Horror movies worth talking about this Halloween

Halloween is upon us. That means costumes, trick or treating, carving pumpkins and more. If you’re a film nerd, however, you only have one thing in mind … obsessively annoying people to watch some of your favourite horror flicks.

Here are a few scary movies sure to get you in the mood for the spooky season.

The Thing (1982)

Directed by John Carpenter

Starring: Kurt Russell, Wilford Brimley, Keith David

In terms of menacing creatures, not many hold a candle to The Thing from John Carpenter’s 1982 classic. Based on the 1951 original film called The Thing from Another World, an extraterrestrial shape-shifting organism invades an American Antarctic research facility causing chaos to ensue. The alien creature first makes its appearance as an innocent-looking husky dog who is taken in by the Americans. When the alien is put into a kennel with their other dogs, it morphs into a disgusting, bloody, terrifying creature that tries to take control of the other dog’s bodies before making its escape. The researchers grow very distrustful of one another as any of them could be the alien unknown to all the others.

This classic is fantastic top to bottom with wonderful performances, an engaging story, and gruesome practical effects that really make this film stand out among its other horror counterparts … The Thing itself (aside from being really disgusting) is truly menacing and possibly unstoppable. The only thing that really destroys the creature is fire and any cell of the creature that keeps on living is enough to infect some other unfortunate life form. This is likely my favourite horror film and I’d highly recommend it (as long as you have a strong stomach).

Suspiria (2018)

Directed by Luca Guadagnino

Starring: Dakota Johnson, Tilda Swinton

One of the most underrated movies that came out last year was this fantastic remake of Dario Argento’s great Italian film of the same name from 1977. Just like the original, the plot follows Suzy Bannon, an American who has come to Berlin to dance for a prestigious dance academy, only to discover that the academy has some mysterious, potentially dangerous force controlling it. It is here where the similarities end. The incredible all-female cast of Suspiria puts on a fantastic performance, especially Tilda Swinton, who pulls off playing three separate roles (one of the characters she plays, Dr. Klemperer, is male as a side note). This film strips the bright vibrant colours from the original, instead of going for a bleaker colour palette of greys, tans, and whites. There are some very frightening and hard to watch scenes (there’s one in the beginning in particular). In terms of style and tone, this movie is very different from most other flicks. There are scenes of genuine emotion and artistic choices that are very well done. The look of the film really draws you into watching it. It’s another great horror movie that doesn’t get anywhere near the respect it deserves. This film is great for any time of year, so be sure to go out and see it. (The 1977 original is pretty good as well — it deserves a watch too!)

Re-Animator (1985)

Directed by Stuart Gordon

Staring: Jeffry Combs, Bruce Abbott, Barbra Crampton

Re-Animator is a cult classic directed by Stuart Gordon that combines horror, comedy and science fiction all tied together in a very charming B-movie. The story follows Dan Cain (Bruce Abbott) who is a medical student dating the dean of his school’s daughter. When a new entrant to the school, Herbert West (Jeffrey Combs) moves in with him, Dan is in for a major surprise. After some original difficulties living with his new roommate, Dan is stunned when Herbert shows him that he’s developed a substance that reanimates the corpses of dead creatures, bringing them back to life. This over the top film borders on campy for much of its run time. It’s very quotable, weird and downright funny in some instances. Its production is low budget contributes to its poor special effects, but ends up adding to the fun and charm of the movie. A great film to just put on, sit back and enjoy, it is also a quintessential Halloween movie. It’s definitely worth a watch.

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