Top 13 Halloween Movies and TV Episodes

By | Oct 28, 2013 | Leave a Comment (0)
Top 13 Halloween Movies and TV Episodes With the spookiest night of the year just a few days away, IMDb today revealed 13 of their best movies and TV episodes to watch on Halloween, as selected by IMDb’s editorial team. From sinister classics like Hellraiser, The Shining and Alien, to family fare like It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, the diverse list covers a spectrum of genres and tones. Also included among the (un)lucky 13 are episodes of The X-Files and Buffy the Vampire Slayer as well as a documentary on the history of witchcraft called Häxan: Witchcraft Through the Ages. 1. Hellraiser
“Not long after the Rubik’s cube was introduced to Americans came this tale of a different kind of puzzle box, the kind you really don’t want to solve…or open. While the creepy Cenobites promise their victims eternity in a world of pleasure, pain and suffering, we only get see the pain and suffering part of that guarantee, underscored by the demon Pinhead’s assurance that, in his words, “WE’LL TEAR YOUR SOUL APAAAAART.”
2. The X-Files episode “Home”
“There are many episodes of “The X-Files” that will keep a person up at night, but “Home” took the show’s queasiness factor to new levels of ickiness by liberally playing with the horror trope of backwoods murderous maniacs. Here, we are introduced to the Peacocks, a small-town family consisting of three brothers who keep to themselves… mainly in order to hide a family secret that will make you shudder for hours (or days) after the end-credits roll. Especially if you have space under your bed.”
3. Donnie Darko
“This film is not your typical scary movie, but Halloween plays an important role in the film. If you haven’t checked it out yet, Halloween would be a great time to do so– and you may also get a few cool costume ideas.”
4. House of Wax House of Wax Poster
“While Vincent Price is a horror deity, it is not only his performance that makes House of Wax one Halloween must-see. No, what makes this movie a sinister classic is the very idea of murdered people encased in wax, used in displays of historical figures; watching the major characters and the visiting public walk amongst these tableaux, commenting in awe on how real the figures seem only makes the squick factor gradually intensify. The most inexplicably horrifying scene of all comes near the beginning: the visuals of wax figures melting in a fire is at least as disturbing as many axe or chainsaw scenes filmed in the years since. P.S The actor playing Igor, Charles Buchinsky, might look a wee bit familiar to you.”
5. Häxan: Witchcraft Through the Ages
“Ostensibly a practical look at the history of witchcraft – and the punishments meted out for practicing it through the ages – this little silent gem is lent a veneer of menace by the visual age of the footage, the bizarre costuming of the witches and the mismatching of the music to the topic at hand. While the title card translations from Swedish to English are fanciful and a riot to read all on their own, juxtaposing that with visual demonstrations of how medieval implements of torture were used is an unintentional but potent psychological horrorshow. Note: this is an ideal film to screen at your Halloween party, as the visuals alone will set the mood while both entertaining and unnerving your guests in the right proportions.”
6. Alien
“The original Alien is first-and-foremost a sci-fi movie. However, its last hour or so is a classic haunted house scenario – with a spaceship serving as the house – and director Ridley Scott masterfully ratchets up the tension to an unbearable level. For further proof that this is a great horror choice, look no further than the movie’s iconic tagline: “In space no one can hear you scream.”
7. The Shining The Shining Poster
“The elevator! The twins! Room 237! Stanley Kubrick’s adaptation of Stephen King novel The Shining is legitimately terrifying, and it always makes for a strong choice around Halloween. It doesn’t hurt that it’s also a pretty great movie – it ranks 48th on IMDb’s Top 250 list, which is second-best for a Kubrick movie behind Dr. Strangelove (Kubrick has eight movies on the list, six of which are in the Top 100).”
8. Buffy the Vampire Slayer episode “Hush”
“For the most part, “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” was not a scary show. Even the vamps died cleanly: One stake in the general region of the heart, and they neatly dissolved into a puff of ash. Not the case for The Gentlemen: floating, ghoulish creatures with sunken-in eyes and unnaturally tight smiles whose modus operandi was the stuff of nightmares. Using magic, The Gentlemen rendered mute the citizens of Sunnydale in order to harvest their still-beating hearts without having to deal with any inconveniences like screaming. But that doesn’t mean you can’t yelp a little while you’re watching.”
9. Trilogy of Terror
“Trilogy of Terror may have consisted of three separate stories, each starring Karen Black playing markedly different characters, but the one that stuck with me through the years is the finale piece, in which an African tribal doll comes to life and hunts a woman in her apartment. As a child who grew up in a home filled with small African sculptures, this film added a more sinister dimension to one’s fear of the dark. And dolls.”
10. The Imposter
“As unnerving as the best fictional horror is this true story of a pathological Frenchman’s successful attempt to pass himself off as a Texas family’s long-missing child. His deceit sets the stage for what translates as a potential murder cover-up, and the mix of documentary and re-created footage adds serious ick factor thanks to Adam O’Brian’s portrayal of Frederic Bourdin, also known in the real world as “The Chameleon”.”
11. It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
“No Halloween is complete without a viewing of “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown”, arguably one of best Charlie Brown specials (after “A Charlie Brown Christmas”). And don’t forget Lucy’s wise advice: A person should always choose a costume which is in direct contrast to her own personality.”
12. American Horror Story American Horror Story
“IMDb Editor Michelle started watching the first season of “American Horror Story” when they replayed the first five episodes on Halloween. By the end of the marathon, she was hooked and it’s still one of her favorite shows. The series has only gotten creepier over time, and this season has taken the gore to a new level. Be forewarned: you may experience some strange dreams after viewing.”
13. Dracula
“Watching Dracula each Halloween serves as a fine mental palate refresher of sorts from all of the vampire variations that have come along in the decades since it was filmed. We’re fans of so many different vampire incarnations, but there’s just something perfect about Bela Lugosi’s interpretation of Count Dracula as a mysterious, menacing continental gentlemen, complemented by the gorgeously gloomy visual atmosphere created inside the Abbey by Tod Browning and Karl Freund. The chilling work of these three early horror masters combined makes this an ideal film to watch in the dark long after the trick-or-treaters have gone home.”
BONUS: November 2013 Movie Trailers
Category Movie Trailers
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