Halloween Horror | Shocktober 2022
Inspired by last year's Halloween Horror | Shocktober 2021, which was itself inspired by the original Halloween Horror | Shocktober 2020, I am repeating it all again this year with yet another wonderful 10 horror movies. I have chosen the 10 movies myself, which are spread over various streaming platforms and each of them will contain a little synopsis. Some of the movies I have seen previously and enjoy enough to watch again, and some of them are new. There are actually 12 movies in the list below. This is because for the final one I have chosen Halloween, and I will be watching the 1978 original, along with the 2018 remake, and finally, the sequel to the remake, Halloween Kills from 2021. The streaming services that I chose to watch my 12 movies on are, Prime Video, Netflix, NOW, Shudder, and Disney+. A bit more detail regarding subscriptions for the streaming services is added at the end of the reviews.
Prey is a science fiction action movie and it acts as a prequel to Predator. It is set in 1719, so not too far off 300 years before the first movie takes place. After the Predator lands close to a Comanche settlement, Naru (Amber Midthunder), who is eager to prove herself as an accomplished hunter, and who witnessed the ship descending from the clouds, heads off in search of any potential threat. Along the way, Naru runs into a group of trappers who use her and her brother Tabbe (Dakota Beavers) as bait to catch the Predator. There are lots of little nods to the original Predator movies during Prey, and the action and kills from the Predator are all on point here. For Shocktober, this was my second viewing of Prey, and it just fits in to the franchise so well. Forget about the recent reboots or sequels, as this just blows them all out of the water. Prey is directed by Dan Trachtenberg and is available to stream on Disney+.
Dark Glasses (2022)
Dario Argento is back in giallo territory with Dark Glasses, his first directorial movie in about a decade. Diana (Ilenia Pastorelli) works as an escort, and after becoming the next target of a serial killer, loses her sight in a car accident, while she is being persued. The killer does not give up and continues his obsession with Diana after she returns home from the hospital. So begins the cat and mouse game throughout the rest of the movie. Rita (Asia Argento) is on hand as a volunteer who works with Diana to help her adjust to life without the use of her eyesight. Going in to this one, I was expecting a return to form for the director. Don't get me wrong though, it is an enjoyable movie, just not up there with some of his classics from the past. It has some good moments, and as you would expect from a Dario Argento movie, it comes a great soundtrack. Dark Glasses is available to stream now exclusively on Shudder.
You Are Not My Mother (2021)
You Are Not My Mother is a slow-burning Irish indie folk horror which is set in Dublin. Char (Hazel Doupe) lives with her mother Angela (Carolyn Bracken), and her grandmother Rita (Ingrid Craigie). One day, after driving Char to school, Rita mysteriously disappears, leaving her car abandoned in a nearby field. A few days later she returns, but she apparently does not appear to be the same Angela. Rita tells Char the story of her childhood, which relates to the opening scene of the movie, and that they must repeat that process with her mother. I never knew much about this one going in, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. Yes, it is a real slow-burner, but it is very well made, so the pace did not affect it for me. It really is worth checking this one out, especially if you are a fan of indie folk horror. You Are Not My Mother was written and directed by Kate Dolan, and it is available to stream right now over on Netflix.
Offseason is a Shudder exclusive supernatural horror movie, written and directed by Mickey Keating. Marie (Jocelin Donahue) sets off with her boyfriend George (Joe Swanberg) to the remote island where her mother is buried, after receiving a letter asking her to come straight away, as the grave has been destroyed. When they arrive there, they soon discover that the island is deserted apart from a handful of local residents, but all is not what is seems. I found this to be a very atmospheric movie. It is light on dialogue, but heavy on the sound editing, and it just works so well. The town and the setting both add to the atmosphere and there is a supporting cast featuring Jeremy Gardner, Richard Brake, and Melora Walters. With its short runtime, if you are looking for an unnerving lovecraftian indie horror, then you should add this one to your watchlist. Offseason is available to stream exclusively on Shudder right now.
No Exit (2022)
After getting stuck in a nasty blizzard while trying to get home to visit her mother in hospital, Darby (Havana Rose Liu) has no other option but to stay the night at the local visitor centre. When she arrives there, she finds 4 other similarly stranded travellers: Ed (Dennis Haysbert) and his wife Sandi (Dale Dickey), along with Ash (Danny Ramirez), and Lars (David Rysdahl). While she is outside trying to find a signal for her mobile phone, Darby discovers there is a young girl tied up inside a parked van. Stranded for the night in the storm, and without a phone signal, she tries to discover which of the 4 people with her have kidnapped the girl. I didn't know much about this movie going in, and ended up enjoying it more than I actually thought I would. The remote setting and the snowstorm both add to the atmosphere here. No Exit was directed by Damien Power, and it is available to stream right now on Disney+.
Last Night In Soho (2021)
Eloise (Thomasin McKenzie) moves from her rural Cornwall home to London after getting accepted to the London College of Fashion. Soon after she arrives, and starts her new life, living in a bedsit owned by elderly Ms Collins (Diana Rigg), Eloise has a vivid dream that she is back in the 1960s. In the dream she sees a young woman called Sandie (Anya Taylor-Joy) and her manager Jack (Matt Smith). The dreams do start off well, but as they continue each night, things soon take a turn for the worse and begin to affect Eloise in her normal day to day. Last Night In Soho does start off slow, but if you are prepared to stick with it, there is a good movie here. The music will certainly cater for fans of the 1960s, and there is a great cast on show including Terrence Stamp and Pauline McLynn. Last Night In Soho was written and directed by Edgar Wright and it is currently available to stream or watch on NOW or SkyTV.
