Best Halloween movies

Monsters, vampires, witches and warlocks! That’s right.  It’s that time of year again. Time to break out a costume and chow down on some trick-or-treating candy while you watch a Halloween movie.

But how do you choose the best one to watch? If you’re tired of watching the guy with the ridiculously sharp fingers, the guy chasing people down in a hockey mask, or the story of a doctor with two personalities, then you may want to take a look at the suggestions below. Whether you want to bond with the kids or lose sleep for a week, I have you covered.

Friendly fright: “Casper”, 1995, is a great movie to kick back and enjoy with the family. Casper, “the friendly ghost” is the story of a paranormal expert and his daughter who stay at an abandoned house, where they discover three trouble-making ghosts and one friendly ghost. This movie includes classic Halloween figures, with spooky ghosts and abandoned mansions, but it’s a light-hearted movie that is appropriate for all ages and is also a story about building a friendship. (PG, 100 minutes)

A movie that bites: “You’re gonna need a bigger boat.” “Jaws”, 1975, is one of the most horrifying movies of all time. The Steven Spielberg movie features a monstrous great white shark that terrorizes the island of Amity. This leaves a police chief, a marine scientist and a local fisherman as the only ones to try and stop this beast. What makes “Jaws” so scary is that it makes you think that you could be lunch if you even walk past a swimming pool. The iconic theme song, composed by John Williams, has become the universal song to signal danger. Despite its PG rating, this is not the best choice for younger audiences.  (PG, 124 minutes)

The ludicrous character: “Beetlejuice”, 1988, directed by Tim Burton, is not only one of his best movie, but perhaps his most well-known Halloween creations. Michael Keaton plays Beetlejuice, a so-called “bio-exorcist”, who is hired by a recently deceased couple to scare the new owners out of their old house. “Beetlejuice” has a creepy yet comical feel. Just remember to say it three times, “Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice.” (PG, 92 minutes)

Holy water necessary: Even though “The Exorcist”, 1973, is 39 years old, it will still make you check your closet for a new pair of pants. This bloodcurdling movie depicts a 12-year-old girl who has been possessed by an evil spirit. Be ready to try and run from the room when the priest attempts to remove the evil spirit from the girl, while saying one of the most well known phrases in scary movie history, “The power of Christ compels you!” (R, 122 minutes)

Blood suckers vs. full moon lovers: So you want to watch a movie that pits vampires against werewolves? Put that Twilight DVD to the side and pick up a copy of a real vampire versus werewolves movie. “Van Helsing”, 2004, creates its own action-packed version of the storied fight between the two creatures. The monster hunter Van Helsing is sent to Transylvania to stop the notorious vampire Count Dracula. In this version of the tale, not only are there intense fighting scenes, but Dr. Frankenstein and his monster play a major role. Watch the movie to see how Van Helsing deals with the powerful vampires. (PG-13, 131 minutes)

“What the …?”:  “The Silence of the Lambs”, 1991, is one of those movies that you just can’t place into one specific genre. It’s about a new FBI agent, played by Jodie Foster, who has to ask a manipulative serial killer, Hannibal Lecter , played by Anthony Hopkins, for help in finding the serial killer in the FBI’s investigation. Between multiple serial killers, a cannibal helping the cops, and a major crime investigation, this Oscar-winning movie is one to never forget. (R, 118 minutes)

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