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The Maid
Photograph: Mediacorp Raintree PicturesThe Maid

The scariest horror movies to watch this Halloween

Stay home for a fright night and stream horror films from Singapore and beyond

Cam Khalid
Written by
Cam Khalid
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As the gates of Halloween Horror Nights remain closed this Halloween, turn your humble abode into a house of horror with a scary movie marathon on the telly. Safe-distance yourself from the ghouls and ghosts by watching them on the small screen via online streaming services such as Netflix, HBO Go, and MeWatch. There are plenty of local and international movies to get your scream on, from those with Southeast Asian horror icon leads (we see you, Pontianak) to haunted houses that will make you think twice about yours. Grab your popcorn, blanket, and buddy – it's time to get spooked.

RECOMMENDED: The best upcoming movies in Singapore and where to celebrate Halloween in Singapore

To stream online

Revenge of the Pontianak
Photograph: Tiger Tiger Pictures

Revenge of the Pontianak

Hell hath no fury like a Malay Mina(h) scorned – and back from the dead. Revenge of the Pontianak reimagines Southeast Asia’s horror icon through a contemporary lens as well as a narrative that provides her side of the story – after all, there are always two sides. The film reveals the origin story of Minah who returns to a small village as a pontianak, seeking vengeance on the man who murdered her years ago. Co-directed with Malaysian actor and director Gavin Yap, this marks Singaporean auteur Glen Goei’s return to the big screen since the release of his 2009 murder mystery The Blue Mansion. Read his guest editor takeover here.

Available on Netflix.

Folklore
Photograph: HBO Asia

Folklore

Not a movie per se, but this six-part horror anthology takes you on a hellish ride across six Asian countries. Brave up for the superstitions and myths that haunt this side of the world – think pontianak, and its equivalents like the Javanese wewe gombel and Thai pob. “Many of the stories have been passed down hundreds of years but given an update – so there's something familiar but yet something new in each episode,” shares filmmaker Eric Khoo. Read our full interview with the local auteur here.

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Zombiepura
Photograph: Clover Films/MM2 Entertainment

Zombiepura

An alternative for the faint-hearted, this local horror-comedy flick sees the breakout of a mysterious virus that turns army boys into zombies. Stuck in an isolated army camp with nowhere to run, a lazy reservist soldier is forced to team up with his arch-rival and put all their military training to the test in order to survive, learning what it means to be real soldiers.

Available on MeWatch.

23:59
Photograph: Netflix

23:59

Before the clock strikes midnight, grab some popcorn for an army ghost story. This Singaporean-Malaysian horror film shines its torchlight in the dark corners of a remote jungle where a national service training camp is set up. At a minute before midnight, an army recruit is found dead, and a sort of evil is unleashed. Those bedtime ghost stories start to come to life when the gruesome incident reveals a terrifying secret, and the remaining soldiers have no choice but to confront their deepest fears.

Available on Netflix.

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Shutter
Photograph: Netflix

Shutter

Nothing gets the heart racing quite like Asian horror. This classic Thai scare fare – not to be confused with the Japanese remake – ropes you in with plenty of darkroom scenes and strange photographs. It all begins when a newlywed couple does a hit-and-run. They start experiencing horrifying events post-accident when they discover that the girl they run over is haunting them.

Available on Netflix.

The Maid
Photograph: Netflix

The Maid

The stuff of nightmares – this horror flick unveils a household's very dark past. A family welcomes a new maid to care for the mentally disabled son, but her arrival is ill-timed as it's the seventh month of the year. It's believed that forces of the underworld are capable of unleashing their evil vibes during this period. As the newcomer begins her new job, she starts to find herself haunted by the sinister visions that reveal the fate of the family's previous maid.

Available on Netflix.

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The Conjuring

The Conjuring

The first one out of a horror series that follows real-life paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, this one sees the duo visiting a family living in a farmhouse haunted by a malicious poltergeist. Based on a true story, the scare level here won’t have you clapping when credits roll.

Available on HBO Go.

Rebecca
Photograph: Kerry Brown/Netflix

Rebecca

If you want some bad romance, you’re in for a treat. Netflix’s new original reimagines the Daphne du Maurier’s beloved 1938 gothic novel Rebecca as an on-screen psychological thriller that follows a newly married young woman who arrives at her husband's imposing family estate on a windswept English coast. Instead of living her best married life in her swanky new digs, she finds herself battling the shadow of her husband’s first wife (aka Rebecca) whose haunting legacy is kept alive by the sinister housekeeper.

Available on Netflix from October 21.

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His House
Photograph: Netflix

His House

From one nightmare to another, a young refugee couple escapes war-torn South Sudan to start a new life in a small English town only to find another type of chaos – and we don’t mean Brexit. If life couldn’t be any harder, the couple is grieving at the loss of their daughter while struggling to adjust in their new home, discovering an unspeakable evil that lurks beneath the surface. Think of His House as a revitalised version of the haunted house subgenre.

Available on Netflix from October 30.

Doctor Sleep
Photograph: Singtel Cast

Doctor Sleep

A sequel to The Shining – a screamfest classic – Doctor Sleep takes place 30 years after the sinister events in Stanley Kubrick’s masterpiece. Haunted by the memories of the Overlook Hotel, Danny Torrance’s hope for a peaceful existence soon shatters when he meets a teen who shares his extrasensory gift to “shine”. Joining forces, they team up to battle a cult that feeds off the shine of innocents to become immortal.

Available on HBO Go from October 31.

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