October is a special, special month. It’s an excuse to spend an entire thirty days watching and rewatching all your favourite horror movies. Now that it’s 2020, we have a plethora of classics to choose from and several lists to pick apart. I am going to impart on you the knowledge of a well-trodden sage, who has dipped his knees into the lowest depths of the bog of awful, terrible, bloody-disgusting horror movies in order to provide the most halloweenie of halloween experiences. Here is a list of some of the more obscure gems you ought to add to your halloween watchlist.
HALLOWEEN 6: THE CURSE OF MICHAEL MYERS
The Halloween franchise entry I’ve chosen for this list incidentally has the lowest critical score of any movie in the series. This entry boasts Paul Rudd as the star. Its campy, cult explanation of Michael Meyers’ curse will surely disappoint fans of the franchise, but never has disappointment been so fun.
Chopping Mall has it all. Shopping malls, premarital sex, robots, and lots and lots of gore. This halloween flick is a joy to watch– catch it in theaters if you can so you can experience the glory of its killer (pun intended) soundtrack.
HOUSE ON SORORITY ROW
This film is so thoroughly baked in ‘80s horror tropes that it almost feels like a joke. Drawing from the popularity of earlier Wes Craven horrors (but preceding his ultimate slasher A Nightmare on Elm Street), this movie shocks with gore and poppy teen terror. You ever wonder where the Scream franchise gets its inspiration? Its “rules”? This is it.
You might be noticing that all of these films have some pretty poor critical reception. That’s because critics hate having fun. Future-Kill stars Edwin Neal (famous for the 1973 Texas Chainsaw Massacre) and features some of the silliest sci-fi, punk violence the ‘80s had to offer. Like all of its best contemporaries, this horror flick has an X rating, and will surely give you a bloody good time.
I have added the exceptional film that is genuinely good. This 1975 giallo film by Dario Argento is the culmination of a decade of bloody, gory shock slasher films with all the style in the world. The genius of this movie lies in its color, in its directing. Argento takes everything that came before– including the camp– and turns it into one of the most solid horror films to come from that side of the alps.
You can’t do halloween without a bit of Vincent Price. This William Castle flick will literally tell you to scream, and you’ll be screaming one way or another by the time you’re through– more likely with laughter than terror. This film is a classic monster shocker, and if you haven’t seen it, you’ve got homework.
Based off of a Stephen King short, this Tobe Hooper (director of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre) feature casts Robert Englund (A Nightmare on Elm Street) as the terrifying Bill Gartley. It’s a silly picture, but it’s good fun, and has some of the signature Stephen King ridiculousness you’ll find in an anthology film like Creepshow. It also has two sequels in case you’ve got an especially long Halloween night.
Robert Englund directs this inconceivably corny horror movie about a phone line that Satan himself uses to possess people. This is not a good movie. This is a very bad movie. But if you watch this and don’t have a good time, I’ll pay you $100,000. It stars Stephen Geofrreys, one of the supports in Fright Night. What could go wrong?
Speaking of Fright Night, there is no way this film couldn’t sit on my list. Starring William Ragsdale and the more surprising Chris Sarandon, this vision in vampirism is an absolute delight. From the soundtrack to the special effects to the killer dancing, you would be hard pressed to find a horror film that screams “1985” more than this.
A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET 3: DREAM WARRIORS
You have all seen A Nightmare on Elm Street, probably a thousand times. If you haven’t delved into the cesspool of its many sequels, you’ll be lucky to know that you can stop at number three. This entry into the franchise is by far the best among the post-tonic additions. It has some of the most creative special effects and definitely the most laughs since the first film. If you choose to marathon some horror movies this Saturday, make sure A Nightmare on Elm Street 3 is your watchlist climax.