Happy Monday! The mister and I had a great time in New Orleans at our friends' wedding -- what a party. We adored the house we stayed in, and both of us had a great time exploring Uptown and Audubon Park, sight-seeing, drinking, eating, and hanging out with our dearest friends who were also in town for the wedding. We were having so much fun we almost hated to leave! And now I'm going through pictures and working on a post to share them with you sometime this week. But more on that later, because...
Halloween is just four days away! I don't know about you guys, but this cool fall weather we've been having has really put me in the mood to cuddle up in a blanket, turn off all the lights and scare myself silly with a good horror movie. When I was a teenager, my best friend Betsy and I went through a bit of a dark phase. We loved devouring Stephen King novels and renting scary movies every weekend when we'd host sleepovers at each other's houses. We watched everything we could get our hands on, but we loved all the classics: "Friday the 13th," "Halloween," "The Shining," "IT." The list goes on and on. It's like we had some morbid fascination with seeing how much we could scare ourselves. She still talks about the time we rented "The Exorcist" and I fell asleep, leaving her in the dark without a remote or a way to find the VCR to turn off the static that came over the TV when the movie was over (a little too much like the static in "The Poltergeist," which we'd also watched a couple of weeks before.) Kids are lucky that creepy TV static is pretty much a thing of the past. Agh!
I've only recently started to like the horror genre again. I have a tendency to get really lost in a good scary or suspenseful movie (or TV show -- read: "Breaking Bad") and I find that I constantly need to remind myself to breathe -- it's not real. But I think losing yourself in a story is a sign that something is really worth watching, right?
Want to know why I stopped watching scary movies for awhile? I saw "The Strangers" in a theater with my friends a few years ago and I couldn't sleep for three nights. That one shook me to the core (so if you want to scare yourself, I highly recommend watching it!) And don't get me started on blood and gore flicks like "Saw." I personally don't love a violent and/or bloodbath of a movie, so you won't find any of those in this round-up -- just good old fashioned spooky stuff. Well, maybe a little bit more than spooky...
I've thought long and hard about this list -- there are so many great movies to choose from! But without further ado, here are 10 movies I think you should watch this Halloween:
1. "World War Z" -- James and I saw this end-of-the-world zombie flick earlier this summer and loved it. The action starts pretty much immediately and doesn't stop until the very end. If you like zombie movies and Brad Pitt, this one is for you.
2. *"The Cabin in the Woods" -- Campy, fun and stars my celebrity crush Chris Hemsworth (hubba hubba). What's not to love?
3. "Red Dragon" -- Betsy (see above) and I watched this in college at the movie theater on campus -- I remember we were so shook up afterwards that we were scared to walk to our cars! James and I both said this is one we'd like to see again, because the plot is fuzzy for both of us. But I can tell you as the prequel to "Silence of the Lambs," this flick delivers.
4. "Friday the 13th" -- This was the first scary movie I ever watched, coincidentally with Betsy when we were in the 6th grade. I remember we went to Blockbuster with her mom, who suggested we rent it if we really wanted to scare ourselves (she said she remembered seeing it in the theater with friends in 3D!) We rented it and watched -- with the lights on -- and I remember being so scared at one point that a single bead of sweat rolling down my leg made me jump right out of my skin. I was hooked! Hearing Jason's breath "he he, ha ha" takes me back and still gives me the heebie jeebies every time.
5. *"Rosemary's Baby" -- I included this one in my regular "10 to Watch" recently, but I also wanted to include it in this round-up because I thought it was that good -- and it's a perfect movie to watch right before Halloween. (For those of you who are expecting, you may find this flick to be exceptionally creepy!)
6. *"Carrie" -- Classic Stephen King, and one of my favorite scary movies. Fair warning: Sissy Spacek's crazy eyes during the final Prom scene might give you nightmares.
7. "Hocus Pocus" -- Ever since I was a little kid, this has been my favorite movie to watch around Halloween. As some of y'all know, it partly inspired our road trip to Salem a couple of Halloweens ago! And of course, its family-friendly, too, so that's an added bonus.
8. Halloween -- I couldn't write a Halloween-movie round-up without including this one, obviously. "Michael Myers" is practically synonymous with the holiday! Fun fact: Real Housewife Kyle Richards stars in the movie as little Lindsey Wallace!
9. "The Strangers" -- As I mentioned above, I saw this a few years ago in theaters with friends even though the trailer alone absolutely terrified me. I used to baby-sit for a family who didn't have blinds on their back living room windows, and I was always scared that someone was watching me out in the backyard. So, basically this movie was like watching my biggest fears play out on screen. And worse, the events are "based on a true story." If you don't scare easily, I promise this movie won't disappoint.
10. "The Conjuring" -- This one is still in theaters, so if it's playing near you, definitely go see it! Betsy (see above) and I saw this together recently and absolutely loved it. A good old fashioned haunted house, great writing/directing/acting and a creepy clap made this one of my favorite scary movies of all time.
So that's my list! Do you have a favorite horror movie that you watch this time of year to put you in the mood for Halloween? Who's your friend or significant other who you can count on to go to the theater and scream off your head with? (Bets, thanks for always being my scary movie partner-in-crime!) --Natty
*These movies are available to stream on Netflix as of 10/28/13