5 Essential Action-Horror Films for the Halloween Season


There’s nothing quite like an excellent action-packed Horror film to get your blood (and fists) pumping. Scarier fare definitely has its own place, but when it comes to entertaining an audience, nothing tops a good blend of adrenaline-fueled action and gore-soaked Horror! Speaking of which, here are a few great genre-blending movies you need to watch during your October marathons!

army-of-darkness-thumbnailARMY OF DARKNESS (1993)

There’s no denying that the EVIL DEAD franchise is a must-watch every October, but the final film in the original trilogy might be the biggest crowd-pleaser of them all. After our hero Ash is transported back to the Middle Ages at the end of EVIL DEAD 2, he must find a way back home and protect King Arthur’s court from an army of the dead, using his trusty “boomstick” and Oldsmobile Delta 88. What follows is something like a cross between DAWN OF THE DEAD and A CONNECTICUT YANKEE IN KING ARTHUR’S COURT.

By far the silliest of the EVIL DEAD movies (and that’s saying something), it’s also a delightful romp through history that is a quotable essential for all horror fans. The TV show based on the franchise, ASH VS EVIL DEAD, is about to start its second season and this is a great way to get to reacquaint yourself. Apparently the new season will directly reference ARMY OF DARKNESS, so it’s definitely time for another viewing.


blad-thumbBLADE (1998)

The first BLADE film was a perfectly fun action movie that single-handedly helped usher in the current age of profitable comic book movies. Released in 1998, BLADE pre-dated both Bryan Singer’s X-MEN and Sam Raimi’s SPIDER-MAN. The vampire blood rave shootout sequence at the beginning has gone on to become a classic in its own right, and basically defined all modern concepts of vampire nightlife. BLADE TRINITY came out a whopping twelve years ago and the franchise is ripe for the reboot treatment, especially now that the rights have reverted back to Marvel.

The series has become a modern cult classic and still boasts a massive fan-base today. As it happens, BLADE is named one of the most popular titles among dozens of slot reels themed around a wide range of movies and TV shows. It continues to resonate with fans even though the character hasn’t been in a movie in more than a decade. And if BLADE is given a new lease on life, Wesley Snipes is totally down for reprising his role as the bad-ass vampire slayer!


planet-terror-thumbPLANET TERROR (2007)

When you’re looking for marathon material, you’d be hard pressed to beat a movie originally packaged as the first half of a double feature. Robert Rodriguez’s opening half of he and Tarantino’s GRINDHOUSE is a bloody, slime-soaked adventure that revels in all the stereotypes of B-horror schlock. That’s not to mention its ridiculous set-pieces, like Rose McGowan’s machine gun prosthetic leg, that comes complete with a grenade launcher!

While it was an utter flop at the box office during its initial release, PLANET TERROR is pure popcorn fun and an excellent selection for any drive-in style showcase. It boasts an all-star cast that includes Josh Brolin and Micheal Biehn, plus it is loaded with cameos, featuring the likes of Bruce Willis and Quentin Tarantino! The film also features the dismemberment of Fergie from the Black Eyed Peas as well as a terrific turn by Marley Shelton (aka Wendy Peffercorn from THE SANDLOT) as if you needed more reasons to watch this!


they-live-thumbnailTHEY LIVE (1988)

THEY LIVE is still as relevant today, as it was back in 1988, when it hit theaters and took a number of jabs at Reaganomics. It stands as one of John Carpenter’s most memorable films from the 1980s, a decade brimming with other fantastic titles like THE FOG, ESCAPE FROM NEW YORK, CHRISTINE, STARMAN, BIG TROUBLE IN LITTLE CHINA, and PRINCE OF DARKNESS! “Rowdy” Roddy Piper spouts one-liners, wears sunglasses, runs out of bubblegum, and shoots his way through a horde of aliens that have secretly infiltrated our society.

The movie features one of the best, and longest fight scenes ever (just wear the glasses already!) and is a biting satire of consumer culture that has gone on to have its own massive influence on pop-culture today. Piper is backed by a brilliant supporting cast (i.e. Keith David and Meg Foster) that helps make THEY LIVE a hilarious and action-packed must-see that is the perfect movie to help get you excited before All Hallow’s Eve arrives!


thing-bluray-thumbnailTHE THING (1982)

As of our posting this, we here at The Vault are celebrating the horror classic that is THE THING. While its not as action-oriented as the other films on this list THE THING deserves mention because John Carpenter’s 1982 adaptation of John W. Campbell Jr.’s Who Goes There? so perfectly incorporates elements of suspense, horror, and science-fiction into one of the greatest films ever made!

After a series of bizarre events and discoveries, the members of a United States Antarctic research station find that there is something lurking among them: An alien life form, capable of assimilating and mimicking any living thing. Paranoia strikes deep as Kurt Russell, Keith David, Wilford Brimley, and the rest of their crew try to find a way to get “The Thing” out into the open and kill it before it can escape the icy confines of Antarctica!

THE THING’s film score was composed by Ennio Morricone, and features the special effects work of Rob Bottin and Stan Winston. The movie still holds up remarkably well today, as do all the performances and practical effects, and it also has one of the best jump scares of all time! And though it lacks the thrills of the films mentioned above, THE THING definitely has enough frights to really get your blood pumping!

Thanks for reading Vault Dwellers! If you liked this list, please let us know down below in the comments section. Also feel free to share your favorite Action-Horror picks for your personal October marathons as well!