TV & Movies

The Best Fall Movies to Watch During Cozy Season

Source: @tourdelust
Source: @tourdelust

It’s the most wonderful time of the year. The air is filled with scents of pumpkin pie and apple cider, streets are lined with pumpkins and Halloween decor, and our favorite streaming services are providing all of the must-watch autumn content. While Harry is meeting Sally, Michael Myers is making his way to Haddonfield to terrorize his family once again. Starbucks workers contemplate quitting on PSL release day, and Target decor sales skyrocket. As our gateway into the holiday season, fall has become a truly unique and beloved season that deserves to be celebrated. 

While I tend to put up fall decor in August and start planning my Halloween costume in May, not all of us are as eager to give up summer and dive into a pile of leaves. Whether you’re someone who bleeds pumpkin spice latte or you need a little extra nudge to get into the spooky spirit, we’ve got you covered. No matter what genre gets you mentally ready for fall—cozy romcoms or classic horror flicks—we’ve got all of the best fall movies listed below. We dare you to watch a handful of these and not feel ready to carve all the pumpkins and pick all the apples. We dare you. 



Romantic Comedies

When Harry Met Sally

Where to stream: Max

This 1989 Meg Ryan film is the quintessential fall movie and will give you all the cozy vibes you could possibly want. When Harry Met Sally addresses the tale-as-old-as-time question: Can men and women really be just friends? Harry and Sally meet in college in Chicago before sharing a drive to New York together. They part ways in the big city but meet again at a bookstore years later. After sleeping together one night, their friendship is at risk of completely falling apart.


You’ve Got Mail

Where to stream: Max

Meg Ryan may just be the queen of autumn as she stars in another iconic role in You’ve Got Mail, this time with Tom Hanks. As perhaps one of the first tales of an internet love match, the film follows the story of Kathleen and Joe, who fall in love online. The two are blissfully unaware that, in real life, they are actually business rivals. 


While You Were Sleeping

Where to stream: Prime Video

When Lucy, a transit worker, sees her longtime crush, Peter, fall into the path of an oncoming train, she jumps into action to save his life. With Peter in a coma, his family starts to think that Lucy is his fiancé—a mistake she doesn’t correct. They welcome her with open arms, but things get even messier when she begins to have feelings for Peter’s brother.


The Proposal

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video | $3.99

Sandra Bullock does it again, this time with Ryan Reynolds, in The Proposal. Her character, Margaret Tate, is a native Canadian book editor living in the US. When she is threatened with deportation, she ropes her assistant, Andrew, into a faux engagement. Andrew agrees under the condition that she agrees to fly to Alaska with him for a family visit. Under the watchful eye of an immigration official, they must carry out wedding planning and pretend to be in love. 



Halloween (1978)

Where to stream: Prime Video

In 1963, at just 6 years old, Michael Myers murdered his 17-year-old sister, Judith, on Halloween night. He is sentenced to live in a mental institution but, after 15 years, escapes and makes his way back to his hometown of Haddonfield, IL, where he seeks out his next victims. 

Once you’ve finished this one, watch Rob Zombie’s 2007 remake to compare—it comes out on Netflix at the end of September! 


Sleepy Hollow

Where to stream: Hulu

Based on Washington Irving’s classic gothic tale, The Legend of Sleepy Hollow, comes the movie adaptation directed by Halloween royalty Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp. A school teacher from New York City, Ichabod Crane, is sent to the town of Sleepy Hollow to investigate a series of murders. These are not normal killings, however. The victims were said to be slain by a headless man riding horseback. Sleepy Hollow will provide all of the spooky vibes you need this season. 


The Craft

Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video | $3.99

For those of us who tried (and failed) the “light as a feather, stiff as a board” trick at sleepovers back in the day, watch this ASAP. When Sarah Bailey arrives at her new Catholic high school, she quickly befriends a group of three outcasts. Together, the girls practice witchcraft and curse their peers who have done them wrong. When Sarah sees the repercussions of their actions and tries to stop the trio, she becomes their newest target. Little do they know, she holds powers of her own. 


The Blair Witch Project

Where to stream: Paramount+

Legend has it that an evil witch resides in a secluded Maryland forest. When three local students set out to make a documentary on the legend, they quickly realize there may be more fact than fiction in this old tale. 


The Town that Dreaded Sundown

Where to stream: Prime Video

Based on true events of the “Moonlight Murders” that occurred in Texarkana, TX, in 1946, comes a classic lovers’ lane slasher film. When teenagers in the 1940s set out to their local lovers’ lane for some alone time, they become abruptly interrupted by someone much worse than the town sheriff. This is a perfect film to watch in the fall. It’s so perfect, in fact, that the town of Texarkana plays a showing of it in a local park each year on Halloween night.



