Welcome to Shocktober 2014

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Avatar image for patrickklepek
Posted by patrickklepek (6833 posts) -

(Note: A blog version without the trailers attached is available right here.)

October is finally here, which means it's time for Shocktober, as well. I wait all year long for this, and I've spent way too many hours over the past few days researching the following list of movies. I'm stoked.

It's not on my list, but I'll probably end up watching Trick 'r Treat at some point.
It's not on my list, but I'll probably end up watching Trick 'r Treat at some point.

Shocktober, for those who haven't participated in the past, is a daily challenge during the month of October to watch as many horror movies as possible. Although I've picked 31 movies, I'm not actually planning on watching a movie every single night. Some movies will get stuffed into marathons on weekends, while others will simply be pushed to another year.

More importantly, before you charge into the comments, know that Shocktober isn't about creating a definitive list of horror's best movies. "Where's Friday the 13th? Why don't you have Nightmare on Elm St.? I thought you loved Hellraiser!?" I've seen just about everything, and while some classics are part of the haul, there's only of those one per week. Feel free to make suggestions, and share your own lists below!

There's always next year.

Some of the movies are hitting theaters this month, and they've been appropriately slotted for the Friday of the weekend they're opening. Other movies are debuting through various on-demand services in October, and I've slotted them the first day they're available. Unfortunately, a few are are obscure, and not available on iTunes, Netflix, and other places where movies are one click away. You're on your own!

If you're looking for the best way to watch some of these movies, CanIStreamIt works like a charm for navigating digital services. There are even apps for phones and tablets to make the whole thing easier.

Some other programming notes that determined this year's lineup:

  • I'm tired of torture porn, which is why you don't see anything like it on here. It's boring. (One of the only movies that's managed to break that trend for me is the brutal and amazing Martyrs.)
  • Alien, Critters, Halloween, and Eraserhead are this year's classics to rewatch.
  • While I've tried to avoid movies exploitative of women (a trope the genre would be wise to stop using as a crutch to generate uncomfortable tension), it's hard to dodge in movies I haven't seen.
  • There's a bunch of found footage on here because, well, I really like found footage. Feel free to replace some of those movies with other ones I've dropped in here, if you dislike the style.
  • The movies cut from this list but were once part of it include Raze, House (the one by Nobuhiko Obayashi), Under the Skin, Oculus, Warm Bodies, The Tunnel, Bereavement, Making Contact, The Frogs, Galaxy of Terror, Deliver Us From Evil, Dark Woods, The Munches, Tusk, and the WNUF Halloween Special. Plenty of them seem like they would have been worthy!
  • Movies I've seen but considered part of the rewatch included Contracted, We Are What We Are, Maniac, The Silent House (the original), Rubber, Alien Abduction, The McPherson Tape, [rec], and BBC: Ghost Watch. All come highly recommended, especially [rec]. That movie's damn scary.

Throughout the month, I'll probably be writing some reviews of these movies. These will be published as premium written articles, unless I decide to get ambitious and try to do reviews in video format. That seems pretty unlikely. I'm also talking to Alex and Rorie about trying to do a few horror podcasts throughout the month to talk about our favorites. As usual, we'll also have a much more frequent schedule for Spookin' With Scoops, and I'm working on some other features to arrive throughout the month.

In any case, let's get going. With Alien: Isolation coming out next week, it seemed entirely appropriate to kick this year off with one of the greatest, if not the greatest, horror movie of all-time, Ridley Scott's Alien.

Happy Shocktober!

(Thanks to the amazing Giant Bomb user Cal Garrioch for the art at the top!)

  • October 1: Alien

  • October 2: ABCs of Death 2 (VOD)

  • October 3: Annabelle (Theaters)

  • October 4: The Guest (Theaters)

  • October 5: Coherence

  • October 6: The Honeymoon (Warning: I'm told the trailer is spoilery. Beware!)

  • October 7: Beneath

  • October 8: Grabbers

  • October 9: Death Spa

  • October 10: The Houses October Built (VOD)

  • October 11: Dead Snow 2 (VOD)

  • October 12: The Awakening

  • October 13: Kill List

  • October 14: Rawhead Rex

  • October 15: Halloween

  • October 16: The Loved Ones

  • October 17: Chopping Mall

  • October 18: Extraterrestrial (VOD)

  • October 19: Possession

  • October 20: Atrocious

  • October 21: The Battery

  • October 22: Bad Milo

  • October 23: Escape From Tomorrow

  • October 24: V/H/S Viral (VOD)

  • October 25: Exists (VOD)

  • October 26: The Borderlands

  • October 27: The Town That Dreaded Sundown

  • October 28: Stage Fright

  • October 29: Entity

  • October 30: Eraserhead

  • October 31: Horns (Theaters)

Avatar image for hassun
#1 Edited by hassun (9921 posts) -

Damn these videos took a while to load.

