All Hallow’s Eve is nearly upon us, and even though I’m drawn to guts, ghouls and gore, this year I’m in the mood for something a little bit less traumatising for October 31st.
If you’re planning on ending a night of trick or treating with a scary movie this Halloween, I’ve come up with the definitive list of campy (yet scary) horror!
1 Buffy the Vampire Slayer (the film… Not the TV series)
Yes, Buffy the Vampire Slayer is, was, and will always be an amazing TV show. Emotional, scary and entertaining, it ticks all the right boxes and it’s no wonder it’s become such a cult classic. However, the same cannot be said about the original film that inspired it all.
Kristy Swanson’s ‘Valley girl’ take on Buffy Summers is so incredibly bad that it loops back around and ends up being awesome! From vampires that just won’t die, to Luke Perry’s typecast bad boy Pike, it’s pure cheese on toast, and no Halloween movie night is complete without it!
It’s safe to say that Scream was the definitive scary movie of the nineties! It’s self-referencing, self-aware script combined with whodunit mystery and that Drew Barrymore cameo will forever cement it into the horror hall of fame.
What’s so great about it is how much of a genre bender it was, seamlessly mixing horror and comedy elements without seeming forced or unnatural (Scream Queens take note!).
And if you’re going to watch the first Scream, you might as well watch 2,3 and 4. Because, why not?
3 Scary Movie (1 and 3)
Where Scream was almost a parody of the horror genre, the original Scary Movie was a parody of a parody, combining all the best elements of classic horror movies like The Blair Witch Project and The Sixth Sense . It’s silly, dirty and at times cringe-worthy, but it doesn’t take itself seriously at all and that’s what makes it so charming.
As is the case with most franchises, the first movie is the best, although Scary Movie 3 is arguable just as funny! To this day I still quote ‘Cindy, the TV’s leaking!’.
4 I Know What You Did Last Summer
If you’re after a straight-up teen slasher movie, then IKWYDLS is definitely the direction to go in. This classic nineties horror flick hasn’t aged very well, but I think that works in its favour! There will never be anything more 1997 than a film starring both Jennifer Love Hewitt and Sarah Michelle Gellar! (not to mention teen heartthrobs Ryan Phillipe and Freddie Prinze Jr.).
Although the sequel wasn’t quite as good, and the third direct-to-dvd installment was abysmal, they at least provided us with campy variations of the amazingly titled I Know What You Did Last Summer (I Still Know What You Did Last Summer and I Will Always Know What You Did Last Summer). I guess the writers were feeling lazy that day…
5 The Cabin in the Woods
The Cabin in the Woods is the kind of film that I imagine would be amazing if you are completely stoned while watching! It’s just so crazy and out there that half the time I’m trying to decide if I think it’s genius and the other half I have a question mark stamped across my face. But if you give in and accept the crazy it is a fantastic film.
Cabin was a modern day attempt at re-inventing the horror genre, and although I don’t think it was as successful in achieving this as Scream, now that it’s a few years old people have been able to let it sink in and appreciate it for what it is.
The Craft – a film about moody, rebellious teenage witches (not Sabrina).
Halloween – Because Jamie Lee Curtis was the original teen virgin who survived a homicidal maniac on Halloween night!
Chucky – To this day I don’t know whether to laugh or cry when I see that scary psycho ginger doll.