Hocus Pocus

Where to stream: Disney+

Of course, the Halloween classic, Hocus Pocus, had to make the list! When the new kid, Max Dennison, arrives in Salem, MA, in the fall of 1993, he learns of the legend of three sister witches who used to terrorize the town looking for children. Legend has it that if you go to the sisters’ cottage and light the black flame candle, the witches will return. After getting roped into taking his little sister, Danny, trick-or-treating, they end up at the house of the prettiest girl in school. The trio decides to make an impromptu visit to the cottage, and Max lights the black flame candle. As it turns out, the legends are true, and the sisters awaken after 300 years. Now they must suck the lives out of the children of Salem before sunrise or die.


Halloweentown (1-4)

Where to stream: Disney+

Marnie has not only loved Halloween all her life but has always felt she was special. On her 13th birthday, she finds out why. It turns out Marnie and the women in her family are witches—something her mother has tried to keep secret from her and her siblings. When Marnie’s grandma, Aggie Cromwell, stops by unannounced, it’s to enlist the help of Marnie’s mother. Aggie lives in a magical world called Halloweentown, where supernatural creatures lead normal lives. Her beloved home is under attack, and it will take all of the Cromwell witches to save it. 


The Addams Family

Where to stream: Paramount+

The Addams Family is an eccentric, morbid, and curious bunch who lead lives that are the opposite of normal. They also happen to be filthy rich. When a local loan shark learns of their money, she enlists the help of her son to take over the Addams Family’s fortune. He impersonates the estranged brother of the head of the household, Gomez. Gomez is overjoyed to welcome his brother home after a fight they had years earlier, but the rest of the family is a bit skeptical. After the con artists take over the Addams’ house, the clan must fight to take back their home. 



Where to stream: Amazon Prime Video | $3.99

When Barbara, Adam, and Lydia move into their new home, they have no idea they will be rooming with the ghosts of a deceased couple. Wanting the family out, the couple enlists the help of a malevolent spirit to terrorize the family. Little do they know, the spirit of Beetlejuice would bring trouble to them as well. 


The Nightmare Before Christmas

Where to stream: Disney+

In this world created by Tim Burton, each holiday has its own land. When Halloween’s Pumpkin King, Jack Skellington, discovers the doors to the other worlds, he is enamored by the Christmas world. Bored with the same old scary traditions of Halloween, he kidnaps Santa and tries to take on the role for himself. This is a perfect film for all ages and can be enjoyed both in the fall and around the holidays. 



Practical Magic

Where to stream: Hulu

Sandra Bullock may give Meg Ryan a run for her money as the Queen of Autumn as her reign spans numerous genres. Sally and Gillian are two sister witches who were raised by their unconventional aunts. They have taken very different paths in life, but each lives with the same curse: The men they fall in love with will die. When Sally and Gillian accidentally kill Gillian’s abusive boyfriend in an attempt to sedate him, the duo must use a forbidden spell to resurrect him to avoid murder charges. When this plan backfires, they must kill him again and bury him in the backyard. Just when they think their problems are solved, things get much worse.


Twilight (1-5)

Where to stream: Peacock

Twilight girlies, it’s time for your annual rewatch. We know you still love it all these years later, and we don’t blame you one bit. Young, awkward, and delicate Bella Swan has always been a bit of an outcast. When she moves from Arizona to Forks, WA, she quickly becomes enamored by the dreamy and mysterious Edward Cullen. Despite Edward’s better judgment, the two become enchanted by each other. Bella learns that Edward and his family are vampires who don’t drink human blood. She also learns that there are evil vampires out there who do, and she has become their main target because of her connection to the Cullens. 


Harry Potter (1-8)

Where to stream: Max

While I am a firm believer that Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone is, in fact, a Christmas movie, it is also a perfect series to watch in the fall. Harry Potter was orphaned at a young age and forced to live with distant relatives who never accepted him. On his 11th birthday, he learns that his parents were powerful wizards, and he, too, possesses magical powers. Against the wishes of his family, Harry has swept away to a magical school known as Hogwarts. Here, he will not only learn to harness his magic, but he will learn more about his past and a great evil that has long wanted him eliminated. 



Where to stream: Netflix

Many of the adults in Matilda Wormwood’s life have not been good to her, including her parents and the wretched headmistress at her school. When Matilda learns she has the power of telekinesis, she finally has a way to fight back against the unkind people in her life to defend herself and her friends.



The Silence of the Lambs

Where to stream: Hulu

A young FBI Acadamy student, Clarice Starling, has been dealt the task of interviewing Dr. Hannibal Lector, one of the most prolific and violent psychopaths behind bars. As she tries to get answers from him on the bureau’s case, he—a brilliant psychiatrist himself—proceeds to mess with her head before giving up any information. After you watch this one, you’ll be quoting this movie for the rest of the season. 



Where to stream: Max

After losing their biological child, Kate and John decide to adopt. They end up bringing a young girl named Esther into their home. Before long, Kate begins to suspect that Esther may not be the sweet girl they believed her to be. After you’ve watched Orphan, you can follow it up with the sequel, Orphan: First Kill.



Where to stream: Netflix

As a parent, the worst thing that could happen is for your child to go missing. In Prisoners, Keller Dover’s daughter, Anna, and her friend are abducted. The police have one suspect in mind but far too little evidence to take action, forcing Dover to take matters into his own hands.