Staff Streaming Picks: Halloween Edition
A few spooky films to help pass a rainy day (or a sunny Sunday)
If you happen to be like me, you might often find yourself visiting the Netflix website in your downtime, when you could, per say, be studying, or getting ahead on schoolwork. Unfortunately, you might also find yourself with nothing to watch. Have no fear! For I have compiled a list of my favorite picks on Netflix, keeping in mind the spooky season.
Leading up to the season two premiere of this smash hit series at the end of October, why not take a trip down memory lane, or perhaps watch the show for the first time?
The thrilling horror series, directed by the Duffer Brothers, takes place in a small town in Indiana in the year 1983. In a twist of events, twelve-year-old Will Byers goes missing. After the mysterious disappearance, other strange things begin to occur, including the sudden appearance of a quiet girl with unknown powers and capabilities. Netflix currently streams the first season, with eight “chapters” in total. The directors create an immersive plot that practically transports you into the show yourself. Strap in for a sensory roller coaster, as every episode will have you on the edge of your seat, awaiting the next surprise.
Another globally acclaimed and successful series, Riverdale is sure not to disappoint. The second season of this popular show is currently airing on Cable TV, but the first season is available on Netflix to watch at your leisure. Rated TV-14, a few episodes contain sensitive content, so watch accordingly.
Based on the famous Archie comic series, the TV show loosely follows the plot of its comic roots, though with a darker tone and edginess to it. The series starts in the midst of a local mystery when the town football star, Jason Blossom, goes missing. The whole town becomes involved, yet life still continues, and school with it. The beginning of the school year brings a new student from New York, the daughter of an infamous con man. As more clues and developments in Jason’s case arise, more and more citizens become suspects and victims in the case. The plot follows high school students Archie, Betty, Veronica, and Jughead in their involvement, whether known or hidden, with the grand scheme of Jason’s death. The series will have you clicking to the next episode over and over again, so grab some snacks and settle in for a dark adventure.
The Nightmare Before Christmas
If you happen to be a fan of Disney, Tim Burton, mild horror, or holidays in general, this is the right movie for you! Released in 1993, the stop motion animated film has become a cult classic.
The story follows the main character, Jack Skellington, and the antics his fellow residents of Halloween Town. The town follows the same routine of scaring people in the real world once a year, but eventually Jack becomes bored and yearns for more. After accidentally stumbling across the entrance to Christmas Town, he plans to kidnap Santa Claus and claim the holiday for himself. This eerily cute film is perfect for a night in with friends and is suitable for all ages.
Another Tim Burton gem, this movie is based on the award-winning novel by Neil Gaiman. Although seemingly cute and family friendly at first glance, Coraline is a film sure to terrify. I had previously made the mistake of watching this movie late at night, one that I will most definitely not repeat again.
One day while exploring her new house, Coraline discovers a secret door. The passageway leads to a parallel dimension that mirrors her own, displaying slight twists on Coraline’s reality. At first, these fantastical twists seem like some nice changes, but soon things start to take a turn for the worst. When Coraline tries to leave, difficulties arise and the “Other Mother”, a terrifying maternal figure that holds a dark power, tries to make sure she can never leave. If it’s a good, clean scare you’re after, Coraline meets the criteria.
Another childhood nightmare generator, Little Monsters tells the tale of young Brian and his friend from down under (the bed), boogieman Maurice. When evening falls, the pair take trips downstairs under Brian’s bed to the world of monsters. Everything seems to be going great until Brian himself begins to transform into a monster.
What happens throughout the rest of the movie is a nightmare in and of itself. Originally intended to be a family horror movie, this film ended up being the reason my younger self was afraid of the dark and what lurks within it. If you are searching for a terrifying but silly film, look no further than Little Monsters.
A classic film from the 1980’s, this movie has become part of pop culture, and I suspect that the Furby craze was based on this film’s popularity. On a gift shopping trip to China Town, Billy Peltzer stumbles across a strange but cute and cuddly looking creature called a “Mogwai”. Reluctantly, and with fair warning of never to let the creature eat late at night or get wet, the shopkeeper sells the animal to him. After a short period of time, he is unable to maintain this regimen and, as the phrase goes, all hell breaks loose.
This action-packed film is full of jump-scares sure to give you a spook. A good mix of action, comedy, and horror, this movie is perfect to watch to get in the Halloween mood, and maybe give you some great costume ideas.