The weather is cooling down, midterms are coming and going, and Halloween is fast approaching. If you’re sick with a cold or just don’t feel like leaving the house, watch a movie! This time of the year is perfect for curling up under the covers with a bowl of popcorn to watch some scary (or not) movies.
The Honors Program Bloggers have put together a list of recommended movies for this month so check them out whenever you need a break from homework:
One of my favorite movies of all time! A widowed mother reads her son a story about a monster called the Babadook. The story is so realistic that he starts having nightmares and terrifying visions that the monster is coming to kill them. At first, his fears are dismissed–but then his mom starts seeing the monster too.
THE CABIN IN THE WOODS
This movie is another one of my favorites. It takes on a very classic zombie horror situation. 5 friends vacation at a cabin in the woods, but how many come back out? You may think you know the answer, but then you realize that there is a little more to the story than meets the eye.
THE HALLOWEENTOWN MOVIES
I am a major weenie so you won’t be getting any #2spooky movie recommendations from me. Instead, I recommend that you punch yourself in the face with some childhood Halloween nostalgia and watch the Halloweentown movies. All of them. Even the last one, Return to Halloweentown, which takes place in college and in which the actress for Marnie is inexplicably replaced with Sara Paxton. Just thinking about these movies make me feel like a kid again.
HAROLD AND MAUDE
Truthfully, I like to watch this movie all year round, so Halloween time is no exception. Harold is kind of a downer and likes to try to kill himself in unique ways, so I guess you could say it is gory if you’re looking for a reason to watch this around Halloween. Maude is super free spirited too, so maybe she’ll motivate you college kids to be happier around exams, possibly… hopefully. It’s a good movie and should be watched no matter the season.
It feels a little cheap to recommend Harry Potter when there’s little to no chance that you haven’t seen at least one of them already. Since I appear to be on a nostalgia kick I’ll go ahead and recommend them anyway. I’m a diehard Harry Potter fan and since the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them movie is coming out in November, now is the perfect time to rewatch your favorite Harry Potter movie(s) (mine is Prisoner of Azkaban and also all of them). Get your head back into Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry instead of, like, calculus.
Monster House is a must-watch! It is absolutely my favorite! My brother and I have watched this movie countless times. It has the right amount of scare and comedy for a perfect Halloween movie that’s suitable for people of all ages. It is about a boy named DJ Walters who discovers that the house in front of him is actually haunted. A creepy old man always runs out whenever anyone dares to trespass even a millimeter onto his lawn. One day, the unexpected happens. The old man gets a heart attack, and the house seems to come to life in his absence. This is when the creepiness starts. I would say for an animated movie, this has done a very good job of unwinding a riveting yet frightening plot.
THE NIGHTMARE BEFORE CHRISTMAS
At this point it’s almost a cliche, but Nightmare Before Christmas, an entertaining mashup of all your favorite holidays with some Tim Burton-produced flair, is my favorite Halloween film. It has been since I was 3 and we rented it from Blockbuster (anyone else suddenly feel old?). However, though I will maintain that this is the perfect movie for any holiday, it is definitely most appropriate for Halloween. And, well, yes, it is a cartoon and yes, it is a Disney movie, it is entertaining at any age. Also, how can one not be ready for October after watching “This is Halloween”? Seriously, if you want to get both the trick and treat feeling from your movie, watch this.
This psychological horror thriller is a classic and a must-see if you haven’t yet. I was fascinated by the psychological aspect of it, which left me thinking about what I had just watched. It follows a young woman, Marion Crane, who comes across the Bates Motel, a vacant lodging in the middle of nowhere. She meets a handsome, yet odd, man: Norman Bates, owner of the motel. They seem to get along at first but what happens as the night goes on? You may already know the general plot of the story but it is worth watching the entire film.
SCARY GODMOTHER: HALLOWEEN SPOOKTACULAR
Here’s a movie to fit the spooky Halloween spirit. Yes it may be based off a children’s book series, and yes it’s probably only for little kids, but do I care? No. I’m watching this movie till I die. #Bugab004lyfe. No but seriously, it’s super cute and makes me feel like it’s October, so if you don’t mind watching a kids movie, then watch this one.
Although Halloween and Friday the 13th are some of my favorites when it comes to horror movies, I can’t help but consistently relive the intense thrill and suspense that comes from Wes Craven’s 1996 classic. It not only brings back to life all the tropes and aspects of horror movies from the ‘80s, but it also serves as a sort of satirical comedy poking fun at those tropes while still remaining one of the best murder mysteries I’ve seen in a full-length feature film. No spoilers, but as a fan of whodunits, I congratulate the director for making it so captivating. Even if I know who did it, I still like to go back and look through all the scary scenes (and the not so scary ones) in hopes of finding some way that would point to the killer’s identity as if I were watching it for the first time. The best part about slasher films, especially Scream, is that the killer isn’t necessarily a supernatural being. No, this movie shows just how the dark side of humanity can be just as captivating as the claws of Freddy Krueger and that terrifying hockey mask worn by Jason.
So this isn’t technically an autumn or horror movie, but I always considered it as such. It resonates pensive transition that always felt autumnal. More importantly, it’s terrifying. From the first scene to the last, there’s a sense of dread, punctuated by some humor, and quite a few scares. Still, it’s the last twist that gets you (no spoilers in the comments!). For this reason, I highly recommend The Sixth Sense for a Halloween thrill.
I love this movie. The first time I watched it, I was blown away. While the movie poster seems ominous, it’s not so much a horror film as it is a psychological thriller. As far as I can remember, scary things don’t pop up and make you scream in this one. Anna, a young girl, returns home from a psychiatric facility to find many changes at her house upon her return. She sees a ghost of her dead mother who accuses her father’s fiancé of killing her. Prompted by this, Anna and her sister try to uncover the truth of her mothers death (murder?). This movie will leave you anxiously awaiting what happens.
There are countless movies out there that are perfect for October, such as Hocus Pocus or The Conjuring. If you’ve already seen these movies that we’ve recommended or you’re looking for something a little different, check out Rotten Tomatoes’ list of Top 100 Horror Movies to check out here.