[Image credit: New Line Cinema / Warner Bros.]
The high temperatures of late summer have us dreaming of cool fall days, and that leads to thoughts of Halloween, and horror movie season. Thankfully for fans, horror is now a year-round event at the movies. There’s no question, however, that the approaching autumn is the best time to watch some spooky stories on the big screen.
Fortunately, the late months of the year have a lot to look forward to! There’s IT CHAPTER TWO, of course, which follows the biggest R-rated movie event of the decade. And Stephen King will be back on screen — or his stories will, at least — when DOCTOR SLEEP, the sequel to THE SHINING, arrives in November. Here are six great horror films we’re looking forward to in the back half of 2019.
[Image Credit: CBS Films / Lionsgate]
It's 1968; the war in Vietnam is raging and there’s turmoil even in small-town America. But three high school kids and a stranger in town (played by Zoe Margaret Colletti, Gabriel Rush, Austin Zajur and Michael Garza) have bigger problems, as they find a book of scary stories which exerts a terrible influence on real life. Soon they’re dealing with creatures that leap right off the page. There was always something delightfully old-school about Alvin Schwartz’s “Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark” books, which celebrated horror as a gateway to having a great time. This film version follows suit as it translates a few of Schwartz’s stories into a spooky, somewhat gory and certainly scary night. [August 9]
[Image Credit: Fox Searchlight Pictures]
Extended family relations turn tense and bloody in this absolutely bonkers tale of Grace (Samara Weaving), a new bride who will only be welcomed into her husband’s wealthy old society family by taking part in a game of hide and seek. There’s just one catch, as the contest involves weapons and extreme violence. In the spirit of gory good times like YOU’RE NEXT, this fast-paced game of death is a welcome blast of gory good times for late summer nights. [August 21]
[Image Credit: New Line Cinema / Warner Bros.]
The Losers Club survived a brush with the demonic clown Pennywise in 1986, but their task is not done. 27 years after they faced the evil force as children, the seven grown friends are pulled back to their home town of Derry, Maine, to face their fears, and send the clown back into the darkness. James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain, Bill Hader, Isaiah Mustafa, Jay Ryan, James Ransone and Andy Bean star as the adult Losers, while Jaeden Martell, Wyatt Oleff, Jack Dylan Grazer, Finn Wolfhard, Sophia Lillis, Chosen Jacobs and Jeremy Ray Taylor return to play the characters as children — and, of course, Bill Skarsgård reprises his role as the terrifying Pennywise. [September 6]
[Image Credit: A24]
Writer/director Robert Eggers captured arthouse horror audiences with THE WITCH in 2015; now he returns with an even more stripped-down tale of terror that feels as if has been dug up from some shadowy hiding place. Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe star in this black and white film about two lighthouse keepers who may have too much time on their hands — and whose isolated existence on a New England island in the 1890s leads to madness. [October 18]
[Image Credit: Warner Bros.]
In 2013, Stephen King published the sequel to his early novel “The Shining,” and now the feature film version is almost ready to scare anyone willing to venture back to the Overlook Hotel with a now-grown Danny Torrance. Dan (played by Ewan McGregor) has suppressed the “shining” power that turned his young life into hell. When messages begin reaching him in the night, however, he meets a young woman, Abra (Kyliegh Curran), who also has the “shine.” Together, they confront a group which preys on powers such as theirs — and Dan finally faces the fears that took such horrifying form in the corridors of an isolated old hotel. [November 8]
[Image Credit: Blumhouse Productions / Universal Pictures]
In 1974, Bob Clark’s BLACK CHRISTMAS, which is based on the old “the call is coming from inside the house!” urban legend, became one of the first slasher films, and the defining Christmas horror movie. (Context for the younger readers: Everything was different before cell phones.) Clark’s movie followed a group of college students whose sorority house is infiltrated by a killer. Now Sophia Takal is doing a new version, with co-writer April Wolfe, for Blumhouse. Imogen Poots stars in the New Zealand-shot remake, with Aleyse Shannon, Brittany O’Grady, Lily Donoghue and Caleb Eberhardt also in the cast. [December 13]