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#301-#400

The 1,000 Greatest Horror Films: #301-#400

The 1,000 Greatest Horror Films: Introduction | #1-#100 | #101-#200 | #201-#300 | #301-#400 | #401-#500 | #501-#600 | #601-#700 | #701-#800 | #801-#900 | #901-#1000 | Full List | Sources | The 21st Century’s Most Acclaimed Horror Films | Top 50 Directors

Shadow of the Vampire

301. (-16) Shadow of the Vampire

E. Elias Merhige

2000 / UK / 92m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
John Malkovich, Willem Dafoe, Udo Kier, Cary Elwes, Catherine McCormack, Eddie Izzard, Aden Gillett, Nicholas Elliott, Ronan Vibert, Sophie Langevin

“The movie does an uncanny job of re-creating the visual feel of Murnau’s film. There are shots that look the way moldy basements smell. This material doesn’t lend itself to subtlety, and Malkovich and Dafoe chew their lines like characters who know they are always being observed (some directors do more acting on their sets than the actors do)… Vampires for some reason are funny as well as frightening. Maybe that’s because the conditions of their lives are so absurd. Some of novelist Anne Rice’s vampires have a fairly entertaining time of it, but someone like Schreck seems doomed to spend eternity in psychic and physical horror.” – Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

Children of the Corn

302. (-7) Children of the Corn

Fritz Kiersch

1984 / USA / 92m / Col / Evil Children | IMDb
Peter Horton, Linda Hamilton, R.G. Armstrong, John Franklin, Courtney Gains, Robby Kiger, Anne Marie McEvoy, Julie Maddalena, Jonas Marlowe, John Philbin

“So Children of the Corn is goofy and campy, but it’s also awesome. The atmosphere is killer, evoked by some eerie shots of cornfields both in the daytime and at night – and it’s surprising how scary this is even when most of the film takes place during the day. The kids, while not GREAT actors, do get the job done and manage to come off as legitimately creepy rather than just silly. The main characters are both good, with real personalities and as an added bonus, they actually DO things rather than just letting things HAPPEN to them, which is a big problem a lot of horror movies have. By avoiding that pitfall, this movie has a lot of drive and momentum and remains consistently exciting all throughout its duration.” – Lawrence Griff, Doc Universe

Deliverance

303. (-5) Deliverance

John Boorman

1972 / USA / 110m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Jon Voight, Burt Reynolds, Ned Beatty, Ronny Cox, Ed Ramey, Billy Redden, Seamon Glass, Randall Deal, Bill McKinney, Herbert ‘Cowboy’ Coward

“‘Deliverance’ is a movie of contrasts, the primary one emphasizing the differences between modern Man, with his impulse to change things, and primal Nature, with its pristine beauty. Man chews up the landscape, as symbolized by the bulldozers and earth movers we see at the beginning, and spits it out. The four city slickers, eager to commune with what they view as the underlying structure of the universe, are ironic emblems of the modern world’s need to destroy for its own good. Despite their being a part of the root problem, they’re out to prove their understanding of the wild by taming a river, a river the state is about to dam up and spoil forever… At its most fundamental level ‘Deliverance’ is a story of survival, but it’s not just about surviving the hazards of the wilderness; it’s about surviving one’s own heart of darkness, about confronting one’s basest needs and accepting or rejecting them.” – John J. Puccio, Movie Metropolis

Let Me In

304. (+15) Let Me In

Matt Reeves

2010 / USA / 116m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Kodi Smit-McPhee, Chloë Grace Moretz, Richard Jenkins, Cara Buono, Elias Koteas, Sasha Barrese, Dylan Kenin, Chris Browning, Ritchie Coster, Dylan Minnette

“In transliterating a foreign-language horror hit into an Anglophone movie it doesn’t follow [shot-for-shot]… though it does lift many scenes verbatim… If anything, this is a grimmer reading: as per Lindqvist, Abby genuinely feels for Owen, but the film suggests – via a photo-strip showing that she has been with her current protector since he was Owen’s age – that the vampire is going through another iteration of a relationship she has had before and will have again… Let Me In isn’t as rich or daring as Let the Right One In and seldom improves on it – but it plays better as a horror film, more concentrated in its focus on the creepy and shocking aspects of its unusual love story.” – Kim Newman, Sight and Sound

Bug

305. (+16) Bug

William Friedkin

2006 / USA / 102m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Ashley Judd, Michael Shannon, Harry Connick Jr., Lynn Collins, Brían F. O’Byrne, Neil Bergeron, Bob Neill

