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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Western chapter.

We are nearing the end of spooky season, so that means trying to fit in as much Halloween and horror related stuff into our lives before we start being bombarded with everything related to Christmas. If you and your friends are anything like me and mine, you may have an endless list going of what movies you want to watch to celebrate Halloween. And besides the obvious Halloweentown, which cult classics from the past should we also check out? Are these cult classics we see film buffs on twitter fawn over worth the watch as well? I’m here to break down some of my favourites I’ve watched this October and tell you why I think they’re worth it.

1. Beetlejuice

This one is a childhood favourite of mine. Every time I watch it, a part of me desperately wants to dye my hair black and become Winona Ryder. This is a movie that can be enjoyed by people of all ages and contains such a stacked cast (peep a young and very attractive Alec Baldwin) that it’s a good choice for a family movie night or for your friends that don’t enjoy full-on horror movies. Like many of the movies on this list, Beetlejuice has its iconic moments, especially when it comes to music. Although the soundtrack is minimal, we can’t forget the dinner party scene when Scarlet O’Hara and the guests begin to uncontrollably lip-sync to Day-O (The Banana Boat Song). If you can’t get enough of this movie, then look no further than the Broadway musical of the same name, complete with their own rendition of Jump In the Line. This movie is fun and just spooky enough for the Halloween season.

2. The Craft

Not necessarily a Halloween movie, but anything containing witches immediately screams fall and spooky season to me. If you’re unfamiliar with the story of this movie, chances are you at least know the fashion. If anything, it’s worth the watch just for all the 90s grunge outfit inspo you’ll be getting. This movie is dark in all the right places and also contains a killer soundtrack that obviously includes Letters to Cleo and Siouxsie and the Banshees. It’s everything you would want from a classic 90s movie about witches and high school drama: heartache, murder and magic.

3. The Shining 

A horror-movie CLASSIC, but is it worth all the hype? I definitely think so.To be perfectly honest, it wasn’t what I was expecting upon watching it for the first time. There are so many recognizable moments and lines from this movie, and if you haven’t seen it, I highly recommend you do just so you can be up to speed. However, I also recommend you watch it if you’re a fan of more suspenseful horror movies. This one keeps you on the edge of your seat, just waiting for Jack’s character to crack and do something crazy. There’s also so much to unpack and analyze about this film that if you’re someone who loves YouTube video essays and movie conspiracy theories, there’s plenty of those to read up on and watch for The Shining. Heck, even checking out Stephen King’s book to see all the differences between the two would be something I personally would love to do. If you still can’t get enough, it’s getting a sequel titled Doctor Sleep on October 30th!

4. Psycho

Another old classic, but this time in black and white! There is just so much to love about this movie. To some, it may read as silly for today’s standards of horror, but I urge you to keep an eye out for some beautiful camera work. This is a given since Alfred Hitchcock did direct and produce the film and for its status as one of the greatest films of all time. It’s even considered as one of the earliest examples of the slasher movie genre. The movie is filled with suspense and narration that will capture your attention and keep you thinking until the very end. If you’re also someone who gets into movie scores, then this one’s for you! As much as I love this movie, please do not waste your time watching the 1998 remake with Vince Vaughn. Stick to the 1960 version and, if you crave more, Bates Motel is on Netflix for you to binge.

5. Scream

I feel like this movie doesn’t deserve to be on the same list as an iconic classic like Psycho, but that’s exactly why you should watch it. This whole movie franchise can be taken as a joke and not too seriously, but the first one really did have a good story arc. If you love horror movies, you’ll appreciate the MANY references they compile into these movies. It’s part of what makes them so great. They’re perfect to watch on a cozy fall evening with friends while drinking wine and eating copious amounts of popcorn. It has just the right amount of scary, but is also good to leave on in the background during some pumpkin carving.

Hopefully this gave you some ideas of what movies to add to your list for this Halloween! It’s always fun to mix in some classic horror films with lighter ones that bring you back to your childhood favourites, but all are worth the watch!

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Grace is a fourth year student at Western University currently completing a major in Media, Information, and Technoculture and a certificate in Museum and Curatorial Studies. She hopes to one day become a research librarian and spend her time reading dusty history texts and drinking tea. For now, you can catch her thrifting for vintage finds with friends, eating vegan fast food, and listening to records.
This is the contributor account for Her Campus Western.