13 Halloween Night Movies. From Classic to Contemporary.

We have arrived at that time of the year!    So put on your coziest pajamas, switch off the lamps and light the candles – it’s scary movie time.

It’s hard to believe that 8 months into a living through a scary movie, anyone could possibly need to watch a scary movie, but heck; if the only thing scarier than our own life is a teenage girl barfing out the devil and crab crawling down the stairs, so be it.

Anything to make us feel like – “Hey, you know what? I might have wiped myself with the cardboard roll inside the toilet paper twice this spring, but at least no one has poured pigs blood on me this year.

I’ve compiled a list of 13 (appropriate, no?) movies that are worth watching this Halloween. Beside each movie title you’ll see a percentage. That’s the percentage of people who liked the movie when they watched it.

It’s not how many film critics liked it – but rather regular bumbling people like you and I.

The Exorcist – 87% liked this movie

There is no scarier movie. There just isn’t. I haven’t watched it since I was 12 in my parent’s basement. I only saw the version that was aired on television so it wasn’t even the full scary version. I will never be the same again. We all knew it was going to be on the list, so I figured I’d get it out of the way right off the top.

Rosemary’s Baby – 86% liked this movie

A movie about a scary baby made by director Roman Polanski; a man who was charged with drugging and raping a 13 year old. Watch it or don’t. But it’s a scary movie classic and sometimes you have to separate the art from the artist.

Carrie – 89% liked this movie

Girl gets tormented. Girl gets revenge.

Scream – 86% liked this movie

The first in the classic, campy, horror movies franchise.

Ghostbusters – 86% liked this movie

Who you gonna call? Your favourite Canadian friend to thank them, because without Canadians Ivan Reitman, Dan Aykroyd and Rick Moranis, is there even a Ghostbusters?

Practical Magic – 90% liked this movie

Yes Virginia, there is a Halloween Rom Com movie starring Sandra Bullock.

Us – 74% liked this movie

A perfectly respectable family gets terrorized by their doppelgängers.

The Witch – 78% liked this movie

The Witch is a period piece taking place in 1630s New England.

Don’t Breathe – 91% liked this movie

Three thieves break into the home of a blind man after hearing he has $300,000 cash in the house. They figure it’ll be an easy job. They’re wrong.

Donnie Darko – 92% liked this movie

The psychological thriller that cemented Jake Gyllenhaal as a talent, not just a Jake Gyllenhaal face.


Get Out – 89% liked this movie

My first try of this film I turned it off. Not because it was too scary, but because I just didn’t like it. I gave it a second shot. I changed my mind. It’s a brilliant look at systemic racism.

Host – (too new to have an accurate account but it scored 100% on Rotten Tomatoes)

Host is THE movie made for this moment in time. A movie about the isolation of Covid 19, shot entirely in isolation, about a ZOOM call. The actors shot alone, did their own special effects and shooting with instructions from director Rob Savage.

Contagion – 87% liked this movie

Contagion. The similarities to the current pandemic are eerie both in the unpredictable nature of the virus and how it came to be. Even more eerie, is the fact that this predictive movie was made a decade ago.

I haven’t seen Don’t Breathe and that’s the one I’ll be watching this Halloween night.

Will you be watching a scary movie this weekend? Or just sticking with the one we’re living through?

 

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13 Halloween Night Movies. From Classic to Contemporary.

48 Comments

  1. sandy says:

    Young Frankenstein is the standard here

  2. Woniya says:

    Young Frankenstein and Great Pumpkin! Though Practical Magic always gets me happy.

  3. Abby says:

    The Babadook is my favorite scary movie, and it’s not even the scariest!

    Baa baa Doooook DOOOOOK.

    The kid screams a lot, but it’s worth it. It is unusual.
    P.s. You are hilarious.

  4. Lauren from Winnipeg says:

    Another really good one is See No Evil. It’s from 1971 with Mia Farrow. Blind girl, killer, need I say more? Terrifying. Sadly, I haven’t seen it listed anywhere to watch again.

  5. Julie says:

    I’ll be watching The Other from 1972. I saw it when I was maybe 10? 42 years later, I finally have the nerve to watch it again. From your list, I’ve definitely gotta give Don’t Breathe a try!

  6. Renee Ryz says:

    ok here is an oldie silent film, but it creeped me out – although it doesn’t take much.
    Nosferatu
    Also all those old black & white movies that used to be on Creature Features back in the day.

  7. Julie Napier says:

    Rocky Horror Picture Show is a must at my house on Halloween!

