If you’re anything like me, Halloween is a great time to watch some really fun movies. I’d rather watch Young Frankenstein instead of The Grudge any day, but Halloween especially. Heck, the last time I watched Saw, I went home and watched The Emperor’s New Groove until I fell asleep. (2.4 times, for the curious). Life is scary enough, thank you very much! So here’s a list of our favourite Halloween Howls: The best and most funny Halloween movies that will make you scream… with delight!
Best Moment: Gene Wilder’s Dr. Frankenstein and his Monster dancing to “Puttin’ on the Ritz.”
Young Frankenstein is one of Mel Brooks’ most critically acclaimed comedies. Plus, the only iteration of Frankenstein that includes a Broadway dancing routine. The film is non-stop jokes all in the campy style that only Brooks can get away with. It includes Igor’s continually changing hump, spawned from actor Marty Feldman pulling a prank on the director by switching it around to see if anyone noticed. We certainly did!
Shaun Of The Dead
Best Moment: The climactic battle, set to Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now”
The first installment in Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg’s “Three Flavours Cornetto” trilogy, Shaun of the Dead is a rom-zom-com that’s packed full of zombies and cricket bats. Simon Pegg plays Tim, a guy who is just trying to figure out his life and apologize to his girlfriend when a zombie apocalypse puts a bit of a kink in his plan. Teamed up with his deadbeat best friend Ed, Tim fights his way to the pub in the hopes to solve his relationship problems and cure his hangover. And, like all good British comedies, Bill Nighy plays the same character he always does and it is reliably delightful!
Best Moment: Billy’s mother killing three Gremlins with all manner of kitchen appliances, including the microwave!
The first Gremlins film is great for its balance of horror and humour. The film can actually be gruesome at times, in a way that only movies of that era can be, but is also hilarious. When a failed inventor and entrepreneur gets his son a special pet for Christmas. The rules that keep the little gremlin cute are quickly violated, and the guy starts reproducing evil versions of himself, over and over. The film is chock-full of terrible ideas, mostly the inventor’s crazy contraptions, that barely holds together. Seemingly on purpose.
Bride of Chucky
Best Moment: The puppet sex scene is both disturbing and hilarious, with Chucky’s little gem of dialogue: “Have I got a rubber? Look at me, I’m all rubber!”
Like Gremlins and Evil Dead, the Chucky franchise eventually woke up and realized that they were moreso funny than scary and just went that way as far as possible. Bride of Chucky follows terrifying doll/serial killer Chucky in his latest attempt to get a new body for him and his new love. Then 19-year-old Katherine Heigl apparently “butted heads” with her plastic, err, rubber co-star, but the film is a ridiculous satire of its own franchise. Plus the bride eventually gives birth, distilling the movie’s blend of gross-out humour and silliness into a single moment you simply don’t want to watch.
Ernest Scared Stupid
Best Moment: The opening montage of old horror films.
Jim Varney’s classic Ernest P. Worrell character severely declined in popularity after this movie. It saw the lovable nincompoop team up with some kids to fight off an army of trolls. Coming out of the heyday of great horror movies in the ‘80s, the trolls are the best of terrible makeup design. But our favourite part is how the trolls are eventually defeated: with the power of dairy. Jim Varney’s character was always hokey. But his ridiculous facial expressions made the character relatable and hilarious.
Dracula: Dead and Loving It
Best Moment: Peter MacNicol’s Renfield trying to hide his love of insects during a lunch with his psychiatrist.
Mel Brooks’ last directing endeavour saw a delightful Leslie Nielson take on the role of the world’s most famous vampire (sorry, Edward Cullen). Especially after Bram Stoker’s Dracula did such an appalling job of telling a Dracula story. Mel Brooks’ version is simply better in every way, and arguably more accurate! While Leslie Nielson is the main man, Peter MacNicol steals the show. There are so many funny moments, a compilation of the movie’s best jokes on YouTube runs nearly a half hour. You just have to (re)-watch the whole thing.
Best Moment: Beetlejuice’s list of qualifications includes living through the Black Plague (and had a pretty good time during that) and seeing The Exorcist about 167 times (and it keeps getting funnier).
If you’ve never seen CollegeHumor’s short “Tim Burton’s Secret Formula,” it’s worth every second. But he did make great movies way back when, before Johnny Depp had to be in every single frame and things felt like the exact same thing every time. Beetlejuice may be one of Burton’s best movies. Plus, proof that Michael Keaton is one of Hollywood’s most underrated actors. Alec Baldwin and Geena Davis play the recently deceased Maitlands, who want the living tenants of their old home “bio-exorcised.” Burton’s now very familiar visuals blossom here in beautiful campy wonder. Keaton is nearly unrecognizable. It still boggles my mind that he went on to be playboy millionaire/superhero Batman pretty much immediately after.
Cabin In The Woods
Best Moment: The cameo at the end, but also Marty’s go-cup that transforms into a bong.
Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard’s loving deconstruction of horror movies is probably one of the most clever horror films in existence, and has the best final cameo I have ever seen. Whedon’s usual wit focuses on a group of college students who go to their cousin’s cabin (in the woods, of all places!) for some much needed R&R. Little do they know, the cabin is a setup of an annual ritual that ensures the world is kept safe from evil gods living underground. The ritual must go according to a very specific formula and is coordinated by hilarious takeaways to what is essentially the most callous office comedy ever in existence. We cannot recommend this movie enough!