• Rylee Petty

Review: Top 10 Films for Spooky Season


Photo courtesy of Minnesota Public Radio

Spooky season is finally among us. I could not be more excited to sit down and binge watch some of my favorite movies. So go ahead and grab your bucket of candy and get ready, because I have compiled a top 10 must-watch spooky movie list—including an honorary mention—that you may all binge-watch this Halloween. This assortment of movies will fill your soul with much needed laughter and the occasional scream.


Starting us off at number 10 is The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975)

This cult classic film focuses on Brad and Janet, who discover the creepy mansion of Dr. Frank-N-Furter, a transvestite scientist. As Brad and Janet navigate through losing their innocence, they’re introduced to an array of characters that are interesting, to say the least. You just have to watch to meet Dr. Frank-N-Furter’s newest creation—Rocky.


Number nine is Edward Scissorhands (1990)

This film revolves around the life of Edward, the product of a late inventor, who has metal scissors for hands. Edward is found by Peg, and eventually welcomed into her home. Though he experiences the kindness of Peg and her daughter, Kim, he remains an outcast in society due to his peculiar hands. This movie will definitely bring on the tears, so if you’re looking to shift from the usual Halloween fear, this movie is for you.


Number eight is Practical Magic (1998)

This film focuses on Sally and Gillian, played by Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman, who are both sisters and witches. They attempt to harness their powers to undo a family curse. This curse results in the death of any significant other who comes into the family’s lives. Both the on-screen magic and the actors sold me on this film; however, the books are what first intrigued me. I highly recommend reading Practical Magic and The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman if you’re interested in tales of both magic and family.


Number seven is Rosemary’s Baby (1968)

This film follows the pregnancy of Rosemary Woodhouse, who becomes pregnant under mysterious circumstances after moving into an apartment with her husband. The apartment has a weird reputation in the city, and the neighbors give off cult member vibes. This psychological horror film shows both the isolation Rosemary experiences and a shocking truth regarding her pregnancy.


Number six is The Addams Family (1991)

This film follows the return of Gomez Addams’ long lost brother, Fester. The only problem is that Fester is an imposter who finds it increasingly hard to blend in with the Addams family in their dark magic-filled home, and his main goal is to break into the Addams’ family vault. The imposter, Fester, achieves his goal and gets the Addams family evicted from their home, making it that much easier for him to reach the vault. This movie is full of colorful characters, including Thing, who is just a hand!



Number five is Halloween (1978)

This movie is definitely scary, but was good enough to become a series; it follows the life of Michael Myers and his victims. The film begins with six year old Michael murdering his older sister on Halloween in 1963 and being institutionalized for 15 years. The film then flashes forward to 1978 when Michael Myers escapes and returns to his hometown...looking for his next victims.

Number four is The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)

This movie follows Jack Skellington, the Pumpkin King of Halloween Town, on his accidental trip to Christmas Town. Jack decides to take over Christmas and even kidnap Santa. Christmas gets a new look with skeletal reindeer and shrunken heads as gifts. This Tim Burton film gets a lot of hype, and for good reason. The characters are well thought out and very interesting in dynamic. This is the only movie that includes an evil sack of bugs as a villain!


Number three is Beetlejuice (1988)

This movie begins with the death of Adam and Barbara Maitland, who become ghosts destined to live in their house for the next 150 years. After the couple’s deaths, the Maitland’s house is sold to the Deetz family, and this causes Adam and Barbara to seek help to rid this family from their home. Lydia Deetz is the only member of the Deetz family that can see the ghosts because of her unique personality and her understanding of the ghost handbook—even though the Maitlands like Lydia, they still get help to get rid of the Deetz family. Fellow ghost and bio-exorcist, Beetlejuice, is hired to scare the Deetz family away from the home, but things become complicated when Beetlejuice devises his own plan. Beetlejuice’s goal is to marry Lydia Deetz so he can return to the land of the living.


Number two is Ghostbusters (1984)

This movie focuses on the lives of Ego, Ray and Peter, who lose their research grants at the university they work for. The three become parapsychologists—or ghost scientists—and open their business to the people of New York. They discover that ghosts aren't actually a rare sighting in the city, and their business begins to boom. This movie is full of laughs and unique ghosts—my personal favorite is the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. This film received an all-female remake in 2016, and I highly recommend that version of the film too!


Number one is Hocus Pocus (1993)

After 300 hundred years of being dead, the three Sanderson witch sisters return to the world, thanks to the work of three kids who summon them on Halloween. In order for the sisters to become immortal, they must sacrifice the life of a child, so what good fortune that they were freed by three children! The kids then have to race against the clock to steal the witches’ spell book in order to stop the witches from becoming immortal; if the kids do not succeed, the witches will claim the lives of many children in the area. This movie is full of laughs and has a great musical number composed by Bette Midler. I cannot recommend this film enough for Halloween.


And the honorable mention goes to… Halloweentown (1998)

This Disney Channel Halloween movie focuses on the lives of three siblings whose mother forbids them from celebrating Halloween. Things get turned upside down when their grandmother, an avid Halloween lover, comes to town. The siblings run away with her, and ultimately find out that they’re from a family of witches!


By Rylee Petty, Contributing Writer

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