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The Mass Media

What scares UMass Boston: Student horror movie recommendations

Olivia Reid
Kyle Makkas interviews students in the Campus Center to get input on horror favorites. Photo by Olivia Reid / Mass Media Staff

Horror movies reflect a very strange part of human nature. People like to laugh and feel excited in their everyday lives, but usually no one likes feeling scared. The exception seems to be horror movies. So, what makes film any different? With Halloween just around the corner, it’s time for everyone to get a glimpse at the things that go bump in the night, even if it’s just through a screen.

But what’s worth watching? Wanting to get a good ideas for movies, the students of UMass Boston were recently asked what horror movies they would recommend to others. Here’s what they had to say.

“Hereditary” was first recommended by Dante Sologaistoa, a biology major at the university. They emphasized that the movie was extremely scary. So, if any self-proclaimed scaredy-cats are reading this, maybe this isn’t the ideal spooky season flick. Even still, the movie was mentioned by four other students, even if just to compare it to another recommendation.

Billy Nguyen, a freshman math major, was one of those students. They also made sure to stress that it was really terrifying. It seems as if just about everybody in UMass Boston has seen “Hereditary,” except, ironically, for the person who wrote this article. The plot centers around a family unraveling their ancestry and growing more and more terrified of what they find. The film has undoubtedly left a mark, and if one is looking to find out why, the movie is currently streaming on Showtime and Paramount+.

Another person who recommended “Hereditary” was Alishba Amin. They also offered up “Midsommar,” stating that it was offsetting, and “Parasite,” which wasn’t all that scary. So, it may be perfect for anyone not looking for anything too frightening.

“Midsommar” is about a couple that goes on an idyllic retreat in which things end up going wrong. For the scariest experience, it’s best to not know much more than that. It’s currently streaming on Showtime and Paramount+.

“Parasite” is about a poor family that manages to get jobs working for a rich one. Again, to say anything more than that would ruin the experience, so to find out what happens next, make sure to stream it on Hulu.

Heather Hervieux stated that “Nope,” which was released just a few months ago, was “really good.” The film was also said to be “like Hereditary”—see?—and really built up a lot of suspense.

As it is the latest film by Jordan Peele, one can expect plenty of twists and turns, along with biting social satire. It is not currently streaming on anything, as it just came out, but is available to buy digitally and is playing in theaters. Physical copies are set to be released on Oct. 25th.

For another recommendation that was released this year, Kelly Zelaya-Perez suggested “X.” When talking about the film, they mentioned that it was gory and “just entertaining.” It centers on a group of actors trying to make an adult film; however, things end up getting “gory,” as Perez succinctly put it. The film is streaming on Showtime.

Joselyn Torres, a freshman in nursing, said that “The Black Phone” was another recent release to watch. They said that it was a good kidnapping story, and that it was “more interesting than scary.” Its story centers on a kidnapped boy who discovers a phone that lets him hear the voices of his kidnapper’s previous victims. If anyone reading is interested, the movie is streaming on Peacock. Other suggestions made by Torres included any Stephen King and Tim Burton movies.

Daniel Fordham is a senior and an English major. He is also passionate about movies and especially loves horror. His recommendation was “Let the Right One In,” a Swedish movie released in 2008. He said that it was a “dark vampire movie” about deeply disturbing subject matter. The movie is “very atmospheric and dark, along with being surprisingly romantic.”

So, none of the aforementioned scaredy-cats should watch this film as it appears to be purely for the dwellers of darkness. It is streaming on Hulu, Amazon Prime, Kanopy and Criterion. It should also be noted that Daniel Fordham gave this list of streaming services so readers would know where to check the movie out—thanks Daniel!

Finally, one student, and one student alone, provided this article a film that was explicitly for scaredy cats. Sierra McQuade, a senior psychology major, said that “Shaun of the Dead” was a good horror recommendation for those who’d prefer spending the night not fearing the dark. Of course, the classic horror-comedy is extremely gory, but that’s to be expected from a zombie movie. So if one is looking for a movie that isn’t too scary or gory, sorry, this list doesn’t really have anything.

However, if the small selection of students from UMass Boston who were asked for recommendations is any indication, maybe this university isn’t looking for tame horror movies. If that’s the case, then have a good time watching these films. If that isn’t, then there’s a wide selection of Scooby Doo shows and movies on HBO Max. Ruh-Roh.

About the Contributors
Kyle Makkas, Humor Writer
Olivia Reid, Photo Editor