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FRIGHT NIGHT: The spookiest reel-life families

Think your family is strange? These pop culture families will probably give you a run for your money 

FRIGHT NIGHT: The spookiest reel-life families
FRIGHT NIGHT: The spookiest reel-life families
25 Sep 2017

FRIGHT NIGHT: The spookiest reel-life families

Family. Whether you love them or you have a love-hate relationship with them, family is what sticks with you throughout your life – and sometimes even after. While some families are pretty much peaceful and ordinary, there are always exceptions – just look at pop culture for extreme examples of that.

One such far-from-ordinary family will be paying us a visit on our little red dot this November, with the entire clan of The Addams Family descending upon Singapore to bring their brand new musical show to us.

Well-loved all over the world since this extraordinary household was introduced to the world decades ago, Gomez, Morticia, Wednesday, Pugsley, Uncle Fester, Grandmama, Lurch, Thing and Cousin Itt have become familiar names that have brought us on the strangest (and sometimes spookiest) adventures while we were growing up.

What’s in store this time for the Addams? Wednesday is all grown up and is bringing a – gasp – boyfriend home. Alas, he’s not like the rest of the Addams – will he be able to accept what the family is like? What exactly about the Addams is so spooky?

We delve into the spookiest reel-life families and tell you just what makes them stand out. Read on for more.

The Addams Family will play at MES Theatre at Mediacorp from November 15 to December 3, Tuesdays to Sunday at 8pm with additional 2.30pm shows on Saturday and Sunday. Tickets are priced at S$165, S$135, S$95, S$65 (excluding booking fees) and are now available on SISTIC.

The Addams Family
The Addams Family
25 Sep 2017

The Addams Family

Where do we begin? While this family is far from being the most terrifying on the list (you’ll find out why later), they’re definitely not the family you’d expect to be living next door.

Just think of their Cousin Itt – what exactly is Cousin Itt, anyway? His entire body is shrouded with long hair, and let’s not forget their hand-servant (ha, ha) Thing, the disembodied hand that helps out with all things big and small at home.

Let’s not forget the human (mostly, anyway) family members, Gomez, Morticia and their children, Wednesday and Pugsley, whose hobbies include raising spiders and guillotining dolls.

The Addams Family will play at MES Theatre at Mediacorp from November 15 to December 3, Tuesdays to Sunday at 8pm with additional 2.30pm shows on Saturday and Sunday. Tickets are priced at S$165, S$135, S$95, S$65 (excluding booking fees) and are now available on SISTIC.

Beetlejuice
Beetlejuice
25 Sep 2017

Beetlejuice

If you thought that the Deetz family’s resident Goth child, Lydia, would be the oddest character in the family, boy are you in for a surprise. Adam and Barbara Maitland got into an accident on the way home from their vacation and realise that their home was taken over by another family, the Deetzes.

After putting two and two together, (the Handbook for the Recently Deceased should’ve served as a good enough clue) they realise that they’re not quite alive anymore but must remain in their home for another 125 years and scare the Deetzes out of the house.

The ghostly couple’s abilities, including shapeshifting into monsters, aren’t quite enough and they enlist the help of the havoc-loving Beetlejuice in order to accomplish their mission. The result: utter chaos – fret not, however, as all ended well and the living and non-living co-existed in harmony thanks to Lydia’s ability to see ghosts.

Crimson Peak
Crimson Peak
25 Sep 2017

Crimson Peak

You know what they say: always listen to your mother. Clearly, Edith Cushing didn’t quite listen to her mother (well, to be fair, her mother warned her about Crimson Peak as a disfigured ghost, but that’s beside the point.)

Alas, Edith’s mother was right, as her beau (and later husband) Thomas Sharpe isn’t quite what he seems. His romantic pursuit of her was with good reason: he and his sister, Lucille, have systematically planned Thomas’ marriage to wealthy women and poisoned them in order to gain their families’ riches through their deaths.

The siblings have been in an incestuous relationship (why hello there, House Lannister) and only embarked on their evil plot to fund Thomas’ inventions and to support themselves. In case you’re curious about the ending, yes, both Thomas and Lucille die and turn into ghosts – Thomas a kind one who protects Edith from his sister, and Lucille a tormented spirit who haunts the family mansion even after her death. Yikes.

The Tale of Two Sisters
The Tale of Two Sisters
25 Sep 2017

The Tale of Two Sisters

Okay, we’ll have to admit this: we took more than one watch to figure out what this horror story was about. Sisters Sumi and Suyeon live with their father and stepmother Eunjoo, and Sumi insists that their stepmother is abusing her younger sister.

Her father then tells her that Suyeon is dead (wait, what?), and yet Sumi finds a bloodied sack in the house, in which she believes her sister is in. Sumi gets attacked by Eunjoo for doing this and the assault only stops when Sumi’s father comes home.

