Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Studios Hollywood is King of Halloween

Halloween Horrors Nights is the best. There is literally no other way to start this article without stating that. If you want a “knock your socks off” Halloween Event, this is the one you should attend. The whole event is such solid quality and the scares are so in your face that I almost ruined my knee from jumping in every direction. So let’s start this review with the mazes!! I’m going to try my best to be spoiler free, because I want you all to go out there and experience it for yourself! This has seriously been the best line up for mazes in years!!

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre: Blood Brothers
So where do I begin? The last time Universal Studios did a Texas Chainsaw Maze, it was probably one of my least favorite mazes. This year changed all of that. Never have I walked out of a maze shaking and this maze had it all. Great acting that brought you, and kept you, into the realm of the story and amazing scares that I did not see coming a majority of the time! Chop top and Leatherface play perfectly together in this maze and the talent was completely top notch!! It’s incredible, because the sets in this maze are so basic, but they are so rich in detail and so well executed that it feels like you are in a part of this terror. An A for this incredible maze.

HOLLYWOOD HORROR NIGHTS - HOLLYWOOD

Halloween II: Hell Comes to Haddonfield
So unlike The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, this was by far my favorite maze last year and there is no way that this years Halloween could be as great as lasts. WRONG! This maze blew away the year before and it was just astonishing how well executed the scares and scenes were done. My heart was pounding in my chest the whole way through and there was absolutely no place for me to catch my breathe. I’m not going to give anything away in these reviews, but this was by far my favorite maze of the night. And the ending, this was by far the best ending in any Horror Nights maze ever! The music was amazingly slow and creepy, the scares were perfect and on point and the smell just completed the whole thing!! A+ for this perfect maze!

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The Exorcist
When I first heard that The Exorcist was coming to Halloween Horror Nights, I can honestly say that I wasn’t too thrilled. Yes, this maze is beautiful in every way possible, but I couldn’t help but wonder how they were going to bring to life a movie that takes a majority of its place in one room. Boy, do I feel stupid for ever doubting the creative minds of HHN. This maze was absolutely incredible and the scares were so amazing! I’ve never been too big of a fan of the mazes they put behind the Mummy, but this year was a for sure winner. From spider crawl Reagan to seeing all of the memorable scenes in this movie with the use of animatronics. I was completely blown away. There were tons of black hallways to transport you from one scene to another, but what’s hiding in those black hallways will scare the ever-living hell out of you!! Another A+ for an outstanding maze.

Universal Studios "Halloween Horror Nights" - Preview

American Horror Story
So I’m going to be completely honest and say that I am not one of the biggest fans of the TV show, so my excitement for this maze was the lowest of all mazes announced. It’s more of a thriller than an actual horror show to me, but that’s besides the point. This maze was horrifying! From Rubber man in Murder House, Twisty in Freak Show and the Countess in Hotel. This maze had the most memorable scenes from each season in this maze. I do wish Freak Show was a little bit longer, but that damn monkey!! Even though the talent play characters from the show, they made this maze their own and I felt the love and passion they were spilling into it. Murder House was creepy, Freak Show was memorable, but I feel Hotel was the scariest of the three! I’m going to give this maze a solid A!

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Krampus
I was most excited about this maze going in to this event and honestly, it was my least favorite of the night. I was the very first person to enter this maze and I do understand that myself being the only one in the maze caught performers off guard going through, I missed A LOT of the scares! That wasn’t the main issue. It was the girl being eaten by the Jack-in-the-Box. She was acting great and I was buying it because I was scared, but then she stopped right when I walked by her, shrugged her shoulders at me then just sat there. That blew it for me! Keep acting! There is nothing that irks me more than someone giving up and breaking character because I was the only person in there. The elves were great, the puppetry and snowmen were fantastic, Krampus was amazing, but every time I walked by that girl, the only vision I had of her was breaking character. The talent and sets are outstanding and I hope when I return this will be much higher rating for me, but it also doesn’t help that every time I went through, it was a cast change. This one gets a B from me.

Freddy vs. Jason
With Alien vs. Predator being an awesome maze for two years and getting into the middle of their battle, I was so excited to see how they were going to do this for Freddy and Jason. The maze was brutal and so cool! I felt the maze was more Freddy than Jason, but that didn’t ruin the maze in the slightest. The scares were definitely solid and the sets were mind blowing with the use of scrims! I felt really bad for Jason in the beginning of the maze, but later on through he just becomes ruthless!! Freddy pops out in so many different places that I didn’t think were possible and I just loved loved LOVED this maze. From Freddy’s Boiler Room to going through Camp Crystal Lake, the scares never seemed to stop! I have to give this maze an A!

Universal Studios "Halloween Horror Nights" - Preview

Eli Roth’s Terror Tram
Terror Tram has always been my least favorite thing going into Horror Nights year after year. This year and its original idea of clowns was exactly what this attraction needed. The clowns were extremely high energy and fantastic and the settings were great for what you can actually do in Terror Tram. The problem with this will always be the mass amounts of people going through this small pathway all at the same time and it makes the attraction extremely unbearable. But I’m glad the clowns have taken over this and I hope to see more original ideas come through Terror Tram! I give this a B+.

The Purge
Alright, this will probably be the hardest one to review. I love the Purge movies and the concept of it all is extremely cool, but this as a Scare zone/Gauntlet is just a total let down. The talent is fantastic in keeping up high energy and the scares, but it’s just not scary to me. If the Gauntlet (located near Mel’s Diner) was a Purge maze it would have been a great transition from street to maze to be one full cohesive story and I probably would have enjoyed it more. I’m just done with the Purge as a scare zone. I hope a maze will change the way I see the Purge and it will probably scare me more with its close quarters. I give this a C+. The talent is what saved this from going lower.

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So that’s my thoughts on this year. The scares, mazes and overall feel of this year has been nothing short of the best and I can’t wait to return. Visit Halloween Horror Nights if you haven’t before because this is definitely the year to attend. The line up of mazes is the best it has ever been and you will leave exhausted from screaming and jumping from all the incredible talent that put all that they have into this event!

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