October is a great month for a number of reasons. The weather has finally gotten cool enough to wear your favorite hoodie every day, the leaves decorate the world with breathtaking reds, yellows, and oranges, pumpkin-flavored everything stocks supermarket shelves, but most importantly October is the spookiest time of the year. With Halloween right around the corner, here's a list of 13 scary flicks to watch this spooky season.
1. "Halloween" (1978)
You can't properly celebrate Halloween without watching this iconic classic. On Halloween night, a psychopath named Michael Myers escapes from the insane asylum he's been living in for the past 15 years and goes on a killing spree in his hometown of Haddonfield, Illinois. The thing that makes this film so eerie and terrifying is that the killer has no proper motive, which throws rationality out the window and suggests that nightmares can come true without warning and for no reason at all.
2. "A Nightmare on Elm Street" (1984)
Another classic slasher film, A Nightmare On Elm Street terrorizes its viewers by blurring the lines of reality. Nancy Thompson is an average high school student with a dark family history. When Nancy was little, her parents burned alive Freddie Krueger, a child rapist wrecking havoc in their town. Now, Freddie's ghost is terrorizing Nancy in her sleep and slowly killing her classmates. A Nightmare On Elm Street is more of a psychological thriller than a jump-scare flick, but it still invokes plenty of fear with the simply haunting tagline "Don't fall asleep."
3. "The Conjuring" (2013)
Based on the true accounts of demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren, The Conjuring broke new grounds in the paranormal activity genre of horror films. When the Perrons move into a beautiful country farmhouse in Harrisville, Rhode Island, they believe that the move is the fresh start their family of seven needs. It isn't until strange happenings start occurring, like the clocks stopping at 3:07 every night or the smell of rotten meat that occasionally fills the house, that the Perrons realize something sinister has moved in with them. The movie also includes real photographs of the Warrens and the Perrons to remind the audience that an incident like this has really happened and could happen to anyone.
4. "Scream" (1996)
If you're into crime mysteries and suspenseful thrillers, then Scream is a must on your watch list. This Whodunit? slasher film opens with the death of high school student Casey Becker and her boyfriend Steve and leaves the audience on the edge of their seat for the rest of the movie trying to figure out who the killer is. The film purposely misleads the viewer with lots of twists, turns, and foreshadowing, making the guessing game all the more difficult and exciting.
5. "The Blair Witch Project" (1999)
Three film students looking for clues of a murderer in the middle of the woods - what could go wrong? Alongside its dark storyline, creepy setting, and eerie ambiguity, The Blair Witch Project is popularly known because it was one of the first movies to be filmed entirely from a first-person P.O.V. This style of film teases the viewer by blending the realms of reality and fiction, which makes this movie very hauntingly disorienting.
6. "IT" (2017)
A remake based on Stephen King's classic novel by the same name, IT encapsulates true terror by recognizing the fact that fear is personal. In the small town of Derry, Maine, seven kids find themselves in a living nightmare when an ancient, shape-shifting evil emerges from the sewers and preys on the group of friends. The remastered version of IT is much more frightening because it combines both psychological terrors as well as horrifying special effects. It's recommended that you watch this one with the lights on.
7. "Hush" (2016)
Surprisingly an underrated horror film, Hush tells the story of a deaf author who is targeted by a killer in her isolated cabin. The lack of hearing in the protagonist makes the element of a killer that much scarier because it adds the element of dramatic irony - the viewer is able to perceive knowledge about the killer that the main character does not. This leaves the audience constantly shouting things like "Don't open that door!" while watching through their fingers.
8. "The Silence of the Lambs" (1991)
One of the most iconic movies in film history, this psychological thriller questions the boundaries of morality and gets under your skin with its cringey content. Clarice Starling, a top student at the FBI training academy, is assigned her first case - interview Hannibal Lecter, a brilliant psychiatrist who is living behind bars for cannibalism. Clarice uses Hannibal's intellect to help catch Buffalo Bill, a killer on the loose who's just recently kidnapped a local college student. Together, hero and villains must team up to catch the killer, but how far is Clarice willing to go in order to do her job?
9. "The Ring" (2002)
A strange videotape followed with a phone call telling you that you are going to die in seven days - sounds like some lame prank, right? Reporter Rachel Keller seems to think so...until people start mysteriously dying after watching the tape. As a curious journalist, Rachel watches the tape, and now she only has seven days to solve its mystery. The Ring is a movie that only gets better each time you watch it since there are so many elements thrown around that are meant to confuse and terrify the viewer. If you like creepy mysteries with lots of suspense, this is a great movie for you.
10. "Beetlejuice" (1988)
Although it's known as more of a comedy than a horror movie, Beetlejuice is still a creepy classic for those looking for less of a sleepless night and more of a good spook. After suffering from a tragic accident, a young couple is forced to haunt their house for all eternity, but they're not very good at it. After seeking the help of the boisterous spirit "Beetlejuice," they realize their guide may be more malicious than good and work with the new family who's moved into their home to get rid of him. A classic Halloween film that is always sure to be a crowd pleaser, Beetlejuice is a must on your watch list for spooky movies this month.
11. "Orphan" (2009)
After losing her third child in a miscarriage, Kate decides she wants to adopt. At the orphanage, Kate's husband Pete becomes close with Esther, an intelligent little girl who seems perfect in every way. Esther seems like just the right addition to Kate and Pete's family, but after a series of sinister events seem to plague the couple and their other two children, Kate begins to suspect that there is something evil lurking behind Esther's innocent appearance. Orphan is a highly unique movie full of twists and turns. Try to watch this movie without gasping every twenty minutes.
12. "Insidious" (2010)
When Josh and Renai Lambert's oldest son Dalton falls into a coma after falling from a ladder, the couple is devastated. To make matters worse, ever since their son's accident, the family has been seeing terrifying spirits lurk about their home. After calling paranormal specialists to come and investigate, Josh and Renai learn that their son is actually trapped in an alternate, demonic reality, and it's up to Josh to save him. A classic paranormal film, Insidious is scary for its horrifying characters and its neglection of a happy ending.
13. "Psycho" (1960)Janet Leigh Screams In Shower From 'Psycho'
The first movie of its kind, Psycho is a Hitchcock classic that is a mandatory watch for movie fanatics everywhere. On the run from the police after stealing $40,000 from her place of work, Marion Crane checks into a discreet motel. She isn't heard from in a week, and out of concern, Marion's sister goes to the motel to investigate. There she meets Norman Bates and learns the disturbing truth behind the seemingly innocent hotel proprietor. After nearly 70 years, this movie still manages to freak out its viewers and is a great Halloween classic.