With October now officially over, the decorations taken down and everyone’s costumes in frumpled messes at the bottom of piles of clothes, everyone probably thinks that the time for scares is over–not true.
Every once in a while magazines, websites and sometimes even television channels (looking at you, AMC) will celebrate the respective “Big Holiday” of the season by playing a marathon of films revolving around said holiday (Lord knows I’ve sat through my share of Arbor Day marathons).
To continue the scares, why not have 24 hours of entertainment for the weekend following Halloween? So someone who did not get his or her fix of knife-wielding children and reanimated corpses can spend a day trying to forget all those dreadful embodiments of fear and terror encountered this past weekend (i.e. pretty much everyone out socializing).
I have tried to pick movies that take place primarily during the time period viewers would be watching them. Most of the time there will be about 10 minutes of downtime between movies for bathroom breaks and the like. Also included are several polarizing titles in case a food run or a nap is necessary. And lastly, this is in no way a comprehensive list of The Best Horror Movies or anything like that– I simply just wrote down a list of my 25 favorites. I tried to weed out ones that were either too long (“Grindhouse”), too stupid (“Troll 2”) or in another language (“High Tension”) because reading seems to be unpopular, let alone reading subtitles. If anyone actually attempts this, please send in any and all accounts of the journey.
~12:00 p.m. “Dawn of the Dead” (1978)
An excellent starting point, this is still the all-time best zombie film. There are so many things to say about this one, I could write an entire article just about it alone so I’ll just say this: it is centered around just four characters whom viewers really start to care about and will actually care about when they start to get picked off willy-nilly.
~2:30 p.m. “Creepshow” (1982)
I will be the first to admit that Creepshow is not a perfect movie by any stretch of the imagination. The five-story valentine that Stephen King and George Romero crafted to horror comics of the ‘50s and ‘60s will probably go over most viewers’ heads at this point with many of the effects hopelessly out of date on purpose. Regardless, it’s still terribly fun, terribly scary and sometimes just terrible.
~5:00 p.m. “Trick ‘r Treat” (2007)
Continuing with our anthology theme, this presents four dark spins on old favorites with enough pitch black humor to balance all the, well, murder.
~6:30 p.m. “Let Me In” (2010)
Celebrate the disappearance of the sun with this stylized American remake of a 2008 Swedish vampire film. For those feeling vamp fatigue (there is a loss of blood joke in there somewhere, I just know it), trust me, this is great. It’s moody, atmospheric and has more quiet-loud-quiet moments than a Pixies album. And it starts with a guy setting himself on fire.
~8:30 p.m. “Evil Dead II” (1987)
There is no reason for you to not watch this movie. End of discussion.
~10:00 p.m. “Scream” (1996)
Holding up surprisingly well 15 years and 3 sequels (that only get progressively worse) later, “Scream” still has all the meta-charm it had when it reminded everyone that horror movies can actually be good.
~12:00 a.m. “Requiem for a Dream” (2000)
This is still, hands down, the scariest movie I have ever seen.
~2:00 a.m. “The Simpsons: Treehouse of Horror V” (1994)
Without question, the quintessential “Simpsons” Halloween episode, it is both the funniest and most gruesome.
~2:30 a.m. “Sleepaway Camp” (1983)
Continue back into a world not populated by diet-pill addicted old Jewish women with this over-the-top, generic camp (figuratively and literally) slasher. While at first it may seem like the time to take that hard-earned nap, stay tuned for the indescribable ending.
~4:00 a.m. “Audition” (1999)
“Audition” initially paints itself as comedy of errors as a lonely Japanese businessman is talked into finding a girlfriend by his best friend and teenage son. It is not until about halfway through when things go completely sideways. Also, I know it is rough to read subtitles this early in the morning, so just send the most squeamish of the group out for coffee.
~6:30 a.m. “The Thing” (1982)
So if one made it out to the cinematorium at some point in the past two weeks and saw the new “Thing,” this movie is actually the sequel to that. The blinding, stark white snow of the Antarctica will wake one up, and Kurt Russell has a tremendous beard.
8:30 a.m. “Funny Games” (2007)
One last nail bitter, “Funny Games” is pure psychological torture with hope becoming bleaker and bleaker as the antagonist of the tale literally dares viewers to keep watching.
10:30 a.m. “Shaun of the Dead” (2004)
Congratulations on making it through 24 hours of terror. Celebrate by snuggling up with a blanket, a cup of tea, a best mate and watch the funniest zombie apocalypse ever.
Patrick McFadden is a student minoring in journalism. He can be reached at PM623279@wcupa.edu.