Ice Nine Kills’ Spencer Charnas Picks The 13 Best Horror Movies To Watch This Halloween
Look, we couldn’t not ask Spencer Charnas about horror movies this week, could we? Like, the dude’s band just put out a new album inspired entirely by horror movie soundtracks, The Silver Scream. You can give that a listen via the link at the bottom. First, the Ice Nine Kills frontman recommends the 13 best horror movies that you should watch this Halloween.
Just don’t watch them on your own…
13. IDLE HANDS
A great example of how horror and comedy, when done correctly, can be highly entertaining. Idle Hands tells the story of a stoner so lazy that the devil decides to posses his idle hand. This underrated ’90s gem was a victim of bad timing - released the same week as the Columbine massacre, theaters and studios decided it wasn’t the right time to make light out of teen homicide. Rightfully so, it did however eventually find its audience.
12. AMERICAN PSYCHO
Based on Bret Easton Ellis’ cut-throat novel, the film is a caricature of the decadence and greed of the 1980s. It uses an exaggerated yet poignant universe where the characters are so self involved that they fail to notice that one of their colleagues is a bloodthirsty serial killer. Christian Bale is at his absolute best here.
11. AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON
One of maybe five films to ever combine comedy and horror in the correct manner. John Landis was on top of his directing game and Rick Baker’s Academy Award-winning makeup effects put this movie over the top in terms of gaining classic film status.
This was the first horror film that I ever saw in theaters and it truly reinforced my love of the genre. The self-referential wit of Kevin Williamson’s screenplay combined with the razor-sharp direction of Wes Craven made the movie a real high point in the history of the genre. It also sports one of the best twist endings ever put to film.
9. IT (1990 & 2017)
Pennywise the dancing clown is the personification of evil. Both films (based on Stephen King’s brilliant 1986 novel) tell the story of a sinister child eating clown who can shape shift from a seemingly innocent entity to your darkest fears at the drop of a hat. After seeing these films I never looked at red balloons the same way again.
8. SILENT NIGHT, DEADLY NIGHT
Who says the Christmas season can’t be bloody? A heavy public backlash was caused by this ultra violent and sleazy 1984 santa slasher film that sported one of the coolest marketing campaigns this side of the north pole. It was pulled from theaters almost immediately after its release after angry parents picketed outside of cinemas playing the film. Its infamous reputation gave the movie a forbidden fruit aura and helped it gain a much deserved cult following.
7. THE SHINING
Hotels were never the same again after the Stanley Kubrick classic, The Shining. Derived from an incredible book written by Stephen King, the audience joins Jack Torrance, a newly hired hotel caretaker, as he descends into madness. For whatever reason (watch the film to find out), Jack Nicholson’s character is dead set on hacking his wife and son to pieces with an axe. Talk about a last resort.
Jaws is universally considered the first official, ‘Summer Blockbuster’. Released in 1975 to massive critical and box office success, it further cemented Steven Spielberg as a tour de force in the world of cinema. As terrifying as the shark looks, much of the credit for the film’s tone must be paid to John Williams, whose iconic score provides an aura of absolute doom even when the mammal is nowhere to be seen.
5. THE CROW
Alex Proyas’ 1994 film, The Crow, gave birth to the most bad ass anti hero of all time. Visually stunning, the film features a show-stopping performance by the late Brandon Lee who tragically lost his life due to an on set prop gun malfunction. It’s a bloodthirsty revenge story of a man who was killed along with his fiance the night before their Halloween wedding. He returns one year later to, “put the wrong things right”, as the narration in the film states.
4. THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE
Marketed as “a true story”, Tobe Hoopers seminal slasher about a family of backwoods, flesh-hungry cannibals predates Halloween by four years. When people think of the film they think of heavy gratuitous violence, but it relies more on the the gore being implied, proving that what your own imagination can conjure up is worse than whatever they can show you on screen. Power tools were never the same again.
Theres not enough dead bodies in all of these franchises combined that would equal the number of imitators that cashed in on the success of 1978’s holy grail of horror film’s, Halloween. 40 years later, no slasher villain has even come close to rivalling the terror of Michael Myers and his signature expressionless white mask.
2. FRIDAY THE 13TH
Camp Crystal Lake is the perfect setting for a Summer bloodbath. Join Mrs. Voorhees, a few horny teens and her dead and deformed son for a night of gratuitous nudity, drug use and some of the most gruesome kills ever to grace the silver screen.
1. A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET
The whole idea of Freddy Krueger slaughtering people in their dreams is so terrifying because no matter what you do, sleep is imminent. You can barricade your door, hold a fully-loaded automatic weapon and booby trap your entire house, but eventually you will meet that fedora-wearing, razor-gloved maniac, and it won’t be pretty.
Ice Nine Kills’ new album The Silver Scream is available now through Fearless Records. Check it out on the stream below.
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