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Get Into a Spooky Groove This Halloween With Four New Flicks

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So far the 2023 horror movie lineup has been a blood-curdling fright that gets audiences paranoid about evil spirits and paranormal events for days and days. The New University has compiled a list of what’s new to the genre to watch with your friends this Halloween season. We’ve included films that have already been released, as well as some that will come out this month. Be aware, and proceed with caution. 

“The Nun: 2” 

Michael Chaves’ “The Nun: 2,” released on Sept. 8, features a stacked cast of A-list horror film actors including Taissa Farmiga as Sister Irene, Bonnie Aarons as Demon Nun, Anna Popplewell as Kate and Storm Reid as Debra. As a sequel to the 2018 film “The Nun,” this movie made for an exceptionally executed sequence of storytelling and frightening reactions. Without giving any spoilers, the jumpscares will literally make you jump! 

Part of the “Conjuring” franchise, it is helpful to have seen the other films, but not crucial as it can still be watched without prior knowledge and the audience will still be frightened at every twist and turn. The story follows protagonist Sister Irene five years after her first deadly encounter with the evil spirits. Sister Irene and newbie nun Debra go to the Vatican to perform yet another miracle where an unfortunately macabre sequence of events takes place. Throughout the horrifying watch, audiences will be curled up in a ball in their seats and peaking through their fingers at each action-packed scene. 

“The Exorcist: Believer” 

Another classic franchise that forever changed the game for horror films is the spine-chilling “Exorcist” saga. The franchise came out with its sixth movie just this year on Oct. 6, David Gordon Green’s “The Exorcist: Believer,” portrays a modern twist to the petrifying fears of the sequences of exorcism and evil spirits. In this modern portrayal, the main cast — Olivia O’Neill as Katherine, Ellen Burstyn as Chris MacNeil, Leslie Odom Jr. as Victor Fielding and Lidia Jewett as Angela Fielding — encounter an evil spirit that Chris MacNeil is very familiar with as they attempt to defeat it with all their might. 

After Katherine and Angela return from a trip to the woods three days later with no memory of what happened, Angela’s dad, Victor, seeks out Chris, suspecting evil spirits were involved. With great storytelling and scenes filled with angst and suspense, the movie makes for an exhilarating watch with friends. 

“Talk to Me” 

Danny and Michael Philippou’s “Talk to Me,” released back in July 28, is another outstanding horror movie to bring back this season as it focused on breaking the barrier of communication between the living and the dead. The main characters — Sophie Wilde as Mia, Joe Bird as Riley, Zoe Terakes as Hayley, Alexandra Jensen as Jade and Chris Alosio as Joss — take life-threatening risks by interacting with an embalmed hand to communicate with restless spirits for social media popularity. 

By holding the supernatural hand and chanting a few words, Mia, as well as other characters, are allowed into another world where they are able to see and speak to a person who has passed away. Mia and Riley suffer severe consequences for their unsanctioned interactions with the dead, causing audiences to feel paranoid and leave the theater sick to their stomachs. 

“Five Nights at Freddy’s”

Five Nights at Freddy’s fans have waited all year for the highly anticipated film adaptation of the terrifying video game, which dropped on Oct. 27, directed by Emma Tammi. Fans have no idea what to expect for the film adaptation of the worshiped horror game, but the main cast is raising expectations, starring Josh Hutcherson as Mike Schmidt, Elizabeth Lail as Vanessa Monroe, Matthew Lillard as William Afton, Mary Stuart Masterson as Aunt Jane and Piper Rubio as Abby Schmidt. 

The movie follows a more developed story of the basic narration of the video game, in which a security guard, Mike, works a late shift on his first night at Freddy’s where he’ll experience his worst fears come to life. Based on previous Blumhouse Productions successes, audiences should expect impressive cinematography and petrifying horror depiction, as well as a thrilling scare with friends that will surely create a core memory of your cinema experiences. 

Cameryn Nguyen is an Arts & Entertainment Staff Writer for the fall 2023 quarter. She can be reached at camerynn@uci.edu.