5 Influential French Films to Watch During Spooky Season

Instead of watching Halloween for the thousandth time or binging on the Scream franchise again, why not try something new this Halloween.

If you’re anything like me, you spend a lot of time on Netflix. October is usually an excuse for me to watch films like Beetlejuice, The Nightmare Before Christmas, and basically anything else directed by Tim Burton. I – however – opted to try something a little new this year.

With the remake of Suspiria coming out this month I decided to look to foreign countries for films to binge as the days grow shorter and the nights grow longer (and spookier). Though instead of looking to other films by Dario Argento or other films that fit into the giallo ( https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giallo ) genre, I decided to look to French films that are either inspired by giallo or are spooky.

Here are five amazing French films that will give you the creeps this October:

  1. Eyes Without a Face
    Instead of staring into Michael Myer’s mask this Halloween, stare into an equally spooky mask in this Franju film. We don’t need to see the main character’s face in this film to understand what she’s feeling, her eyes give it away. Christiane is the victim of a terrible car crash. To fix the damage done to her face, her father tries to graft the faces of other women onto hers… Creepy, am I right?
    I highly recommend this movie, especially if you like watching films like Chainsaw Massacre and Silence of the Lambs where human skin is used for masks and lamps and such.
  2. La Femme Nikita
    While I love horror, spooky season offers you an opportunity to watch movies that won’t give you nightmares but are exciting. Personally, I love watching Kill Bill as well as this film: La Femme Nikita. If you’ve heard of the multiple TV Series of the same name, then you probably have a good idea of what this film is about: assassins. I love this film, Nikita is one of my favorite femme fatals of all time.
  3. Daughters of Darkness
    Do you like Lesbians? Do you like Vampires? Do you like any combination of the two? Well, you might enjoy this film by Harry Kumel. This sexy film about an immortal vampire on the hunt for blood which sets her sights on a young couple is one of my favorite vampire films (sorry Twilight). Plus, it’s very Madam Bathory, which for you history nerds is a total bonus.
  4. Let the Corpses Tan
    Again, this movie isn’t nessicarily a horror, but it sure is bloody. These brilliant filmmakers drew inspiration from both the giallo genre as well as the spaghetti western… but in the Mediterranean instead of the ol’ west. I’m obsessed with the juxtaposition of the leather and the rustic looking landscape. I would characterize this film as a wild ride from start to finish, and I think you’ll love this too if you like Suspiria or anything by Tarantino.
  5. Possession
    ’80s horror is my favorite kind of horror. This movie is by no means a traditional slasher film, but it’s one of the most influential and best-acted horrors I’ve ever seen. If you like a little suspense with your murder, I think you’ll love this dramatic exploration of a failing relationship. Possession isn’t just one of the best horror films of all time, but it’s one of the best films of all time.