Shelf Life: October means time for fright night films

Published 3:12 pm Tuesday, October 3, 2017

It’s October, which in my household means horror movie marathons! I started watching horror movies as a teenager in the late ‘90s when they were making a comeback with films such as “Scream” and “I Know What You Did Last Summer.” With the release of critical darlings “Get Out” and “It” this year, they seem to be making a comeback again! I could not be happier.

If you haven’t seen either of those two, they should be first on your list. “Get Out,” comedian Jordan Peele’s directorial debut, follows an interracial couple who visit the mysterious estate of the woman’s parents for a very bizarre party. It is still in theaters and I’m sure you’ve all heard about the most recent film adaptation of Stephen King’s novel starring Pennywise the evil clown. If you are a fan of the TV show “Stranger Things,” you’ll love this movie!

Speaking of which, have you watched “Stranger Things” yet? Season two will release on Oct. 27 on Netflix so make sure to be caught up! Set in a small town in Indiana in the 1980s, a young boy disappears amid supernatural events and his friends, family, and the local police department launch investigations to bring him back.

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If you’re still missing Downton Abbey, check out “The Guest” starring Dan Stevens, a.k.a. Matthew Crawley. He plays David, a former soldier who visits the family of his best friend who died during the war in Afghanistan. However, David may not be exactly who they think he is.

I had never heard of the 2015 film “The Invitation” when we randomly chose to watch it last week, but was pleasantly surprised. This one is more of a psychological thriller than a horror for those who don’t like blood and guts. Will and his girlfriend Kira go to a dinner party at his ex-wife Eden’s house. Will and Eden divorced while trying to cope with their young son’s death and the party is the first time any of their friends have seen the couple in over two years. But then things get weird.

“Split” and “The Visit” are director M. Night Shyamalan’s most recent films and I loved them both. In “The Visit,” 15-year-old Becca and 13-year-old Tyler experience a very interesting visit with their grandparents. In “Split,” three teenage girls are kidnapped and held hostage by a man with 23 different personalities.

A few more to check out… “Don’t Breathe,” where three delinquents break into a blind man’s house; “The Gift,” where a married couple move back to the husband’s hometown and his former classmate just won’t leave them alone; and “You’re Next,” where a family comes under attack by a group of masked assailants during their wedding anniversary getaway.

Looking for some fall fun that’s not scary? There are plenty of fun programs happening at the library this month, from pumpkin spice candles and team trivia to literary pumpkins and The Friends of the Polk County Public Library’s semi-annual book sale (see details on page 12). Pick up a copy of our monthly calendar or check it out online for more info!

Jen Pace Dickenson is the Youth Services Librarian for Polk County Public Libraries. For information about the library’s resources, programs, and other services, visit or call 828-894-8721.