Monday, October 31, 2011

Favorite Movies I Like to Watch at Halloween

This list probably changes a little from year-to-year, but not much.  Halloween is a great to break out those old black and white movies and dig through the archives of Netflix and find something you haven't seen in a while.

Last Man on Earth with Vincent Price.  I love this movie.  It's based off of Richard Matheson's short novel, I Am Legend.  It is a standard read for me around this time and I am reading it right now.  I find new things each time I read it.  Not sure if that's because the book is so fantastic or I have a lousy memory.  Two other movies have been based on this book, Omega Man with Charlton Heston and more recently, I Am Legend with Will Smith.  Omega Man is bad.  The Will Smith version while good (Smith did a fantastic job) and it keeps the basic concept does not match the image of the book in my mind as I read.  Last Man on Earth hits all the right notes with me.  How can you not love a single man alone against a planet of vampires.  Although in the movie they look like very early versions of Night of the Living Dead zombies.

Speaking of Night of the Living Dead, yep that is on my list also.  How could it not be.  Living an hour away from where they filmed it and having a festival every Halloween to celebrate the movie it is a part of our celebration every year.  Actually Ivy and I plan to go to Evens City Graveyard this vacation, where they filmed the opening sequence of the movie.  The grand daddy of zombie movies is a lot of fun to watch.  Like the above movie you have them barricading themselves inside a house trying to keep the zombies out.  Although in the movie they kept calling them ghouls.  They were such newbs back then.

There are three giant classics of horror, Dracula, Frankenstein and Werewolf...four if you count the Mummy, five if you count the Creature from the Black Lagoon.  Those are all fantastic, but the one movie I grew up with that I think fits into is own special category is Plan 9 from Outer Space.  I absolutely love this movie.  The cheese is thick, the acting horrible, props laughable and the plot of the movie is ridiculous.  Combine it all to gether and I think you have one of the best movies for the Halloween season.  Of course if you like this movie please check out Ed Wood, a movie Tim Burton did on the director.  And to no surprise Johnny Depp is in it.

Another brilliant lead in for our next movie.  Nightmare Before Christmas.  This is Ivy's all-time favorite.  She likes to thank the Emos (or as she says the Emus) for keeping this movie's never ending paraphernalia around.  I am an anti-singing person for movies.  One reason why you never catch me at a Disney flick.  Something about singing cartoons makes me violent.  Anyway, the songs in this movie aren't that bad.  It's a cool concept that personifies the vision Burton's has been reproducing for years.  This is Ivy's all-time favorite so it has become one of mine.  It isn't Halloween at the Manor until she has the soundtrack cranked up in the kitchen as she makes skull shaped sugar cookies.

And here is a simple list of the many other Halloween movies we like.  Not a complete list just a few.
Halloween with a very young Jamie Lee Curtis.  Second was okay and then it went to crap after that.
Monster Squad.  Who knew the wolfman had nards.
Poltergeist.  This is a scarey movie even with all of its 80s special effects.
The Exorcist. There was something more frightening about those 70s flicks.
The Omen, there is a reason why there are so many remakes of these horror films.  And there is a reason why most of them are a complete waste of time.  Like this film, it had the right cast, feel and in the 70s they seemed to capture creepiness that in remakes comes out as derivative crap. 

And a question to anyone reading this.  I am looking for the title of a movie I saw a long ago.  The details I remember was dracula's skeleton was in a carnival sideshow.  Then someone took out the stake and flesh and eyes and all the gooey parts started to reform.  Any help would be appreciated.

Enjoy your Halloween everyone.  It is the funniest holiday of them all. 


  1. You should the original 1960 The Haunting to the list, an excellent movie for Halloween and one of my favourites.

  2. And I thought I was the only one who had seen Monster Squad. Too funny.

  3. Good list of classics. I'll second Simon's vote for the Haunting.

  4. No love for Chuck Heston?

    Ahhh, well... chalk me up for another vote on The Haunting, but what about this gem?

  5. I always think of The Nightmare Before Christmas as a Christmas film, so that's when I tend to watch it, alongside Die Hard.

    I always watch Halloween on, er, Halloween. It's my favourite film anyway, and the day gives me an excuse to give it a play.

    Tonight I'm going to the cinema to see Ghostbusters for the first time since it came out!

  6. You're thinking of "House of Frankenstein". Pretty awful.

  7. I've always enjoyed Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein. I just introduced my daughter to that last weekend; she loved it.

  8. The Haunting is great. We just bought this 50 horror movie collection from Target for only 10 bucks that has a ton of classics on it.

    Lurker, worry about me? Me and Enik have been buds from way back. But if you hear any hissing tonight turn on the light.

    Zombie Cowboy, Ivy is the one who introduced me to that one. Fun movie.

    Trey, I'll third it and might cue it up tonight.

    ScottZ, I got come love for Chuck, but not that movie. However Ghost Story is one of those rare cases where the movie is as good as the book.

    Kelvin, sounds great. And yeah, I can see people digging it for Christmas, but that movie is Ivy's call.

    Kaiju, thanks. There are so many cool movies I thought I would just list the ones in my head at the time.

    Joseph, that's it! It is awful and I need to see it again.

    Sean, Ivy and I just watched that one and the one where they meet the mummy also.

  9. I love The Omega Man, but Last Man on Earth is incredible... Internet Archive Link:

    Watch Mr. Price in Last Man on Earth!

  10. "The Last Man on Earth" is an early example of the fantastic, even on a minimal budget, a film is set in a post-apocalyptic world. The film begins with Morgan (Vincent Price).