“Bug is not surprisingly being advertised as being “from the director of The Exorcist,” which says almost as much about the lingering power of that 1973 horror classic as it does about the disappointing nature of Friedkin’s career over the past three decades. The comparison is not just a marketing ploy, though, as Bug allows Friedkin to play on his strengths as a director–namely, managing actors in close quarters. For all the talk about pea soup and head-spinning in The Exorcist, that film was in many ways a chamber piece, with its issues of faith, religion, and the true nature of evil playing out largely within the tight confines of a little girl’s bedroom. By the end of Bug, Agnes’s motel room is as unrecognizable as Reagan’s bedroom was, transformed from a place of ordinary existence into a realm of extraordinary degradation in which two people finding love and acceptance culminates into a literal inferno.” – James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk

Tales from the Crypt

306. (-34) Tales from the Crypt

Freddie Francis

1972 / UK / 92m / Col / Anthology | IMDb
Ralph Richardson, Geoffrey Bayldon, Joan Collins, Martin Boddey, Chloe Franks, Oliver MacGreevy, Ian Hendry, Susan Denny, Angela Grant, Peter Cushing

“Subotsky bought the movie rights for all the E. C. horror titles from their publisher, William M. Gaines, and “Tales from the Crypt” is the first film made from the material. It’s put together something like the comic books, with the old Crypt Keeper acting as host and narrator… The five stories all work on the principle that an evildoer should be punished ironically by his own misdeed… The direction is by Freddie Francis, who has something of a cult following among horror fans, and the visuals and decor have been planned in bright basic colors and gray, so they look something like comic panels. One further note: If Santa Claus knocks at your door tonight, don’t answer.” – Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times

Killer Klowns from Outer Space

307. (0) Killer Klowns from Outer Space

Stephen Chiodo

1988 / USA / 88m / Col / Evil Clown | IMDb
Grant Cramer, Suzanne Snyder, John Allen Nelson, John Vernon, Michael Siegel, Peter Licassi, Royal Dano, Christopher Titus, Irene Michaels, Karla Sue Krull

“It’s a one-gag movie, but while some of the iterations of that gag are about as hilarious as a squirt in the face from a plastic flower, a few are genuinely rib-tickling: a clown makes a balloon-animal dog… then lets it loose to hunt down a pair of escaping teens; later, a hapless victim is turned into a hissing pile of melted flesh and bone by a barrage of corrosive custard pies. The designs are likeably lurid (particularly the surreal interior of the clown spaceship), and the animatronics are impressive, considering the budget. Killer Klowns was clearly a labour of love for the three brothers responsible (Stephen, Charles and Edward Chiodo). They never made a feature again… but they can be justly proud of their one big achievement.” – Ian Berriman, SFX Magazine

Trouble Every Day

308. (+14) Trouble Every Day

Claire Denis

2001 / France / 101m / Col / Drama | IMDb
Vincent Gallo, Tricia Vessey, Béatrice Dalle, Alex Descas, Florence Loiret Caille, Nicolas Duvauchelle, Raphaël Neal, José Garcia, Hélène Lapiower, Marilu Marini

“Denis’s films have always been shot through with a current of menace just waiting to be made explicit: it’s present in their off-balance close-ups, faintly unstable camera moves, obsessive attention to the texture of hair, clothes, and skin, and habit of letting the camera slide caressingly around actors’ bodies when they’re at their least self-conscious and most exposed. Where other Denis films seem to circle and drift around indecisively, Trouble Every Day itches with a kind of nervous forward momentum. It’s an extended come-on, full of teases and hints and come-hither gestures, finally climaxing — in every way — with two scenes of gruesome sexual violence.” – Max Nelson, Film Comment Magazine

Evil Dead

309. (+120) Evil Dead

Fede Alvarez

2013 / USA / 91m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Jane Levy, Shiloh Fernandez, Lou Taylor Pucci, Jessica Lucas, Elizabeth Blackmore, Phoenix Connolly, Jim McLarty, Sian Davis, Stephen Butterworth, Karl Willetts

“Evil Dead is relentless. Once it starts, it never lets up. It becomes a constant barrage of gory fun, and in the spirit of the original, Alvarez and his team use make-up and real-world special effects rather than relying solely on CGI. Another distinctive and key part of the original series were the off-kilter and exaggerated camera angles. Alvarez adopts the film language of Raimi’s films, adds more to the bag of tricks, and keeps the sardonic attitude without necessarily being slapstick.” – Eric Melin, Scene Stealers

The Tingler

310. (-27) The Tingler

William Castle

1959 / USA / 82m / BW / Science Fiction | IMDb
Vincent Price, Judith Evelyn, Darryl Hickman, Patricia Cutts, Pamela Lincoln, Philip Coolidge

