Much has been written about the dearth of high-quality movies on Netflix. It is rife with inspiring, funny, interesting and award-winning television programs; this is not up for debate. The problem lies with its film catalog, where one is more likely to find titles like Beauty & the Briefcase, which follows Hilary Duffas a journalist who “gets hired to write a career-making story on love in the workplace but must ultimately choose between her assignment and her heart,” or November Rule, which touts itself with the tagline “He was a warrior when it came to dumping women, until one relationship struck his Achilles’ heel,” than you are the newest or most critically-acclaimed movie.
It presents a potential dilemma when one is just dying to watch a certain flick that is nowhere to be found. Every Halloween season, for example, many get a craving to watch Hocus Pocus, say, or The Craft. These are among the many classic Halloween movies that you won’t be able to stream on Netflix. But no worry! This just means a person has to get creative, and we found just the solution.
We present to you the official Halloween movie hack. Whenever the mood strikes for one of your perennial favorites, just try our alternative suggestions to satisfy the craving. It may not be exactly the same, but it’s better than (gasp!) paying extra to rent it on iTunes.
If you like Hocus Pocus, try Sleep Hollow. The setting: An adorably picturesque East Coast town filled with houses so quaint they have to be part of a drawing. The conflict: A town resident come back from the dead to terrify its current residents and gain eternal life. The costumes: The most voluminous dresses that imagination could conjure. Does that all sound familiar? It’s because we’re describing both Hocus Pocus and Sleepy Hollow. The latter may be a smidge spookier, but you’ll find yourself laughing more than screaming during both.
If you like The Craft, try Practical Magic. The Owens sisters pretty much are the high school coven all grown up. They may not dress in such a made-for-replicating coordinated manner, but a séance is a séance, ya know what we mean? Watch Sandra Bullock and Nicole Kidman conjure up spells and pretend that they also said “We are the weirdos, mister.”
If you liked Double Double Toil & Trouble, try Escape to Witch Mountain. We freely admit that no actors can replace the venerable Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen. That doesn’t mean that this alternative movie is any less sophisticated than the tale of a pair of sisters hunting through a witch’s gathering to find a moonstone.
If you liked Halloweentown, try Gilmore Girls. Any episode of which takes place in the fall, specifically. Stars Hollow is just as isolated from the rest of society and just as odd as the fictional Halloweentown. Plus, the Stars Hollow town square decorations certainly rival the Disney Channel’s version.
If you liked The Nightmare Before Christmas, try Corpse Bride. In fact, we’re still a little unclear as to how it is these are two different films.
If you liked Scream, try Scream 2. Meh, close enough.
If you liked Halloween, try The Amityville Horror. So you’d like to be scared s–tless this Halloween season. You want to watch a total maniac terrorize innocent victims. Amityville gives you all that, as it follows a pair of newlyweds who move into a house full of demons hell-bent on driving them mad with fear, but you also get to look at Ryan Reynolds.
If you liked Casper, try Scooby-Doo. Unfortunately for you, the cartoon about the dog detective and his crew of mystery-solvers getting marooned on a haunted island won’t end with the reveal of a hot ghost, but did we mention there are still cartoons?
If you liked Beetlejuice, try The Addams Family. An old creepy house, monsters in suits, bad makeup. Case closed.
If you liked It’s a Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown, try Hotel Transylvania. It’s definitely sacrilege to suggest replacing an iconic classic with a movie voiced by Adam Sandler and Selena Gomez. It probably seemed like there was a “but” coming wherein we explained why Hotel Transylvania is just as timeless…there isn’t. There’s just not a lot of material on Netflix, okay?