The Funniest Halloween Horror Movie

Jaelyn Hudson, A+E editor

Halloween is the perfect time to get together with friends and laugh at a ridiculous “scary” movie whose greatest fear factor comes from the poor quality. 

Ma, released in 2019, is definitely the way to go when searching for this kind of movie. 

Ma is pretty tricky. All trailers and reviews build a hefty anticipation for an hour and 39 minutes of pure fright. But it’s really not what it seems. 

The movie advertises a terrifying experience of many twists and turns: a treat to the audience. But the scare factor falls flat. Ma does a better job of entertaining the audience through its unintentional comedy than its supposed scare tactics. 

It sets up the audience for a good laugh, morphing reality just enough to support the plot lines while completely leaving viewers behind. Last I checked, most teenagers were well aware of the dangers of walking into a strange adult’s house for a basement party of underage drinking, but 2019 must have been a different time. 

The truly terrifying part of the story has to be the teenagers themselves. Really, they’re just a bunch of twenty-year-olds written to be in their early teenage years. 

They are the traditional “delinquents,” convincing adult strangers to buy them alcohol and sneak it into the back of their janky van. Of course, nothing could be more reminiscent of the modern teenager. 

The script follows the pattern of all bad horror movies: the victims are always oblivious to the numerous dangers surrounding them. They continue to make the worst decisions possible, while the viewer sits on the other side of the screen, cringing in frustration. 

These poor kids refuse to question the threatening messages they receive from the strange lady who keeps stalking them and coaxing them into her basement. Only when it is integral to the plot does the group respond to their danger. 

At least Ma, played by Octavia Spencer, contributes some action and surprise to the story. Spencer performs the character beautifully, portraying an image of a conflicted and obsessed older woman, perfectly performing the character’s growing insecurities and intense desires for control. 

But the script doesn’t do Spencer any justice. Screenwriter Scotty Landes really stretches the boundaries of reality to fit in his desired “plot twists.” The story unfolds unnaturally, and Spencer is caught up in trying to build characters in an unbelievable world, while all the teenagers remain undeveloped. 

The movie isn’t good. But it’s the perfect movie for a good laugh and a couple of jump scares. 

If you’re looking for a mild scary movie this Halloween night, Ma is definitely the one to watch.