  8. Terri says:

    A very scary movie with even scarier vampires…30 Days of Night about a small town in Alaska that goes dark for a month every year..well this year a group of insatiable vampires find it & have a field day (or should I say field night) getting their “fill” of the inhabitants. Never mind the blood..just the idea that they have 30 days of night to hunt & terrorize scares me no end..Watch it if you dare!
    I still have problems watching the Exorcist… Get Out & Babadook have been on my list for awhile but I haven’t gotten my nerve up to watch them…yikes

  9. Vikki says:

    About the scariest movie I’ll watch is the Charlie Brown one. If I want Truly Scary…I just watch the news.

  10. Nancy Ann says:

    You all are a lot braver than I am……it doesn’t take that much to make me jump. I live alone in a creaking house deep in wooded acreage and at night there are whispering winds through the trees, marauding animals rustling in leaves (pretty sure they’re animals), an occasional firearm going off not that distant…so I like watching comedy shows and musicals. I love this lifestyle during daylight hours and I’m going to get a big dog. Really big.

    • Suzanne Reith says:

      Crickey!

    • Debi Schoeman says:

      I live on my own too. Out in the middle of no-where. In a house than creaks and cracks at night as it expands and contracts. So I hear you! Although I would love to settle down with something spooky I would need someone to watch it with. So I also tend to watch all those cosy small town series….

  11. Josephine Dubois says:

    I have a few new ones to try out here! Thanks! I tried the Exorcist when I was like 12, by myself. I slept with a nightlight on, rosary in my nightgown pocket and a Bible under my pillow for months and I’m not even Catholic! I’m more of a Silence of the Lambs fan – nothing like a good old fashioned serial killer. If you haven’t seen it, Mr. Brooks is a good serial killer movie with Kevin Costner as the lead. But if you haven’t seen it and you want a real life scary movie/show, the Netflix docuseries Don’t F*** with Cats truly freaked me out. Seriously scary stuff there – and I’m a huge fan of crime shows. But that was just wacky.

    • Lauren from Winnipeg says:

      Silence of the Lambs. Totally agree. Such a good movie. I also think this genre is scarier than the typical slasher or monster type.

  12. Cynthia says:

    Here are my scary movies: “Young Frankenstein”, “Dracula Dead and Loving It”, “Ghostbusters 1 and 2”. I also like “Tyler Perry’s Boo! A Madea Halloween.” But I’d have to say our favorite movie around this time of year is “Blackbeard’s Ghost” a campy Disney film starring Peter Ustinov as Blackbeard’s ghost. I guess I don’t do SCARY, scary. I do ha ha scary. I prefer to laugh in the face of scary. Or at in this case. There’s enough scary things in this world as it is, but not enough laughter.

  13. jacqueline says:

    Dr. Sleep is my favorite… but not on the list. It’s a sequel to the Shining but more compelling and horrific. Ewan McGregor, Rebecca Ferguson, Zahn McClarnon, Kyleigh Curran and every cast member delivers fascinating character portrayals and explains what was behind the Shining. It’s smart and so well done it’s a classic that won’t wear out for me and I’ll be watching it again and again. The only one on this list that has worn well enough for me to watch again is Practical Magic (but Alice Hoffman’s book series is even better).

  14. Allison says:

    Must watch movies for me are Halloween, Children of the Corn and Fright Night (all the originals)! Happy Halloween everyone!

  15. Linda J Howes-Smyth says:

    Scary movies scare me so I don’t watch too many. Certain scenes stick with me and this pandemic hasn’t helped any in that department. The Skeleton Key and Frailty are good ones for all out creepiness.

  16. Emily says:

    “Heredity”, starring one of my all-time favorite actors, Toni Collette, is quite scary. I enjoy a build-up and subtlety in a horror film, so my favorites include “The Amityville Horror,” “The Shining,” and “Cujo” (the originals, obviously) – all of which still incite a bit of fright for me! I have to say, too, “Us” and “Get Out” are great films and should be seen!

  17. Peter says:

    Ahhh scary movies…..I remember babysitting back in the late 60’s early 70’s and starting watching a movie because the girls in it were cute….I was a teenager….the hockey game had ended, had no TV guide and didn’t know what it was about….hooked me in, couldn’t stop watching….scared the crap out me at the time! Didn’t actually know the name of the movie until years later…I Know Who You Are and I Saw What You Did….black and white…right place and right time to stick with me all these years! BOOO!

  18. Dave R says:

    I’ll stick with The Rocky Horror Picture Show.
    You want to watch it too. I know it.
    I see you shiver with antici……..

