By no means a spectacular horror movie but it is a nice little ghost story. Director James Wan, rather than relying on cheap gore and torture, as in the Saw movies that he launched, opts here for old fashioned mystery and suspense.
There are very few decent childrens’ programs for Halloween outside of the classic, It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. Having already broken ground with Chicken Run, director Nick Park and Aardman Entertainment cast their signature duo, Wallace and Gromit, in a wonderfully playful horror spoof in their first feature-length motion picture.
Nearly identical to its progenitor, [REC], this American remake gets a slight edge over its predecessor by stripping away the supernatural elements and giving the zombie outbreak a more terrifying, earthly origin. This also gives Quarantine an element of whodunit that’s missing from the Spanish original.
Another excellent remake worthy of its predecessor. This time around the Red Scare overtones have been jettisoned in favor of a post-Nixon/Vietnam paranoia that sees the enemy as the establishment, conformity, and psychoanalytical self-centeredness. The film circles slowly around an ever-decreasing perimeter of safety as the protagonists first discover then try to escape from the otherworldly menace that claims them one by one.
Tremors didn’t get much love when it was initially released in the winter of 1990. Over time, it has garnered a respectable following, spawning three sequels and one television series, and putting it nearly on par with Planet of the Apes. Writers Brent Maddock and S.S. Wilson, and director Ron Underwood nicely infuse the classic 1950s B movie monster motif with a touch of goofy, sometimes slapstick humor that manages to avoid degenerating into outright parody or farce.
After John Carpenter’s highly successful Halloween, he tried his hand at horror once again with this eerie ghost story. Adrienne Barbeau’s small town deejay serves as a kind of narrator to the events that unfold in the unsuspecting town of Antonio Bay as townsfolk prepare for its centennial. Though it’s quite a comedown from his slasher classic, it still has his signature suspenseful style.
What is quite possibly the first slasher film (unless you want to get all semantic with The Lodger, another Hitchcock classic). Psycho‘s unusual story structure caught audiences off guard when the star of the movie resolved to be not the top-billed actress but the legendary scene in which she appeared. The nefarious proprietor of the infamous Bates Motel isn’t even introduced until 20 minutes into the story, but once he is, things get unnerving very quickly.
Director Tobe Hooper was inspired by both a hardware store and a famous serial killer when he wrote what would become The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Filmed on a shoestring budget under an unforgiving Texas sun that overexposed most of the film, the end product is a film with a tone that looks and feels so raw and real that it has caused nightmares for nearly four decades now.
It’s easy to see how Alfred Hitchcock earned his moniker of “Master of Suspense” with this, his first surviving film, wherein he pays homage to the mystery that was Jack the Ripper. This adaptation of a play by Marie Belloc Lowndes has a mysterious lodger appear at the home of a couple with a room to let at about the same time a series of brutal murders terrorize the city.
This follow-up to Clive Barker’s original is a far more interesting examination into the paradoxical concept that pain is pleasure and vice versa. Barker has an oddly intoxicating fascination with the flesh (as can be said of genius Seth Brundle). In this film that fascination is on full display, in particular his affinity for skinless people who have returned from the dead.