We’ve all got different relationships with our favorite horror movies. Some are delighted by an on-screen gorefest, but for others, it can be a thoughtful look at the human condition, illuminating all kinds of fears stowed within us. Either way, it’s Halloween—that time of year again when these films really shine. We asked 20 artists to share their favorite horror films, and you can let us know yours in the comment box below.
1. Russ Manning (Rush Midnight, Twin Shadow)
1. The Exorcist
This is one of the first horror movies I watched….The makeup is supreme and this actress Linda Blair totally nails both innocence and evil.
I couldn’t turn on the television when by myself for about week after watching this one. This is the original; darker and more suspenseful than the American remake.
3. Halloween 2
Michael Myers is a machine who can lift nurses off of the ground with one hand and withstand boiling water in the name of murder. He’s a unique immortal and we’re afraid because we have no [way to] sympathize with him.
Although some of these zombies look more like circus freaks, just wait for the ending! There is no hope and this is that classic non-Hollywood narrative where no one escapes.
5. Paranormal Activity 3
Just watched this recently and luckily I have company at night. There’s nothing scarier than to watch a character you once sympathized with transform into the demon that lives in the basement. No soundtrack and a stationary camera help create a unique surveillance of horror.
6. The Silence of the Lambs
I once hung out with Jody Foster and she’s fun!
Candyman among others inspired me and my friends to stand in front of the mirror and turn off the lights and hope our pants stay dry. Philip Glass’ score adds some true class to this movie, elevating it above many ‘90s horror flicks.
8. 28 Days Later
The motion-jitter effect used in this one is super effective. The consistent cold color palette and Godspeed You! Black Emperor opening song grabbed my attention. Not the most original plotline and a slightly too-good-to-be-true ending, but one of the most beautiful zombie movies I’ve ever watched.
9. The Amityville Horror (1977)
The opening theme is the creepiest ever. Again, nothing scares me more than little girls’ haunted spirits. While AH no longer has me jumping off my chair, I’m sure in 1978 it was the most bad ass date movie. Its probably one of the most recycled stories in history.
10. Stephen King’s IT
I’ve always hated clowns so this movie really cuts the cake. Part one is worth seeing, in which innocent children are tormented by their worst fears, embodied by this horrendous clown. This one challenges pure innocent and frailty against true evil.