There are a few more things that go with the Halloween/October theme that I can recommend. I won’t go into them in great detail (like I’m apt to do most of the time,) just assume that if something I mention makes this list it’s worthy of a look.
Event Horizon – Better at being “Hellraiser in space” than “Hellraiser: Bloodlines,” which WAS actually “Hellraiser in space.” Stars Lawrence Fishburne and Sam Neil.
The Watcher in the Woods – If you want something scary that’s OK for young kids… this will freak ‘em out plenty. And some of the scares will get to adults too. Look for Bettie Davis in a very creepy role.
Pitch Black – A decent Vin Diesel action/horror movie.
Cabin in the Woods – Sends up many other horror movies while being a great one itself. Written by “The Avengers” Joss Whedon.
Ringu or Ju-on (original Japanese versions) – Nothing against the American versions of Japanese horror movies, but if a horror movie is based upon a Japanese movie AND you can stand subtitles… get the original version because they are usually much better.
And that’s not knocking great classics like Night of the Living Dead, The Shining, The “original 3” horror classics (Dracula, Frankenstein, Wolf Man,) or any of the other big names. Those are great, I was just trying to bring up some titles people may not be familiar with.
Netflix has the full run of “The Twilight Zone” and “Alfred Hitchcock Presents.” For the former, don’t miss episodes “A Game of Pool,” “The Hitchhiker” and “Shadow Play.” And for the latter I suggest “And So Died Riabouchinska,” “The Waxwork,” and “A Nightmare in 4-D.”
The X-Files is also on Netflix, and had some good scary episodes. I recommend “Humbug,” “Grotesque,” “Ice,” and “Die Hand Die Verletzt.”
You can’t go wrong with the classics. Mary Shelly and Frankenstein, Bram Stoker and Dracula, H.G. Wells and “War of the Worlds.” All great in their original forms. And horror hit a new benchmark with H.P. Lovecraft. As far as anything a little more current, well…
“Storm Front: a Novel of the Dresden Files” by Jim Butcher. This is not horror, it’s being called by some “urban fantasy.” But it’s a good time to start on the Dresden Files, as the next book in the series (book 12 I think) is coming out soon.
“Regina’s Song” by David and Leigh Eddings. David Eddings was an author who has written several books I like. Most of them were parts of larger series, but “Regina’s Song” was a standalone effort that was pretty entertaining.
And of course Stephen King is kind of “King of Modern Horror.” But I really suggest his short story collections over any of his long form novels. “Night Shift,” “Nightmares and Dreamscapes,” and “Everything’s Eventual” are all full of great scary, funny, and above all good short stories. Don’t miss “The End of the Whole Mess” in “Nightmares and Dreamscapes, one of my favorites.
I went into detail about “Silent Hill 2,” but for a (soon to be not) current generation console you could do a lot worse than “Silent Hill: Shattered Memories.” It’s basically a remake (or in this case Wiimake) of the first Silent Hill. But it’s not just the first one with better graphics. It’s actually a pretty good entry in the series in its own right, kind of the first one from a different perspective. And the Wii hardware use of the Wiimote as a flashlight to look around and also as you cellphone works really well.
“Eternal Darkness: Sanity’s Requiem.” A very dark and Lovecraftian game. It uses some cute 4th wall breaking tricks to make the player not only doubt the character’s sanity… but maybe his own as well.
And I hope I can suggest “Amnesia: The Dark Descent.” It got good reviews. People whose opinions I respect have said it’s good and very scary. And I bought it last night for PC on Steam. It’s on a 75% off Halloween sale on Steam and I have little doubt it will be worth the $4.99 sale price.
Feel free to suggest your favorite Halloween themed bit of entertainment. Maybe someone will suggest something I haven’t seen yet.