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31 days of Halloween: 7 underrated horror classics

31 days of Halloween: 7 underrated horror classics

31 days of Halloween: 7 underrated horror classics
October 06
13:00 2022

This story is a continuation of the Daily’s 31 Days of Halloween series. Read part one here.

If you are looking to broaden your love of the horror genre, this week is curated for you. This edition is all about appreciating films that may not get the love they truly deserve.

Despite their variety, all of these films share one thing in common — they are perfect to watch during the month of October.

  1. “Dead Silence” (2007)

James Wan gave the world another reason to be utterly terrified of dolls. His films, like “Saw” and “The Conjuring,” have made permanent impacts on the horror genre.

Scary movies were decreasing in popularity back in 2007, so a film like “Dead Silence” was destined to be overlooked. This movie absolutely rules. It has creepy puppets and an even creepier old woman.

Wan’s style is plastered all over, and there are enough scares to keep the bravest souls up at night.

Everything from the campy acting to the cobweb-smothered atmosphere makes for a super entertaining watch. It may not be the strongest in Wan’s filmography, but it certainly isn’t a misstep either.

  1. “The House of the Devil” (2009)

This film walked so “X” and “Pearl” could sprint. Ti West has quickly become one of the most beloved names in horror and “The House of the Devil” proves he has had it in him all along.

The film is a slow burn with effective twists and turns. Once it sinks its hooks in, there is no way to direct your attention to anything else.

Any time a horror film can consistently entertain solely off of suspension, you know you are watching something special.

This film also has the most unexpected casting, with Oscar-nominated director Greta Gerwig as the main character’s loving best friend. If you loved “X” and “Pearl,” don’t be shy to show some love for West’s original classic.

  1. “Cherry Falls” (2000)

A small town is terrorized by a murderer who only kills off virgins —the premise of this film alone should raise the eyebrows of anyone. 

After “Scream” was released in 1996, the slasher film bar was raised to unreachable heights. While “Cherry Falls” is most definitely a product of its time, it sure is a lot of fun.

The late and great Brittany Murphy takes the lead role. Her performance is worth a watch on its own.

It may not be the scariest film (unless you’re scared of awful haircuts), but it is certainly something you’ve never seen before.

  1. “Alligator” (1980)

The greatest “Jaws” knockoff ever made. Not much to dissect here.

Instead of a great white shark, it’s a mutant alligator who terrorizes our main characters. It is everything you’d want out of a 1980s killer animal movie.

It is dumb in the greatest way possible — for example, the alligator’s name is Ramone. The effects in the film are also seriously impressive, and make it a genuinely enjoyable watch. 

  1. “Chopping Mall” (1986)

Another off-the-wall cornball classic. A young group of friends decide to stay in a shopping mall after hours, leading them to be hunted down by killer robots.

This film definitely makes for the most entertaining entry on the list. It is chock-full of corny dialogue and laughable moments. Horror royalty Barbara Crampton absolutely steals the show.

The mall setting is stunning and gives our characters a lot of room to survive the night. You can’t have a bad time with “Chopping Mall.”

  1. “Hell House LLC” (2015)

One of the most terrifying found footage films of all time — and you never hear a word about it.

If it weren’t for slashers, the found footage subgenre would run the horror world effortlessly. Shaky cameras mixed with an unnerving setting create a panic-inducing experience.

It feels low budget in the best way possible, and by the time everything is revealed, you can’t help but leave your jaw on the ground.

  1. “Mayhem” (2017)

We are ending this week with a film for apocalypse lovers.

A virus breaks out in an office space, forcing people to act out and create chaos with no control. It is the classic scenario of a bunch of people trapped in one location with something extremely dangerous.

“Mayhem” is stylistically brilliant, with director Joe Lynch constantly putting his best foot forward.

You would think a film starring Steven Yeun and Samara Weaving would get more appreciation. Yeun and Weaving are horror genre regulars at this point, and their chemistry is easily the best part of the film. The intense violence is pretty fun too.

Featured Illustration by Erika Sevilla

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Jaden Oberkrom

Jaden Oberkrom

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