October: Que Horror!
Hey everyone, it’s Pilar again!
It's October and this column will wholeheartedly participate in the long awaited fall/spooky vibes. However, if you are wary of scary movies and horror is generally not your jam, I have included some classic spooky movies that are cool and scardy-cat approved (by me, a bonafide scardy-cat). For horror fans, I've included some good must-sees too.
1. House on Haunted Hill (1959)
In Los Angeles, there exists a gorgeous and odd art-deco styled home that plays the House within this haunted caper. An And Then There Were None esq game is proposed by the rich host (Vincent Price) - if any of the five guests can make it through the night they can win $10,000. It's got ghosts, skeletons, cobwebs, and everything you need for a crowd pleaser this October.
2. Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)
Probably one of the scariest movies I've ever seen because, if you're a true crime fan like myself, this one feels like it could be real and could happen. Two siblings and three friends take a roadtrip in Texas to see their grandfather's grave and are picked off one by one by a family of cannibalistic psychopaths. It's breath taking and unrelenting in its malice and terror - with famous eerie villain Leatherface leading the torture (Ed Gein comes to mind). Scream your head off before they get to it!
3. Wake in Fright (1971)
This film is hard to put into a simple genre box: it doesn't quite have the gore or jump scares you would expect in horror and doesn't quite have the structure of a thriller as we know them. Yet, when traveling teacher John (Gary Bond) stops in small town Yabba in the Australian Outback as a lay over on his way home, we are filled with a mounting sense of dread. John gambles away his money and tries to find his way back but gets sucked in further to the sweaty Christmas hell, the beer guzzling and guffawing locals, and a horrific (and real, kept in to raise awareness) Kangaroo hunt. Take a shower after this one, it'll spook you in different ways.
4. Black Sunday (1960)
This Italian film begins with the persecution of a witch. The film jumps ahead in time to a dead ringer of the Witch (Barbara Steel as both) and a stirring in the Witch's grave. In a castle with secret doors and candelabras (hell yeah, am I right?), the witch schemes to take over the new body with only her brother and a handsome doctor in the way. To counter the traditional gender roles on display, we are treated to the eye popping madness of the formidable Witch - it's all very fun and very goth.
5. A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (2014)
A contemporary, Iranian black & white movie lead by a lonesome female vampire (Sheila Vand) in the ghostly Bad City. There's something inherently powerful about a woman looming in the shadows ready to lunge at the men who generally terrorize. It flips the very lore set in Dracula while celebrating it's gothic spirit in the present day. And naturally, there is a supporting cat for our vampiress.
Enjoy your binge! Until next time, Pilar <3
ABOUT WHAT SHE’S WATCHING
Hi y'all, my name is Pilar and I am a filmmaker & lover who has gotten overwhelmed by suggestions at film school parties and didn't know where to start. I'm hoping this column will give you some hors d'oeuvres to chew on and help you discover other great movies to inspire your own filmmaking. This is a safe space no judgement if you haven't seen it, in fact, I'm very jealous of you right now for getting to experience some of this for the first time.