It’s the season of pumpkins and apple cider donuts, golden leaves and spooky outdoor decorations! Halloween is just around the corner, which means it’s time to prepare for frightful sights and sounds. Lots of us like to be scared: we watch horror films and visit haunted houses for fun. I am not one of those people. The general level of scary that I can handle is the Scream series (I know, I know, you hardcore horror fans are rolling your eyes because those movies aren’t even scary). However, there are millions who seek out the creepiest, most terrifying entertainment.
I’ve put together a few viewing and reading lists for your frightful (or not so frightful) enjoyment.
Scary Films…And Some Not-So-Scary Films
As I said, I’m not an authority on scary movies. I’m familiar with some classics, like The Exorcist (haven’t seen it), Rosemary’s Baby (haven’t seen it), Halloween (seen it and it terrified me), The Shining (in my opinion, the book is much better), Psycho (gotta love a good Hitchcock), and A Nightmare on Elm Street (absolutely no way I am seeing it; the thought of Freddy Krueger gave me nightmares as a kid, pun intended).
So, I’ve turned to others for guidance. Rotten Tomatoes compiled a list of the 75 Best Horror Movies. All of the films I just mentioned are part of this list, including a couple (The Silence of the Lambs and The Birds) that I have seen and enjoyed, surprisingly.
If you’re overwhelmed with options, MTV is there to help you narrow your choices. In 2013, they came up with this infographic to help you pick what to watch on Halloween. After you’ve had your fill of scary movies, head over to Buzzfeed and get some trivia; they’ve put together “34 Facts About Scary Movies That Will Blow Your Mind.” For instance, rumor has it that Tom Cruise was nearly Edward Scissorhands…can we even imagine anyone other than Johnny Depp playing the beloved blade-handed hero?
Finally, the good people at Popsugar are looking out for us scaredy cats. Their list of “15 Halloween Movies for Wimps” includes perennial favorites like Hocus Pocus, The Rocky Horror Picture Show, and The Nightmare Before Christmas. For even more family friendly Halloween films, you can find viewing inspiration from this Buzzfeed compilation of “20 Movies to Watch with Your Kids this Halloween.”
Confession: I have never seen The Nightmare Before Christmas I’m adding it to my Halloween bucket list!
When I look back on my childhood, there actually was a time when I must have enjoyed a little bit of spookiness. I know this because I have clear memories of reading and loving Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark by Alvin Schwartz. Do you guys remember that one? It was basically a collection of urban legends for younger readers. I loved it.
In the past three years, I’ve become a novice Stephen King reader, with four of his books under my belt. Of course, Stephen King is a go-to during this time of the year, and the LPL shelves are filled with his works. Also, don’t forget that our Adult Fiction Collection has an entire section devoted to mystery books. For a little inspiration, review these 21 Modern Mysteries. According to Popsugar, you won’t be able to put them down!
If you want to take it old school, read this list of The 10 Creepiest Ghosts in Literature. Some of the great genre masters are included, like Edgar Allan Poe and Shirley Jackson. Flavorwire, the same website that put that list together, also created a broader listing of The 50 Scariest Books of All Time. You’ll notice that many of the books included have been adapted into films. If you see one or more that pique your interest, stop by the LPL and ask a librarian to help you find them. While you’re here, check out our awesome display of Halloween-themed books and DVDs, in addition to our spooky tree that’s adorned with bats, skeletons, and other Halloween decorations that were made in our Innovation Station.
There you have it! Everything you need to enjoy Halloween! If you’re still trying to decide what to wear on the big day (it’s a Saturday, this year!), read last year’s blog post about Halloween costumes inspired by our favorite books and literary characters.
Stock up on your DVDs and spooky books, settle in with a warm pumpkin spice latte, throw on a chunky sweater, and get excited to celebrate Halloween!
(And don’t forget to check for monsters under your bed…)