‘By Definition’ Returns and This Time It’s Hellbent on Defining Halloween Movies


On the next episode of the Acid Pop Cult podcast, the By Definition segment makes a triumphant return to the show. In the By Definition segment we each offer up three movies we believe define a particular genre or subgenre. This time we turn an analytical eye toward movies we believe to be premier Halloween viewing.

The basic concept of the By Definition segment is to answer the question, “If you had to choose three movies you believe define the genre/subgenre of fims, which three movies would you choose and why?”

The beauty of the By Definition segment is the films each person chooses, combined with  their reasons for choosing them, reveal the list maker’s point of view for the genre selected. We get to see into each others’ mind, man.
This week we try to answer the question, “How would you define the characteristics of a good Halloween movie and which three movies do you believe best fit your definition?”

Below are films at least one of us considered for inclusion in our Top 3, By Definition: Halloween Films Edition List, but ultimately found other movies to be more ideal.

So here we go..

The 2013 Acid Pop Cult By Definition: Halloween Movies Edition Also Rans Are:

Night of the Demons (1988) – Nothing says Halloween quite like demons who may, or may not, be suffering from emphysema, hot chicks, blood, and scares. This one narrowly missed being in both Jeremy and Chris’s Top 3.

Hocus Pocus (1993) – Horror movies often get top billing during the Hallween season, but the season is also about fun and family. Hocus Pocus also just missed the Top 3 for Jeremy and Chris.

Beetlejuice (1988) – Remember when Tim Burton made a string of amazing films? We do too, that’s probably why Beetlejuice received heavy consideration as Top 3 material from Lee and it was also recommended by Jeremy’s kids and Danielle. It’s also hard to ignore the ghost with the most, especially at Halloween, baby.

Monster Squad (1987) – A group of tweens fight off classic Universal-style monsters, and then realize they are the only ones who can stop Dracula’s effort to dominate the world. It’s also a movie about some foul-mouthed kids doing what foul-mouthed kids do, which is why It’s a great depiction of true-to-life, 12 year-old characters. Chris and Lee both nearly included this one in their Top 3.

The Exorcist (1973) – It’s only one of the most successful horror films ever made, and one of the few over-hyped movies that legitimately lives up to its billing. Chris and Lee both nearly put it in their Top 3.

Halloween 5 (1989) – Michael Myers is back and this time he’s stalking the grounds of a children’s hospital, and even catching a few day-naps at the Ronald McDonald House no doubt, while he tries to get to Jamie inside. Halloween 5 is a dark film, and was recommended by Jeremy’s kids and Danielle.

I Walked With a Zombie (1943) – This Hollywood classic produced by Val Lewton and directed by Jocques Tourneur, creates an atmosphere so thick it you could suspend a 50-cent piece in it, and it’s shot in beautiful black and white. The classics still make Lee giddy, but not giddy enough to put it in his Top 3.

Hear more Also Ran titles, as well as the three APC co-hosts discuss their Top 3, By Definition: Halloween Films List, on Episode 82 of the Acid Pop Cult Podcast, Monday, Oct. 28, right here, and on iTunes or Stitcher.

You can also hear our last By Definition session about Misfit Comedies, or comedies whose main character is a social outcast, screw up, or misfit of some other kind.

Got any thoughts on the topic? Which films do you believe, By Definition, are ideal for Halloween viewing? Drop us a comment here, on Facebook, or on Twitter @AcidPopCult.

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