With so much choice at our fingertips, sometimes settling down to decide which film or TV show you’re going to fill your evening with is a time-consuming task in itself, particularly on a night like Halloween, when you want to stay on message.
Streaming services like Amazon Prime have a whole lot of choice, which is great if you’re someone who likes options, but can present a problem if the idea of making a decision is scarier to you than any Halloween ghoul you might encounter.
To help whittle it down, here are 13 (spooky, huh?) of our top picks available on Amazon Prime to get you in the Halloween spirit...
Originally a film series based in a dystopian future, which sees all crime made legal for one night only, ‘The Purge’ has since been adapted into a TV show, following a group of people as they prepare for the annual event.
‘The Purge’ is guaranteed to make you jump, not to mention double-check your doors are locked after you’ve watched it too.
‘The Shining’ is frequently referred to as one of the greatest horror films of all time, which is no wonder given the film is the meeting point of the minds of Stanley Kubrick and Stephen King.
With no end of iconic quotes and scene-stealing moments, ‘The Shining’ is a classic of the genre, and an important lesson in quadruple-checking TripAdvisor before you agree to stay anywhere.
Another hugely important offering from the horror archives, ‘Scream’ more or less defined 90s slasher films, and is steeped in nostalgia for anyone who enjoyed it first time around. Maybe switch your mobile off, though, because you’ll be in no mood for taking any calls after watching it. Should you be up for a double (or, indeed, triple) feature, parts 2 and 3 are also available on Amazon Prime.
Supposedly billed as a family film inspired by one of Roald Dahl’s best-loved stories, can anyone honestly say that this didn’t traumatise them as a child? Still, there’s no arguing with the sheer brilliance of Anjelica Huston’s portrayal of the Grand High Witch.
‘Whatever Happened To Baby Jane?’
Equal parts gloriously camp and deeply unsettling, ‘Whatever Happened To Baby Jane’ stars Hollywood royalty Bette Davis and Joan Crawford as two sisters who can’t escape one another. Ryan Murphy’s show ‘Feud’ delves deep into the actress’ long and complicated relationship, a lot of which shines through in the film itself.
An oft-overlooked offering from Tim Burton’s filmography, ‘Sweeney Todd’ tells the gruesome tale of the “demon barber of Fleet Street” who, with the help of his companion Mrs Lovett, wreaks havoc on his customers by slashing their throats and serving them up in pies. Fortunately, the music of Stephen Sondheim makes this grim story (and the presence of certain lead actors) somewhat more palatable.
‘Death Becomes Her’
Two words: Meryl Streep. Two more words: Goldie Hawn.
If this in itself isn’t enough to entice you, let alone the thought of the Hollywood royals playing immortal, youth-obsessed frenemes that are literally dropping to pieces by the end of the film, then we don’t know what to tell you.
Because Halloween is for everyone, and not just for those of us old enough to watch ‘The Shining’ without being scarred for life by it...
Miranda’s Tom Ellis puts a new slant on the Devil in this unique detective series, which sees the Dark Lord abandoning the humdrum underworld for a new life in Los Angeles. Maybe jump straight to series two if you’re watching it for the first time, as that’s when things really get going.
‘The Walking Dead’
All of your zombie acolapyse nightmares rolled into one and spread out over nine series (seven of which are included on Amazon Prime, with the remaiming two still available to watch if you pay extra), ‘The Walking Dead’ is a true horror story.
Set in a world where zombies are rapidly taking over, ‘The Walking Dead’ has been nominated for Golden Globes, SAG Awards and even scooped multiple Emmys in the technical categories.
‘Shaun Of The Dead’
If you’re more in the mood for a laugh than an out-and-out scare, ‘Shaun Of The Dead’ is definitely one to stick on this Halloween, mixing all the gore and gruesomeness of the zombie-pocalypse genre with the best of British comedy.
Simon Pegg won huge praise for ‘Shaun Of The Dead’ upon its release in 2004, having not only co-written the film but also taken on the titular role (it has also somewhat eclipsed the most remake of ‘Dawn Of The Dead’, which was released within a month of its black comedy counterpart).
‘Night Of The Living Dead’
Then again, maybe you prefer your zombie films a little more traditional, in which case Amazon has got you covered with the 1968 version of ‘Night Of The Living Dead’.
Still good for a scare even 50 years after its initial release, you can either watch it in its original black-and-white form, to amp up the nostalgia factor, or watch a re-coloured version, for a touch more realism.
And speaking of horror and nostalgia...
Originally released in 1922, German Expressionist horror film ‘Nosferatu’ has been hailed as an inspiration to many contemporary filmmakers within the genre, while it still holds an impressive 97% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
The only downside is the fact that it’s, y’know, a silent film, so why not chuck a bit of Evanescence or Ray Parker Jr over the top to really help complete the Halloween atmosphere?