Halloween is coming, perhaps you’ve noticed. It will be on Sunday, and it’s traditionally a time when people are looking for a good scare, particularly when it comes to films. So, to help you prepare, I decided to look a few supernatural tales that provide those scares, giving you a chance to get in your scares this weekend. Below are five tales worth checking out, with the list appearing in chronological order.
The Shinning (1980)
About: Stanley Kubrick adapted this tale from Stephen King. King famously didn’t like the adaptation, which has since been done a few other times, but audiences have long enjoyed this Kubrick take led by Jack Nicholson and Shelley Duvall. There are plenty of iconic moments and this one certainly provides some thrills and chills. You can also follow it up with the sequel Doctor Sleep.
About: You don’t think of horror films when you think of Steven Spielberg, but as a young filmmaker he wrote the script for this classic ghost story. Tobe Hooper takes the directing duties as the focus is on a young family who is haunted by something coming through the TV. This is a seasonal classic and one that still holds up, providing thrills and chills in the spooky season.
Lady in White (1988)
About: This one is personal. It’s the story of a young boy (Lukas Haas) who is trapped in a school closet on Halloween only to see a ghost haunting the space. It turns out to be the spirit of a little girl who was murdered, setting the boy on a quest to learn the truth. My mom showed this to me when I was younger after I claimed I couldn’t be scared. I was wrong. While it doesn’t terrify adult me, it’s still a bit chilling.
The Blair Witch Project (1999)
About: I was in college when this one was released and I remember it was one of the first of the big found footage films. A big part of the marketing centered on people believing this was real. They used amateur actors and, as a film, it’s not great. However, as an experience in 1999, it sort of kind of worked.
The Sixth Sense (1999)
About: The big breakout for M. Night Shymalan, and still probably one of his best. It’s one of his best twists, though the discerning among us might have figured that one out. Bruce Willis is great as is a young Haley Joel Osment. Knowing the plot makes the re-watch hit differently but it’s still an enjoyable film.
Matthew Fox is a graduate of the Radio, Television and Film program at Biola University, and a giant nerd. He spends his free time watching movies, TV, and obsessing about football. He is a member of the FSWA. You can find him @knighthawk7734 on Twitter and as co-host of the Fantasy Football Roundtable Podcast.