The Trip (2021)
More a comedy-horror, but definitely worth a place in this year's Shocktober, The Trip could well be the surprise of the year for me. Lars (Aksel Hennie) and Lisa (Noomi Rapace) are a not so happily married couple, so they both head off out in the middle of nowhere to a cabin in the woods, owned by Lars' father. They each have a plan to murder the other, but it all goes to hell not long after they arrive at the cabin, when they discover three local convicts who have escaped from prison slumming it up in the attic. There is quite a lot of dark humour throughout the movie, almost Tarantino-esque, and although it's more comedy than horror, there is still enough gore to keep the horror fans happy. I think the morale of the story is to stay away from cabins in the woods. The Trip was written and directed by Tommy Wirkola, and is available to stream now on Netflix, with original Norwegian audio or dubbed English.
The Cellar (2022)
Keira (Elisha Cuthbert) and Brian (Eoin Macken) move into a new house with their two kids, Ellie and Steven. The house is very large and very old, but they managed to pick it up quite cheap at an auction from the previous owner. It's not long before we find out that there's an ancient force controlling the house, with its presence eminating from their cellar. After Ellie disappears in the cellar, Keira starts to investigate the history of the house and the previous owner, while trying to uncover what happened to her daughter Ellie. The Cellar was my first movie watched as part of this years Shocktober, and it did get my viewing off to a great start. It's one to definitely check out, especially for fans of slow-paced supernatural horrors. The remote Irish setting and the house itself both add to the atmosphere. The Cellar was written and directed by Brendan Muldowney and is available to stream now exclusively on Shudder.
Midsommar (2019) Dani (Florence Pugh) has not long lost her sister and parents after they all die when Teri, her sister, fills the house with carbon monoxide in a planned murder-suicide. In an attempt to try and patch things up with her boyfriend Christian (Jack Reynor), Dani decides to go on a trip with him and his friends to Sweden. They all stay with Christian's friend, who is Swedish, in a remote commune, and take part in ceremonies and rituals, that soon have them questioning whether they should leave and go home. It is not long before things start to get a bit weird, and they find themselves caught up with the local folklore, and in way over their heads. This was a hard watch at times, but was still a great movie. I enjoyed the director's previous movie Hereditary, which was released in 2018, and found myself enjoying this as well. Midsommar was written and directed by Ari Aster and it is available to stream right now over on Netlfix.
This is absolutely THE classic Halloween horror movie. It is a John Carpenter masterpiece that I was lucky enough to see on the big screen a couple of years ago. Michael Myers, the killer, having spent most of his life locked up after murdering his sister, escapes from the institution and makes his way back to his hometown of Haddonfield on Halloween night. Local babysitter Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) and her friends, Lynda and Annie, become the prey, as Michael tears up the town with a large knife and a William Shatner mask. I have lost count how many times that I have seen this movie over the years. It is a wonderful classic horror, a classic Halloween movie, with a soul-less brutal killer on the loose in a small town, all filmed on a very small budget. It is still an iconic horror movie to this day. Halloween was directed by John Carpenter and is available to stream now in the UK on Lionsgate+ (Starz).
I was very sceptical when I first heard about this, not only because of the nonsense that was the Rob Zombie reboots that preceded this, but because they changed the back story and pretty much wiped out all of the movies made after the original one, calling this new one the official part 2. But once you do accept that, this is very good movie. It can be over the top with the violence at times, and with so many little nods to the original as well as to part 2, you can just about forgive them for erasing the great part 2 from the official back story. It is set in present day, as Michael once again escapes an institution and grabs his mask and big knife and sets about on another murderous rampage on the trail of Laurie Strode, played again by Jamie Lee Curtis. This is the first of a new Halloween trilogy, with Halloween Kills following it. The final part of the trilogy, Halloween Ends, has just been released in cinemas. Halloween was directed by David Gordon Green and it is available now on the BBC iPlayer.
Halloween Kills (2021)
Following on directly from the end of Halloween (2018), the kill count rises and the carnage continues, as Michael Myers rampages his way through Haddonfield. The middle part of a trilogy always has that difficult task of holding the other 2 movies together, but unfortunately, for me, this seems to be a task that Halloween Kills in unable to do. Yes there are an awful lot of kills, and there is also some great flashback footage to 1978, which is done really well. But for me, the whole storyline featuring Tommy, Lindsey, and Lonnie, could have been left out. In saying that though, for fans of the franchise, you do get plenty of gruesome Michael kills here. If you enjoyed the previous movie and are looking forward to the next one, then there is enough here to keep you satified, to fill that gap until you see Halloween Ends. Halloween Kills was directed by David Gordon Green and is available to stream over on NOW or SkyTV.
Thank you for reading this little Halloween themed movie watching Shocktober blog of mine for 2022. I have really enjoyed watching these movies and also re-watching some that I had seen already. I will most likely repeat this all again next year, but for now I will leave you with some information regarding each of the online streaming services that I used to watch my movies on, with a link to their websites and some information about their subscription prices.
The information below applies to the streaming services I used. The prices listed below are for Ireland and are in Euro, so just make sure that you check in your own region as there may be some differences with both the prices and availability of some of the titles that I viewed.
Prime Video - Amazon's own streaming service will cost you €7.00 per month for a Prime sub.
Netflix - Maybe the most popular streaming service with prices starting at €5.99 per month. NOW - Sky's live/on demand movie streaming service with subscription at €11.99 per month.
Shudder - AMC owned mostly horror content service and €4.99 per month for a subscription.
Disney+ - All of the horror related content is on Disney+ Star and it all costs €8.99 per month.
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