“”Be afraid. Be very afraid. And when you are afraid, for Heaven’s sake don’t hesitate to scream.” The Tingler is famous as one of the first ever audience participation cinema experiences. Chapin (Vincent Price) happens to have dedicated years of his life to studying fear, which he suspects is caused by a parasite attached to the human spine. Now he may have the opportunity to capture a live specimen – but, all moral concerns aside (every character here is quick to forsake them), can he really control it?… Opening the door for endless experiments in making more out of the cinema experience, The Tingler is one of the most important genre films of its time, and it has enough humour to remain endearing to this day. ” – Jennie Kermode, Eye for film

Targets

311. (-29) Targets

Peter Bogdanovich

1968 / USA / 90m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Tim O’Kelly, Boris Karloff, Arthur Peterson, Monte Landis, Nancy Hsueh, Peter Bogdanovich, Daniel Ades, Stafford Morgan, James Brown, Mary Jackson

“Targets, despite having been made over 40 years ago, remains an intense viewing experience. In some ways, it’s even more relevant now than it was then, because, sadly, we’ve seen far too many Bobby Thompsons, especially in the past decade. The drama therefore feels very real. That Bogdanovich never provides much of an explanation for Bobby’s actions only makes them creepier. The finale, set at the drive-in, is an extended sequence of immense terror, beautifully staged by the director for maximum suspense.” – Mike McGranaghan, The Aisle Seat

Pumpkinhead

312. (-9) Pumpkinhead

Stan Winston

1988 / USA / 86m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Lance Henriksen, Jeff East, John D’Aquino, Kimberly Ross, Joel Hoffman, Cynthia Bain, Kerry Remsen, Florence Schauffler, Brian Bremer, George ‘Buck’ Flower

“When Pennsylvanian country-dweller Ed Harley’s kid gets (accidentally) killed by a group of marauding young townies on motorbikes, the aggrieved father (Henriksen) seeks justice, or more precisely, vengeance. Aided by the mythically wizened old crone from Black Ridge (Schauffler), he invokes the rampaging form of Pumpkinhead, a 15-foot monstrosity who doesn’t believe in penal reform and with whom one does not mess lightly. From there on it’s stiff-city for the unfortunate kids, as well as some hellish rewards for Harley himself.” – MK, Time Out

Lake Mungo

313. (+50) Lake Mungo

Joel Anderson

2008 / Australia / 87m / Col / Found Footage | IMDb
Rosie Traynor, David Pledger, Martin Sharpe, Talia Zucker, Tania Lentini, Cameron Strachan, Judith Roberts, Robin Cuming, Marcus Costello, Chloe Armstrong

“Anderson’s use of the documentary framework is an inspired choice, since it lends what we’re seeing an air of reality that helps build the tension to jangling point. It also gives him the opportunity to vary the look with the use of different types of film, including Super 8 and lots of still photography, smartly serving the story while keeping a grip on what was, presumably, a very tight budget. By staying true to the audience’s expectations of the documentary format, the sense of dread that settles over the family is also more readily conveyed than it might have been if we were watching something which looked more ‘fictional’. It’s not just the format that draws the viewer in, but also the manner in which the film is shot. Since much of what the family talk about relates to spooky images in pictures, Anderson’s camerawork draws you deeper and deeper into the frame with an increasing feeling of unease.” – Amber Wilkinson, Eye For Film

The Monster Squad

314. (-5) The Monster Squad

Fred Dekker

1987 / USA / 82m / Col / Comedy | IMDb
Andre Gower, Robby Kiger, Stephen Macht, Duncan Regehr, Tom Noonan, Brent Chalem, Ryan Lambert, Ashley Bank, Michael Faustino, Mary Ellen Trainor

“Although a heart felt tribute to the great movie monsters of filmland this little gem was especially appealing to an 80s kid because it dared to stick an affectionate middle- finger up at the stately Hammer Horror movies that were concurrently screened on our TVs ad nauseum. This movie opens with Van Helsing fucking up! It also depicts the classic character of the Wolf Man being kicked in the nuts! That singular boot to the balls kick starts the Squad’s ascendancy to a force to be reckoned with and also acted as the ultimate revenge for a legion of sleep deprived kids haunted by late night werewolf TV escapades.” – Dan Palmer, You’ve Got Red On You

It's Alive

315. (-27) It’s Alive

Larry Cohen

1974 / USA / 91m / Col / Body Horror | IMDb
John P. Ryan, Sharon Farrell, James Dixon, William Wellman Jr., Shamus Locke, Andrew Duggan, Guy Stockwell, Daniel Holzman, Michael Ansara, Robert Emhardt

“The proudly independent Larry Cohen finally struck it rich in the mainstream with this unnerving tale of a monstrous baby that puts a novel twist on the concept of being brought into the world kicking and screaming. As the marketing campaign for the film declared, the only thing wrong with Frank and Lenore Davies’s second child is that it’s alive, and, after being received with horror by the rest of the world, it does not hesitate to defend that life to the utmost. One part allegory on familial tensions and one part commentary on environmental and biological poisoning, It’s Alive is a multi-layered work that is at the same time starkly clear and chillingly precise in its observations.” – Josh Vasquez, Slant Magazine

