Where to Stream ‘Poltergeist,’ ‘Psycho,’ and Other Classic Horror Movies This Halloween
Halloween may be here, but it’s not going to be the spooky celebration we’re all used to. Big parties are a no-no and many towns have canceled trick-or-treating due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. But there’s one traditional activity that’s still OK to indulge in this Oct. 31 — watching scary movies. There’s no shortage of horror movies out there to stream, but you can never go wrong with a classic. Get ready for a night of frights with this list of some of the best-known horror films and where to stream them.
“They’re here.” Who can forget the iconic line uttered by little Carol Anne (Heather O’Rourke) after she starts communicating with a ghost via a static-filled television set? Soon, it’s not just Carol Anne who’s seeing strange things in Tobe Hooper’s quintessential haunted house flick about a suburban California family who discovers they’re sharing their home with a very malevolent spirit.
Streaming on Netflix.
Master of suspense Alfred Hitchcock laid the groundwork for the slasher film in this 1960 classic starring Janet Leigh. The notorious shower scene remains one of the most frightening murders ever committed onscreen, and the big reveal about the deceptively mild-mannered motel operator Norman Bates (Anthony Perkins) still has the power to shock decades later.
Streaming on Peacock.
A young woman (Mia Farrow) and her husband (John Cassavetes) move into a Gothic apartment building in New York City in this 1968 movie directed by Roman Polanski. Soon after, Rosemary learns she is pregnant and begins to experience strange symptoms. She suspects her husband and their mysterious, overly friendly neighbors have sinister intentions involving her unborn child.
Streaming on Showtime.
A research team working at an isolated station in Antarctica discovers an alien lifeform that can assume the form of its victims in this dark and grisly film from John Carpenter. The movie was panned when it was released but has since become a cult classic, in part due to its ambiguous ending.
Streaming on Hulu.
‘Night of the Living Dead’
First-time filmmaker George Romero basically invented the modern zombie movie with 1968’s Night of the Living Dead. Part horror, part social commentary, the movie follows a group of people who hole up in a farmhouse when the dead suddenly begin to attack the living. The movie is notable for casting a Black actor (Duane Jones) in a lead role and for its dark (and still-relevant) ending, which shows that undead are not the only source of horror in the world.
Streaming on Amazon Prime.
Masked murderer Michael Myers stalks a group of small-town teens in this influential 1978 horror film from John Carpenter. Jamie Lee Curtis (daughter of Psycho’s Leigh) plays Laurie Strode, who has to defend herself and her babysitting charges from a relentless killer.
Streaming on Shudder.
‘Don’t Look Now’
Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie play parents grappling with the accidental drowning death of their daughter in this 1973 chilling horror-thriller from Nicolas Roeg. On an extended trip to Venice, the wife meets a psychic who shares messages from her late child. The husband is a skeptic, but he seems to possess some strange powers himself. Elliptical editing and recurring imagery create an increasing sense of dread as the film moves toward its shocking conclusion.
Streaming on Amazon Prime.