October 2023 Horror Preview

Spooky season is finally upon us! As the Halloween festivities finally commence, read up on all the spooky goodness you can find in theaters and streaming this month!

Without further adieu…

October 4th

Chucky S3:

First up is the latest installment in the massive sprawling franchise of CHILDS PLAY – eight feature films (not counting the reboot), two short films, and a television series later, the old “Good Guy” is still alive and kickin’.

After season two’s impressive viewership numbers and finale cliffhanger, a third season was inevitable and it looks like the series is taking Chucky straight to the Oval Office this time around.

Fan favorite Devon Sawa returns once again to the franchise, this time as the fictional POTUS. Bringing Devon back each season in a new role is a unique idea that reminds me of AMERICAN HORROR STORY or even Cheech Marin’s revolving door of characters in the cult classic FROM DUSK TILL DAWN, but time will tell if this character fares better than Devon’s last three…

Fun fact: William Friedkin almost directed the original CHILDS PLAY.

Speaking of Friedkin…

October 6th

The Exorcist: Believer:

Oh boy.

A common complaint about THE EXORCIST is that it isn’t scary by today’s standards…

When I spoke on the Red River Horror podcast (which you can listen to here) I mentioned the hysteria and panic THE EXORCIST caused in its initial release, especially in the suburban middle America and down south area where I was born and raised. Doing a legacy sequel now seems an odd choice based on the changing attitudes, the shift of the Overton window, and other sensibilities becoming more modern, combined with just how far the horror genre has come in the last 50 years.

In spite of that, THE EXORCIST is widely regarded as one of the greatest horror movies ever made, if not the single greatest.

To say that my expectations were low after hearing David Gordon Green and Danny McBride would be tackling one of the all-time greats is an understatement, especially considering Linda Blair and William Friedkin’s notable absence and unfortunate passing, respectively.

Can we really have faith in the team behind HALLOWEEN ENDS? Can it really be worse than THE EXORCIST II: THE HERETIC?

Read Staci Layne Wilson’s review here only on Red River Horror.

Pet Sematary: Bloodlines:

A prequel to the 2019 PET SEMETARY reboot based on both the original 1983 novel and the 1989 film, PET SEMETARY: BLOODLINES explores another terrible haunting, this time set 50 years prior to the events of the last film.

Bloodlines also sees a return of genre icons Pam Grier and David Duchovny in an exciting continuation of the classic King tale. Hopefully, this proves better than the ill-fated CHILDREN OF THE CORN reboot from earlier this year.

Find out if this incarnation is dead on arrival or not when it hits Paramount Plus later this month.


I love a good anthology and the V/H/S series is no exception.

Premiering to positive reviews at Fantastic Fest earlier this year, V/H/S/85 features all-new short films from the likes of David Bruckner (HELLRAISER, THE RITUAL), Mike P. Nelson, Gigi Saul Guerro (BINGO HELL, INTO THE DARK), Natasha Kermani (LUCKY), and Scott Derrickson (SINISTER, DOCTOR STRANGE).

Scott Derrickson has also confirmed that his segment is something of an unofficial continuation of last year’s THE BLACK PHONE – unbelievably hyped for this one!

Totally Killer:

Nahnatchka Khan’s (DON’T TRUST THE B—- IN APARTMENT 23, FRESH OFF THE BOAT) sophomore film is a throwback to classic 80s horror with a time travel twist.

Starring Kiernan Shipka (Netflix’s CHILLING ADVENTURES OF SABRINA) and Julie Bowen (MODERN FAMILY, HAPPY GILMORE), Totally Killer tells the story of a young woman transported back to 1987 who has to team up with her own teenage mother to solve a murder spree before it happens.

An interesting subversion of genre tropes with a razor-sharp comedic edge. Check out this girl boss thriller when it hits Prime later this month!

October 13th


Goosebumps might just be Disney+’s answer to STRANGER THINGS.

Based on the successful series of children’s novels and with no relation to the last two adaptions starring Jack Black, Goosebumps looks like a well-crafted and moody melodrama about a group of young kids who get mixed up in a much grander supernatural plot.

While not exactly my cup of tea, I’ll watch almost anything with Justin Long.

October 27th

Five Nights at Freddy’s:

Last but not least – WILLY’S WONDERLA–ahh, never mind.

Five Nights at Freddy’s adapts the viral video game sensation that captured the hearts and minds of young YouTubers everywhere.

Boasting an impressive cast including horror icon Matthew Lillard (SCREAM, SCOOBY DOO, TWIN PEAKS: THE RETURN) and Josh Hutcherson (THE HUNGER GAMES, THE DISASTER ARTIST), incredible practical effects from Jim Henson’s Creature Shop, and a wealth of lore to draw from for potential sequels, FNAF is a promising film with a rabid and passionate fanbase hungry for a proper film adaptation.

The trailer surprisingly looks far better than I could have possibly anticipated. I am honestly incredibly excited to check this out when it hits theaters and same-day streaming end of October.

Reader Submitted Films – Release Dates and Trailers

October 3, 2023 – Mary Had a Little Lamb

October 6, 2023 – GRIEVE

October 13, 2023 – 15 Cameras

October 17, 2023 – THE HAUNTING LODGE


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