The Playlist: Halloween Edition

It is Halloween time again.  Second only to Christmas regarding their wonderful built-in kitsch and campiness.  And while I would rather be watching the live action television adaptation of the comic series The Walking Dead on AMC I do not have the channel therefore I must wallow.  Apparently I make lists while wallowing.  So here are a few films I like to watch around this orange and black ornamented fall time of year:

Films after the Break——>

Alien (1979)

Director: Ridley Scott

Written By: Dan O’Bannon (Story and Script), Ronald Shusett (story)

Starring: Sigourney Weaver, Tom Skerritt, John Hurt, Ian Holm, Harry Dean Stanton

What is it? The crew of commercial towing spaceship Nostromo battles and alien entity.  The ultimate haunted house film that does not take place in a haunted house.


Evil Dead (1981)

Director: Sam Raimi

Written By: Sam Raimi

Starring: Bruce Campbell, Ellen Sandweiss, Richard DeManincor

What is it? A group of guys and gals heads to a cabin in the woods.  Horror tropes maintain that this is a great idea.  Carnage ensues.


Evil Dead 2 (1987)

Director: Sam Raimi

Written By: Sam Raimi, Scott Spiegel

Starring: Bruce Campbell, Sarah Berry, Dan Hicks

What is it? More of an Ash one man show and one of the rare instances of the sequel surpassing the original in quality.  Also a chain saw takes the place of a hand.  This may be the future.


Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)

Director: Tobe Hooper

Written By: Tobe Hooper, Kim Henkel

Starring: Marilyn Burns, Edwin Neal, Gunnar Hansen

Advice! Don’t be a hippy and travel off the main highway.  Carnage will ensue!


Trick or Treat (2007)

Director: Michael Dougherty (writer X-2: X-Men United)

Written By: Michael Dougherty

Starring: Anna Paquin, Brian Cox, Dylan Baker

What is it? An under-appreciated horror anthology.


Susperia (1977)

Director: Dario Argento

Written By: Dario Argento, Daria Nicolodi

Starring: Jessica Harper, Udo Kier

What is it? Director Argento lit and coloured the film to look akin to Disney’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarves.  A young ballet dancer travels to a school in a foreign country.  Things don’t stay too Disney for long.


Gremlins (1984)

Director: Joe Dante

Written By: Chris Columbus

Starring: Zach Galligan, Phoebe Cates, Hoyt Axton

Break down! I usually like watching this at Christmas a little more as it feels more seasonally appropriate during that time of year.  No bright lights.  Don’t get it wet.  Don’t feed it after midnight.  Simple rules to follow to stave off chaos.  But we all no that, in movies at least, rules are not meant to be followed they are meant to be broken.


28 Days Later… (2002)

Director: Danny Boyle

Written By: Alex Garland

Starring: Cillian Murphy, Naomie Harris, Brendan Gleeson, Christopher Eccleston

What is this? The revisionist zombie tale that arguably brought the idea of undead mindless masses back from the abyss of the horror genre back into a  favourable light.


The Thing (1982)

Director: John Carpenter

Written By: Bill Lancaster

Starring: Kurt Russell, Keith David, Wilford Brimley

Words of wisdom. This movie is too good to not be seen.  Everyone should see this film.  Watch it more than often.  It is badass, thrilling, and may have the only creature effects that have been able to avoid the usual degradation of time.  Don’t watch Halloween by Carpenter, watch The Thing.  One of the best remakes ever, and the reason I do not balk at remakes.  Hyperbole! Hyperbole!  Hyperbole!


The Host (2006)

Director: Bong Joon-ho

Written By: Bong Joon-ho, Ha Won-jun, Baek Chul-hyun

Starring: Song Kang-ho, Doo-na Bae

What is this? A family tries to save their youngest member who has been stolen by a mutated monster.  I like to describe it as Little Miss Sunshine meets Godzilla, but far superior to the aforementioned.


An American Werewolf in London (1981)

Director: John Landis

Written By: John Landis

Starring: David Naughton, Griffen Dunne, Jenny Agutter

Advice! Stay clear of the Moors.  Good advice to follow I guess, but I would have taken it more seriously if you had mentioned the reason for moor-avoidance in England is roving werewolves.  Villagers must learn to not bury the lead.


Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)

Director: Philip Kaufman

Written By: W.D. Richter

Starring: Donald Sutherland, Brooke Adams, Jeff Goldblum, Leonard Nimoy

Observations! Pod-people.  Pod-people. Pod-people!  ARGH! Sutherland.  Goldblum.  Nimoy.  Now that is the three amigos film I wanted to see.


Being Human (2008-present)

Created By: Toby Whithouse

Written By: Toby Whithouse

Starring: Russel Tovey, Lenora Crichlow, Aidan Turner

The set-up. A ghost, a werewolf, a vampire.  The vampire and the werewolf work at a hospital.  The ghost does ghost things occasionally.  They all share an apartment.  Sounds like the set up to a bad joke.  It is not.  Not strictly horror, but a good play on the genre.

Wild Card Bitches!:

Earnest Scared Stupid (1991)

Director: John R. Cherry III

Written By: John R Cherry III, Coke Sams (get it? Cherry Coke.  Man these people did not want to be credited)

Starring: Jim Varney, Eartha Kitt

Huh?!? Earnest accidentally unleashes an army of trolls.  He must stop them.  What is Miak?  Hilarity, or lack thereof, ensues!


About Benj Wilson

A nomad, not unlike Mad Max or Kwai Chang Caine, sans their warrior tendencies or other defining qualities. Pop Culture and/or Culture Culture dependant, be it films, comics, novels, music and misc. Don't forget the misc. Also, a possible hypocrite constantly battling contrarian leanings.
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