Halloween is nearly upon us and to celebrate that fact, I want to share with you 12 films that I feel are essential to your viewing pleasure this Halloween. I have included new and old films, a few personal favourites and one guilty pleasure to complete the list.
Part 1 one of my 12 films for Halloween featured a much older selection of films than Part 2 will. The films featured on that list all came from the 70’s & 80’s and it’s probably safe to say that not all of my readers will have an interest in certain older movies. So, that brings us to Part 2 nicely, as nothing on this list predates 1998.
Hopefully people will enjoy this list as much as the first, and again, if anyone wishes to comment on these films or has anything they would like to add to it then please do so in the comments section below.
The Faculty is film I watched many, many times when I was younger and was probably one of my first experiences of the horror genre. The film has a great teenage cast to its name including the likes of Josh Hartnett, Clea Duvall, Jordana Brewster and Elijah Wood, who are surrounded by a strong cast of character actors in the forms of Salma Hayek, Famke Janssen and the T-1000 himself Robert Patrick. The film plays like a cross between Invasion Of The Body Snatchers and The Thing, John Carpenters influence is all over this movie, as the residents of a small Ohio town gradually get turned into mindless zombies after being turned by a parasitic alien. The film that got me into horror movies is also the reason I am here writing about movies today, and is a personal favourite that has stood the test of time.
Say what you want about this movie, but I really like it. I admit that on my first viewing of this movie I wasn’t completely sold by it, but after watching it twice since, I have to say it has grown on me. I even enjoyed its 2012 sequel, but had nowhere near as much fun as I did with the first film. There’s a certain atmosphere when watching this film that I find quite unique, whether that be from the vivid almost Hellraiser like imagery, to the gothic ash that falls upon the town or the shots that the link Silent Hill and the “real” world, I find myself enjoying this film every time I watch it.
Forget the ill-fated attempt at a TV show and stick with the movie. Zombieland was a film that came out of nowhere for me, I had barely seen a trailer before I was being dragged to the cinema to see this impressive zombie/horror/comedy unfold before my eyes. A small cast is headed by the always watchable Woody Harrelson who teams up with Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin who take on the zombie apocalypse and attempt to find some sense of normality in their lives. Oh and any film that starts off with Metallica on the soundtrack while we get to see the “zombie kill of the week” is a winner in my book.
The Crazies is a remake of a George A. Romero film of the same name, and stars Timothy Olyphant and Radha Mitchell, as the inhabitants of a small American town are slowly turned into mindless zombies after their water supply is infected with a virus accidentally spread by the military. The Crazies is full of tension and scares and has some great moments throughout, and is one of the few horror remakes that actually works.
People may balk at the idea of seeing Harry Potter in a horror film, but give this ghost story, based on the book by Susan Hill, a chance and you may be pleasantly surprised. For a horror film, The Woman In Black is pretty lacking in gore but more than makes up for it in chills and suspense, and has the distinct honour of being one of the few films to genuinely make me jump at the cinema.
The Cabin In The Woods is by far my favourite film on this list. A horror film that took the genre, span it around and then turned it upside had no right to work, but, like Scream before it, The Cabin In The Woods did something truly special and made it all work. While talking to friends, I understand that it may not work for everyone, especially those who simply don’t find it scary, but The Cabin In The Woods has so much more going for it than being a simple exercise in frightening its audience and anyone who didn’t get it really should go and watch it again.