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Now that it’s finally October, you might need some movies to watch this spooky season. Whether it be a fun family flick, a gory slasher thrill, or a horrifying supernatural film, VIRIDIAN has you covered.
by Colton Wise and Emery Brown
***Family Caution: Of course, some of these movies include some explicit themes and images, so it’s not for everyone; we suggest doing research before watching. They are intended to frighten, after all.
Halloween is an exciting time for all ages, which means you’ll need a movie that can appeal to all ages. Henry Selick’s Coraline is an imaginative and chilling tale with the common theme of, “Be careful what you wish for.” Based on a novel of the same name, Coraline sees the titled heroine Coraline Jones adjust to a recent move into the Pink Palace apartments, a place with dull walls and strange neighbors. She discovers a door to an alternate dimension where everything is colorful and idyllic, unaware of its sinister truth. The film is a dark yet entertaining and immersive one that utilizes stop motion to put you into the shoes of its characters. From depressing gray forests to vibrant fruitful gardens, you are instantly transported into Caroline’s world and truly feel the various emotions the movie depicts. It is an amazing movie that encapsulates the frightening fun that Halloween has to offer.
Beetlejuice is a Tim Burton fever dream, featuring Michael Keaton as the titular demon. Adam and Barbara Maitland are a deceased couple that finds themselves in a sticky situation when the Deetz family moves in. They attempt to scare them away but only end up making the issue worse, which is when they call on Keaton's character for help. This doesn’t go as planned and the couple finds themselves getting more than they bargained for. This movie is incredibly clever and witty, featuring numerous moments of fun special effects and quotable one-liners. Beetlejuice himself is crude and hilarious, being the greatest part of the movie and solidifying the film as a family comedy classic.
Now, we at VIRIDIAN understand that you wouldn’t want movies for children if you were to be watching some Halloween films on your own, so if you’d like, we have some slashers just for those who enjoy the realistic thrill of a sadistic killer; such as Wes Craven’s Scream. The film starts with a high schooler named Casey Becker (Drew Barrymore) getting a call containing some horror movie trivia. It carries on such as, such so, but then said call takes a dark turn; it begins holding threats to her and her boyfriend, saying her boyfriend is being held captive. Eventually, as we all do, Casey gets a question wrong about Friday the 13th. You’ll have to see the rest of the film yourself.
Now, if you’d prefer to see a different film entirely, we have you covered. Why not try John Carpenter’s Halloween? We see in this film on Halloween night of 1963, in the suburban town of Haddonfield Illinois, six-year-old Michael Myers (Nick Castle, in the first film anyway) attacks his teenage sister Judith with a chef’s knife. Years later, that young Michael goes on to be a slasher villain. We tried keeping it a little vague in case you want a more blind experience.
While a merciless killer on the loose can be quite horrifying, supernatural encounters can be just as fearsome. We see this in Jeffrey Reddick’s Final Destination. Alex Browning (Devon Sawa) is a part of a group of kids on a trip to Europe. Before the plane can take off, he has a vision of the plane exploding, killing everyone on board. After leaving the plane with a handful of others, we see that his vision was correct. He, as well as the others, were given a second chance at life but death is unrelenting and comes for them all. Final Destination has an interesting and unique premise that is executed fairly well. This movie excels in its suspense as you know that people will die, but you don’t know how or when. With the same appeal of slashers mixed with incredible suspense and that supernatural touch, Final Destination is a great watch for anyone wanting something to get into the macabre and disturbing side of Halloween.
Few films are as renowned in the horror genre as The Ring. Rachel Keller is an investigative journalist diving into the story of the deaths of four teenagers and how they may be tied to a mysterious videotape. Legends say that whoever watches the tape only has a week left to live. Because of this, Keller finds herself in a race against the clock to save the lives of both herself and her son. Based on Koji Suzuki’s 1991 novel Ring and Hideo Nakata’s 1998 film of the same name, The Ring offers frightening imagery and a dark, suspenseful atmosphere that leaves you as fearful as Keller herself. The imagery of Samara Morgan, the film’s nightmarish antagonist, climbing out of the well and towards the screen is iconic and while it may not be as gruesome and scary as its Japanese counterpart, The Ring is an essential experience for any fans of horror.
As All Hallows’ Eve approaches, there are numerous ways to get into the spooky spirit. The preferred method for some is kicking back and enjoying a good movie. While the listed films are sure to give you a good time, there are countless others of the same quality that can be enjoyed by all ages. Be sure to kill the lights, gather your “victims”, and have a freakishly good time going from movie to movie as we get closer to October 31st.
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