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Happy Halloween! Scary Movies You May Have Missed

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Happy Halloween!

While still not technically an official holiday (if we don’t all get a day off work, it’s not officially a holiday in my book), Halloween has to be the best holiday/kick-off to the fall season. Halloween rocks for many reasons: it is the most varied of all the holidays, it isn’t about anything religious (well, not in the way that it is celebrated), it doesn’t require any cooking or prepping, no one has to spend excessive time with family or extended family, and there are so many ways to celebrate Halloween.  Our love of Halloween starts early, but how we celebrate it tends to evolve as we get older.  The Halloween celebration progression goes a little bit like this.

Ages 0 – 13:  Trick-or-treating.  Free candy is any child’s dream scenario, especially free candy while dressed as Batman or a Ninja.

Ages 13-ish – 35/40:  Dressing up and partying.  Teen years is the slow trickle into Halloween parties, but it is really once we graduate high school that the Halloween partying kicks it up a notch.  However, I’ve noticed the minute people start having babies they go back to the trick-or-treating/pumpkin patch photo op stage. Ah, the circle of Life/Halloween.

Ages 18-35:  Men try to come up with original/clever or disgusting/scary costumes to wear to bars and parties while the majority of women try to come up with original slutty costume ideas to wear to bars and parties.

Ages 13 + : Scaring Yourself.  This may be the best and everlasting Halloween option because there really is no age limit on scaring the pee out of yourself.  At least, that’s my theory.  I love a good scare and am easily scared, which is why I love roller coasters, scary movies, and haunted houses.  I definitely make a concerted effort each Halloween to watch some of the old school scary films (The Shining, Halloween, The Exorcist, Psycho, Alien, etc. – all scary good films). However, it does seem that finding new, good scary films that aren’t 1.) torture porn or 2.) fucking horrendous isn’t easy.  I’ve sadly seen too much of the latter, but I have some to recommend.

So if tonight’s Halloween has you parked in front of the television and you’ve realized that American Horror Story is more campy than actually scary (typical Ryan Murphy), here is a list of some scary films you may have missed, but are definitely worth checking out.

1. The Decent (2006):  This movie has two things that you won’t find in other scary movies – an all-female cast and spelunking.  That’s right, some kick-ass ladies start exploring a cave, and wouldn’t you know it, they stumble upon “subterranean flesh-eating humanoids.”  It is scary, creepy and original.  Mostly, it was high time for women to take back a genre that loves ripping them to shreds.

2. Cabin in the Woods (2012): This is produced by Joss Whedon so it doesn’t take itself too seriously, and really plays with the classic “group of hot twenty-somethings go into the woods for a fun weekend and havoc ensues.”  It really makes fun of the genre in a meta, Scream-type way.  I didn’t love the ending, but Bradley Whitford and Richard Jenkins are hilariously awesome in this film.  It’s scary and clever.

3. Let The Right One In (2008): For all the Twilight/vampire mania of the last four years, this film is by far the best.  It is a Swedish film (they made an American version Let Me In, but I always recommend seeing an original).  The film is about a young bullied boy who befriends his new neighbor, a creepy girl who just happens to be a vampire and behind a rash of murders in the town. The tension and creep-factor of this film is insane.  It’s haunting and disturbing, and an excellent vampire film.  Take that Bella and Edward.

4. Zombieland (2009):  This is more a comedy than a straight-up scary movie, but there are so many zombie attacks and zombie killings, that it is my recommendations for someone needing some Halloween scare wrapped up in a fun, light-hearted movie.  Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone are all great.  It has an awesome cameo that makes the entire film worth it, and it really makes fun of zombie cliches.

5. The Orphanage (2007):  This may be one of the best scary movies I’ve seen in the last decade.  What makes this Spanish film great is it doesn’t need typical horror tactics of mass killings, a lot of blood, guts or a homicidal maniac.  Instead it is a traditional haunted house story, a psychological, haunting film that left me spooked for days.

 

Enjoy!  Happy Halloween.

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