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All Hallow's Eve.


Scary Movie Watch List!

A few movies that I consider essential viewing for Halloween. Let me know if you feel the list is incomplete! 

  • Cult cinema:
  1. The Nightmare Before Christmas, a heartfelt movie that is fun for all the family and can be enjoyed throughout the year. The dazzling stop-motion animation is timeless and the music & lyrics by Danny Elfman is perfect. 
  2. Sleepy Hollow This movie is visually stunning, with a perfect mix of ethereal setting and artistic gore.
  3. Beetlejuice, another Burton classic! A surprisingly enjoyable, surreal and macabre delight. 
  4. Halloween, this is a no-brainer really. John Carpenters low-budget masterpiece single-handedly created the slasher genre. Even the opening credits are terrifying!
  5. Night of the Living Dead (1968). Standing at nearly half a century old, Romero’s fabulous debut is still terrifying. Arguably the greatest horror film ever made, and almost certainly the greatest zombie movie. 
  6. A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984). Highly imaginative, inspired and truly horrifying. What makes it so perfectly scary is that Craven delves into an area where we should feel most safe, our dreams. 
  7. Eraserhead (1977). Bizarre and thoroughly enjoyable, shot in a very macabre black & white - this is one of the most infulential works of the great David Lynch. Highly recommended!    

  • Fun for all the family!
  1. The Nightmare Before Christmas (as before). As an added bonus, why not check out Frankenweenie and Vincent? These are early Burton shorts that can be viewed as extras on the Nightmare Before Christmas DVD.  
  2. Ghostbusters I’m pretty sure every child that views this will want their own Proton Pack and jumpsuit! Infectiously funny, with the usual deadpan delivery from Bill Murray. 
  3. Corpse Bride, another brilliantly animated, quirky, visually lovely tale of lost love. 
  4. Hocus Pocus, come on, who doesn’t love this? A cheesy Halloween staple.
  5. Monsters Inc. Charming and sadly under-appreciated, with plenty of witty lines and action. 
  6. Addams Family/Addams Family Values. Dark comedies with a delightful cast, including an adorable Christina Ricci as Wednesday. 
  7. Wallace & Gromit: Curse of the Were-Rabbit. Meticulous effort pays off in this stunning stop-motion adventure. Dry, whimsical and very British!

  • The Scariest Movies of All Time
  1. The Shining, the ultimate haunted house movie, exploring the world of the supernatural and following a man’s descent into madness. Justly classic. 
  2. The Exorcist, an unforgettable film that will stay under your skin long after you’ve seen it, it’s label as "the greatest horror film ever made" still stands after nearly 40 years.
  3. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974). A cutthroat, intense masterpiece. A movie that loses none of it’s punch with age. 
  4. The Silence of the Lambs, an unmissable classic, with perfect characterisation. Hopkin’s is hypnotic and the tug-of-wills between his Lecter and Foster’s Clarice is powerful and nerve-wracking. 
  5. Jaws, one of the most effective thrillers in film history, the movie that made millions afraid to go back in the water. 
  6. Poltergeist, based on a story by Steven Spielberg, and released 1 week before Spielberg’s E.T., this movie is viewed like the antithesis of the latter. Compelling and consistently creepy. 
  7. Halloween (as above)
  8. The Ring (2002). An excellent remake and a modern horror triumph, with incredible cinematography. A thoroughly unpleasant and creepy atmosphere is created that doesn’t let up. Plus a chilling score by Hans Zimmer.
  9. 28 Days Later, scary and ingenious, more thoughtful that your average zombie flick.  
  10. Psycho, infamous for it’s ‘shower scene’, the iconic film has been passed into cinema history. Darkly amusing and manipulative. A must see!
  11. A Nightmare on Elm Street (as above)
  12. Se7en, fast paced, stylish and sleek thriller. The audience glimpses the horrific aftermath of the serial killers attacks, never seeing the murder first-hand. In this way, Fincher creates a claustrophobic and disquieting atmosphere. It also has the most perfect twist ending I’ve ever seen. The opening credits alone are a mini-masterpiece! 
  13. Rosemary’s Baby, brilliantly acted by both Farrow and Gordon, Polanski’s horror classic is an intelligent and realistic adaption of the novel. 
  14. The Thing (1982). Relentless suspense, and with more originality and wit than any other remake. The special effects may now seem outdated, but Carpenter’s classic remains an almost perfect horror movie. Plus it has the greatest tagline ever: Man is the warmest place to hide. 

  • Horror Comedies. 
  1. An American Werewolf in London. With most horror comedies, the ‘horror’ portions, are never truly scary; in Werewolf we have a perfect balance of the two genres. David’s character could be starring in a RomCom in his attempts to charm the pretty british nurse, that is before he encounters the zombie-form of his best friend telling him to commit suicide before his transformation into his werewolf alter ego. I don’t think Jennifer Aniston would stare in this movie. The metamorphoses scenes are spectacular!
  2. Shaun of the Dead A clever balance of scares and witty satire. A sweet tribute to Romero’s Dawn of the Dead, and the British technique (that I myself have mastered) of not bothering (and sitting down with a cup of tea). A modern masterpiece. 
  3. The Evil Dead 1, 2 & 3. Cult classic, low budget horrors, that combine the right amount of gore and black humour. Perfect splat-stick fun! 
  4. Drag Me To Hell, a movie which often gets bad reviews by those who take it too seriously. Raimi returned to top form with this frightening and hilarious thrill ride. A real genre-buster.
  5. Slither, an affectionate homage to the B-movie, thoroughly enjoyable nostalgic fun. A greatly under appreciated gem. 
  6. Zombieland, wickedly funny, character-driven and delightfully offbeat. I think Fleischer joins the likes of Romero, Raimi and Wright with this offering. Not just a great ZomCom, but a great film. Featuring possibly the greatest cameo of all time!
  7. Beetlejuice (as above)