Obviously, the summer blockbuster and the Christmas premiere stand out, but no other holiday highlights the Hollywood calendar like Halloween. However, there’s no need to dwell on the slashing and screaming when there are plenty of other more imaginative flicks for this time of year:
Monsters are inextricably tied to the lore of Halloween. Halloween movies should then be rich with children and the monsters that haunt them, but since 2001, “Monsters, Inc.” has charmed viewers with a look at monsters and their children.
Since Halloween is about stepping out in costume, why not carry the masquerade to stepping into another body. 1988’s “Big” caught Tom Hanks in the transition from funny comic lead to versatile, sought-out talent, while his character, Josh Baskin catches himself between anxious teenager and anxious adult. The film is comedic and dramatic, proving there’s something unique on both sides of a well-chosen Halloween mask. Another fun take on this theme is “13 Going on 30”.
You already know that it takes the right clothes to make an outfit, so it goes that costumes can make a movie. The lavish looks of “Alice In Wonderland,” the 2010 Disney release, breathe new life into an English story that is now as old as the American Civil War. This film contains the best movie chessboard outside Hogwarts and from that the set piece of this film – Colleen Atwood’s Academy Award winning costuming – is displayed. There is an array of dressy characters available in this story to inspire a winner for any costume party. For more fun in the costume department, revisit the “Pirates of the Caribbean” series.
Costumes are merely the means to an end. It’s candy everybody wants. And again director Tim Burton concocts a Halloween-worthy adventure with 2005 blockbuster “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.” But, don’t forget the “Willy Wonka” production made 34 years earlier. This is one time when doubling up on sweets won’t leave you with a stomachache.
And what would Halloween be without trick-or-treating? It would be a stretch to recommend the 1944 Musical “Meet Me In St. Louis” since Halloween is but one holiday on the calendar of 1904, but it does contain an interesting look at trick-or-treating through the eyes of a 6-year old at the turn of the century. So, to stick with the theme a bit more, we’ll recommend “E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial.” You still get a look at an earlier generation going door to door, but one of the gang shouldn’t even need a costume.