Stuck at home this weekend giving out candy? Have a case of the pre-winter flu, condemning you to bed all weekend? Looking for a reason to get a little cozy with your new beau/dette? Or just plain and simple want to indulge in some hallowed day entertainment sans movement? Other Halloween flick lists are redundant of the classics (like Poltergeist, Friday the 13th, Halloween, The Exorcist, etc.), so we’ve made a list of the not-so-traditional films to get you in a horrible mood….justifiably horrible, we mean.
Here’s a few in honour of the recently trending hand-held, POV Found Footage Horrors…
Cloverfield – The movie follows a group of friends that are attempting to flee New York City when a giant monster attacks, causing mass pandemic, evacuation, and eventual lockdown. It doesn’t end great for some of them, but it’s a good watch. Viewing especially encouraged as the thus-far-untitled sequel was just announced.
Quarantine – Based on the Spanish horror film REC about a TV reporter, while on assignment following firefighters to calls, becomes trapped in an apartment building on lockdown due to a virus contaminating people within, giving them a taste for blood. Similarly, this is a good one to catch if you can because the sequel was just released in August.
The Blair Witch Project – Considered the first real success of the ‘found footage’ genre, the film tells the story of three young filmmakers who hike into a forest to film a documentary about local legend the Blair Witch. If you’ve lived under a rock the last 10 years and haven’t seen this movie, we won’t give anything away, but it’s definitely a good place to start. (Is it just us, or is The Blair Witch really only scary the first time you watch it?)
If you’re looking for something in the Halloween realm, but are, shall we say, less inclined to watch gore fests and the like, these are some campy comedy faves…
Zombieland – A mutated strain of mad cow disease causes a worldwide zombie apocalypse, and follows a group of four survivors on a road trip across the Southwestern US to find a sanctuary free of the undead. Starring Woody Harrelson and Jesse Eisenberg, it’s the highest grossing zombie movie of all time.
Shaun of the Dead – A interesting British romantic zomedy (huh?) about Shaun, a guy trying to get his life together and deal with the dramatics that come with girlfriends, roommates, parents and friends, amid an apocalyptic uprising of zombies. It is the first of ‘The Three Flavours Cornetto’ trilogy, and our personal favourite on the list.
Ernest Scared Stupid – The fifth film in the ‘Ernest’ series, the plot follows loveable namesake Ernest accidentally unleashing an army of trolls on the town on Halloween night. We’re laughing just thinking about it. What’s not to love?
If you’re a big wuss (yeah, we said it) and like the idea of Halloween movies, but can’t actually muster up the gusto to watch any, we’ve got some tame ones for you…
The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror Specials – Halloween specials featuring the classic cartoon family parody classic scary movies and reference pop culture simultaneously. With 21 episodes to choose from and the newest debuting Sunday the 30th, it’s a good ol’ cartooney time.
It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown – The Halloween classic – celebrating its 45th anniversary – in which the Peanuts gang prepares for Halloween and Linus awaits the arrival of the Great Pumpkin. It’s a tame Halloween show children, grandparents, and cowards of all ages enjoy.
Clifford’s Big Halloween – Clifford and his friends watch a scary movie, and his friend, Jetta claims nothing scared her. But later that night, she witnesses a ghost sighting of the very large, red variety. (Don’t worry, we made it sound scarier than it actually is.)
Our favourite and arguably most popular Halloween characters star in these creepy Zombie movies…
Dawn of the Dead – Survivors of a worldwide plague that is producing aggressive, flesh-eating zombies, take refuge in a mega shopping centre. We love the remake from 2004 the best because it was filmed just outside of Toronto.
Day of the Dead – A small group of military officers and scientists dwell in an underground bunker as the world above is overrun by zombies. With a tagline like “The darkest day of horror the world has ever known,” it’s a great sci-fi horror blend true to the 80s.
Ghost Rider – A performance so emotionless and monotonous as anything Nicolas Cage has done in his career, GR makes the list because of Cage’s pure undead-like nonchalance. We recommend his next role be in the next zombie apocalypse movie…as infected/king of the…
28 Days Later – Four weeks after a mysterious, incurable virus spreads throughout the UK, creating a not-so-typical host of undead, leaving a handful of survivors to try to find sanctuary and stay alive. One of the darker apocalyptic movies, this English gem starring Cillian Murphy is interestingly shot, and not for the faint of heart.
Here’re a few vamp flicks to check out…and sorry, not the sparkly kind…
Dracula – Probably the most popular vampire film of all time starring Bela Lugosi from 1931 (don’t go up in arms, Twilight fans) tells the classic tale based on the Bram Stoker novel, with over 170 versions to date. This traditional vampire flick is a great way to kick off any Halloween horrorfest.
Blade – A different spin on the traditional vampire scene, Blade creates the story of a rare mutation occurring within a vampire community called The Reapers, a breed of vampire so consumed with insatiable bloodlust they prey on fellow vamps as well as humans. Threatening the population, Blade, played by Wesley Snipes, sets out to make things right. If you watch the third instalment in the series (Blade: Trinity), you can catch ‘unique’ performances by Dominic Purcell, Jessica Biel and Ryan Reynolds.
Interview with the Vampire – Based on the 70s novel of the same name, which shot Anne Rice to fame, the movie stars now comparatively young actors Tom Cruise, Brad Pitt, Kirsten Dunst, Christian Slater and Antonio Banderas. The film chronicles the story of Louis and his descent into becoming a vampire with his friend Lestat, who then together turn a twelve-year-old girl into one, as well. We recommend you make time for some of the golden globe performances in this flick.
Daredevil – A movie so bad it actually sucked the life out of us. We recommend Ben Affleck’s next role be, well, nothing.
30 Days of Night – One of the more recent vampire horrors, based on a comic book series of the same name, stars Josh Hartnett in an Alaskan town beset by vampires as it enters into a thirty-day long polar night. We can’t think of many things worse than snowy, dark isolation with people who want to drink our blood…can you?