‘Pumpkin Cinema: The Best Movies for Halloween’ Book Review
Halloween is a special time of year. It’s a time when everyone gets to be a kid again. People are stocking up on candy, making the perfect costume, and Halloween (and sometimes scary) movies are all over TV and Netflix. Movie watching on All Hallow’s Eve has become as big of a tradition as trick or treating for most folks.
Nathaniel Tolle has created the perfect book for this time of year, Pumpkin Cinema: The Best Movies for Halloween. Tolle, who has a degree in film studies, collected movies, not only his favorites but some totally new to him, to help you create the perfect Halloween party. This isn’t just a list of everything out there (you’d need a couple hundred more pages for that) but a very solid collection of movies based on a set of criteria, some of those being: it cannot have a run-time over two hours, it has to be fun to watch, and it cannot be mean-spirited and cruel.
Tolle then lists out, in alphabetical order, 135 pages worth of full-length feature films, 12 pages of short features, and 20 pages of TV episodes that will help you create the right atmosphere for your Halloween get together. Each entry has a brief synopsis that includes: year of release, director, cast, length, rating, and the reasoning behind why they are on the list. The book also includes shots of one sheets and movie posters to add some color and give you some good art to look at as you make your choice.
It is easy to see Tolle is a big fan of the Halloween holiday. Certainly the resurgence of (good) scary movies recently and Halloween’s every growing popularity would seem to make this a perfect time for a book like this. Now you may think you wouldn’t get a ton of use out of this book the rest of the year, but it can easily come in handy when you need something fun to watch with a group of friends. The last couple of pages of the book contain “top 5” lists for different situations. Want a movie that is fun to watch with friends and has vampires? Tolle provides a list for that. Is it May and you need to get your Halloween fix in a short amount of time? You guessed it, there’s a list for that, too.
Overall, Tolle has compiled a variety of movies and shorts that will be perfect for any age group and any time you need something to watch with friends. He clearly presents why he picked the movies he did and what criteria he used, which is a huge plus when creating a list like this. Is his list perfect? Probably not, but to be fair it is really good. I’m sure you have your movies you’d add to the list and some you’d take away. The nice thing is that there are also some you’ve probably never heard of, let alone seen. So if you have a Halloween aficionado in your group of friends (or if that’s you), check out Pumpkin Cinema: The Best Movies for Halloween, you won’t be disappointed.