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Some great Halloween horror movies

Man, it’s tough to think of a topic for today’s column.

It’s the end of October, we’re in between seasons, too early to talk about Christmas, too late to talk more about the municipal elections.

Is there anything about October 31st that would make a good topic for a column? OK, it actually wasn’t that hard to come up with a topic, since today is Halloween.

I decided, though, instead of talking about the history of Halloween (about which there is too much information for a column) or great Halloween costumes I have worn (of which there is a definite scarcity of information), I decided to write about the horror aspect of the day, since I know a few friends who always have a ‘horror night’ sometime in the days before Halloween.

They get two or three horror movies, grab some snacks, and try to avoid the sound of the tree branch knocking against the window.

I enjoy some horror movies, but my standards are different from a lot of people. I don’t want the movie to hit me in the stomach; I want it to hit me in the head, make my brain an unwilling participant in the horror.

So I called up the Top 100 Horror Movies list on the Rotten Tomatoes film review site, and started looking for ones I had seen and enjoyed for their brain-affecting powers.

A couple of their top-rated movies were from the 1920s, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari and Nosferatu. Both are silent movies from Germany in black and white, and both scared the bejabbers out of me the first time I saw them. I think it was the whole combination, where there was nobody explaining things as the movie went along, so your mind was filling in the missing parts.

I must also mention that for a movie made in 1922, Nosferatu had some very impressive special effects.

Some of the movies on the list I have seen and think of more as comedies, but sometimes that makes a nice break in a night of movies. Start with a true horror flick, then follow up with Young Frankenstein or Beetlejuice, then wrap things up with another true horror flick.

There were movies on the list I haven’t seen, and after reading the description of them, I’m figuring they might be too high on the stomach-affecting scale for my tastes. There are others, like They Live and Frankenweenie, I may look up before next Halloween.

Have fun tonight, and stay safe.

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