Non-Halloween movies that give off Halloween energy

Arts and culture editor Matthew Daigle gives his top picks of non-Halloween movies for spooky season. (Aaron Sousa/AQ)

Hello there. I’m teen-heartthrob, Matthew Daigle. You’re probably wondering, “how is he so handsome?” But more importantly, “what am I going to do for Halloween since parties are cancelled because of this stupid virus?” Have no fear friend, I’m here to help.

Today, I’ll show you another path. A path to a catalog of five movies that give off Halloween energy. This list won’t be ranked in order and the quality of the films doesn’t matter. What matters is entertainment. If you want to be entertained like a heartthrob like myself, I suggest you keep scrolling.


This 1985 cult classic is based on the popular board game of the same name and stars Pennywise himself, Tim Curry. Curry is not playing an evil clown, but he plays Wadsworth, the butler carrying out a simple dinner party. The night had other plans for Wadsworth and the guests he served.

The mansion hosts a treasure-trove of scandal, blackmail, slapstick comedy … and murder. Lots and lots of murder. Bodies are piling up in the mansion? Who do you think is the killer?

I don’t know if the comedy was intentional, but Clue is one of the funniest movies I’ve ever seen. The slapstick humor, witty dialogue and over-the-top acting make this a cult classic. I have watched Clue with my cousins a lot and we always roll on the floor during the singing telegram scene.


Based on Roald Dahl’s novel, Matilda centers around a little girl who has the worst movie family ever. Our lord and saviour Danny DeVito plays Matilda’s dad. At the beginning of the movie, he puts baby Matilda in the trunk of the car.

When she finally gets to grade school, she has to deal with the evil principle, Miss Trunchbull, who despises children, but for some reason, took a job that requires interacting with them. But have no fear, Matilda has magic powers and she puts them to use later on.

Matilda‘s balance of dark humor and heartfelt moments can delight children and grown-ups alike.

The Harry Potter series

Based on the novels by she-who-must-not-be-named, young Harry goes off to Hogwarts, the magic school where he nearly dies every year. He also breaks every school rule and gets rewarded each time.

There are so many spooky elements from magic, to ghosts, to killer-spiders, I’m surprised no one calls this a Halloween flick. I’ve been obsessed with these movies for years because the wizarding world was the one fictional world I’ve always wanted to visit.

The young cast’s immaculate chemistry, the film’s brilliant set-design and practical effects will make a witch out of you.

Sweeney Todd

Any Tim Burton movie can qualify for this list, but let’s stick with the murder musical. Johnny Depp plays Sweeney, a barber out for revenge against all that wronged him. This demon barber of Fleet Street gives his clients a bit too close of a shave.

After he kills his victims, he sends them down a shaft for Mrs. Lovett to cook them into the best meat-pies in London. This film of mayhem and murder solidifies with a haunting Stephen Sondheim score that chills the spine.

This flick screams murder, but make it a musical.

Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island

Want a kids movie that will scar your kids for life? Because I have the perfect movie, you weirdo. Previous Scooby-Doo adaptations are lighthearted, where the gang hunts ghosts, gets into shenanigans along the way and unmasks the culprit.

While there are some child-friendly moments, the film takes a dark turn. The creature-design and animation creates a creepy atmosphere that will terrify kids and some adults.

Now, go off on your spooky journey because if you can survive 2020, nothing can scare you.