5 Best: Spooky Movies for Halloween


Praise Eteng '18

          It’s October so you know what that means: Halloween! What better way to celebrate the spooky month than with some spooky movies? Although the month is almost over, there is no reason why you can’t continue to celebrate the spooky spirit with some good horror movies.


From Dusk till Dawn (1996)

         From the director who brought you Spy Kids, and The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl, comes… a gritty action/horror movie? Yes. Before and even after director Robert Rodriguez was making kids movies he primarily directed action films. In this movie Richard, played by Quentin Tarantino, and Seth, played by George Clooney, are thieves who are on the run after robbing a bank in Texas. In their attempt to find refuge in Mexico, they hijack the car of a man named Jacob, played by Harvey Keitel, and force him and his two kids to take them to a bar where they will meet their smuggler. Unfortunately for them, the bar is haunted by vampires who they must defend themselves from until dawn (this movie is a lot of fun if you lower your expectations). The movie won’t make you think like Inception and the genre leans more towards action, so it won’t have you scared out of your mind like The Conjuring. But if you understand that, you will really enjoy the movie. George Clooney is great as always and the rest of the cast are so over the top with the line delivery that it becomes very charming. The only issue with the film is that the special effects have aged poorly; the vampires and monsters look dated and cartoonish. However, this flaw wasn’t enough to make the movie unwatchable so if you have the chance grab some friends, grab some drinks, and enjoy this fun action flick.


Annabelle: Creation (2017)

          Annabelle: Creation is the prequel to the movie Annabelle that came out in 2014. In this movie we follow Janis, Linda, Sister Catherine, and the rest of the orphanage as they try to deal with the demonic spirit that terrorizes their home. This movie is as scary as they come, director David Sandberg does a good job of making you fear of the unknown, just like the orphans. What elevates this movie from not being just another run of the mill horror film is the sound design and cinematography. As with any horror movie, sound design and cinematography is crucial in to building the tension in a scene. Annabelle: Creation does that and more, with tight shots that’ll make you feel claustrophobic, tense music building up for seconds on end until the inevitable jump scare, the camera panning across the room slowly to reveal the demonic entity that is plaguing the house. By the time the movie is over, hearing a pin drop will make you jump. Now while I liked this movie, I couldn’t help but find myself questioning the actions some of the characters made. It seems that they would do those things only to move the plot forward and to have a scary scene. It is a trope that is common in a horror movies and is the result of bad writing so I can’t blame the directors or actors for it. Even with those flaws, Annabelle: Creation is perfect entertainment for a scary night.



Jaws (1975)

          Kicking off the top three we have the granddaddy of horror films, the quintessential horror movie, Jaws. Directed by Steven Spielberg, Jaws is about the quest to kill man eating shark that terrorizes a New England beach resort. The hunt is led by the police chief, a marine biologist, and a veteran seafarer. Even though it’s 42 years years old, Jaws is still as scary as the day it came out. The iconic theme that plays and builds up as the shark approaches an unsuspecting victim had me yelling at the characters to “GET OUTTA THE WATER!”. They hardly ever showed the shark due to the shark model’s fragility. This is a blessing in disguise because seeing the shark in the film makes it less scary because it’ll lack the fear of the unknown that makes so many horror films scary. Jaws is one of the most important films ever, its influence can still be seen today. For the five of you who have never seen jaws, what are you waiting for? Now is the time.



The Sixth Sense(1999)

          Before M. Night Shyamalan was making abysmal movies like After Earth, The Happening, or The Last Airbender he was making great movies like Unbreakable, Signs, and The Sixth Sense. In this movie, Cole Sear, played by Haley Joel Osment, has the ability to  communicate with ghosts who don’t know that they’re dead. It’s up to child psychologist Malcolm Crowe, played by Bruce Willis, to help him deal with his issues. This movie is amazing in every sense of the word. The acting is top notch. For the most part child actors are complete garbage, only there to look cute. However, Haley Joel Osment’s acting was Oscar-worthy. He was able to portray a tortured soul without being over-dramatic. Bruce Willis is known for his action movies so it was refreshing to see him in a different role for once. Toni Collette does not get enough credit for her role as Lynn Sear, Cole’s mother. I cannot think of anyone else who could’ve done a better job. M. Night Shyamalan’s directing was superb. The amount of detail that is in every scene in the movie requires multiple viewings to catch them all. He does a great job of showing and not telling, which a lot of movies can’t seem to do these days. My only gripe with the film is the plot twist at the end. It’s shocking and it’ll leave you surprised, but after you know the twist the incentive to watch it again is less. Nevertheless, The Sixth Sense is an unsettling, spooky, psychological thriller. Do yourself a favor and watch it.


Silence of the Lambs(1996)

          Last but definitely not least is Silence of the Lambs, directed by Jonathan Demme and starring Anthony Hopkins, Jodie Foster, and Scott Glenn. In this movie, Foster plays Clarice Starling, a top tier cadet at the FBI academy. On behalf of her superior, Jack Crawford who is Scott Glenn, Clarice is sent to seek help from Hannibal Lecter, a psychiatrist turned serial killer played by Anthony Hopkins, to help find the mutilating serial killer, Buffalo Bill. Silence of the Lambs is the best kind of horror movie; it doesn’t have jump scares and demonic entities like Annabelle: Creation. This movie is scary because it’s so unsettling and realistic. When I hear about murderers and serial killers on the news I usually just say, “Gee that sucks.”, and get over it. But seeing serial killers and the damage they cause firsthand can be eye opening. Jodie Foster is great as Clarice Starling. She might be in the FBI, but she is scared just like anyone else would be. This makes her and the story relatable. Anthony Hopkins is brilliant as Hannibal. Any scene that he’s in put me on edge of my seat because you never know what he’s going to do. Silence of the lambs isn’t just a great horror movie. It’s a great movie. Watch it. It didn’t win five Oscars for nothing.

So here it is, my movie recommendations for this halloween. All of these movies (except Annabelle: Creation) are available on Hulu or Netflix so if you have the time watch them, you won’t regret it.