Since it’s October, it’s the perfect time of year for spooky movies. If you’ve seen all the perennial classics (“Halloween,” “Scream,” “Friday The 13th”), you’re probably moved on to the sequels and, man, is that a journey.
Here are some follow-ups that are worth your time:
“Paranormal Activity 3” — Because of the “found footage” boom of the early 2000s, the “Paranormal Activity” franchise hasn’t aged particularly well. But the third installment, which is the best of the series, threw it back to 1988 and used some cool, creative methods to draw up scares, like a camcorder on an oscillating fan. The story is still pure cheese, but the jolts of horror are there.
“Ouija: Origin of Evil” — While the original “Ouija” movie wasn’t anything to note, its prequel, directed by new master of horror Mike Flanagan, is surprisingly creepy, grounded and emotional. It’s exactly what you would expect from the person who helmed the surprise hit Netflix show “The Haunting of Hill House” and underrated horror movies like “Hush (2016)” and “Gerald’s Game.”
“Addams Family Values” — While it’s not horror, “The Addams Family’s” gothic look and fixation on death certainly fits the season. The original “Addams Family” movie was a fine start, but this sequel, back with the first’s stellar cast, is superior in almost every way. It lets the cast, which includes fantastic performances by Raul Julia, Christopher Lloyd, Joan Cusack and Anjelica Huston, off the leash to be creepier, kookier and funnier.
“Scream 4” — Nothing will touch the thrills and cleverness of the original “Scream.” Having done a recent re-watch of the series, “2” and “3” have not aged particularly well. Maybe it’s lowered expectations or the 11-year gap between this and its predecessor, but it’s a pretty fun movie. Neve Campbell gives an entertaining comeback performance, while newcomers like Emma Roberts, Adam Brody and Rory Culkin give it a fresher feel. The twist is still ludicrous, but it’s what you’ve come to expect by now.
“10 Cloverfield Lane” — Besides its tacked-on ending, this barely qualifies as a “Cloverfield” film. Instead of being a monster movie, it’s a creepy, locked-door thriller about a woman (played by Mary Elizabeth Winstead) trapped in a fallout shelter with a conspiracy nut (John Goodman at his most unhinged) after she gets in a car crash. He says she can’t leave because a bomb has gone off and the nuclear fallout will kill her. She thinks he’s lying to keep her from escaping. It’s the closest a mainstream movie has come to Hitchcock in a long time.
— Andrew Gaug | St. Joe Live