Nightmare on Gumtree – Our pick of the best Halloween flicksThursday 23 October 2014, by The Media Team
If your trick or treating days are behind you, and you prefer a cosy night in to wearing a blood spattered costume at a fancy dress party, then surely the best way to get into the Halloween mood is to stick something suitably spooky on the TV. With any luck you’ll barely notice the sound of eggs splattering against the front door.
Gumtree’s listings are well stocked with Blu-rays and DVDs that’ll help you to summon the ghoulish magic of Halloween without leaving your sofa. Here’s our pick of the eeriest flicks to look out for in time for the 31st.
The eponymous Halloween chiller… Halloween (1978)
John Carpenter’s 1978 classic really is the ultimate Halloween movie. Which is lucky, given its name. Everything about this archetypal slasher flick has been hugely influential to both the horror movie genre and, arguably, the concept of Halloween itself. We found a Blu-ray copy for a tenner along with a fine selection of similarly gory Halloween classics. That’s your night’s entertainment sorted then.
Family fun with a dash of the macabre…The Addams Family (1991)
Living up to expectations this adaptation of the classic 60s TV comedy is most certainly kooky and possibly even ooky. OK, it isn’t especially spooky but you’ll be too busy laughing to quibble over the absence of Halloween chills. Raul Julia, Anjelica Huston and Christopher Lloyd ham it up irresistibly and the family-friendly laughs are spiked with a pleasing twist of macabre.
Burton’s best… Edward Scissorhands (1990)
It would be easy to compile a fairly extensive list of Halloween-worthy movies composed exclusively of Tim Burton flicks. Few directors have smuggled such a darkly gothic sensibility into mainstream cinema and Burton’s appealing knack for heart-warming pathos makes for perfect Halloween viewing if you don’t fancy getting scared witless. We’ll go with Edward Scissorhands because, as an enchanting, beautifully stylised parable about alienation featuring Burton’s best muse Johnny Depp, this outsider fairy tale probably remains the big haired director’s best work.
Don’t answer the door… Trick r’ Treat (2007)
If ever a film was tailor made for October 31st its Bryan Singer’s Halloween themed horror master class. If you’re in the mood for classic horror with plenty of nerve wracking shocks to keep you on the edge of your sofa then this portmanteau of interconnected horror stories delivers jolts, twists and no shortage of blood and guts.
Vintage thrills… The Haunting (1963)
Don’t make the mistake of picking up the dreadful 1999 remake of this supernatural classic. However you feel about Hollywood’s fondness for ‘reimagining’ films that really didn’t need to be remade, the more recent incarnation of The Haunting was a particularularly insipid affront to its source material. Stick to the original however and you’re in for a treat. With limited means this sinister Brit-Horror classic builds into a nerve-wracking psychological fright fest that’s far more creepy and atmospheric than most of its haunted house imitators.
Foreign frights… Ringu (1998)
Another horror classic that has since been remade (as The Ring in 2002), Ringu beats its impersonator hands down for sheer uncanny weirdness. This restrained Japanese masterpiece may offer thrill seekers less in the way of jump-out-of-your-seat shocks but more than makes up for it by conjuring an atmosphere of sheer dread that’s likely to disturb even the most jaded horror aficionado.
You can currently pick up Ringu along with bumper selection of creepy foreign horror DVDs right here on Gumtree, perfect for a more esoteric evening of Halloween horror.
Read more in our Hallowe’en series: