Netflix and Chiller

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A clip from the famous horror movie, The Shining. Warner Brothers/1980

Getting together to watch horror movies is a time-honored Halloween tradition. For those who are undecided when it comes to what you’ll be watching this Halloween night, here’s a quick list of classics and oddities.

The Guilty Pleasure: Event Horizon

Combining a horror story in a sci-fi setting, Event Horizon takes a lot of influence from better movies. However, thanks to stellar performances by Laurence Fishburne and Sam Neill, and some gory effects, this makes for a weird, fun time.
You can find it on: Netflix | Amazon Video | iTunes

The Tim Burton Pick: Sleepy Hollow

There are a fair amount of Tim Burton movies on Netflix, all of which are good for the Halloween season. However, neither Corpse Bride nor Sweeney Todd features the decapitated head of Christopher Walken as a crucial plot point in their movie. Reinventing the classic short story of Ichabod Crane into a horror-action-mystery movie, this movie is one of Tim Burton’s bloodiest and zaniest.
You can find it on: Netflix | Amazon Video | iTunes

The Dark Comedy: Tucker and Dale vs. Evil

To be perfectly honest, I would be more than happy if this list focused specifically on dark comedies. The reason Tucker and Dale beats out other tough competition on the list such as Evil Dead 2, Cabin in the Woods, and Slither is because: 1. It’s readily available on Netflix and 2. This movie has a surprising amount of heart. Gory and clever, this movie is a terrific subversion of the typical Texas Chainsaw/Friday the 13th style horror story.
You can find it on: Netflix | Amazon Video | iTunes

The Classic: The Shining

Although you probably already know this movie’s iconic moments since they’re constantly referenced in pop culture, from Hannibal to South Park and even the Angry Birds movie (ugh), I’m constantly surprised how few people have actually seen it. There’s a reason it’s on so many top-ten horror movie lists: It is an iconic horror classic, and it’s also a damn near perfect movie.
You can rent it on: Amazon Video | iTunes

The Cult Classic: The Thing (1982)

Once called a “disappointment” by renowned film critic Roger Ebert, The Thing has gotten a lot more love and recognition now than when it premiered in 1982. The Thing is arguably movie maestro John Carpenter’s best film. With great, kooky, and gross practical effects, Kurt Russell being Kurt Russell, and the always appreciated presence of Keith David, it’s practically an album of John Carpenter’s greatest hits.
You can rent it on: Amazon Video | iTunes

The New Classic: It Follows

When we think of modern horror, we mostly think of jump scares and ridiculous gore. However, the modern horror genre has been experiencing something of a renaissance lately and It Follows is currently its poster child. This film is a slow moving and creepy horror story that takes horror movies back to their indie roots.
You can rent it on: Amazon Video | iTunes

The Obvious Pick: Halloween (1978)

John Carpenter’s classic film is without a doubt the obvious pick for Halloween night. This is the movie that more or less started the slasher genre, creating elements and tropes that have been replicated for over 40 years. It may not be as scary as it was in the 70s, but with its iconic score, classic beginning, and great performances by Jamie Lee Curtis and Donald Pleasence, Halloween still deserves a place on your horror queue. Thanks, Uncle John!
You can rent it on: Amazon Video | iTunes

Honorable Mention: Halloween III: Season of the Witch

If you’re a little sick of jump scares or the slasher genre this Halloween, Halloween III: Season of the Witch is another worthwhile pick. Halloween III drops Michael Myers and replaces him with crazy, Celtic witchcraft and robots. It’s corny, creepy, and awesome!
You can rent it on: Amazon Video | iTunes

Other great Netflix picks: The Host | The Babadook | From Dusk til Dawn | Big Trouble in Little China | Wes Craven’s New Nightmare | Underworld | We Are Still Here | The Guest

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