The first article by a guest author! Below is part 1 of Scott’s Top 50 horror films of all time! If you’d like to write for this blog as well, please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with your submissions.
- Tourist Trap (1979)
A movie from my childhood that while doesn’t hold up to today’s standards of quality horror still has a sense of creepiness and terror within the film. Tanya Roberts (Beastmaster) is one of the more notable names on the bill as the story centers around a group of young adults who stumble upon a demented man who has the telekinetic power to control a massive collection of mannequins that do some god awful creepy things.
- The Iron Rose (1973)
Long story short, the plot deals with young lovers whom visit a graveyard for no particular reason. But very quickly the young woman and man are both excited and anxious. What starts as a sense of sexual arousal and exploration soon turns to fear as they both get lost as night falls. Eventually one of them becomes more acquainted with the macabre which doesn’t bold well for the partner. One of many films that director Jean Rollin (Requiem for a Vampire, The Living Dead Girl, The Grapes of Death) has directed The Iron Rose is not a gory slice fest but a surreal fearscape of dark atmosphere and dread and while the pacing is a little slow actress Francoise Pascal is very easy on the eyes and is able to keep your attention throughout the film.
- Howling V: The Rebirth (1989)
My love for werewolf movies is strong but I am also very finicky about what I like in a werewolf movie. The Howling series has its fair share of duds but the great thing about this flick is it sort of gets back to the roots of the early part of the series. Based upon a group of people who are invited to a Hungarian castle that was the location of a 500 year old massacre the group soon are being hunted down systematically one by one by an unknown creature. The group also starts to believe that one of them may be the hunter.
- Thale (2012)
In the modern age of reboots and remakes it’s quite nice when you can find little gems sprinkled throughout the rubbish and Thale is one of them. Focusing on a pair of crime scene cleanup guys the movie follows them as they are at a scene and stumble upon a humanoid woman like creature that has a cow like tail. The two men also discover audio tapes from the man who had been keeping the creature captive until some soldiers come to reclaim the creature with dire consequences when they discover she isn’t alone.
- The Void (2017)
While not particularly original The Void is very stylish and pays great homage to movies like Carpenter’s The Thing and Barker’s Hellraiser. The story kicks right in when a cop comes across a man crawling in the road after fleeing a farm house. As they arrive to the hospital it soon is learned that the man is being hunted by a group of cultists thus they begin to barricade themselves and a few others in the hospital. As the body count starts to rise more and more secrets are exposed leading to a very disturbing and supernatural conclusion.
- The Ugly (1997)
I honestly have never seen this movie on any horror list, whether it’s just not well liked or not many people are aware of it. The story centers on a Silence of the Lambs type plot with serial killer Simon Cartwright who is being interviewed by Dr. Karen Shumaker to see if he is cured of his sickness. The movie backtracks through memories of Simon’s killing spree and how his victims haunt him constantly throughout the spree and afterwards. Shumaker believes that Simon is simply not as crazy as he seems and suspects the asylum’s warden may be feeding him the ideas of his madness.
- The Woman (2011)
While this movie is actually a sequel to The Offspring you don’t necessarily have to have seen that to follow this movie as it works well as a standalone flick. A suburban husband comes across a feral woman while hunting and brings her back and locks her up in the shed as he begins to try and “tame” her. Soon he introduces his family to the woman which of course draws ire from his wife but sexual curiosity from his son. What he doesn’t anticipate is the background from the woman and her ability of survival which brings everything to a very gruesome end.
- The Shining (1980)
Hailed as one of Nicholson’s best and one of Steven King’s best stories Nicholson plays an author who takes his wife and son to the Stanley Hotel as they are working as the caretakers over the winter months while he tries to write his new novel. Unfortunately the hotel has its own dark secrets and the combination of haunting images, ghostly apparitions, and the unraveling of Nicholson’s mind it soon becomes a mixed bag of cat and mouse for the rest of the family. Well shot and very well acted this movie holds a special place in my heart even to this day and is one Kubrick’s best offerings.
- City of the Living Dead (1980)
Directed by horror master Lucio Fulci City of the Living Dead is part of the “Gates of Hell” trilogy. Like most of Fulci’s films this flick has some issues with editing and timing but does not take away from the glorious gore and horror that it delivers. After a clergy kills himself he opens the gate to hell that a reporter and a psychic must race against time to close before the dead to rise from their graves.
- Silver Bullet (1985)
The second werewolf movie to make my list and this one is a fun one. Featuring some masterful performances from Corey Haim, Gary Busey, and Everett McGill the story is about a young boy Marty (Cory Haim) who is paralyzed from the waist down and is constantly supervised much to the chagrin of his eldest sister Megan. Soon the small town they are a part is plagued by vicious attacks that has the town crippled with fear and anxiety. Marty’s uncle (Busey) provides Marty with a brand new wheelchair in the form of a modified motorcycle. One night Marty is shooting off fireworks provided by his uncle to which he is almost attacked by a creature. Marty informs his sister that the town is being attacked by a werewolf and takes some convincing of his sister and uncle to believe him. Filled with some genuine scare moments as well as some well-timed comedic spots Silver Bullet has survived the test of time and is an all-time Steven King classic.
- Excision (2012)
Excision focuses on a young teen named Pauline (Annalynne McCord) who has a younger sister who suffers from cystic fibrosis adding tension into the family especially with her overly Christian mother Phyllis (played by former pornstar legend Traci Lords). To add to the tension Pauline has dreams with very gory and sadistic imagery which she gets a sense of sexual relief from. When Pauline’s sister begins to get sick she kicks off a plan to try and save her but nobody can prepare you for what transpires. One of those sneaky flicks that caught me off guard when I first discovered it.