The 31 Nights of Halloween that we know and love has been underway this month on Freeform. The month-long spooky celebration was originally just 13 nights, but has evolved since its debut in 1998. This year, I was impressed with the lineup, and it has not disappointed so far.
Admittedly, the 31 Nights of Halloween did not start out on the strongest foot; I expected more than Willy Wonka to kick off the spooky season, but they finished the first day off strong with “Hocus Pocus.” It feels like this year was a little more family-friendly, and it was nice to have so many guilty pleasure movies featured. I didn’t realize how much I loved “Hotel Transylvania” until I got to watch it again. “Ghostbusters” brought me back to middle school years, when we got spooked by the slime in the sewer. I have never been a huge fan of “The Corpse Bride” or “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” so those were not highlights for me, but to each their own.
I wasted many of my days watching Halloween movies this month, but I am not upset about it. A few of the highlights from this year were that Freeform would play movies with their sequels following, but they wouldn’t do it every time, so it was a little bit of a gamble if I was going to get to see “Ghostbusters 2” or not. I didn’t even know that there was a “Hotel Transylvania 3” until I had already gotten through the first and second movies.
Things started to get a little spooky on the 15th, but I was a little confused with the decision to show “Scream 3” first, “Scream” second and “Scream 2” last. The 1999 “Sleepy Hollow” was a nice throwback that I convinced the whole family to watch. A few of my least favorite selections for the 31-day lineup include “Shrek” and the Halloween rendition, “Scared Shrekless.” I am not a fan of “The Simpsons,” so I wasn’t surprised with my lack of attraction to “The Simpsons: Treehouse Horror-thon.” I always pass on watching “Beetlejuice,” and stuck with that tradition this year. I skipped out on “Boxtrolls” and “Monsters Inc,” not because I don’t like those movies, but they just didn’t feel spooky enough to be worth the watch.
The best movies that were featured so far this year were hands down “Hocus Pocus,” “Twitches” and “Halloweentown.” I stand by these opinions, and I typically pick the same favorites every year. I was really hoping for some more spice this year and to venture away from the Addams Family and Tim Burton usuals. I was hoping for “The Sixth Sense,” “Halloween,” “Cabin in the Woods” or “The Blair Witch Project.” I understand that this is typically a family event, but they can save the spooky movies for later instead of repeating one of the earlier movies. For example, on the first night, Freeform started with “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,” and then the last movie that was shown at midnight was Willy Wonka again. Overall, I was not disappointed this year at all, but there are always a few that are hit or miss.