It’s that time a year again. Time when little monsters beg for snacks and drunk soccer moms dress as slutty pirates. No it’s not kids eat free night at Long John Silvers, it’s time for our annual “Movies you might have seen but maybe not but if you didn’t then check them out halloween night movie list” or “MYMHSBMNBIYDTCTOHNML” for short. Our highway mutant editors came up with a list that in no way reflects good taste, human decency or a proper hygiene and to that we say “heck yeah!” So here’s our movie list which is in no particular order mostly because we ain’t no communists.
1. The Frighteners
Three years before that kid saw dead folk in The Sixth Sense, Michael J. Fox had a similar affliction in this here flick. But, unlike the mopey kid in Sixth Sense, MJF used his powers to make some extra cash.
2. Trick r’ Treat
A collection of interlaced short stories which nobody but four people saw, Trick r’ Treat is a hoot. Shame it didn’t get the attention it deserved, much like Jaleel White’s one man musical, Urkel Rex.
3. Ernest Scared Stupid
Yes, this may fall under the ‘kiddie’ category, but aside from being an important Public Service Announcement about the dangers of trolls, it is some of Jim Varney’s finest work as Ernest.
4. Planet Terror
A throwback to over-the-top zombie movies (are there any other kind?), Planet Terror is as fun as it is gory.
5. Call of Cthulhu
For those what like their horror a bit more on the ‘cerebral’ side (and I don’t mean floating killer brains), check out this take on H. P. Lovecraft’s classic story. It is black and white, and not a talkie, but captures the mood (and time) of the story pretty well.
6. John Carpenter’s Vampires
No Halloween movie list is complete with out at least one JC flick. Vampires is funny, gory, and gritty. No fancy hairdos or sparkling here. Trivia: stars Sheryl Lee, Twin Peaks’ Laura Palmer. Yes, please.
7. Dead Alive
Most blood and gore I’ve seen, and I’ve been looking for years to find more; all of it is absolutely gratuitous. The story of a momma’s boy whose mother is bitten by a spider monkey and becomes a zombie. Unable to properly “deal” with his mother, a comedy of errors insures and the plague spreads quickly. But the real gem is the Kung Fu priest and his line, “I kick ass for the Lord!” Can I get an Ahmen!?!
8. Evil Dead 2
This one is a no brainer. Yes, it is a popular favorite, but it stands the test of time and needs to be on any Halloween list.
9. Ghost Dad
83 minutes of terror. Bill Cosby (yes) rises from the dead to wreck havoc on those who done him wrong. Or he just comes back as a ghost and tries to make his kids love him. I can’t remember. I always pass out after the first ten minutes due to brain failure.
A vampire movie that is actually cool. Not because some aesthetically pleasing teens are wearing tight black leather, but because the story is excellent. Tired of feeling useless watching patients die at the hospital he works for, a Catholic priest volunteers for an experiment to find a cure for a deadly, and incurable, disease. During one of his blood transfusions he is tainted with vampire blood. Without knowing what’s happened, he has to come to terms with his new urges and his religious calling.
11. The Signal
Someone has started broadcasting a signal on all devices, radio, television, interwebs, etc., that has driven people insane. A young girl tries to make it to a rendezvous with her lover at a train station, all the while being pursued by her husband, and what seems like the whole of the city, that’s gone psychotic. Another great mix of bloody horror and humor.
12. Murder Party
Christopher Hawley is a loser who mistakenly gets an invite to a Halloween party. The group throwing the party intends to kill him for their “art”. What they get is mayhem, mishap and hilarity.
13. Shawn of the Dead
Best. Romantic. Comedy. Ever. It took me a while to realize it was a romantic comedy because the genre is so masterfully hidden under the layers of “buddy flick” and “zombie outbreak”. Pure GENIUS.
14. The Mist
Whereas this movie has monsters, and blood and guts, the real horror of the film is what happens because of the people who are trapped, trying to survive. In true Stephen King fashion, no one gets away clean in this film, and the worst of the worst is saved for the very end. The last minute is heartbreaking.
