While there’s some absolute belters out in the cinema right now capable of scaring you to death, you might be one of those sorts that would rather have the remote in hand if it all gets too much. Luckily, Netflix knows this and is jam packed with some Halloween classics this year. We’ve compiled some proper petrifying flicks for you to binge on this October, so get ready to hide behind the pillows and scream for your Mum.
Straight away you’ll feel Hush is a bit different to any other horror film you’ve seen. The main protagonist is deaf, so instead of spooking you with jump scares, it haunts you with the eerie presence of a home invader stalking her every move. You’ll be wincing and shouting at the screen for her to run as for once, you know much more than the characters and. It’s not the scariest film Netflix has to offer, but you’ll be gripping the couch at this unique thriller outing.
I made the decision to see Insidious at the cinema, and from the first couple of minutes I knew it was a mistake. James Wan, the director of horror staples like Saw and The Conjuring, lets loose in this new horror series that holds nothing back. Sure, some of the lore is a bit iffy, and the last 20 minutes features what looks like a cameo from Darth Maul, but the scares are terrifying and doesn’t give you much build up to prepare yourself. Watch chapters 1 and 2 right now, with a new one coming out soon.
American Horror Story
Currently airing the seventh season, American Horror Story became an instant classic with Murder House back in 2011. It’s most recent series, Roanoke, is the one you need to watch this Halloween. It was shrouded in secrecy, and is enjoyed so much more if you know nothing going in. All there is to say is prepare the sick bucket, because the show takes on new levels of gore and scares that if any of you can do all 10 episodes in 1 go, you’ll be a champion in my eyes.
Hundreds of thousands of people across the globe were terrified when the first Paranormal Activity hit cinemas. It was an overnight sensation, reinventing the found-footage genre that exploded with The Blair Witch Project decades before. The whole series of 6 films are available to stream, and don’t be put off by the same format. There’s some cracking moments across the collection, especially The Marked Ones which switches things up with more of the origin story. If you’ve never seen them, you could spend a complete day scaring yourself with all 6, or stick to the first, and best, film which shows how 2 people, a camera and an incredibly low budget was the making of a horror phenomenon.
On the surface, Unfriended might look like a bit of a gimmick. It’s a film shot entirely from a MacBook screen, where every single interaction takes place. That includes Skype calls, iMessages and Facebook – everything happens on this desktop. Yes it’s a gimmick, but it’s still absolutely terrifying, especially as the filmmakers meticulously crafted the displays for the real life quirks you get every day. FaceTime’s that cut out, sound that’s not in sync or using the proper sounds for notifications you get every day. Couple that with some petrified teens and you’ve got yourself a horror flick worthy of your time.
First off, this film is shot beautifully, scored perfectly and is one of my favourite modern horror films. You follow a young girl who is followed continuously, with the threat of death if ‘It’ manages to catch up with her. The only way to get rid of it? Pass it on by having sex with someone else and it continues down the line. It’s an odd premise, kin of like a real life STD, but the film keeps you on your toes as you scan the horizon for anyone and anything that may be moving in their direction. There’s so many moments where the blurred background will trick you into thinking somethings coming, and you’ll be wondering whether ‘It’ is about to attack. Unnerving but beautiful, It Follows will be a hidden gem in the genre for years to come.
Woman in Black
Daniel Radcliffe’s first outing after Harry Potter doesn’t disappoint, especially as it takes you as far away as possible from the family-friendly outing of the series. Adapted after the highly successful theatre play, Woman in Black gives you a brilliant level of atmosphere and dread that continuous through the 95 minute run. Set in the Victorian era adds to the muted-coloured cinematography and makes intense scenes in the haunted mansion even more chilling. Jump scares galore, it’s a proper good haunt that doesn’t use gimmicks to tell the tale, instead relying on a truly scary story.
The film series took a turn for the worse with the fourth instalment, a pretty predictable reboot of sorts that didn’t add much to the show. Cue this re-imagining as a television series and all those bad feelings go away, apart from the dread and fear the show instils in you. Following a new batch of teenagers, and creating a whole new killer away from ghostface, there’s some great scares and interesting twists along the way. You’ll see some similarities with the films, but the new direction is both scary and addictive. 2 seasons are available to binge right now, so for something lighter but still praying on your serial killer fears, this is the one for you.
Over the summer, The Babadook became a massive meme/phenomenon/gay icon, possibly taking the trophy as the strangest thing to happen this year. The Australian film turned into a cult hit, with the only too real fears of a monster hiding under your bed and in your closet being brought alive on screen. It’s also got deeper meanings, being an incredibly thoughtful and smart story, but if you’re here for the scary vibes it checks all the boxes. Don’t watch this alone, and you should be fine.
So, if you’re staying in this Halloween, make sure you tune in to one or more of the suggested freaky films or spooky series to get you in the holiday spirit.