Summer of 2020 has ended (roughly a week ago as of writing this) which could only mean the Fall season is finally here! While here in Malaysia, we don’t necessarily have the same Autumn experience like those in the West or in East Asia, but when October rolls over, we often think of Halloween.
Yes, ladies and gents, Halloween is almost upon us once again. A time of spooky ghouls and goblins, dressing up in elaborate costumes, eating candy and schedule a trip to the dentist, and of course the scary movies to binge on. With that said, the Hobility crew have come up with a list of some our favorite horror movies for you to sink your teeth in this October.
Viewer discretion is advised as a majority of the these movies deals with very sensitive subjects and matters. So if you’re still too young, stop reading, but hey, I won’t tell if you won’t.
Friday the 13th (1980)
In this horror classic, a group of camp counselors are stalked by a vengeful serial killer. The Friday the 13th series is best known for Jason, a hockey mask-wearing, axe-wielding serial killer, but he doesn’t appear in this first installment. Decide for yourself if that makes it less enjoyable than its descendants, which kept the original’s inventive gore but got more and more absurd as the years went on.
The Ring (2002)
A remake of the Japanese hit Ringu, The Ring breathed new life (or death) into urban legend-based horror. Naomi Watts plays a skeptical reporter investigating a videotape that, rumor has it, will kill anyone who watches it seven days after they’ve seen it. Just try not to fall backwards in fright when Samara comes scrambling out of the well.
Evil Dead 2
Evil Dead 2 is perfect comedy horror. While it might not send you shrieking away from your screen, there’s a delightfully depraved viscerality to proceedings. Eyes in mouths, wall to wall gore, chainsaws feeling like the only option. It’s worth noting here, too, that if you do want something a little less punctuated with the word ‘groovy,’ then the Evil Dead remake from Fede Alvarez is truly something that can get under your skin.
An American Werewolf in London (1981)
Movies about werewolves are nothing new in cinema, but what sets this particular picture apart is in its special/practical effects. This movie wouldn’t be as memorable if it were not for Rick Baker and his team. The effects which he and his team used lead them to winning an Oscar back 1981. So, instead telling you, I’ll show you (viewer discretion is advised). The Combination of puppetry, animatronics, some stop-motion, and other effects have made this scene unforgettable, a true cinematic marvel.
The Exorcist (1973)
This Oscar-winning possession parable still chills. Directed by William Friedkin, this thriller about a young mother (Ellen Burstyn) who tries to exorcise her young daughter (Linda Blair), is brimming with old-fashioned scare shots and a highly quotable script, plus kitschy practical effects that still manage to rival some of today’s CGI.
Unpredictable, visceral, and primeval, this is a movie based on the simplest of premises but even in it’s happiest moments, is absolutely anxiety inducing.
Arguably one of the greatest science fiction movies ever made also just happens to be one of the greatest horror movies too. It doesn’t seem fair, does it? The original Alien from Ridley Scott sends the crew of the Nostromo to investigate a distress call from an abandoned alien spaceship as innocently as any gang of hormonal teenagers headed off to a remote cabin in the woods. And, just like those teenagers, not many of them are going to survive to tell the tale.
The Cabin in the Woods (2012)
At once a brilliant send-up of the horror genre and a loving homage, this film will satisfy enthusiasts and dabblers alike. Full of sardonic humor and genuine shocks, The Cabin in the Woods follows a stereotypical group of friends who spend a weekend at a secluded cabin in the woods. What starts off as a typical slasher film quickly reveals itself to have so much more up its sleeve; the plot zigs and zags around well-known tropes.
Wicked City (1987)
From the director of Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust and Ninja Scroll, comes the ’80s horror anime movie Wicked City. There are two types of worlds, the human world and the Black World, a dimension that few people know about. For hundreds of years, a pact existed between the two dimensions for peace and harmony to exist on both sides.
Interestingly enough, footage from Wicked City was used in synthwave band The Midnight’s single, Vampires
Shaun of the Dead (2004)
The first in Edgar Wright’s ‘Cornetto Trilogy,’ Shaun of the Dead follows the titular Shaun as he plods his way through his dreary London existence, only to discover that the majority of the population has been transformed into shambling cannibals while he was asleep. Suddenly realizing he needs to be the hero everyone deserves, it’s time to rescue his mum, get his girlfriend back, and make sure everyone is fine in time for tea. Unfortunately it doesn’t quite go as planed.
Sleepy Hollow (1999)
Halloween master Tim Burton strikes again with this gothic retelling of the legend of the Headless Horseman.
Sleepy Hollow vividly reveals the shadow side of this community where things are not what they seem to be. Ichabod’s intrepid investigation eventually leads him to discover that the dread horseman is actually being summoned by a greedy and vengeful person in town. While tracking down the truth, the constable is forced again and again to confront a secret in his own past.
The Shining (1980)
Even if you haven’t watched Stanley Kubrick’s masterpiece, you’ll know of The Shining. You’ll know Jack Nicholson’s “Heeeeeeeere’s Johnny” bit that’s constantly parodied to this day
There’s a reason as to why this movie often makes its way into any horror movie list. The Shining feels evil. From Jack Nicholson’s deranged performance as a man descending into murderous insanity to Kubrick’s relentless direction as we hypnotically follow Danny navigating the hotel corridors on his trike, this is a movie that never lets you feel safe.
Okay, this list wouldn’t be complete if we didn’t mention this film considering its name, Halloween. Not only does it namecheck the holiday in the very title, but it’s a standard bearer in the horror genre. Directed by auteur John Carpenter, Halloween tells the story of child psychopath Michael Myers, who is locked away after murdering his 15-year-old sister at the age of 6. He breaks out 15 years later, hell-bent on murdering his other sister, Laurie, played by preeminent scream queen Jamie Lee Curtis.
“Do you like scary movies?” That line and the shocking killing that followed it marked the beginning of a new era for horror movies. Written by Kevin Williamson and directed by Wes Craven, Scream is the perfect blend of ’90s pop culture archness with slasher film tropes.
Of the movies listed here, Scream is the only one that differs in the horror genre. If you’ve been paying attention, you’ve would’ve noticed that all the movies up until now featured an element of the supernatural or sci-fi, but not Scream. This is just a simple slasher movie, pure simplicity. Don’t believe me, well just take at Jeremy Jahns’ review on the movie below