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One of the biggest problems that most cinephiles have on Halloween is not knowing which films to watch. In an effort to scare myself, my girlfriend and some of our closest friends to death, I have included some of the scariest films of recent history for viewing on this sacred evening. I submit to you: the Spooktacular.
Alien - In space no one can hear you scream. Onboard the Nostromo it's all you can hear. It could be argued that Alien is only half-horror, but the atmosphere Ridley Scott creates chills that haven't been replicated since the first film.
The Shining - A family of three goes on a seemingly serene trip to a Colorado hotel. What they get is an inside look at the depths of madness and the intimate betrayal of a loved one turning on you.
Don't Look Now - Grieving parents Laura and John Baxter go to Venice to take stock of their lives, once there, John finds the temptation to get his daughter back too strong to resist. A little-known film for sure, but emotionally devastating.
Shutter Island - U.S. Marshall Teddy Daniels is investigating the disappearance of an insane asylum patient when the doctors there at Ashecliffe Hospital prove to be more harrowing than any escaped killer. The prospect of not being able to trust your own mind is one of the most horrifying thoughts that occur in life.
The Thing - An isolated bunker in Alaska becomes the home for one of the most paranoia-fueled horror films of all-time. The special effects are what's most remembered, but the ending is absolutely haunting.
The Fly - Auteur David Cronenberg would probably not consider himself a horror film director, but what The Fly and films of that ilk do is create a sense of physical and philosophical panic that stays with you long after the credits roll.