Haunted houses are kind of a thing in my family. My mom, my brother, and myself have all worked in one, at some point. That’s where my best friend and I became friends, many years ago. I love Halloween events like Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Orlando. I’ve been a scareactor, makeup artist, and worked on sets. I’ve been behind the scenes at some of the coolest haunts I’ve ever been to. And now, I’ve passed along my love for haunts to my nieces, who have become my haunt buddies the last two years. (Each girl pictured above at their first house they ever went through.)
With everything this year, it’s looking like the girls and I may be skipping out on haunts. So, to keep the feeling alive, I’ve been binge-watching some movies in one of my favorite sub genres of horror: haunt attractions going awry.
So, I decided to share a list with some of my favorites. I’m always finding more to watch, so not everything is on here that could be, I’m sure. But hopefully you’ll find some spooky haunt movies to keep the spirit alive if you are also missing haunts this year.
The Houses October Built ( 1 & 2 )
This is a big series for people who enjoy haunt films. The movie is about a group of friends that go on a road trip to check out underground and wild haunts, but obviously, things start to get unusual. Shot in a found footage style, you go through the haunts and horrors with them.
The Funhouse Massacre
Fun and definitely enjoyable – the Funhouse Massacre is a perfect example of haunt attraction goes horribly wrong. Plus, Robert Englund. Need I say more?
Another fairly popular and very recent movie, Hell Fest is easily described as a “what if Halloween Horror Nights turned murderous?” – or any big Halloween event, really.
Hell House LLC
Another found footage, but another example of a classic haunt going very, very wrong. There’s three of them, currently, and all are available on Shudder.
A Shudder exclusive, but available on DVD as well, Haunt is one of my favorites on this list. Unique, interesting ideas, a good motivating drive for the main character to preserve, and just a fun time, it’s one that you could really see happening in reality with just enough disbelief to not ruin haunts for you forever.
If extreme haunts interest you, then this is the movie for you. There’s some interesting twists to this one as well, so it keeps things from getting too repetitive.
The Blackout Experiments
Now, let’s venture a little into documentaries. And since we’re on the subject, let’s talk about a fairly famous extreme haunt: the Blackout Experiment. This one focuses on a group of people and how intensely their obsession with it has influenced their regular lives. But it’s still an interesting watch if you’re curious about these sorts of haunts, without wanting to sign a waiver.
Haunters: the Art of the Scare
I’ve watched this particularly documentary over and over, but it does hold a bit of controversy in the haunt community because of it’s heavy focus on the extreme haunt (if you can consider it even that): McKamey Manor. But, I think it shows the negatives of that haunt and highlights the positives of classic haunts, and definitely worth a watch.
A charming look at the popular New Zealand haunt, Spookers, this documentary is a lovely look at the bond a good cast can make with each other. Available on Shudder, if you’re interested.
Let me know which movies you’ve seen, and which you’re planning to check out!