Scream while you Stream

Best movies streaming this Halloween season

By Brian Bowe

Spooky-season is upon us, people! And yes, you could busy yourself with the usual tiresome (and, in my experience, messy) activities of trick-or-treating and pumpkin carving. But, instead, why not sit back and enjoy a horror-movie marathon from the comfort of your own home – best of all, there’s no costume required! With the chill in the air and the earlier onset of evening darkness, Halloween seems the perfect time for snuggling up with red wine and a scary movie.

Whether you are a seasoned horror aficionado or a curious soul seeking thrilling new encounters, this list promises to deliver a selection of best movies to stream this Halloween season. So, gather your courage, dim the lights, and submerge yourself in our collection of nightmares. Stick with our picks, and you’ll be in for a spook-tacular night.


Wendell and Wild (2022)
Vicky Krieps
Vicky Krieps (credit: Noam Galai/Getty Images,

The two devious demon brothers Wendell (Keegan-Michael Key) and Wild (Jordan Peele) have to face their arch-enemy with the help of the nun Sister Helly, who is notorious for expelling demons. However, the brothers are not only plagued by her, but also by her altar boys.

Many will flock to Netflix for their Halloween fix – and, sure, why not; it’s the home of Black Mirror and the PG phenomenon that is Stranger Things. However, dig a little deeper, and you’ll uncover a bounty of creepy delights. One such gem is Henry Selick’s Wendell and Wild, a stunning animation packed with knotty themes and tremendous voice acting. Sure, it all gets weighed down by its too many plotlines, but just to be back in Selick’s world – the creator of 1993’s A Nightmare Before Christmas And Coraline – is a rare treat. Treasure it. 

Old (2021)
Old director M. Night Shyamalan
Old director M. Night Shyamalan (image credit: Gage Skidmore)

A family on a tropical holiday discovers that the secluded beach where they are staying is somehow causing them to age rapidly, reducing their entire lives into a single day.

Since his breakout, 1999’s The Sixth Sense, director M. Night Shyamalan has slowly become the king of mainstream schlock. And Old, starring Gael García Bernal and Vicky Krieps, might just be the schlockiest of all – if not one of his most enjoyable. It’s a very silly movie, but it has a way of getting under your skin. This might be down to Shyamalan’s direction; there’s no denying his formal skill. Very few are doing it like this. Shot to shot, this is a joy to watch and eerie throughout. But, of course, like many of Shyamalan’s films, it suffers in its home-stretch – but don’t let that put you off.

Prime Video

Malignant (2021)

Madison (Annabelle Wallis) is paralyzed by shocking visions of grisly murders, and her torment worsens as she discovers that these waking dreams are in fact terrifying realities.

Malignant director James Wan
Malignant director James Wan (Image credit: Gage Skidmore)

We’re certainly a lucky bunch, aren’t we? We live in a time where James Wan goes from directing the CGI avalanche that is Aquaman to topping up his own Horror resume with something as gruesome and bizarre as Malignant. Here, Wan (whose previous directing credits include The Conjuring and Saw) returns to his spooky roots with references to the splatter horror of Frank Henenlotter and David Cronenberg. It’s dumb and delightful, strung together with a series of outre horror set-pieces – the perfect pick for a late-night scare. 

Gremlins (1984)

A gadget salesman is looking for a special present for his son and finds one at a store in Chinatown. The shopkeeper is reluctant to sell him the “mogwai” but sells it to him with the warning to never expose him to bright light, water, or to feed him after midnight. All of this happens and the result is a gang of gremlins that decide to tear up the town on Christmas Eve.

Time for a classic! Joe Dante’s Gremlins is a wacky wonder of a movie. It’s great, not just because of its clever premise and sublime puppetry, but it’s one of those rare films – along with the aforementioned A Nightmare Before Christmas – that works for Halloween as well as Christmas. It’s full of scares but also peppered with satirical bite, poking fun at American materialism and Christmastime commercialism. The film’s technical achievements have stood the test of time well: the animatronic work is almost completely seamless and entirely convincing.


Barbarian (2022)

In town for a job interview, Tess (Georgina Campbell) arrives at her Airbnb late at night only to find that it has been mistakenly double-booked and a strange man (Bill Skarsgård) is already staying there. Against her better judgement, she decides to stay the night anyway, but soon discovers that there is much more to be afraid of in the house than the other house guest.

Coco star Gael García Bernal
Coco star Gael García Bernal

Barbarian made quite a stir when it opened in America last September. The hype only grew before landing on Irish soil two months later. Zach Cregger’s effective horror flick is a film of two halves. The first half is taut and slick, keeping its audience on the edge of their seat; the back half is a zany monster movie. It’s a laugh riot at some points and traumatising at others. If you choose to watch it with a group – which I recommend you do – you’ll enjoy a chorus of giggles and screams emitting from those around you

Coco (2017)

Despite his family’s baffling generations-old ban on music, Miguel (voiced by Anthony Gonzalez) dreams of becoming an accomplished musician. Desperate to prove his talent, Miguel finds himself in the stunning and colourful Land of the Dead following a mysterious chain of events. Along the way, he meets charming trickster Hector (Gael García Bernal), and together, they set off on an extraordinary journey to unlock the real story behind Miguel’s family history.

We’re ending this list on a Disney crowd pleaser, one that’s fun for the whole family. Coco is like a Tim Burton movie: it’s full of hocus pocus and gooleys, but beneath it all pounds a beating heart. The film’s meditations on death are culturally woven into the story, instead of just being the stylistic choice. It suffers a tad from adhering too closely to the Pixar formula, but if you can overlook that, you’ll find a beautiful love letter to Mexican culture and a great musical to boot. The characters are well-rendered and endearing; and the complex, touching backstory holds up so well on repeat viewings that you’ll be going loco for Coco in no time. 

And there you have it! Whether you prefer animated wonders or suspenseful thrillers, or perhaps a delightful family-friendly tale might be just what you need, all the films listed offer a mix of excitement and eerie moments. So, gather your loved ones, prepare some snacks, and let the Halloween fun unfold with a night of frightful entertainment.