This article reminds me once again that I live in an area of the world were video on demand is scarcely available. Let alone services like netflix.

@patrickklepek

"a rope the genre would be wise to stop using as a crutch"

I think that should be "trope".

"The movies cut from this list but were one part of it include Raze,"

Did you mean to write "once" there?

"Under the Skin" also has an italicisation problem.

P.S. Do you have a link to that awesome looking header art?

Avatar image for striderno9
#2 Edited by StriderNo9 (1347 posts) -

Awesome! @patrickklepek, I've been waiting for this! Also, not can't remember if you've seen these already but Lovely Molly (found footage) was way better than I expected, The Road was really clever, and Absentia was a good watch also.

Avatar image for kantrip
#3 Posted by kantrip (58 posts) -

Cannot wait to see Horns.

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#4 Edited by DJKommunist (288 posts) -

@patrickklepek have you ever seen some of the weird aggressively unpleasant body horror stuff? not just your david cronenbergs and your human centipedes, but if you want some real unpleasant hard to watch stuff go watch nekromantik or Salo : 120 Days of Sodom.

Avatar image for shotgunlincoln
#5 Posted by ShotgunLincoln (396 posts) -

IT'S FINALLY HERE! Great list but you really are doing yourself a disservice by not watching House. That movie is a fever dream of crazy.

Avatar image for fobwashed
#6 Posted by Fobwashed (2778 posts) -

I love scary movies. Unfortunately, Celine does not. I won't be catching any theatrical releases =[

And "(a rope the genre would be wise to stop using as a crutch to generate uncomfortable tension)"

I think you meant trope?

Avatar image for kingjulesxii
#7 Edited by kingjulesxii (95 posts) -

BEEN WAITING FOR THIS, YASSSSSSS

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#8 Posted by KatyGaGa (626 posts) -

Patrick, do you consider Alien to be a good science fiction film?

Online
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#9 Posted by FeverChill (45 posts) -

I'll have to watch some of these trailers at home, people are looking at me funny in the office, nobody understands October

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#10 Posted by Landon (4137 posts) -

@patrickklepek have you seen Resolution on Netflix? Really great atmosphere and a really weird ending. The two leads have great chemistry as well.

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#11 Posted by profmembrane (26 posts) -

@patrickklepek I cannot wait to hear your thoughts on Possession. One of my favorite films and one of the most disturbing pieces of cinema ever created. Isabelle Adjani's infamous scene [no spoilers, you'll know it when it happens,] is powerful and disturbing and moving all at once. Incredible stuff.

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#12 Edited by kaos_cracker (1003 posts) -

I am really looking forward to see some of these. They look pretty good.

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#13 Posted by sleeperman (24 posts) -

Kill List is one of the best movies I have seen in a very long time, but Atrocious is terrible all the way through. An incredibly lazy found-footage movie.

Avatar image for borilla
#14 Posted by Borilla (13 posts) -

Hey Scoops (and fellow Bombadiers), if you're in LA, you can check out the movie I wrote at Screamfest on October 20th at 7:30. You can see the trailer here:Lost After Dark Trailer

Hope some of you guys check it out, and Patrick is right. Martyrs is incredible if you want to feel kind of horrible.

Avatar image for blzzzrrttt
#15 Posted by blzzzrrttt (251 posts) -

Man, I didn't even know a third V/H/S movie was being made! I loved those movies so I'm definitely gonna check out Viral, and maybe a couple of the other movies listed!

Avatar image for borilla
#16 Posted by Borilla (13 posts) -

The Borderlands has a great ending, and Honeymoon is good, but you're going to be waaaay ahead of the characters in the movie, spoilery trailer or not. If you haven't seen it, you should check out Afflicted, which is a great evolution of found footage tropes.

Avatar image for imbiginjapan
#17 Posted by ImBigInJapan (321 posts) -

I'm not sure exactly when I'll find time to watch, but I'll definitely try to track some of these down.

However I'm not sure anyone could pay me enough to watch Eraserhead again. That was the most uncomfortable viewing experience I've ever had, and I am afraid either to go through that discomfort again, or perhaps worse dull the edge by becoming inured to its unique horrors.

Avatar image for outrager
#18 Edited by Outrager (266 posts) -

I thought V/H/S was a pretty good movie, but V/H/S 2 gave me such a headache from just the first 30 minutes that I couldn't finish it. I think the only other time I got motion sick like that was from the first Marathon demo on XBox Live Arcade.