This movie can be incredibly slow. I almost didn’t make it through the film. It’s about a man who’s raised his son alone after his wife died in childbirth. Now, some 17 years later, he’s looking to remarry but doesn’t know how to meet women. A friend, who’s a movie producer invites him to take part in some auditions he’s holding to fill the female lead to help him break the ice. Know this, it is WELL worth what the film’s building up to in the last 25 minutes. When it hits the fan it’ll freak you out, but good.
16. The Ugly
From New Zeland, a good looking psycho thinks he’s ugly and everyone laughs at him, so he starts butchering every chick he comes across with a straight razor because he is possessed by The Ugly. Tries to have a good relationship, but whatever pseudo-demonic force inhabits him just won’t let go, despite the best efforts of a psychologist who comes to love and understand poor Simon. Awesome mental hospital scenes, and a decent twist on the end.
17. The Abominable Dr. Phibes
Willy Wonka’s Candyman up against the diabolical Vincent Price and his wind-up jazz band. Psychedelic dance scenes, prolonged organ playing (of the musical type, you perverts!), and some of the fanciest death scenes ever! My particular favorite is the frog mask. It doesn’t get much more technicolor than this.
18. The Stuff
The best parasitic alien dessert food movie yet. White gunk bubbling from the ground is discovered by two hobos whose first instinct is to taste it. It takes off like effing wildfire, and the only things standing between The Stuff and world domination are a little boy and an industrial spy. You get an excellent grocery store freakout, melting faces, and sentient cool whip. It’ll make you think twice about eating a twinkie ever again!
Vietnam veteran gets along better with snakes than he does people; your typical traditional country native fighting off the sleezy, drug-addled land developer. He takes matters into his own hands and sics his pet rattlesnake Stanley on the city scum, and then in a moment of pure ‘What just happened?’ kidnaps the developer’s daughter after he’s filled the pool with various and sundry snakes, and she falls in love with the cold-blooded swamp stud. He plans to make her his Eve, but she wants to go to the rock-n-roll show, and in a climactic man vs. nature scene, he reaps the venom he spewed.
20. Don’t Answer the Phone
Psychopathic pudge-bucket throttles ladies with extreme prejudice. Amateur S&M photography sessions, and extreme stalking behavior. The one that got away is chased and psychologically tortured, but thankfully a hunky police officer feels sorry for her and annihilates the bad guy.
21. The Blob
I can’t say much about this one other than if frigging rocks. The quintessential Earth vs. Extraterrestrial Gunk movie. Just awesome fun all the way around.
William Katt, a horror writer with PTSD inherits his aunt’s haunted house, where his son disappeared years before. Estranged from his soap star wife, he goes to the house to write his Vietnam memoirs, but ends up doing battle with the supernatura, led by Bull from Night Court. The Greatest American Hero dukes it out with sentient garden tools, slime glopola monsters, demonic troll kids, and a taxidermied swordfish. Badass.
23. Dr. Giggles
Crazy surgeon takes revenge on his home town for the deaths of his parents. His mom died of a bad heart, and his surgeon father tried to find her a replacement…by cutting the hearts out of townsfolk. They gave him the Frankenstein pitchfork treatment, but not before he had sewn the young doctor into his mother’s corpse. He runs into a teenager with the same condition as dear momma had, and makes it his mission to kill her friends and transplant her heart.
A twist on the wax museum revenge story; this time set in a movie theater where a college film studies class puts on a horror movie extravaganza, but someone’s got their sights set on murder! A little girl with vague memories of almost getting murdered by a cult, the movie the cult was filming showing up, and the hideously deformed creepazoid hiding his marred visage behind elaborate makeup untl the final showdown. Great sendups of William Castle classics and old theater gimmicks.
25. American Gothic
Traumatized woman takes an island vacation with her friends, only they land on an island inhabited by a family of nutballs who murder folks from the modern day and make them into mummified dolls for the kids. This one goes full circle, everyone getting hacked up except for the crazy lady, who goes so absolutely and perfectly insane that she joins up with the family, only to go EVEN MORE CRAZY and kill them all. Amazing