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Movies Watched: Halloween Edition

Tis the season, and here are some Halloween-style movies watched through the first two weeks of October.

If it’s October, it’s Halloween month, and if it’s Halloween month, it’s Halloween movie time. Here is a collection of creepers of varying degrees watched so far this season.

Hocus Pocus 2 (Disney+)

Twenty-nine years have passed since Hocus Pocus became a tween-favorite comedy and the sequel lives up to its predecessor’s notoriety. It’s not wildly different from the original, but then, why mess with the formula? You even get Bette Midler singing twice.

My Best Friend’s Exorcism (Prime)

A teen comedy with possessions and exorcism makes for an entertaining companion piece to Hocus Pocus 2.

Scream (2022) (Paramount+)

This was a bit of a letdown: The satire doesn’t kick in until the last fifteen minutes, and Courtney Cox and Neve Campbell look bored to be in the fifth installment of the Scream saga. Still worth a look for a franchise completionist.

Scream (1996) (Paramount+)

The original, though? What a perennial classic.

Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales (Disney+)

The fifth Pirates movie goes a long way to restore the original’s humorous touch. Javier Bardem makes for a good undead pirate leader, too.

Hellraiser (2022) (Hulu)

I always liked the concept of the original Hellraiser, but the execution was rather shaky. And while that movie was infamous for its eighties-style gore, David Bruckner has put together a more psychological remake that is genuinely eerie and beautiful to watch.

Watcher (Shudder)

I hate calling anything Hitchcockian, but that is what Watcher is. The film follows an actress who may or may not be stalked by a serial killer or who may or may not have devolved into paranoia from her crippling loneliness. It’s a tense thriller, one in line with classics like Rear Window.

Deadstream (Shudder)

Deadstream very much aspires to become a cult classic like Evil Dead 2, and judging by its reception, it might just have succeeded. It’s gross-out fun following a disgraced influencer trapped in a haunted house during an attempt to regain lost followers after an “incident” with one of his previous viral stunts. With this as its promotional picture…

Ghost picking our hero's nose.

… you know what you’ll get.

The Munsters (2022) (Netflix)

I have a feeling fans of the old show will love this. As I never watched the sixties sitcom, I didn’t really “get” the movie. Some great acting, though, particularly by Sheri Moon Zombie.

2001: A Space Odyssey (HBO Max)

Sure, you could claim it’s not a Halloween movie, but if HAL doesn’t freak you out, I don’t even know what to say. Plus, that acid trip of the last twenty minutes? 2001 isn’t just the most influential sci-fi film of the last fifty-five years; it’s a downright freaky film.

V/H/S/94 (Shudder)

I decided to revisit this before V/H/S/99 releases in a week, and it’s not a bad horror anthology. Read my review over at One Star Classics. The aforementioned David Bruckner served as a producer for this movie, but I’d much more recommend his Southbound anthology, which is genuinely unsettling.