Turns out, Eunjoo and Suyeon’s ‘actions’ were all the work of Sumi, whose dissociative identity disorder sees her being unable to get a grasp of reality. Later on in the film, the ghost of Sumi’s biological mother makes an appearance to scare the living daylights (or perhaps kill) the real Eunjoo.

Casper
Casper
25 Sep 2017

Casper

It doesn’t get any more otherworldly than this – Casper (the friendly ghost!) has been around for decades, and his adventures with his uncles, the Ghostly Trio (Fatso, Fusso and Lazo) have captivated many throughout the years.

In the 1995 movie, it was revealed that Casper died of pneumonia as a child and remained on earth as a ghost to keep his father company. His dad built a machine which he claimed could bring the dead back to life (and was declared as insane as a result), and guess what – it worked.

Casper, however, gave up his chance at coming back to life when it was revealed that only one person can be restored, and the love of his (after)life’s father was the person he sacrificed his shot at humanity for.

All wasn’t lost, however, as his uncles have remained by his side to keep him company on his adventures – and misadventures – through time.

Practical Magic
Practical Magic
25 Sep 2017

Practical Magic

Imagine growing up and being taught how to use magic – in particular, practical magic – from a young age. It’s not all rainbows and glitter, however, as the Owens family’s sorcery comes with a price, which is that the men they fall in love with all end up dying.

Gillian and Sally attempt to live normal lives but Sally’s husband dies in a car accident and Gillian tries to leave her boyfriend Jimmy when he becomes abusive. Alas, Sally accidentally kills him and the sisters bring him back to life with a forbidden spell. They later get rid of him for good when they realise that he’s not just the sweet person that Gillian fell in love with.

But you know what they say – the bad guys don’t stay dead. Jimmy’s ghost comes back to possess Gillian and his spirit is only exorcised with the help of the rest of their town’s witch coven.

The Others
The Others
25 Sep 2017

The Others

How would you react if you suspected that your house was haunted? Probably not well (we know we wouldn’t). Grace Stewart is convinced that her home, in which she lives with her children Anne and Nicholas, is haunted when she hears the piano playing itself at night, and even more so when one of the servants, Mills, hints that the living and the dead sometimes cross paths.

Realisation dawns upon Grace when she notices that a book of the dead has a picture of all three of her servants and also sees their graves in a cemetery near her home.

However, a major plot twist happens when the family realises that they, along with the servants, have been dead all along – Grace went insane one day and smothered her children to death and shot herself after she lost her husband in the war, but thought that she had been given a second chance at life when she woke up one day and saw her children alive and well.

Newsflash: nope.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre
Texas Chainsaw Massacre
25 Sep 2017

Texas Chainsaw Massacre

This 1974 slasher film was so successful that it spawned a remake back in 2003, and probably traumatised so many that people refused to pick up hitchhikers for some time.

Sally, Franklin, Jerry, Kirk and Pam visit the Hardestys’ family grave to investigate reports of grave robbing, but end up picking up a hitchhiker who slashes himself, then demands for money from them.

They force him out of the van, but their vehicle runs out of gas and they can’t find a gas station that can sell them fuel. They stumble upon a nearby house, where they encounter Leatherface, who tries to kill them one by one.

Turns out, the hitchhiker is Leatherface’s brother – and that’s not the whole family. Grandpa, a desiccated body the friends thought was a corpse, is apparently the best killer and tries to kill Sally (but fails). Phew.

The Hills Have Eyes
The Hills Have Eyes
25 Sep 2017

The Hills Have Eyes

While not all the mutants in this flick are related by blood, the Jupiter clan is led by Papa Jupiter and Big Brain, of whom the latter barks commands at the other mutants through a walkie talkie while he sits in his wheelchair of power.

Other members of the clan include Big Mama, Cyst, Goggle – and Lizard. As one of the most merciless mutants, Lizard is also the main antagonist and lays the foundation to trap the Carter family and lead them into their lair.

It was also revealed that Lizard, Goggle and Ruby are Papa Jupiter’s children, and Pluto is his nephew. Talk about a family that wrecks pain and destruction.

Dark Shadows
Dark Shadows
25 Sep 2017

Dark Shadows

There’s a vampire, a not-very-nice witch, a pseudo-doppelganger trapped in a love triangle – and that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Barnabas falls in love with Josette, but Angelique (the witch) loves him and enchants Josette to jump to her death. Incensed by his attempts to join Josette in her death, Angelique curses Barnabas to become a vampire, and he is buried alive for almost 200 years.

He returns to the estate he once lived in and passes himself off as his descendant, but meets Victoria, who currently lives there with her family. She looks so much like Josette that he falls in love with her – alas, Angelique finds him and threatens him.

In the end, Barnabas turns Victoria into a vampire in order to save her life, and she tells him to call him Josette. Uh, what?

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