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How to Survive Halloween: A Movie Lover's Cheat Sheet

Halloween can certainly be a dangerous time of year, whether you're a drunk teenager with obscured vision on your way to a kegger or a child wandering the streets asking strangers for candy. (Or, if you're the adult who's on the road or at home and has to deal with them.) But real Halloween will never be as dangerous as movie Halloween, so when you're looking for safety tips to get you through the holidays, just pop in a movie -- they've already thought of every worst-case scenario.

1. When choosing a costume, wear something that gives you some mobility, just in case you're chased by a gang of skeletons who know karate. For instance, do not dress as a portable shower, complete with curtain -- especially if you plan to prank a skeleton who knows karate. (The Karate Kid)

2. When driving at night, be mindful of people in the road. Don't speed, and if you do run over someone, don't get out of the car, because their friend might have a gun. (Donnie Darko)

3. If you're with a friend who's wearing a sheet as a ghost costume, check under the sheet regularly to make sure that it's still your friend under there, and not, you know, a serial killer. Sometimes you can tell just by the height. (Halloween)

4. Always check into the background of the company that manufactures your Halloween costume. Make sure they're a reputable company and not, for instance, a cult of robot druids who have implanted their masks with bits of Stonehenge that will melt the wearer's face. (Halloween 3)

5. If a zombie or werewolf costume looks too good to be fake, it's probably because the person is really a zombie or werewolf. It doesn't mean they're dangerous, per se, but you should maintain a safe distance just in case. (Idle Hands, Ginger Snaps)

6. Don't wear a realistic animal costume, because that can only lead to comedic misunderstandings, which generally become less comedic the more time you spend in a cage with a real gorilla. (Trading Places)

7. If you're going to wear fake fangs, at regular intervals shout "I am not really a vampire!" The illusion will be shattered, but your chances of getting staked by an overzealous vampire hunter are reduced dramatically. (Blade: Trinity)

8. Don't blow out a Jack-O'-Lantern, or you will be bludgeoned to death. ...Hey, better safe than sorry. (Trick 'r Treat)

Check out our favorite Halloween TV episodes, then let TV dictate your costume!

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