I’m obsessed with Halloween! That’s why I was so excited to write my latest story, Scared. It’s a fast moving, fun Little (pardon the pun) tale featuring the gang from Miss Paula’s Pull-up Academy as they investigate a haunted house.
Not only did I have a blast writing it, but it got me thinking of my favorite scary movies. October is the perfect time to snuggle under a blanket, dim the lights, and get frightened senseless. With that in mind, and in no particular order, here are my favorite horror films…
The Conjuring—I’m a sucker for ghost stories. I LOVE THEM! The Conjuring might be the best haunted house thriller I’ve ever seen. Really, add the whole Conjuring Universe to the list! Sure, some entries in the series are better than others (I love The Conjuring 2 just as much as the first one, and I really enjoyed Annabelle Creation and Annabelle Comes Home).
These movies are low on gore (yay!) but high on scares (double yay!). They’re atmospheric, chilling, and loads of fun. A mainstay on my Halloween watchlist.
Fright Night—I’m talking the original here. It’s one of those great 80s horror films with a touch of comedy. Plus, I’m a big vampire fan. If you have not seen this movie, do yourself a favor and find it. It’s wonderful.
The Horror of Dracula—Speaking of vampires, how about this classic from Hammer? While Universal’s Dracula (1931) is great and a landmark in horror cinema, it was an early-era talky and creaks a bit from age (it’s almost as if they filmed a stage production). Don’t get me wrong: Bela Lugosi is iconic. The sets are amazing. But for my money, you can’t beat this classic late 1950s version from Hammer Studios. Glorious color (just look at that bright red blood) and the always terrific Christopher Lee in the title role. Plus, Peter Cushing is a wonderful Van Helsing. This is one of my all-time favorite monster movies.
Poltergeist—Of course I’m referring to the original 1982 film! Don’t even get me started on that 2015 remake (I’ll just say it was not for me). The first is still the best and holds up remarkably well, even in this day of CGI spectacles. If you haven’t seen this movie, stop reading this, find a copy, and enjoy!
The Uninvited—This haunted house mystery, a gem of a film from 1944, is a classic. We have a haunted cliffside home, a brother and sister pair trying to solve the tragic tale, and a mysterious ghost who gets a surprising amount of screen time (particularly for the era). This is a superb film. By the way, it received a Criterion Collection Blu Ray release a few years back. It looks stunning!
The Changeling—This film from 1980, starring George C. Scott, is both scary and unsettling. Another one that isn’t overly violent or gory, it delivers plenty of chills and a few well-timed jump scares (my favorite). And yes, it’s another haunted house tale (a running theme on my list).
Gremlins—Is it a horror movie, a Christmas movie, or a comedy? It works as all three. And I love it. Surely you’ve seen Gremlins. It’s an 80s classic!
Okay, these are some pretty scary movies, but what about fun Halloween movies for Littles? If your Daddies or Mommies won’t let you watch spooky shows, or you don’t want to be scared, how about these honorable mentions?
Goosebumps 2—both films are cute, but part two takes place at Halloween. It’s spooky yet innocent fun!
Monster Squad—Dracula, a werewolf, Frankenstein’s Monster. The gang is all here in this fun, family friendly film.
It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown—I love, love, love this holiday special! An annual tradition in my home.
Okay, that’s my list. For now. There are so many other great horror films I love. Comment below and let me know yours!
Whatever you choose to watch, however you celebrate, I hope you have a fun, safe, and spooky time. Remember, cuties, you are valuable! You matter. Happy Halloween!