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Wednesday, May 25, 2022

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, and there are dozens of movies to watch to get you into the holiday spirit. It’s spooky season, and we can honor the ghouls and goblins this month by watching proper seasonal films.

Hands down, the best Halloween movie, beyond a doubt, is “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.” Any Charles M. Schulz movie will always take the cake. The aesthetic of pink and purple watercolor sunsets makes the film not only entertaining, but a work of art. The soundtrack, produced by the Vince Guaraldi Trio, is sure to put you in a festive mood. Then, of course, there is the humor native to all “Peanuts”comics, with Charlie Brown lamenting that he got a rock while trick or treating, and Snoopy flying his dog house as a WWI aircraft, yet making it home on time for the Halloween festivities. Linus and his innocent belief in the arrival of the Great Pumpkin will get you into the holiday spirit, especially if you’re feeling a bit overwhelmed with midterm exams and papers. 

Tim Burton’s “The Nightmare Before Christmas” is a close second. If creepy is what you like, creepy is what you get. Some people are averse to his aesthetic, but all my favorite movies are stop motion (i.e., “Fantastic Mr. Fox”). The weirder the better, right? This 1993 movie combines my two favorite holidays in one, so what’s not to love? If you like romance, you’ll like the subplot of Jack and Sally’s undying love for one another: #RelationshipGoals. If you’re more into horror, this movie is definitely for you. The characters are lovable, the music is fantastic and the plot is intriguing. The Pumpkin King is here to get you excited for Oct. 31. 

Burton is in the rankings yet again, but this time for the stop motion film “Corpse Bride.” The 2005 movie embodies the Victorian era as it follows the love triangle between Victor, Victoria and Emily, the undead bride who was murdered by her ex-fiance. Helena Bonham Carter and Johnny Depp are serving serious spooky vibes in this classic film.  The dark hues of this haunted movie are sure to leave you creeped out, yet the happy ending will fill you with warmth — if the hot cider you ought to drink while watching hasn’t already. If you’re even remotely interested in British literature or Victorian history, I highly recommend watching “Corpse Bride.”

Next there’s Disney’s 1949 “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow,” which is a 30-minute short film included in “The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad.” This 70-year-old movie depicts the tale of Ichabod Crane and his encounter with the Headless Horseman on Halloween night. Bing Crosby narrated and sang for this as well, so it’s full of bangers. This classic movie is great for kids and adults alike, as it’s not too scary yet highly entertaining. 

Last but not least on my short list of must-see Halloween movies is “Coraline.” Neil Gaiman must have been on acid when he wrote the novel it was based on because — wow. It’s a confusing conglomeration of buttons, evil parents, insects, magical mice-rats, dead dogs, ghost children and circus performers. I’m not complaining though, I eagerly anticipate watching “Coraline” every October. If you need a song for a synchronized swimming routine, look no further than the “Coraline” soundtrack. 

If you only have time for five movies this Halloween season, be sure to see “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown,” “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” “Corpse Bride,” the 1949 version of “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow” and “Coraline.” Get out your pumpkin scented candle and holiday printed cookies so you can cozy up to a fun-filled night of Halloween movie watching.

Hannah Whitaker is a UF English junior

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