Best horror movies to watch this Halloween – Sonoma County Gazette

October means nonstop horror films. Every streaming service has more or less vomited every horror flick imaginable for your viewing, from the quintessentials to the B-rated films that are more comedic than scary. These days, there are so many to scroll through that it’s nearly impossible to know which one to choose.
When you want to be truly terrified, it’s pretty disappointing to sit your way through 90 minutes or more of almost- or could-have-been scary.
That’s why, here at the Gazette, we did the work for you and narrowed down all the movies to one list of the best horror movies to watch that’ll scare your pants off this October.
Is this list subjective? You betcha, but it’s also entertaining as all heck and is guaranteed to scare you when you, undoubtedly, begin this list in the middle of the day. That’s why we’ve also included suggested snacks from your favorite Sonoma County purveyors. After all, nothing takes fear away like sweet and salty
As if 2022 wasn’t scary enough…Happy haunting!
31. “Rear Window,” by Alfred Hitchcock. (1954) Available on Peacock TV, ROW8, Prime Video, VUDU, Vudu Movie & TV Store, Apple TV or Redbox. Synopsis: Nosy, recuperating news photographer watches neighbors from window. Is his mind playing tricks on him or is something amiss?
Best paired with: The most expensive meal you can get carted to your house.
30. “From Hell,” by The Hughes Brothers. (2001). Available on Hulu and HBOMax. Synopsis: Johnny Depp hunts down Jack the Ripper.
Best paired with: Absinthe from Young and Younder.
29. “The Mist,” by Frank Darabont. (2007). Available on Netflix. Synopsis: Thick weather brings mysterious monsters and maybe also the end of days.
Best paired with: All your favorite hotbar items from your local grocery store, such as Oliver’s Market, Sonoma Market, Big John’s Market, Penngrove Market and more.
28. “The Lighthouse,” by Robert Eggers. (2019). Available on Prime Video. Synopsis: Two men. One Lighthouse. Also a mermaid. What could go wrong?
Best paired with: Local seafood caught by your Bodega Bay fishermen. Drink choice: Rum from Griffo Distillery. Avoid turpentine and honey.
27. “Pet Semetary,” by Mary Lambert. (1989). Available on Paramount Plus, The Roku Channel, Spectrum TV, Philo, Prime Video, Vudu, Redbox., ROW8 or Apple TV. Synopsis: Watch out for that kid sister flashback though.
26. “Signs,” by M. Night Shayamalan. (2002). Available on Vudu, Google Play, and iTunes. Synopsis: Aliens with aquaphobia invade the heart of agricultural America. Joaquin Phoenix practices for the minor leagues.
Best paired with Sonoma County’s own Comet Corn. When you’re watching corn fields, you better have popcorn handy! Wash it down with multiple glasses of water.
25. “Green Room,” by Jeremy Saulnier. (2015). Available on Hulu. Synopsis: A punk band accidentally rocks out for Nazis. How will they escape?
Best paired with: Miyoko’s vegan cheeses with crackers. You might not want to eat meat after this film.
24. “Evil Dead,” by Fede Alvarez. (2013). Available on Hulu, Shudder, Pluto TV, and Tubi. Synopsis: Three friends find a book in a cabin. What will happen when they read from it?
23. “Climax,” by Gaspar Noe. (2018). Available on Hulu and Prime Video. Synopsis: Drug-laced sangrias create a gut-wrenching nightmare for French dancing troupe and viewers alike.
Best paired with: Sangria from Sazon Peruvian Cuisine (Don’t forget to order some of their delicious chicken stew, too!).
22. “Halloween Kills,” by David Gordon Green. (2021). Available on Peacock. Synopsis: Laurie and Tommy and Tommy is hell-bent on revenge.
21. “The Wailing,” by Na Hong-Jin. (2016). Available on Netflix and Amazon. Synopsis: A mysterious illness overtakes a South Korean village.
20. “IT,” (Both chapters) by Andy Muschietti. (2017 and 2019). Available on HBOMax and Prime. Synopsis: Your worst childhood nightmares all wrapped up in one.
