Letter from the Life editor: 10 Halloween movies you have to see

For those with no plans for tonight, consider these movie suggestions

SYDNEY BROWN, Evergreen life editor

Halloween parties aren’t for everyone. Sometimes there’s nothing better than spending the holiday shoveling handfuls of candy into your mouth while nearly sh-tting yourself over horror movies.

This got me thinking about just how many great Halloween movies are out there. This list includes a mixture, since everyone has their own metric for measuring what makes a good Halloween movie. In general, we tried to include movies that were set or released around the time of Halloween, included some sort of paranormal aspect and, of course, added your classic slasher movies. Here is the Evergreen’s guide to staying home on Halloween and scaring yourself:


Wes Craven’s slasher-horror from 1996 easily revitalized the earlier fad of slasher movies that had died out in the 1980s. It basically reads as a spoof of these kind of movies while actually managing to subvert expectations and be terrifying. Is it bad I mostly included this because I share the protagonist’s, Sidney Prescott, name?

2. “The Nightmare Before Christmas”

I don’t care what anyone says, “This is Halloween” is an absolute jam. Tim Burton’s creepy, stop-motion animated film includes complex animation, characters and a haunting musical score by Danny Elfman, who you may know as the composer for the first two “Harry Potter” films.

3. “Halloween”

Released in 1978, this movie represents a quintessential slasher film. It’s a simple story about a guy in a creepy mask who terrorizes a young babysitter in an attempt to brutally murder her. What more could you need?

4. “Monster House”

By far one of the most underrated children’s Halloween films, this animated movie follows three adolescents who attempt to uncover the secrets surrounding their eerie neighbor’s house. It’s well-made enough that this movie is actually pretty damn scary. The house literally swallows children. Cool, right?

5. “Hocus Pocus”

This is another children’s movie, but I remember being pretty spooked by the whole undead thing at the end. With a groovy musical number and campy dialogue, this cheese-fest will put a spell on you and make you think of your childhood.

6. “The Craft”

Would it be a Halloween movie list without including witches? 1996 seemed to be a great year for the release of awesome Halloween movies. This follows the story of four teenagers who seek to widen their witchcraft powers through their rituals. We love female empowerment.

7. “A Nightmare on Elm Street”

First of all, watch the original. Not only will you be treated to a young Johnny Depp in one of his very first roles, you’ll witness the birth of the legacy of Freddy Krueger, the terrifying burn victim who terrorizes a town in their dreams.

8. “Beetlejuice”

This one’s pretty weird, but if you can look past the kooky antics of the characters you get a well-designed film. It also stars Winona Ryder, the queen of the 1990s, who plays a Goth teen looking to make friends in a lonely world. If those friends happen to be ghosts, so be it.

9. “Coraline”

This movie doesn’t really have anything to do with Halloween, but I had to include it after watching it again recently. The buttons over the eyes of Coraline’s mother may fuel my nightmares for the rest of my days.

10. The “Harry Potter” series

No, it doesn’t have anything to do with Halloween directly. But I will hold a deep, deep love for “Harry Potter” until the day I die. Also, witches count for the Halloween theme, right?