Words: Emily Hollwedel
The room is dark, the only light a dimly lit screen. No one dares to move, or speak, or even breathe. Hearts pound, and breaths hitch. Suddenly with a flash of an image and a shriek of noise, the people on the edges of their seats lurch backwards in a rush of fear. This is exactly how horror movies are supposed to make people feel- thrilled, anxious, and terrified all at once.
For decades, a wide variety of horror movies have been created to frighten people all across the world. Here are three iconic films from the horror screen just in time for Halloween.
Halloween – 1978
During a time when horror movies were considerably haunting, Halloween, directed by John Carpenter, tells the tale of Michael Myers, an escaped killer, and his attempts to attack a high school student named Laurie Strode on the chilling night of October 31. This film keeps the audience holding their breath throughout incredibly tense, dark scenes that follow. Viewers will find themselves wondering if they, too, are being followed, and if the monsters they’ve read about are truly fiction or not.
Scream – 1996
Wes Craven’s Scream was a breath of fresh air to horror in a time of sequels and repetitive nature. It follows a masked killer’s string of murders in a middle-class town usually resembling paradise. Sidney Prescott, a girl attending the local high school, is attacked multiple times by the killer, while coping with the one-year anniversary of her mother’s death, and during a party finds herself trying figure out who is behind the rising body count. The quick wit and charm of this movie comes into play through its self-awareness and sarcasm. Though somewhat cliché, it’s still amusing, and every moment is thrilling.
Andrés Muschietti’s adaptation of the classic Stephen King novel provides a recounting of seven outcast kids in the town of Derry, Maine, as they search for the interdimensional alien creature named Pennywise the Dancing Clown in the horrific summer of 1989. The film deeply contrasts the previously made mini-series by splitting the movies between youth and adulthood, as well as keeping up with the increasing quality of CGI that was not available in the 90s. With every element of a twisted coming of age story, the changes in the kids who are forced to face their fears head-on are shocking, but prominent by the end of the film. The truly frightful jumpscares and psychological pressure, speckled in the popular 80s nostalgia is high throughout each scene, making it both fun and petrifying for viewers.
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