Recently it was announced that the Criterion Collection would finally be releasing one of my top five favorite films of all time, "Rosemary's Baby," on fancy-ass Blu-Ray and DVD. I squealed with delight, hoping to purchase it as an early birthday (it's September 30th, cough, ahem, by the way) gift for myself. Then I saw that the release date was October 30th. BLURST.
It got me thinking though; I'm not a last-minute kind of Halloween girl. Two summers ago, I started ordering pieces for my pin-up nurse costume in July. I like to plan ahead. I love Halloween, and I love spooky things. Remember my affection for skull jewelry? (Still prevalent.) Then all that Halloween-thinking and spooky-jewelry-thinking got me even-more-thinking about other creepy things.
So, I'm sitting here in my non-air-conditioned apartment kind of reeling with boredom and itching for moody, murky fall nights and crisper weather. But, seeing as that's not gonna happen anytime soon, I figured I'd put together a little xoJane mid-summer creep-fest. Light some candles and gather 'round, folks.
Wikipedia Is For Creepers
Wikipedia is an Internet rabbit hole for those of us who are obsessed with all things creepy, and so I am here to share with you some of my favorite (I use that term loosely) Wikipedia pages, presented without comment.
- Carl Tanzler
- Taman Shud Case
- List of cryptids
- Who Put Bella in the Wych Elm?
- Unexplained disappearances
While you have to wait 'til October to watch "Rosemary's Baby" in all its crisp, Criterion glory, the collection is currently home to some of the best horror out there. Put these on your Netflix queue or however that thing works (I don't have an account, whatever, whatever).
"House" (1977, Nobuhiko Obayashi)
Because who doesn't want to watch a dreamy, psychedelic, half-cartoon story about 7 teenage girls being killed off one by one? The first time I watched this it was 4 a.m. and I was very tired and very, very confused.
"Eyes Without A Face" (1960, Georges Franju)
Also in my top 5 favorite movies of all time, "Eyes Without A Face" is a French film about a doctor whose daughter was horribly disfigured in a car accident. Determined to "fix" her (despite the fact that she doesn't really care and kind of digs her vacant, expressionless safety mask), he begins to kill off young girls in search for the perfect replacement face. Things go awry, of course. One of the best final scenes in any movie, ever.
"Carnival of Souls" (1962, Herk Harvey)
A Gwyneth Paltrow lookalike is nearly killed in a car accident and, upon surviving, decides to start over as a church organist. Her new life isn't completely free of terror though as she encounters ghouls from an abandoned theme park and an extremely forward roommate. Bonus: creepy organ soundtrack!
"Repulsion" (1965, Roman Polanski)
Included in Polanski's "Apartment Trilogy" along with "Rosemary's Baby" and "The Tenant," Repulsion is a story about Carol (played by the bea-u-ti-ful Catherine Deneuve), a young woman who is so repulsed (hence, the title, har har) by men to the point of madness. Gross things happen, particularly with a rabbit.
Curl Up With A Creepy Book
It's hard for me to be creeped out by works of fiction. Maybe I'm just not reading the right stuff, but I've never really been frightened by any book I've ever read. Two pieces stand out for me though that have left some sort of spooky mark on me, the first being House of Leaves, a difficult-to-describe story within a story about a house that's bigger on the inside than it is on the outside. If you pick it up, be sure to get the full-color edition!
The second scary tale is The Yellow Wallpaper, a short story that I'll let you all look up because I don't want to ruin it! If you know of any books that will actually scare my pants off, do recommend 'em!
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If you're sitting here wondering what on Earth I'm rambling on about, feel free to let me know in the comments. Or just show me pictures of your best Halloween costumes. Here I am as Rosemary with a lil' demon baby.
Twitter weirdo: @hannahejo