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Ten Scary Movies for Halloween Night from WatchPlayRead

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Are you looking for the perfect Halloween night scarefest? Well then, look no further! WatchPlayRead’s Jasen and Ronnie suggest these ten scary movies for a surefire spooktacular evening!

1. Trick ‘r Treat (2009)

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There is no other film out there that better optimizes the Halloween spirit than Trick ‘r Treat. This movie is like a dream come true for fans of All Hallows Eve! It shows Halloween the way it truly should be. The whole town is wonderfully decorated and it makes it seem like Halloween is the most important (and scariest) night of the year (as it is for many of us).  Four equally effective stories wrap around and meet up in the end to create an impressive ode to our favorite night of the year. Everything is perfect about this one from the setting to the atmosphere to the acting. My personal favorite is the story of the school bus massacre. This one is a must for any Halloween night viewing.

2. The Funhouse (1981)

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The creator of Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Tobe Hooper, knocked it out of the park again with this atmospheric and often overlooked horror classic. The Funhouse focuses on a group of teens who decide to do what many of us have thought of before as a challenge: spending the night in a carnival funhouse. As you can imagine, things soon go bad for the group as they end up in the wrong place at the wrong time and find themselves hunted by a killer carny and a monstrous sideshow freak. The Funhouse is beautifully shot and provides the perfect dark and foreboding atmosphere. This one is perfect for Halloween!

3. Candyman (1992)

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It doesn’t get much scarier than this! You have to really hand it to Clive Barker; the man knows how to make one hell of an eerie horror film. Candyman takes the popular Bloody Mary urban legend and takes it a step further, making full use of its urban setting. This is one movie that will easily get under your skin and have you looking behind you at all times. Tony Todd is perfectly terrifying as the title character, with a bloody hook on one hand. I rank this one up there as one of the best horror movies ever made. The haunting music alone is enough to send shivers up your spine.

4. Fright Night (1985)

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You never know who your neighbors might be. They may even be a vampire! Brought to us by Tom Holland, who also brought us Child’s Play, Fright Night may have been the first real film to modernize the vampire tale and bring a new teen centered twist on it, a formula which has been followed many times since. It’s also like Rear Window intertwined in a vampire film. Fright Night works equally well as a teen film and a horror film. Chris Sarandon plays the role of vampire Jerry Dandridge perfectly and is the epitome of the cool vampire, while legendary actor Roddy McDowall steals the show every time he is on camera. This one manages to bring us a perfect blend of humor, horror, sex appeal and still holds up to this day. One of the best vampire films you are apt to find out there and just spooky and atmospheric enough to be a perfect addition to your Halloween evening.

5. Thirteen Ghosts (2001)

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I don’t care what anybody says. This movie is fun all around! It may in fact be one of the most entertaining haunted house flicks out there. The spirits themselves are masterfully done and very imposing looking. They are really the stars of the show. The makeup and effects work is amazing on them. make sure to watch the special features to hear each spirit’s interesting backstory. My personal favorites are The Jackal, The Juggernaut, and The Hammer.  The house itself is a very cool and unique character all of its own as well. The makers of this tried something new and the results were fantastic in my opinion. It may not necessarily be the scariest film out there, but it packs a decent amount of scares and shock scenes in and is just all out entertaining all around.

6. The Haunting (1963)

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“A scientist doing research on the paranormal invites two women to a haunted mansion. One of the participants soon starts losing her mind.”
— IMDB

I do not believe in ghosts. I do not really get into haunted house movies. The Haunting however is one of the scariest most effective horror movies of all time. Robert Wise the director of the Haunting also directed The Day the Earth Stood Still, West Side Story, and Star Trek the Motion Picture. Besides Star Trek that should be enough reason to watch The Haunting alone. This movie has been paid homage to by every ghost movie since. It is literally the standard to which all ghost stories are held to. Skip the remake, learn to love black and white.

7. Halloween 3: Season of the Witch (1982)

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“A large Halloween mask-making company has plans to kill millions of American children with something sinister hidden in Halloween masks.”
–IMDB

I will fight a person over the relevance of this movie. Yes, this movie does not feature Michael Myers. I’m ok with that. Halloween 4 and on could have never been made and I would never care. I like Michael Myers better when he was violent psychopathic human being, not a cursed undying monster. Also, we’re not even talking about Rob Zombie.
Halloween was suppose to be an anthology series with a new movie every halloween. Unfortunately, no one got that and it lead to a lot of dissapointment. Halloween 3 has to be one of the most original horror movies of the 80’s though. An evil mask making company plotting mass extinction starting with the worlds children. Watch it, love it, get the Silver Shamrock theme stuck in your head.

8. Night of the Demons (1988)

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A group of teens break into an old funeral home to throw a halloween party. After a possession things go horribly wrong. And no the black guy doesn’t die first.

This movie is the essence of 80’s Halloween. To me this movie is the pinnacle of 80’s teen horror. It is tacky, sexy, and gory as hell. The story is simple, but the execution is exceptional. Grim, dark, and truly creepy sets. This movie is not to be taken too seriously it’s as fun as it is dark. Watch for some very memorable scenes like an epic dance to Bauhaus’ Stigmata Martyr, and a particularly creepy scene with lipstick.

9. House (Hausu, original title) (1977)

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“Seven girls on their summer trip pay a visit to a possessed house which plans to eat them in extremely bizzare and surreal ways.”
–IMDB

This movie is unnervingly weird, delightfully surreal, and completely over the top. This movie was conceived by a child, and made to look like a child’s nightmare. I can’t think of anything that compares to the weirdness of this film. Some of Evil Dead 2 captures the feel of House but they’re still miles apart. If you’re a horror nerd this is a must see. No one will take you seriously if you don’t know this movie.

10. The Shining  (1980)

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“A family heads to an isolated hotel for the winter where an evil and spiritual presence influences the father into violence, while his psychic son sees horrific forebodings from the past and of the future.”
–IMDB

This movie is my favorite movie of all time. Beyond halloween, beyond anything. This movie is directed by a mad genius that pumped so much subtext into this movie that there’s conspiracy theorists writing books and making movies about it. The atmosphere and tension in this movie so thick you can cut it with a knife.

Kubrick tortured everyone involved in this productions. From Stephen King the man who wrote the story to all the actors involved. He literally made Scatman Crothers cry and beg to be done filming. Shelly Duvall was continuously harassed and Kubrick would yell at anyone who showed her any compassion. In some behind the scene footage you can see him not allowing his wife to comfort a crying Duvall. All this translated into a truly unnerving movie. If it doesn’t make your skin crawl you’re not paying attention.

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