Avatar image for lausebub
#19 Posted by Lausebub (549 posts) -

Would partaking in Shocktober be a good start to get into the horror genre? Probably not, right? I should at least watch Alien I guess.

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#20 Edited by Molenator85 (249 posts) -

KIll List and Grabbers are two movies that remind me why I keep a Netflix subscription. They are both excellent overlooked films.

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#21 Edited by TheManWithNoPlan (7830 posts) -

It's that time again!

Just for posterity, and a reference of other cool movies to check out for this year, here's last year's Shocktober 2013.

Avatar image for patrickklepek
#22 Posted by patrickklepek (6833 posts) -

@borilla said:

The Borderlands has a great ending, and Honeymoon is good, but you're going to be waaaay ahead of the characters in the movie, spoilery trailer or not. If you haven't seen it, you should check out Afflicted, which is a great evolution of found footage tropes.

I really enjoyed Afflicted. Kind of bummed that I didn't save it for October.

Avatar image for sin4profit
#23 Posted by Sin4profit (3501 posts) -

As someone who liked a lot of Pushead artwork growing up, that header image is pretty great.

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#24 Posted by I_Stay_Puft (5578 posts) -

Finished watching "You're Next" the other day after you guys talked about it on Bombin in the AM. That movie was alright.

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#25 Posted by HatKing (7448 posts) -

Cutting House is a mistake. Such a bizarre film.

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#26 Posted by ShaggE (9235 posts) -

It's the most wonderful time of the yeeeeaaaar!

I tend to pick movies on a whim throughout October, so I don't make a list, but I do plan to watch three particular franchises all the way through (again):

Hellraiser (two down already... sadly, the best two by far)

Halloween (I was never a Michael guy, so there will be plenty of unseen installments for me)

Puppet Master (I love the whole franchise to death. Even at its worst, it's hugely entertaining... not unlike my beloved Elm Street)

Avatar image for borp
#27 Posted by Borp (213 posts) -

Just dropping in to say that Kill List is incredible.

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#28 Edited by Milkman (19275 posts) -

Oh man, some horror podcasts with you, Alex and Rorie sounds great. Do it!

Also, that art at the top is amazing.

Online
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#29 Posted by D4RKSH33P (159 posts) -

Nope.gif

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#30 Edited by ImBigInJapan (321 posts) -

@lausebub: Horror fan or not, Alien is just a great film.

Avatar image for lolandorder
#31 Posted by LOLandOrder (27 posts) -

You're tired of torture porn, but you included The Loved Ones? Don't get me wrong - I liked it quite a bit, but it is a torture movie.

Avatar image for pauper
#32 Posted by Pauper (58 posts) -

Yessssssss!!!!! The Battery is an amazing film that you all should watch.

Avatar image for vierastalo
#33 Posted by VierasTalo (1431 posts) -

Glad to see you kept in some of the suggestions I threw your way besides Possession. This list is pretty alright; I've seen a bit over twenty of them. Annabelle has a press screening in a few weeks, though I've no particularly high hopes after that dull trailer came out. Still, I, like everyone else, liked The Conjuring so screw it, hopefully some of that magic rubbed off on it.

The crap/quality-ratio on the first ABCs of Death was a bit too much on the side of the crap, so I might skip the sequel despite the director list being a tad more intriguing this time around. It really sucks that The Guest isn't coming out here. I did an interview with the screenwriter of You're Next and this, was a darn swell dude with a lot to say about turning tropes on their heads while maintaining, you know, the genre roots. And the hardship of building a strong female character in an environment where that isn't really a thing.

The first film I saw here that really rubbed me the wrong way is Grabbers; dumb CGI monsters with comedy that is funny approximately 0% of the time. That is a film with a concept and that alone. Now you compare that to Dead Snow 2, a movie filled with dumb CGI monsters, there's an incredible difference. In Grabbers the gimmick is just being drunk and stupor-y, in Dead Snow 2 the gimmick is the actual monsters doing insane shit. A lot of scenes in that reminded me of the classic werewolf nazi invasion scene in American Werewolf in London.

The Awakening I found maybe a bit lackluster. The proble is that it isn't very scary, but I sure do love how it takes a lot of time building the leading lady as a credible character with legitimate concerns over other people in the film.

The less said about Kill List, the better. It's such a wonderful surprise, even if the social commentary on poverty in modern-day UK kinda falls flat. The Loved Ones is really funny. It's a bit like Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 when it comes to what brand of deranged we're talking about. At the same time though, I would basically categorize it as torture porn, albeit hilarious at that. So I dunno, might not hit the right spot for you if you feel like not watching people suffer horrendously.

