Okay, so before we jump into this one, I have to address the elephant in the room: what happened to the costume contest? Well, I sort of had to call it off due to lack of participation. We had very few entries, all of whom will be getting prizes as thanks, so not enough to make a real post out of. In retrospect, that’s largely my fault, as I didn’t provide nearly as much time or plug the event on social media like last year. Or you all only had the one pic and sent it in for that first contest. Either way, a new Halloween celebration had to be done, which leads us to today’s blog.
Scary movies, pretty much a Halloween staple as we all know quite well. Now while there are a myriad of monsters, ghouls, and demons that live in the films, I find that most scary movies fall into one of three categories:
1. Ones that are actually good.
2. Ones that are bad, but in a fun way.
3. Ones that are fun to drink to.
Now obviously there is a lot of crossover between the categories, especially where #3 is concerned, but the point is that all scary movies that are enjoyable to watch fit into at least one of those three categories. Since tomorrow is the big day, and I’m sure a lot of you will also be celebrating tonight (see you at the bars!) I thought it would be a good chance to share some of my personal favorites that will be on my screen tonight, one from each category. I’ll also try and aim for the somewhat more obscure stuff, since I’m pretty sure no one needs to be told they should watch Army of Darkness again by this point. You already know it damned well.
One That is Actually Good: Trick r’ Treat
This is one of the few films of the scary genre that I tell people isn’t just a good horror movie, but a good movie period. It’s several interweaving tales that sometimes interlock and sometimes just rub against each other, but in a very fluid, enjoyable fashion. The story-telling is fantastic, the central monster is creepy as shit, and every aspect of it is surprisingly top notch.
I checked this out on a whim a few months back and bought it the next day. I know I kept the description short, and that’s not an accident, as this is the one I want you going in with the least pre-knowledge of. The less you know, the better it is when you see the small touches and surprises for the first time. Plus, there’s a sequel in the works, so if you like it then it’s not a one-off.
One That is Bad, But in a Fun Way: Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters
Now this might not technically be obscure, seeing as it got a huge cinematic release, but I’d put down good money that very few of you have ever actually watched it. Because… yeah, one look at the poster or previews let you know it was going to be ridiculous. Hansel and Gretel grow up to hate and hunt witches. Please note, this very unoriginal concept got used by several movies, the one I’m recommending has Jeremy Renner in it.
So, why does this make the list? Because last Halloween I was having some beers while waiting for everyone else to get off work, and I scoured Netflix for something Halloween and new. On a whim, I checked this movie out, and holy shit I was unprepared for the lunacy that came kicking out of the screen. As dumb as the plot is, do you know what the trailers didn’t convey? That Hansel and Gretel fight the witches mostly with martial arts. Like, waaaaaay over the top, Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon weightless-level martial arts.
It is ball-stomping madness, like some assistant dropped two scripts, one horror and one action, mixed up the pages, and no one ever fucking noticed. And yet somehow, it all sort of works. Not as a film or even any cohesive plot, but for sheer entertainment the damn thing delivers like a drunken postman.
One That is Fun to Drink To: The ABCs of Death
Another compilation film, this one is composed of 26 short horror films, each centered around a word starting with a different letter of the alphabet. Unlike Trick r’ Treat, these tales are episodic instead of interwoven, and focus more on gore and shock than story-telling. That said, there is a super easy, kickass drinking game to play to this one, and the ever-changing nature keeps you from getting bored.
The game is simply this: Whenever a new segment starts, you’ll know the letter (they go in order) but not the word. Everyone drinking has until the segment ends and the word flashes to try and guess what word the story is built around. Some are pretty easy, others are goddamned horseshit hard. Every person watching who gets it wrong, drinks. If one of you guesses right, however, that person doesn’t drink and all the others drink double, in cheers to their victory. Simple, easy, and a nice way to set the mood while starting a spooky celebration off right.
Bonus: Halloween Power Hour
Because I love you all and want you to have the most spooky and thematic of Halloween boozing experiences, I’m tacking a quick bonus on in the form of my favorite drinking tradition: The Power Hour. In recent weeks I’ve been scouring the net for a good Halloween one, and after multiple packs of beer I’m proud to be able to link this one to you fine folks:
So check it out, be responsible, and most importantly have fun! This is one of the few nights of the year when we all collectively agree that magic is real. Make sure to grab some for yourself.