Horror movies about ghosts and zombies may be terrifying, but deep down, we know that such supernatural creatures don’t exist. As terrifying as demonic nuns and pale white child ghosts may be, they’re not part of the real world (or so we hope). So we don’t have to worry about them hunting us down as we sleep.

But slasher films like Halloween are a different story altogether (literally and metaphorically). They feature human threats, murderers and stalkers who could very well exist in the real world. Sure, the killers may wear goofy masks and such – but they wield knives, hatchets, and all manner of sharp weapons that could eviscerate you quickly.

That’s why slasher films send bigger chills down our spine than supernatural horror films. If you’re in the mood for a sleepless Halloween, here are some of the best slasher films to catch. We bet you can’t sit through all of them without screaming at least once.

 

1. Scream (1996)

Scream is perhaps the most iconic of all the slasher films. Maybe that Ghostface mask might be a little hokey in this day and age, but it gave all audiences an acute phobia of telephone calls back then. It went on to spawn three more sequels, although none of them could match the horrifying power of the first. The series centered around different murderers adopting the mask and identity of Ghostface as they slaughtered hapless teens in each movie.

Thanks to Scream, we learnt that “Sidney” could be used as a person’s name (as in, Sidney Prescott, the main protagonist played by Neve Campbell). It’s also where many of us met many young actresses who would make it big on screen, like Courteney Cox, Drew Barrymore, Rose McGowan, and of course, Neve Campbell herself.

 

2. I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997)

I Know What You Did Last Summer was a slasher film in the same vein as Scream, with a slightly different premise. After a group of teenagers accidentally ran over a pedestrian one summer, they swear to keep the manslaughter a secret. However, a stalker discovers their terrible deed, and proceeds to murder them one by one.

Like Scream, it starred uncommonly good-looking young adults like Jennifer Love-Hewitt, Sarah Michelle Gellar, and Ryan Phillipe. Although it wasn’t quite as as scary as Scream, it managed to spawn two more sequels (it’s difficult to keep that premise going for more than a movie, after all).

 

3. The Purge (2013)

The Purge was a slightly different slasher film, in that there was no central antagonist. Instead, it’s set in a seemingly idyllic future, with one big caveat – one night a year, all crime is legal. Of course, the events of the film take place during this very night. This means that the protagonists have to keep themselves safe from all sorts of lunatics who are out to murder them.

The ultra-violent film had three more sequels and a television series, but the first one was pretty groundbreaking in its wanton use of gratuitous carnage and murder. It also starred a pre-Game of Thrones Lena Headey, as well as Ethan Hawke. With plenty of jump scares and copious amounts of blood, The Purge also gave us a bleak, pessimistic look at the nature of humanity. Basically, the message was that humans are evil – and they’ll descend into depravity when given the chance.

Not a good message lull you to sleep with, honestly.

 

4. Don’t Breathe (2016)

In Don’t Breathe, a bunch of delinquents break into a blind man’s house – only to find out that his other senses are more than enough to make up for his lack of sight. Granted, the antagonist isn’t technically a slasher, since he goes around shooting people (by dint of using his heightened hearing to know where to aim).

It was a terrifyingly refreshing, with a villain that had a clear weakness (being blind) but was startling effective. If the blind man had his sight, there’s no telling how much faster he would have murdered all of them. Although the good-looking cast hasn’t become household names yet, we predict that Jane Levy, Dylan Minnette, and Daniel Zovatto will achieve idol status in five years.

 

5. Halloween (2018)

And finally, we have Halloween (2018) – a sequel to the original Halloween (1978) film and a reboot of the series. Halloween is probably the granddaddy of all slasher films, with ten more films being made after the first! They centre around the vicious fictional killer Michael Myers (not to be confused with the Austin Powers actor of the same name), of whom very little is known about.

Is he human? Is he supernatural? No-one really knows. He can withstand multiple gunshot wounds, yet it’s obvious that he wears a mask and has a human, emotional side to him. And in this terrifying new sequel/reboot, he’s back to plague Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis), heroine of the very first Halloween film.

Halloween. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

Halloween. Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

The new Halloween movie takes place 40 years after the original (both in the film and in real-life). The murderous Michael Myers (Nick Castle and James Jude Courtney) has been captured and the sole victim to have escaped his killing spree 40 years ago, Laurie Strode (Jamie Lee Curtis) is now living in terror.

Unfortunately, two meddling crime podcasters (played by Rhian Rees and Aaron Korey) decide to investigate, inadvertently freeing Michael Myers. Will our heroes survive a new rash of Halloween murders, or will Michael Myers triumph?

You’ll have to find out for yourself this Halloween.

 

Credit: Golden Village Cinemas

 

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