Welcome, Ghouls! It’s that time of year again and I’ve already been watching Movies to Get in the Halloween Spirit! There’s something magical about October. The leaves crunch just a little bit louder; the wind howls a little bit fiercer; and the moon shines a little bit more eerily. There’s nothing I love more than getting cozy on the couch watching spooky movies, and eating snacks! BTW you’ll want to pair my recommendations with those in this week’s Nerdie Foodie, so be sure you keep an eye out! But don’t lose it *insert maniacal laughter*
Let’s get Spoopy!
Movies to Get in the Halloween Spirit
Some of the movies on this list are family-friendly, while others are definitely not. So let’s whet your appetite with some family friendly classics first!
Nightmare before Christmas
This classic holiday movie takes you to Halloween Town ruled by Jack Skellington, the Pumpkin King! But Jack starts to feel as if he’s grown so weary of the same routine. Jack discovers Christmas Town and decides that this year he’s going to run Christmas! His best friend and secret admirer Sally Ragdoll just knows that this is all wrong. If you haven’t seen this stop motion classic from the mind of Tim Burton, featuring the music of Danny Elfman, and directed by Henry Selick, then I suggest you do! BONUS this is both a Halloween AND Christmas movie (but really you should watch it any time you feel like it!)
Who lit the black flame candle? Max does on Halloween night 300 years after the Sanderson Sisters were hanged. When the witches return there’s Hell to pay. Max, Allison, his little sister Dany, and Thackary Binx need to keep the children of Salem safe until sunrise. There are so many great catch phrases in this movie and Bette Midler’s performance of “I Put a Spell on You” is quite memorable.
Another Tim Burton classic! When Barbara and Adam die in a car accident, they return as ghosts! And soon they find that their house is haunted…by the living! Going to extreme measures they call upon a mischievous spirit named Beetlejuice to help them. Soon they find he’s a lot less helpful than they bargained for. This classic is creepy and has some adult language but it can still be considered family friendly if your nerdlings aren’t too little.
It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
This animated Halloween follows the Peanuts gang on Halloween night when Linus doesn’t want to trick-or-treat. He just wants to get ready for the Great Pumpkin! As a kid it was tradition that when I finished trick-or-treating I would come home, sort my candy on the living room floor, and this movie would come on ABC. This one is a classic for all ages!
Think of this as a Goonies or Stand by Me type of movie, but with classic movie monsters in it. What happens when members of a monster fan club have to save their home town from Dracula, the Wolf Man, Creature from the Black Lagoon, and the Mummy, with the help of Frankenstein’s Monster? Find out in this classic with as much heart as similar films.
Now let’s get onto the Halloween movies that are not meant for the kids!
To this day if someone dresses up as Michael Myers and proceeds to walk toward me, I will run. There’s just something about Michael Myers that always freaked me out! Though Rob Zombie did an OKAY remake (let’s not talk about the sequel) nothing beats the original. This movie is the reason why oldies hits like “Mr. Sandman” freak me out as well. This movie went on to produce several sequels, most of which were really good! Halloween 3 has nothing to do with Michael Myers because they tried to move on to a new Halloween story but soon discovered that they made a big mistake! Probably my favorite sequel in the series is Halloween V. Later sequels are a bit on the campy side but still worth watching at least once. When you finish watching this movie, you may find yourself locking the front door, or being cautious about going outside alone at night.
House of 1000 Corpses
Prepare yourself because this film is a bit on the disturbing side. Rob Zombie drew inspiration for this sadistic horror flick from the classic Texas Chainsaw Massacre. It definitely has the feel of a 70’s horror slasher but with even more darkness and grit. There is no shortness of gore and by the end you may find yourself saying ‘WTF did I just watch?’ Don’t be alarmed, this is a perfectly normal feeling. After my first time watching this movie I experienced this reaction initially, but then the more I let it sink in, I was hooked! The Devils Rejects was a great sequel that actually makes you root for the bad guys but I consider that one more of a violent thriller than a Halloween horror movie.
Trick r Treat
This anthology brings you five tales of Halloween horror that are interwoven. Each of these tales is meant to teach a lesson with a Halloween twist on it. You may find yourself waiting until midnight to blow out your jack-o-lantern after seeing this. Don’t wander out alone on Halloween night, because you never know what unspeakable things are roaming free! And pay attention to those Halloween superstitions as many of them are meant to keep the living safe on this night when the dead are allowed to roam free!
Tales of Halloween
I only recently discovered this little gem on Netflix. Is it campy? Very much so. Is it creepy? At times, yes. It’s not so much the scare factor in this movie that I loved, because there really isn’t much of one. It’s more the stories that are told along the way that really interested me. There’s a total of ten mini Halloween tales in this anthology.
Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
I could not leave this one off my list! Freddy is probably my favorite horror movie icon of all time. Do not watch the remake, you will probably be very disappointed. Much like Halloween, there are a number of sequels in this franchise. Though they get a bit on the campy side they’re still classics worth watching. How scary of a premise that the only way to avoid getting killed by Freddy is to stay awake…1, 2 Freddy’s coming for you….3, 4 better lock your door…5, 6 grab your crucifix, 7, 8 better stay up late…9, 10 never sleep again…
There are so many other movies that are sure to get you in the Halloween Spirit and I just couldn’t forget about them. Here are my honorable mentions:
Night of the Living Dead
Friday the 13th
If you’d like some more ideas then check out our TNT Special Edition in which we each listed some of our favorite spooky movies of all time! What are some of your favorites? Let us know in the comments or on any of our social media!