It’s that spooky time of year again where goblins and ghosties come out to play! I absolutely love all things Halloween. Every year I go to Halloween Horror Nights and costume parties and devour zombie or vampire makeup tutorials on Youtube. One of the best parts of October is all the amazing films!
I’m still not sure why I constantly watch horror movies, because I am the biggest baby. The jump scares get me every single time, no matter how stupid. I dive into bed for fear of… something grabbing my leg. I tip toe around dark corners. But there’s something about the thrill that always keeps me coming back! Here are my top five… favorite, I guess… Halloween films that I’ll definitely be watching this October. What are yours?
This movie is ridiculously underrated. It technically isn’t classified as horror, but I can assure you that it is one of the creepiest movies you’ll ever watch. Nicole Kidman was a star (as per usual), and my fellow Whovians out there might recognize a fantastic familiar face! It defies all the cheesy tropes we hate in scary movies to an impressive final result. Not to mention the M Night Shyamalan-worthy ending! No one I know who has seen this has ever even come close to figuring it out!
People love to hate on this film franchise, but I unapologetically love it. I will never forget how terrified I was the first time I saw it! I am sucker for low budget/high quality movies, and this one is about as good as it gets. Filmed for $15K in the no-name director’s own house with completely unknown actors, this film managed to achieve real horror without lame jump scares or cheesy CGI. It also included some shockingly impressive performances from the lead actors. There was no melodrama or overacting – you really feel their genuine terror. None of the sequels were as good as the first one, but the second and third installments weren’t too bad, either.
Advertised as “a New England folk tale”, I can absolutely guarantee this movie is like nothing you have ever seen before. What makes this movie so stomach-turning is the constant sense of unease. You never really know what’s going on. Is it black magic? Demons? Insanity? All of the above. Sometimes a film not knowing what it wants to be is a bad thing. However in the case of The Witch, the film purposely teases you. The lack of understanding and a chillingly absent soundtrack make you wonder if you actually are going insane.
This movie has absolutely everything you could want in a Halloween film. Bette freaking Midler as a crazy witch, a talking black cat, creepy spells, a friendly Zombie, and Sarah Jessica Parker eating children and playing with men… there is a reason this is a classic, people. Every single Halloween requires at least one viewing of this female-centric masterpiece! Frankly, once you realize this movie was directed by the legend that is Kenny Ortega (High School Musical, Descendants), it’s brilliance should no longer be surprising.
I always loved Dani, the adorable and fearless little sister of Max, portrayed by Thora Birch. She was spunky, wise beyond her years, and knew how to keep her somewhat ditzy older brother in line. Fun fact: her older brother Max was very nearly played by Leonardo DiCaprio! He turned the role down in favor of What’s Eating Gilbert Grape, which I guess sort of was the breakout role that led to all his success. But whatever. Hocus Pocus is a Halloween classic that generations to come will be watching for years!
It doesn’t matter what scary movies I ever watch for the rest of my life. None of them will mess me up like this one. I saw The Ring in theaters, when I was 8. Kids, if your parents ever say you’re took young to watch a scary movie, listen to them. This movie haunted me for years. I tried to break the television in my room because I was afraid Samara would come out. I cried when the phone rang. The cursed video tape played on a loop in my nightmares. And honestly, the actor who played Rachel’s son was just horrifying. The first time I saw it, I was positive he was possessed by Samara or the devil or something. I could not fathom why nobody was ever concerned or creeped out by his thousand yard stares and creepy monotone whispering. I am not even able to objectively critique this film beyond, good acting and compelling story. The few times I’ve seen it since being a kid, all I am able to think about are my childhood traumas. Beware of this one!!!