once and for all (though until she joins Donald Pleasance in the afterlife, don't bet on it). Having thus killed off the only character in the entire series ever to inspire actual audience empathy, Larry Brand's cobbled-together script then moves on to a collection of Breakfast Club-style teen stereotypes and third-hand Blair Witch-isms. Recognizable faces Thomas Ian Nicholas (American Pie) and Sean Patrick Thomas (Cruel Intentions) fare better than most of the WB-network rejects they're paired with, but a scenery-chewing Busta Rhymes and a typically inept Tyra Banks can't even achieve initially low expectations. The reality-show premise is well past its "sell by" date, the murders are perfunctory, and the subplot involving a geeky high-schooler dispatching advice to lovely coed (Bianca Kajlich) over a wireless email device eschews any knowledge of the way such gadgets actually work. By the time a chainsaw appears magically in the heroine's hands in the final reel, patience has long since disappeared -- along with any possible pleasure in viewing this laughable collection of secondhand ideas.