In the run-up to Halloween (and night of), depending on who you're bunking with, there could be a disagreement of what to watch.
Since cinemas are closed, we found the best of the bunch available on on-demand services.
These horror comedies will have you alternately squealing with frights and laughter - and here's where to find them.
Shaun of the Dead
'Shaun of the Dead' was not only key in inspiring further zombie comedies of the 2000s and 2010s. It also launched the careers of its stars Simon Pegg and Nick Frost. Director Edgar Wright would go on to helm 'Scott Pilgrim vs. the World', 'Ant-Man' and the box office smash 'Baby Driver'. Sixteen years on, 'Shaun of the Dead' remains a go-to for movie nights even with its fans having seen it dozens of times.
There are a lot of “zom coms”, or zombie comedies, such as 'Zombieland' (discussed below) and the aforementioned 'Shaun of the Dead', out there. But less common is the rom com zom of which 'Warm Bodies' is the perfect example. Nicholas Hoult plays a zombie leading a dull, eventless existence, trudging along and occasionally feeding on people. That is until he meets and falls in love with a human. This sets off a chain reaction that might just save the world from the zombie apocalypse. A good horror comedy for romantics.
What We Do in the Shadows
Indie comedy 'What We Do in the Shadows' ended up spawning a hit TV series, and was co-directed by its co-star Taika Waititi, who would go on to direct 'Thor Ragnarok' and win an Oscar for 'Jojo Rabbit'. The mockumentary style movie follows four vampires of different generations living together in a house in Wellington. It’s hilarious and has inspired a cult following who endlessly quote it.
The best Irish comedy of last year and quite possibly the best comedy of 2019 overall has got to be 'Extra Ordinary'. It's a bit like 'Ghostbusters' in the west of Ireland, but totally all its own. Maeve Higgins plays Rose, a lonely driving instructor whose special talent to communicate with ghosts is enlisted by a widower named Martin (Will Forte). Meanwhile one-hit wonder Christian Winter (Will Forte) hopes to regain fame by making a deal with the Devil.
The Cabin in the Woods
Most definitely as much of a comedy as it is a horror, 'The Cabin in the Woods' was written by Drew Goddard, who also directed it, and Joss Whedon. They'd collaborated previously on 'Buffy the Vampire Slayer' so that gives you an idea of the degree of horror we're looking at. Five friends - including Chris Hemsworth and 'Grey's Anatomy' star Jesse Williams - go for a break at a remote cabin. They get much more than they bargained for.
Combine black humour, a World War II backdrop, crazy science experiments, Nazis and zombies, and you get 'Overlord'. It's D-Day and a group of US paratroopers are tasked with destroying a radio tower housed in a church in a sleepy French village near Normandy. However, when they make their way into the village, they discover a human experiment lab that is attempting to create Nazi super-soldiers through a serum that turns them into zombies.
'The Babysitter' is teen thriller/horror comedy from 2017 which saw young protagonist Cole attempt to not be killed by his babysitter and her freakish friends. The feature launched the career of Samara Weaving, a dead ringer for Margot Robbie and the niece of Hugo Weaving. Its inferior sequel, 'The Babysitter: Killer Queen' is on Netflix too, but this first one is worth a watch anyway.
M. Night Shyamalan would be better known (aside from his crazy plot twists) for straight-up horrors and thrillers than horror comedies. But 'The Visit' is an exception, as well as one of his better movies in recent years. The found footage feature follows two kids, who are amateur filmmakers, as they are sent to their estranged grandparents while their mum is off working. But grandpa and grandma soon start acting reeeally creepy...
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'Ghostbusters' may not have been the first ever horror comedy (it's widely considered just a comedy). But it's probably one of the most quintessential. Released in 1984, it was an instant commercial hit, amassing a sequel, several videogames, an all-female reboot and, now, a threequel with the original cast returning. It went went on to become a pop culture phenomenon and made household names out of Bill Murray and Sigourney Weaver; plus it gave Ray Parker Jr. his one and only hit.
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Sequel 'Zombieland: Double Tap' wouldn't quite hit the nail on the head, but its 2009 predecessor was great craic altogether. The mismatched Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin fight to survive against zombies. Writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick went on to write 'Deadpool' and its sequel. For a time, 'Zombieland' was the top-grossing zombie film in the US, until 'World War Z' surpassed it.
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The Dead Don't Die
'The Dead Don't Die' features what it guarantees is 'the greatest zombie cast ever disassembled'. There's Bill Murray, Adam Driver, Tilda Swinton, Chloë Sevigny, Steve Buscemi, Danny Glover... *takes breath* ... Caleb Landry Jones, Rosie Perez, Iggy Pop, Sara Driver, RZA, Selena Gomez.... *another breath* ... Carol Kane, Austin Butler, Luka Sabbat and Tom Waits. With stars like that, who cares what the movie's about? (A zombie apocalypse comes to a small American town, basically)
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Ready or Not
'Ready or Not' is led by a terrific, winsome performance in Samara Weaving (from the aforementioned 'The Babysitter') that has you cheering her on from the get-go. She plays a new bride who on her wedding night, is forced to play Hide and Seek with the in-laws. What she doesn't realise is the game is a hunt and she's the prey. Based a pretty messed up concept, the execution of 'Ready or Not' is exquisite. Bloody gruesomeness is expertly blended with a tonne of humour.
Rent/But on iTunes, Amazon, Sky Store etc. from €1.99
You might have to pay a couple of euro to watch 'The Hunt', which hit cinemas earlier this year. But trust us when we say it's worth it. 'The Hunt' ended up creating quite a stir of controversy, before it even hit screens, from Trump supporters. Really, the political insinuations can be made of what you will. A group of people wake up in the middle of a clearing and find themselves being hunted for sport by another group of individuals. Betty Gilpin, Hilary Swank and Emma Roberts are among the cast. It's a lot of fun.