Best paired with Chinese food from your favorite Chinese restaurant. Don’t forget those fortune cookies.
19. “The Village,” by M. Night Shayamalan. (2004). Available on Disney+. Synopsis: An Amish village goes overboard in its attempt to keep its parishioners within its boundaries.
Best served with: Family-style meals from your favorite local restaurant.
18. “The Ritual,” by David Bruckner. (2017). Available on Netflix. Synopsis: Four friends try to outwit a Norse legend in the woods.
17. “Event Horizon,” by Paul W. Anderson. (1997). Available on Paramount+ Amazon Channel, Paramount+ Roku Premium Channel, Paramount+ Showtime or for free with ads on Pluto TV. Synopsis: Haunted house in space.
16. “Annabelle: Creation,“ by David F. Sandberg. (2017). Available on HBOMax. Synopsis: The origin to Ed and Lorraine Warren’s most feared and dangerous demonic artifact.
15. “The Others,” by Alejandro Amenbar. (2001). Available on Prime Video. Synopsis: A mother and her two children move into a big house with mysterious house servants.
Best paired with: A cozy cup of tea from Traditional Medicinals. We like chamomile to soothe our creeped-out senses.
14. “REC,” by Jaume Balaguero. (2007). Available on Netflix. Synopsis: The inspiration for mainstream “Quarantine.”
13. “Rosemary’s Baby,” by Roman Polansky. (1968). Available on Hulu. Synopsis: A young wife comes to believe she had a baby with the devil.
Best paired with: Rosemary Focaccia Bread from Nightingale Breads in Forestville. Carbs go a long way to squash down fear, so really, anything from Nightingale Breads will serve you well.
12. “The Ring,” by Gore Verbinski. (2022). Available on Paramount Plus and Amazon. A newspaper reporter discovers that teens aren’t lying about a killer video.
11. “Paranormal Activity,” by Oren Peli. (2007). Available on Google Play, Vudu, and Amazon Instant Video. Synopsis: New suburban homeowners quickly find out they’re living with supernatural squatters.
10. “The Conjuring,” by James Wan. (2013). Available on HBOMax. Synopsis: Based on the real work of Ed and Lorraine Warren; this is the real deal.
9. “Mother!” by Darren Aronofsky. (2017). Available on Showtime and Prime Video. Synopsis: Jennifer is Mother Earth being destroyed by Ed the Human Race.
8. “Midsommar,” by Ari Aster. (2019). Available on Hulu. Synopsis: When your summer vacation to IKEA’s homeland goes way different than expected, maybe one should keep an open mind.
7. “The Blair Witch Project,” by Dan Myrick and Eduardo Sanchez. (1999). Available on HBOMax. Synopsis: Teens with a camera go into the unknown to film creepy stuff.
6. “The Witch,” by Robert Eggers. (2015). Available on HBOMax and DIRECTV. Synopsis: 1630’s Salem with actual witches.
Best paired with: Laura Chenel’s goat cheese, crackers and olives.
5. “Antichrist,” by Lars von Trier. (2009). Available on AMC+ Roku Premium Channel, Criterion Channel, DIRECTV, Curia. Synopsis: After a couple experiences an unthinkable death, mom becomes unhinged.
Best paired with: Revive Kombucha. Go ahead, drink one and come back to your senses.
4. “Hereditary,” by Ari Aster. (2018). Available on Hulu. Synopsis: Grandma dies and the entire family falls apart.
3. “The Thing,” by John Carpenter. (1982). Available on Peacock. Synopsis: “Somebody in this camp ain’t what he appears to be.“
Best paired with: A meal made of entirely canned foods, purchased from your local grocery store.
2. “The Shining,” by Stanley Kubrik. (1980). Available on HBOMax. Synopsis: Dad’s work vacation turns into a wintry overnighter from hell.
Best paired with: Jack Daniels No. 7 Black Label from Bottle Barn.
1. “The Exorcist,” by William Friedkin. (1973). Available on Hulu and Netflix. Synopsis: A mom tries everything to help her possessed daughter.
Best paired with: Pea soup from The Spinster Sisters.
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