Bad Milo turned out to be as good as I thought a movie about a walking, killing ass would be. The Borderlands is creepy as hell, and the ending... well, that ending. It's so gross. That isn't something I say easily. Stage Fright is no Repo! but I'll take my horror musicals where I can. Meat Loaf is kind of hilarious in it in all the ways he probably doesn't think he is hilarious. I was super hyped to see you pimp up The Entity, but it's without the prefix so it's some new found footage apparently. That old one is a terrifying film. As for stuff I hadn't heard of but am now interested, The Houses October Built might be good. I hope.

PS. I really hope more people see Possession because of this. It is just the best.

Avatar image for shamblertree
#34 Posted by ShamblerTree (4 posts) -

I'd be genuinely surprised if any of the other movies are better than Kill List, it's incredible.

Avatar image for erinisadrunk
#35 Posted by erinisadrunk (226 posts) -

Too bad you ended having to cut House from the list. It was part of my Shocktober run last year and it was incredible. Not particularly scary, but it is a complete visual wonder from beginning to end.

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#36 Posted by ildon (743 posts) -

I was trying to figure out why you had two puppies in the banner artwork, until I realized the second one was The Wolf (Alex)! The eyes gave it away.

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#37 Posted by monkeystick (356 posts) -

Martyrs is one of my all-time favorite horrors. I agree that "torture porn" can be boring but while torture is an element of the story, there's so much more to this film. It really surprised me.

I hadn't read a synopsis of Martyrs before watching it and I firmly suggest the same for anyone intending to check it out. The story feels like it's going in one direction and then slaps you in the face.

Avatar image for inantp
#38 Posted by inantp (46 posts) -

holy shit someone link me to where the image at the top of the page is posted

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#39 Edited by redsoundwaves (86 posts) -

I never thought of Escape from Tomorrow as a horror movie, just seemed like an interesting psychological thriller because of its context. I guess it makes sense looking at it that way.

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#40 Edited by MeierTheRed (5895 posts) -

This should go well in hand with Cinemassacre's Monster Madness this month.

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#42 Posted by mike28212 (51 posts) -

Great list as always. Thanks for doing this. I am currently reading Horns and looking forward to seeing the movie.

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#43 Edited by Yummylee (24646 posts) -

Man, Trick 'r Treat is such a fucking fantastic film. Not particularly scary, but it's a lot of fun. You ever see Joe Dante's The Hole? I guess it's more Dark Fantasy than outright Horror, but it has a lot of superb imagery on display, especially once the main character enters the hole itself during the final stretch -- lotta great symbolism and the like. Plus it's one of the few movies of recent memory where i found the child actor to be a surprisingly engaging little tike.

I don't know if I'll go on a similar scale marathon over the month, but i know I intend to at least rewatch the two Creepshow films soon.

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#44 Posted by DukesT3 (2103 posts) -

Man, fuck Martyrs. Love it but fuuuuck that movie.

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#45 Edited by VincentVendetta (521 posts) -

You should have kept Under the Skin. It's pretty good.

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#46 Posted by Fear_the_Booboo (1071 posts) -

Totally recommended House to Patrick. Sad that it got cut but I hope you'll come back to it one day!

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#47 Posted by Coldman (74 posts) -

Starting my own October horror film per day thing today. First film? You're Next. Mostly making the rest up as I go along, though. I know I want to see [rec] on the 31st. Also, Triangle.

Have you seen "Eden Lake", Patrick? The end of that film is kind of horrifying.

Avatar image for borilla
#48 Posted by Borilla (13 posts) -

@pauper: The Battery is amazing! Our movie got featured by raven Banner at Cannes and I have a pic of our movie poster right next to The Battery's. Such pride.

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#49 Edited by logansexsmith613 (13 posts) -

The only real tragedy from the cut movies list is House. Stunning psycho-sexual loose narrative masterpiece. Incredible cast of all female non-actor leads. Mind bending effects that are ambitious far beyond the film's budget that seem to become willed into existence by the filmmaker who at times paints right onto the 35mm negative to achieve the visuals. Also serves as an almost anachronistic damnation of Japan's male dominated patriarchal society, displaying the moral and very real dangers and effects of trying to trap, trick or consume seemingly unsuspecting women. This movie would have eaten you alive. Try to make room for it next year.

Avatar image for cyberfunk
#50 Posted by cyberfunk (180 posts) -

I'd be genuinely surprised if any of the other movies are better than Kill List, it's incredible.

I was gonna say the same thing. Kill List made me aubily gasp in a theater.

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