It’s the spookiest time of the year, full of giant skeletons, “Squid Game” costumes and creepy, creative treats. If your Halloween plans also include horror films and scary TV shows, you’ve come to the right place.
Whether you’re looking for the ultimate slasher film or are just trying to find something dark that the whole family can enjoy, there are plenty of picks here for any kind of Halloween and horror movie lover. And these picks are so good it doesn’t even have to be Halloween for you to love these films.
Here is a list of classic flicks, suspenseful series and other Halloween-adjacent gems, perfect for taking in on this ghoulish weekend.
Karyn Kusama’s 2009 horror-comedy, which starred Megan Fox as a demonically possessed high school cheerleader who kills her male classmates as her BFF (Amanda Seyfried) tries to stop her, didn’t get the reception it deserved when it was released. But post-Me Too era, the Diablo Cody-penned film is now considered a feminist cult classic.
This perennial favorite is technically for the scardey cats, though the premise of the movie — written by Tina Fey — is basically that teenage girls can be your worst nightmare. Between that and memorable Halloween scenes, it’s perfect for Oct. 31.
One of the modern “new era” classic horror films, it’s the original that launched an entire cinematic horror universe, and for good reason. It’s probably still the best of the bunch, even though there are two sequels and a half dozen doll or nun-based spin-offs out there. Netflix also has The Conjuring 2 as a follow-up, if you want to watch that, and it’s solid as well.
The Strangers is old at this point, released all the way back in 2008, and yet it remains a staple of the genre, beautiful in its simplicity where masked killers stalk a couple for what appears to be no real reason at all. Again, it spawned some lesser follow-ups, but the original remains a true classic.
The gold standard of horror distills the battle between good and evil down to its bare essence, a child possessed and faithless priest, maybe right next door.
“Truth or Dare”
A group of friends have their vacation in Mexico turned upside down when they end up involved in a supernatural version of Truth or Dare. After a few turns, the game turns deadly and they must find a way to survive against the odds and stop it before they all end up dead.
As a movie about an extra-terrestrial predator who dresses up as a clown and feeds on children from the sewers, there’s no getting around the fact that the It movie is terrifying, making it one to watch for the particularly adventurous. But it is just as much a nostalgic, Amblin-inspired coming of age story as it is a scary movie.
Scary movies love to play the analogy game, setting up their monsters and demons as grotesque metaphors for real world issues, but It Follows surely takes the crown for the most disturbing allegory of the lot. It’s demon is the abominable personification of an STI, and while that sounds silly and a little bit tasteless, director David Robert Mitchell brings his star fiend to life with such scary efficacy, you’ll be left a paranoid wreck by its end.