Want to watch some lesser known horror movies for Halloween?
By Michael Brooks
“It's Halloween, everyone's entitled to one good scare.”
Sheriff Bracket spoke this line to Laurie Strode 40 years ago, early in the day before Michael Myers killed Laurie’s friends and tried to kill her.
Now, Myers is back at the box office, trying to kill Laurie again. This new Halloween movie may be good. It looks promising, and I will eventually see it, but I don’t really feel like putting up with a bunch of noisy kids at the movie theatre.
If you are like me and like a good horror movie, especially in October, but would prefer sitting at home and watching it on your own time, let me give you a few of my favorites. I decided to go with some of the lesser known horror movies. Sorry Freddy, Jason, and Michael. Most people will be watching you anyway, so we’re going in a different direction. And no Shining, or Exorcist, or Scream because you’ve all already seen those movies. So, after you have enjoyed the kid’s Halloween show at the Chamber, go back home and crank up one of these and see what you think.
Frailty. The father of two boys wakes them up in the middle of the night and told him that God gave him a list of demons he must slay. He says the boys are supposed to help him. The boys argue that the father isn’t killing demons but murdering people.
It’s an interesting movie. You never really know if the father is looney or if he is really getting these messages from God. And then the ending makes you ask even more question.
It stars Bill Paxton, Matthew McConaughey, and Powers Boothe. The IMDB rating is 7.3, which is astonishingly high for a horror movie, although is more of a psychological horror movie than pure horror.
The Taking of Deborah Logan. If you have ever lost a loved one to Alzheimer’s, this is going to be a tough one to watch. Also, it is a documentary, so it is “found footage” movie.
This movie takes you into the life of a elderly woman battling Alzheimer’s. As the movie goes on, you see symptoms of dementia, but that is only the beginning. The movie get more freaky as it goes along. It builds to an extremely bizarre ending, but I still highly recommend it, as it is one of the freakiest movies I have seen in a long time.
Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon. Imagine if Jason Voorhees let a documentary crew come into his, um, cabin, or shack, or wherever it is he lives and documented his life on a normal Tuesday.
In a world where Jason, and Freddy, and all the other movie killers are actual real-life killers, Leslie Vernon aspires to be the next great murderer. He allows a college film crew in to document how he plans for his murderous rampage.
Once again, this is a “found footage” movie, but only the first half. The movie hilariously explains how a lumbering killer can walk and catch up to his victims, who are frantically running away. It also explains how a killer can be buried and come back.
Think “Scream” but this time, the teenagers don’t know everything that happens in horror movies, the killer does. And he can explain why/how it happens.
After a hilarious first half, full of amazing cameos by horror legends, the movie changed to straight horror for the second half. This is another highly-rated horror movie, as it sits at 6.8 on IMDB.
The Final Girls. Despite a PG13 rating, this movie really stands above most horror movies released in the last decade or so. It also has by far the most comedy of any movie on the list, but for any 80’s horror movie fan, it is absolutely worth a watch. Or five or six. (Note; make sure you watch The Final Girls. There was also a movie called Final Girl, and another called Final Girls. Make sure THE is in the title.)
A “scream queen” in a very Friday the 13th-ish 80’s horror franchise dies in a car accident, but her legacy lives on in the horror community. On the anniversary of the release of her movie, her daughter is talked into going to a screening of the movie at the local theatre.
During the movie, a fire breaks out and everyone is trapped in the theatre. As the daughter and a group of her friends try to break through the screen in hopes of finding a way out of the theatre, they are transported into the movie itself (okay, so you really have to suspend your brain for part of this). From there on, every personality of an 80’s horror movie is presented to the viewer with hilarious results.
This is a movie that anyone can enjoy, and because it is PG13, it is not very bloody and a perfect way to introduce your seven year old to horror movies. (Come on. They need to learn sometime!)
The Possession of Michael King. A lady dies when she is struck by a car while enjoying a picnic in the park with her husband and daughter. The husband declares there is no God, because God would have never let his wife die. He also says that any kind of religion is a joke and he participates in numerous Satanic rituals, where he repeatedly challenges any demon to come possess him, just to prove that religion is a joke.
It is an interesting plot for a movie and some of the scenes are extremely unnerving. I highly recommend it if you get bothered by movies like The Exorcist and Poltergeist.
The Atticus Institute. A documentary about a woman who randomly shows up to the Atticus Institute – a psychology lab that studies psychic abilities. The woman shows abilities far and away above anyone the doctors at the institute have ever seen. As the woman continues to amaze the doctors, they also begin to see signs that her abilities are being influenced by an outside force. A demonic outside force.
This is another one that ratchets up on the spookiness as the movie goes on. As it goes further along the scares rival the scares in the Possession of Michael King.
If you can get your hands on any of these movies, or have already seen them, let me know what you thought about them, whether you share my opinion, or if you are just completely wrong!