  19. Diane says:

    I just watched the trailers of “Get Out” and “Us”…and that was enough for me! Heart pumping full of fear! Wow!

  20. Jane says:

    Not a Halloween movie but one of the scariest I’ve ever seen is “Wait Until Dark” with Audrey Hepburn and Alan Atkins. First time I watched it, I remember jumping out of my skin (and thankfully back in again).

  21. Mary W says:

    I’m going to be trying to store all the supplies I bought for ‘living-in’ during the next several months – hopefully with a celebration on January 20. It should be the first day of the new beginning of having a life again. I’m told a civil war may begin at that time – so maybe I should just go watch a horror movie and die of ‘scared’ instead. Choices, choices.

  22. Jack Ledger says:

    Another great movie was “The Omen” with Gregory Peck.

    • Karen says:

      Gregory Peck, huh? I only remember the terrifying kid, lol. ~ karen!

      • Cheverly says:

        I’m with Karen on this one. Saw part of it at my grandparents’ house one summer (couldn’t watch scary/MTV/anything fun with my parents around) and that kid terrified me. Interesting to know Gregory Peck was in it.

        I also enjoyed “Something Wicked This Way Comes” as a kid. Also scared the crap out of me. Those tarantulas in the bed!

      • TucsonPatty says:

        I still haven’t gotten over those dogs. I’m terrified of big dogs. The kid was so cute and so fricking creepy!!
        I used to read everything Steven King, and I don’t want anything to do with horror movies anymore.
        While I was reading ‘Salem’s Lot, out in the dark country, I made a cross out of a nail file and an orange wood stick wrapped together with my gold chain necklace. Vampires – silver – stake through the heart – cross – gold – it got all twisted in my mind!
        Must have worked – I’m here, and not a vampire!
        Happy Halloween from inside my house where I am very sad to not have decorated so as to help keep the kids inside and safe. It is my most favorite day of the year, and I’m not even going to the “small super spreader party” my friends host every year. Too scary out there for me. I thought a couple of your movies looked interesting from the titles or actors – but then I remembered who I really am!

  23. Em says:

    Our first date was the original Friday the 13th. Apparently it’s very attractive to jump out of your seat and land on the floor. Here we are 40 years later.

  24. Eileen says:

    Yikes…no…all the horror I need is getting up each day and seeing the latest news.
    BUT…many people have recommended “The Babadook” to me (and said to not watch it alone). It stars Essie Davis of “Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries” fame.

  25. Stan Nowak says:

    One that HAS to be on this list is my fave horror flick of all time: “The Changeling”, 1980 Canadian film starring George C. Scott and Trish Van Devere, about the ghost of a boy who comes back from beyond to right a wrong done to him man years ago. I have watched it hundreds of times in the last 40 years and it still creeps me out! Best Ghost Story EVER! Honourable mention: Ghost Story, great book by Peter Straub and a great movie!
    I saw The Exorcist when it first came out (I passed for 18 – but I was 13) and it scared the living HELL out of me – being the Good Catholic altar boy I was back then. Another honourable mention: though not a ghost story or a Halloween flick, but Jaws really ate at me for years! (Yes, puns intended).

    • Karen says:

      Jaws also terrified me. I still have trouble swimming in anything other than a kitchen sink. ~ karen!

    • Christine Chapel says:

      I saw The Exorcist when I was in my early 20″s and have never seen a movie since that has scared me as much. I was so frightened that I honestly slept with a light on for days and I love horror movies so I don’t scare easily!

  26. Debra Stewart says:

    Thank you for the ideas!

    I have on my list Don’t Breathe for Halloween. Get Out, Host and Haunting of Hill House in the next month.

  27. Jenny W says:

    I have watched them all except for the Exorcist because, well, it’s the Exorcist!!
    I Would also recommend the movie HUSH for a creepy, not scary, smart little movie!
    Also the Haunting of Hill House – Netflix version – is a must see!!

  28. Tino says:

    We’re going to go rather old school and watch Creature from the Black Lagoon! Watched The Exorcist the other day, and got to watch Nightmare on Elm Street at the cinema last week which was a cheesy horror TREAT!!
    Think we’ll watch a few more over weekend too, including some more kid friendly ones with our 4 year old like Igor and ParaNorman 😁
    Also, all the popcorn!!

  29. Rb says:

    Get Out is a brilliant movie. The best on this list for sure! I’m glad you gave it another try.

  30. Kristin Conley says:

    Hi Karen,
    Great list! You always come up with the best stuff!!

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