Film Forum

3 Hollywood Halloween films that won’t die

“The worms crawl in, the worms crawl out.” Happy Halloween, everybody!

It’s time to tap your inner strange and become someone else for a night (or a whole month). Are you secretly a pixie, goblin, or ghost? Your time has come. We are fast approaching the one night of the year when you can shed your cloak of normalcy and let all your spooky goodness show. Here at Filmworks, we salute you, you crazy undead creatures of the night.

In honor of all the things that hide under our bed, we will be screening a very special love story on Oct. 10 at the historic Tower Theatre. A story about a love that will not die . . . no matter what . . . even when you really want it to.

In the new zombie rom-com “Life after Beth,” young stars Dane DeHaan and Aubrey Plaza star as Zach and Beth, a young couple happily in love until a tragic accident takes Beth’s life and leaves Zach heartbroken. All Zach wants is to have Beth back. And then one day she shows up–but unfortunately she shows up as a flesh-eating zombie.

At first, Beth and Zach think they can work it out. After all, relationships are all about compromise, right? But Beth’s insistence on eating humans and not ever dying begins to take its toll, and Zach starts to wonder if a love that won’t die is a commitment he’s ready to make.

Zombies in love. It’s sweet, but I know that the undead lead very full lives. You’re about more than just dating. You’ve got careers and friends too.

The 1974 Mel Brooks 1974 masterpiece “Young Frankenstein” follows Dr. Frankenstein’s grandson after he inherits his grandfather’s mansion. The young doctor stumbles upon his grandfather’s work and reluctantly decides to continue his research. What follows is classic Mel Brooks: his own absurdist twist on the classic Frankenstein tale.

There are monsters, angry villagers, and even a love story. Eventually, young Dr. Frankenstein comes around and learns to embrace his legacy and his new career as a mad scientist, and even makes friends with his monster.

While both a successful career re-animating dead bodies and also a beautiful girlfriend who can’t be killed are both great, everybody’s got to have friends. Even monsters! Good friends are always there for you even when things seem bleak: Like during a zombie apocalypse, for instance.

The 2004 Edgar Wright comedy-horror classic, “Shaun of the Dead,” which Filmworks screened at a special midnight Halloween showing in 2008, is an ode to standing by your friends as the rest of your town turns into flesh-eating zombies trying to kill you.

Wright and Simon Pegg play best buds who try to protect their assorted friends and significant others when London becomes ground zero for zombies. This group of misfit slackers head down to the local pub to wait out the crisis and fight off the zombies–if they absolutely have to. If they’re going down, they’re going to do it together at their favorite bar!

In the end, nothing can come between the best of friendships, not even the undead.

Fae Giffen studies at San Jose State in the School of Library and Information Science graduate program. She serves on the Filmworks board, working on marketing and development.

Every second Friday of the month, Fresno Filmworks screens first-run independent and international movies at the historic Tower Theatre.