Break out these horror hits for Halloween

Published 4:38 pm Saturday, October 26, 2013

•“The Amityville Horror” is one of the most famous of haunted house movies, this story has roots in real life. The Lutz family spent 28 days in the supposedly evil-infested house before being driven out by the alleged spirits stirring inside. Avoiding the overindulgence of gore and violence saturating today’s horror movies, “Amityville,” and its director Stuart Rosenberg used drama and misdirection to keep you looking over your shoulder.

•“The Exorcist” is one of the most notorious horror movies to date, simply by what it did to members of the audience when it was released in 1973. There were several reports of people in the audience getting physically sick or walking out before the end of the movie. Again, this movie is based on supposed real events. What could be the most frightening aspect of the movie, though, is the unknown aspect. As the movie focuses on Father Merrin and Father Damian Karras trying to figure out an end to the possession, a mother simply tries to understand what’s happening to her daughter.

•There have been so many incarnations of Dracula, good incarnations, that it’s hard to put one above the others. Francis Ford Coppola’s “Bram Stoker’s Dracula” was an updated and gritty take on Dracula. Centering a little more on the fractured love story, Coppola’s Count, played by Gary Oldman, cast Vlad Dracula as a more sympathetic character.

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•John Carpenter, and let’s face facts here, is largely hit and miss, but he nailed it with “Hallowen.” No matter how many times it happens, it’s hard to get over seeing that emotionless white mask peering in most every window in the neighborhood looking for Jamie Lee Curtis’ Laurie Strode.

•Aptly described as a haunted house in space, “Alien” manages to do the impossible. In a place as incomprehensibly big as space, Ridley Scott manages to create a sense of claustrophobia in the face of a monster never really seen before on the big screen.