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10.29.2013by: Kevin Woods

Kevin's Top 5 Flicks I'll Be Watching This Halloween!

Damn, I love Halloween. I love all that the haunting season brings us: the costumes, the parties, the haunted attractions...every little thing associated with Halloween brings a big ol' goofy smile to my face. And while I never need an excuse to watch horror flicks, this spooky holiday always has me revisiting some of my favorites. When The Arrow suggested that we throw together our own Top 5 lists I thought it would be fun to share what I'll be peeping to get me in the Halloween spirit. So check 'em out and let me know what you think of my selections!

5. THE BEYOND

I was late jumping onto the Lucio Fulci bandwagon but once I discovered THE BEYOND I was hooked on the mans work. Actually, I discovered this film under a different title when I came across it in a used DVD shop. I was perusing the shelves and found a disc titled SEVEN DOORS OF DEATH. It was only $3 so I grabbed it, took it home, turned the lights down, turned my surround sound up, and popped this bad boy in. Even in a butchered version this film was highly effective on me. A little research taught me that I had an edited down version of the flick so I sought out the uncut version, finally finding one online. Since then, THE BEYOND has become a Halloween favorite of mine. And although I've seen it numerous times, this film still gives me the heebie jeebies. Maybe it's the music...perhaps it's the atmospheric look that Fulci employed...maybe it's the strangely hypnotic sound design, but there is something quite unsettling about this film, making it perfect viewing for October.

4. PSYCHO

There's always a pretentious a-hole who will throw a genuine classic like PSYCHO onto a list like this but have no real intention of revisiting it. I'm not that guy. I friggin' LOVE this film...always have and always will, and almost to the point of driving my own wife psycho with my adoration of this classic Hitchcock film. If I flip through the channels and it is airing, I stop to watch. If I have friends over who have never seen it, I force them to watch it. If I'm bored and there is nothing catching my eye on Netflix, in goes the PSYCHO DVD. I have seen this film dozens of times over the years, memorizing the dialogue and studying the way Hitchcock crafted this horror masterpiece. And yes, I've already watched it once this month when I caught it on television. There is no doubt I'll watch it again leading up to Halloween.

3. THE MUTILATOR

Everyone has a guilty pleasure or two, and the 1985 Buddy Cooper-helmed slasher THE MUTILATOR ranks as one of my favorites. This low budget gem has never received a proper DVD release but I can tell you this much: I've seriously worn out 2 VHS copies of this flick over the past two decades. Some may even say I'm mildly obsessed with this flick. Yes, it is an amateur production, but there is something about this film that I have always found endearing. It is as cliched as a slasher film can come and is filled with questionable acting, stilted dialogue, and hilarious music, but really...who cares? The film is a lot of gory fun through and through. What I wouldn't give to be able to get the remake rights to this one! If you can get your hands on a copy of this one I think you'll find a lot to like here. I'll be introducing this film to some of my friends at my annual Halloween party this year and plan on devising a fun drinking game to go along with the viewing experience. THE MUTILATOR rocks.

2. THE LOST BOYS

"I think I should warn you all...when a vampire bites it, it's never a pretty sight. No two bloodsuckers go the same way. Some yell and scream, some go quietly, some explode, some implode, but all will try to take you with them." Damn, I love THE LOST BOYS. I watch this film every Halloween without fail and it remains my personal favorite vampire film of all time. As a child of the 80's this was THE vampire film of my generation. Think about it: Sleep all day. Party all night. Never grow old. Never die. The vamps in this film made it seem like being a bloodsucker would be the the life (uh, so to speak) everyone wants. Everything about this film screams "Fun", from the soundtrack (c'mon...'Cry Little Sister' still rocks!) to the acting to Joel Schumacher's direction. If it's been a while since you've revisited this one, go ahead and make plans to check it out again this Halloween.

1. PHANTASM

In my humble opinion it is really hard to beat the strange creepiness of Don Coscarelli's 1979 horror masterpiece PHANTASM. I first discovered this gem at the impressionable age of 11 when I picked it up from our local video store on dollar rental day. The tagline of "If This Film Doesn't Scare You, You're Already Dead" really sold it for me and I quickly pedaled my bicycle home to pop this flick in the ol' VCR. Little did I know what an influence this film would have on me for years to come. I sure as hell didn't understand it but I knew I loved it. Since that fateful evening many, many moons ago I have revisited this film (and its sequels) dozens of times. It remains one of my all time favorites and I am forever a PHAN.

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