Many of you who are fans of the spook probably celebrated Halloween this past weekend in lieu of actual October 31st, which is today. But if you feel like giving this pagan celebration one more hoorah on its official date in a low-key way, how about a Halloween-themed movie night tonight in the comforts of home? (Inviting over companion and dressing up are entirely optional.) Here are ten movies or series fit for the occasion that you probably won’t be recommended anywhere else.
The Witch (2015)
If a true scare is what you’re searching for tonight, this fairly current film is one of the most uniquely terrifying films I have ever seen. The directorial debut of Robert Eggers, don’t underestimate. Unlike most horror, The Witch doesn’t use the tactic of sudden shock that most horrors do to make you piss your pants. The terror in this story hides behind nothing and slowly unravels before your eyes—if you dare keep them open.
If you’ve seen and love the new It movie, why not explore the first motion-picture adaptation of this Steven King classic? Creepy clown Pennywise is played by Tim Curry, a horror legend.
Binge watch Stranger Things 2
In case you’ve been isolated from civilization for the last five days, Stranger Things 2 is out on Netflix now. Find out what happens a year after Eleven blows up the Demogorgon with her mind and then disappears. Nine episodes go by faster than you think!
If you’re obliged to think of an actor who embodies the spirit of Halloween, that actor has to be Johnny Depp. But instead of running with the obvious choices of Edward Scissorhands—which strikes me more as a Christmas film anyway—Sleepy Hollow or Sweeney Todd, how about this 90s gang musical that just teases dress up and impersonation!
The Love Witch (2016)
If you like the Halloween classic, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, but feel like you’ve seen it one too many times, here’s another erotic dark comedy that is perfect for the season. Directed by American feminist filmmaker Anna Biller, the film is shot entirely on 35mm film, adding to its unmistakeable 1960s aesthetic. The Love Witch is about a young witch who uses spells and potions to seduce men in the hopes of finding love. Relatable?
Rosemary’s Baby (1968)
While The Love Witch is a great modern tribute to 60s technicolor horrors, if you want to experience the original format, Rosemary’s Baby is it. One of my favourite 60s cult classic, this psychological horror by Roman Polanski turned then newcomer Mia Farrow (and her haircut in the movie) into a Hollywood icon.
Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Harold Ramis and Ernie Hudson as Venkman, Stantz, Spengler and Zeddemore are inarguably a-team goals. Plus, the theme song is epic.
A hopeless romantic on any night, including the eeriest night of the year? I’ve got you covered. Revisit one of the most romantic movies about love beyond the grave. Extra points if you pull out a potter’s wheel and reenact that scene as it happens.
Kiki’s Delivery Service (1989)
With so many Halloween-themed animations to choose from—Corspe Bride, Frankenweenie and Coraline among immediate thought—I’m placing my bet that this Studio Ghibli film is one of the least on people’s minds for Halloween night. And why? It’s an adorable film about a young witch with her sidekick black cat who takes a job at a bakery as its delivery girl.
Kill Bill (2003)
I can’t leave fans of gore empty-handed on this list. What better night than Halloween to watch Tarantino’s contemporary masterpiece in this inherently twisted genre. Not to mention that characters from this film have become a choice of Halloween costumes no one seems to get sick of year after year.