UNH Students Share their Favorite Halloween Flicks


Stefanie Kistler, Staff Writer

DURHAM, NH- Spooky season has started – a month full of pumpkins, cider and Halloween activities. One staple that comes with this time of year is Halloween movies and the fervor surrounding them. People love the nostalgia of old classics and the excitement of new ones. However most have that one Halloween movie that just holds onto them and never lets go.

Third year UNH student, Courtney Woodward, said that “Halloweentown” is her favorite. This movie tells the story of a young girl named Marnie who finds out she is descended from a family of witches and that her grandmother lives in a mystical town called ‘Halloweentown.’ 

Woodward said she never enjoyed horror movies as a child and that Halloween was never her favorite holiday growing up. To get her to enjoy it, her family focused on the magic aspect of Halloween and watched “Halloweentown every year. 

“We would sort through our favorite candy while watching,” said Woodward. “Even watching it now I feel like it brings a sense of wonder and magic to Halloween.”

For first year student, Jackson Rogers, the 1978 movie “Halloweenis unbeatable. “Halloween” is a classic slasher movie about an escaped killer, Michael Meyers, hunting down people in a crazed killing spree. Rogers enjoys that the movie doesn’t use jump scares. Instead, he says, the underlying fear is created by being constantly followed with no escape.

“Michael Meyers is a wonderfully simple villain,” Rogers said. “The mask he wears is so stark and lifeless, it almost acts as a screen to project your fears onto.”

Rogers also said that it’s not just the characters or the storyline that he likes, but the general visuals of the movie as well.

“It feels like Halloween. It looks like Halloween. It is Halloween. The film engulfs itself in the holiday that is its namesake,” he said.

For fourth year student, Anna Gray, and second year student, Laura Davies, “Hocus Pocus” is their Halloween movie of choice. This movie is a campy 90s flick about three witches (the Sanderson sisters) who are awakened by some unsuspecting children. The sisters proceed to try and kidnap and devour the town’s children in order to stay young forever.

“I love watching it every year,” said Gray. “I saw it first as a kid and it just reminds me of my childhood.”

When asked what in particular draws her to the movie, Gray was unsure.

“I don’t even know why I love it so much,” she said laughing. “Nostalgia?”

Davies, on the other hand, was sure of why it is her favorite. She said that it is the characters from the film, specifically the Sanderson sisters, that make her enjoy “Hocus Pocus” so much.

Sophia D’Amato, a third year student, said that the lesser-known movie “Scary Godmother” is her favorite. This 2003 computer-animated movie is about a young girl named Hannah who encounters a witch who calls herself, ‘Scary Godmother’ on Halloween, and hijinks ensue.

“I remember when I was a kid sitting in front of my TV and watching it. I wasn’t exactly afraid of it, but it was off-putting mostly due to the animation,” D’Amato said with a smile.

D’Amato said she still enjoys watching it today, due to the general light-hearted silliness of it and the fact that the animation still creeps her out.

“It’s one of those movies that stuck with me, even though the quality isn’t that great. It has a special place in my heart,” she said.

Nolan McHugh, a third year student, says that the movie “The Cabin in the Woods” is his all-time favorite during the Halloween season. The horror-comedy movie is about a group of college students who, while staying at a cabin in the woods, start to experience typical horror movie events, but unbeknownst to them, it is all being controlled by a laboratory of scientists.

When asked why this movie came first to his mind, he shared that it’s the mix of genres that attracts him.

“It succeeds in all aspects be it satire, horror, or comedy all at the same time.”

He said that he enjoys watching the movie with friends around Halloween.

“I like showing it to people. It’s so strange that you cannot help but be drawn to it. It’s just a unique type of horror movie,” he said.

While student’s clearly have a variety of opinions on what the best Halloween movie is, there seems to be a common theme – love for nostalgia, humor and Halloween magic.