With Halloween at the end of the month, we have compiled the perfect list of our favourite spooky films to get you in the mood for tricks and treats !
1) Halloween III: Season of the Witch (1982)
Halloween III is the only entry in the Halloween series that does not feature the series antagonist, Michael Myers. It departs from the slasher genre which the rest of the installments is known for, instead featuring a “witchcraft” theme with science fiction aspects and parallels to old Celtic fairy tales.
This installment is the first film to be written and directed by Tommy Lee Wallace with John Carpenter and Debra Hill, the creators of Halloween, returned as producers.
The film tells the story of Dr. Dan Challis (Tom Atkins) as he tries to solve the mysterious murder of a patient in his hospital. He, along with the patient’s daughter, Ellie Grimbridge (Stacey Nelkin), travels to the small town of Santa Mira, California, where he discovers that Silver Shamrock Novelties, a company run by Conal Cochran (Dan O’Herlihy).
2) Trick ‘r Treat (2007)
Trick ‘r Treat is an American anthology horror film written and directed by Michael Dougherty and produced by Bryan Singer. It relates four Halloween horror stories with a common element in them, Sam; a mysterious child trick-or-treater wearing shabby orange footie pyjamas with a burlap sack over his head.
The character makes an appearance in each of the stories whenever a character breaks Halloween traditions.
The film stars Dylan Baker, Rochelle Aytes, Anna Paquin and Brian Cox.
3) Bride of Frankenstein (1935)
Bride of Frankenstein (often incorrectly styled The Bride of Frankenstein) is the first sequel to Universal Pictures‘ 1931 hit Frankenstein.
It is widely regarded as one of the greatest sequels in cinematic history, with many fans and critics considering it to be an improvement on the original Frankenstein.
As with the first film, Bride of Frankenstein was directed by James Whale and stars Boris Karloff as the Monster.
The sequel features Elsa Lanchester in the dual role of Mary Shelley and the Monster’s mate at the end of the film. Colin Clive reprises his role as Henry Frankenstein, and Ernest Thesiger plays the role of Doctor Septimus Pretorius.
4) House of 1000 Corpses (2003)
Inspired by horror films of the 1970s such as The Texas Chain Saw Massacre and The Hills Have Eyes, House of 1000 Corpses is the directorial debut of Rob Zombie.
The plot centers on a group of teenagers who are tortured by a psychotic family on Halloween, after traveling across the country to write a book.
This films sees a stand out performance of the late Sid Haig who brought to life the character of Captain Spaulding the “Killer Clown”.
5) Hellraiser (1987)
Hellraiser is a British supernatural horror film written and directed by Clive Barker, and produced by Christopher Figg, based on Barker’s novella The Hellbound Heart. The film marked Barker’s directorial debut.
The film features Frank (Sean Chapman), who had opened the door to an alternate dimension and had his body torn to pieces by creatures known as Cenobites. Years later, Frank’s brother Larry (Andrew Robinson), new wife Julia (Clare Higgins) and Larry’s daughter Kirsty Cotton (Ashley Laurence) accidentally trigger his resurrection – bringing both Frank and the Cenobites to our realm.
As lead Cenobite Pinhead Doug Bradley is a standout and went on to star in seven of the current nine sequels.
6) Friday the 13th (1980)
Friday the 13th is a slasher film produced and directed by Sean S. Cunningham, written by Victor Miller, and starring the late great Betsy Palmer, Adrienne King, Harry Crosby, Laurie Bartram, Mark Nelson, Jeannine Taylor, Robbi Morgan, and Kevin Bacon.
The film tells the story of a group of teenage camp counsellors who are murdered one by one by an unknown killer while attempting to re-open an abandoned summer camp.
7) Drag Me to Hell (2009)
Drag Me to Hell is a supernatural horror film co-written and directed by Sam Raimi.
The plot, written with his older brother Ivan Raimi, focuses on a loan officer (Alison Lohman) who, because she has to prove to her boss that she can make the “hard decisions”, chooses not to extend an elderly woman’s mortgage. In retaliation, the woman places a curse on the loan officer that, after three days of escalating torment, will plunge her into the depths of Hell to burn for eternity.
8) Sleepaway Camp (1983)
Released as Nightmare Vacation in the United Kingdom, this American slasher film is written and directed by Robert Hiltzik
It is the first film in the Sleepaway Camp franchise, and tells the story of a young girl sent to a summer camp, where a series of murders begin shortly after her arrival. It stars Felissa Rose, Katherine Kamhi, Paul DeAngelo, and Mike Kellin.
Released during the slasher genre’s heyday, the film is known for its infamous twist ending, considered one of the most shocking of its kind.
9) Candyman (1992)
This early 90’s supernatural slasher film written and directed by Bernard Rose, starred Virginia Madsen, Tony Todd, Xander Berkeley, Kasi Lemmons, and Vanessa Williams.
Based on the short story “The Forbidden” by Clive Barker, the film follows a graduate student in Chicago completing a thesis on urban legends, which leads her to the legend of “Candyman”, the ghost of an artist and son of a slave who was murdered in the late 19th century.
Madsen & Todd’s onscreen chemistry during this film is mesmerising – a pure twisted fairytale.
10) Halloween: The Curse of Michael Myers (1996)
Also known as Halloween 6: The Curse of Michael Myers, Halloween VI: The Curse of Michael Myers or Halloween 666 – the 6th instalment of the Halloween franchise is directed by Joe Chappelle and written by Daniel Farrands.
It follows Dr. Sam Loomis coming out of retirement to face Michael Myers once more. At his aid is Tommy Doyle, a returning character from the original Halloween film. Michael’s niece, Jamie Lloyd, who first appeared in Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers, also appears in a less prominent role. The plot of the film formally introduced the “Curse of Thorn”, a mystical symbol that first appeared in Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers and revealed in the film to be the source of Michael Myers’s immortality and drive to kill.
The film stars Donald Pleasence in his final film appearance. The film also features the first starring role by Paul Rudd and Marianne Hagan.
After the film’s home media release, the original workprint of the film (which featured 45 minutes of alternative footage and an alternate ending) was discovered by fans of the series. This version, dubbed The Producer’s Cut, developed a cult following, with bootleg DVD copies sold on eBay and online petitions targeting for an official release of it.
In 2014, the Producer’s Cut was officially released on Blu-ray.
This film is a guilty pleasure of ours and with two cuts to choose from thats double the Haddonfield kill fest!
Have we missed out the perfect Halloween flick?
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Check out our previous Horror articles here.