Friday the 13th Part 2

316. (-8) Friday the 13th Part 2

Steve Miner

1981 / USA / 87m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Amy Steel, John Furey, Adrienne King, Kirsten Baker, Stuart Charno, Warrington Gillette, Walt Gorney, Marta Kober, Tom McBride, Bill Randolph

“Friday the 13th Part 2 is every bit as crude, senseless, and blunt as they accuse it of being, and it’s not surprising that discerning filmgoers with higher aspirations than the slasher genre offers would find it somewhat unnerving to be in a roomful of kids who seem to revel in make-believe bloodlust. Friday the 13th Part 2 cannot be defended intellectually, yet, the film’s very simplicity and directness gives it a kind of folkloric power, albeit power that works only if you give yourself over to it. If you do, it not only allows you to find a queasy sense of pleasure in being unashamedly goosed and grossed out, but also to ignore just how utterly nonsensical the film’s ending actually is.” – James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk

Night of the Eagle

317. (-13) Night of the Eagle

Sidney Hayers

1962 / UK / 90m / BW / Supernatural | IMDb
Peter Wyngarde, Janet Blair, Margaret Johnston, Anthony Nicholls, Colin Gordon, Kathleen Byron, Reginald Beckwith, Jessica Dunning, Norman Bird, Judith Stott

““Burn, Witch, Burn” maintains both its tone and the line of ambiguity about whether the witchcraft actually works. Wyngarde is fantastic in a finely nuanced performance. He comes off as a good person but flawed; he’s not always the nicest human being and with that ego comeuppance is assured. Still, this is Hayers’ ship, and he steers it flawlessly. The film is never less than gripping, and past a certain point, you have no idea where this movie is going. With neither the budget nor the technology for flashy effects, the filmmakers had to fall back on quality acting, writing, directing, and editing. They succeeded.” – Ron Wells, Film Threat

I Know What You Did Last Summer

318. (+49) I Know What You Did Last Summer

Jim Gillespie

1997 / USA / 100m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Jennifer Love Hewitt, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Ryan Phillippe, Freddie Prinze Jr., Bridgette Wilson-Sampras, Anne Heche, Johnny Galecki, Muse Watson, Stuart Greer, J. Don Ferguson

“Laying its claim to succeed ‘Scream’ as a high-grossing, blood-drenched date-night crowd-pleaser… Once again, the screenwriter is Kevin Williamson, working from a novel by Lois Duncan about four teen-agers haunted by a secret: their decision to dispose of the body hit by their BMW… Though it flies in the face of credibility and becomes downright silly by its end, ‘I Know What You Did Last Summer’ knows its way around the rules of the popular horror-film genre: the prefiguring ghost story around the campfire, the teen-age sex that insures murder, the spooky killer, plenty of steamy shower rooms and crab vats, pop-up bodies, references to other films and television and an ending that sets the gurney for as many sequels as the public can stomach.” – Lawrence Van Gelder, New York Times

Grindhouse

319. (+8) Grindhouse

Robert Rodriguez & Quentin Tarantino et al.

2007 / USA / 191m / Col / Anthology | IMDb
Kurt Russell, Zoë Bell, Rosario Dawson, Vanessa Ferlito, Sydney Tamiia Poitier, Tracie Thoms, Rose McGowan, Jordan Ladd, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Quentin Tarantino

“An exuberant double feature by Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino, evokes the exploitation flicks that used to play, several decades ago, in moldering theaters with flypaper floors. Thus a go-go dancer’s leg goes missing during a zombie attack, and the action is occasionally interrupted by title cards that proclaim “Missing Reel.” (That touch is more affectionate than factual, since projectionists and sleazy distributors of the slasher/horror genre didn’t brag about such omissions.) Little else seems to be missing from this work of wild-eyed archaeology – not the slime or drool, spurting blood, throbbing engines, screeching tires or jeopardized women. Yet value has been added as well – the most thrilling car chase ever committed to film, a sequence that also shows, by cutting to the psychosexual chase, why fans embraced the tawdry genre in the first place.” – Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal

Cure

320. (+32) Cure

Kiyoshi Kurosawa

1997 / Japan / 111m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Kôji Yakusho, Masato Hagiwara, Tsuyoshi Ujiki, Anna Nakagawa, Yoriko Dôguchi, Yukijirô Hotaru, Denden, Ren Ohsugi, Masahiro Toda, Misayo Haruki

“Writer/Director Kiyoshi Kurosawa is not a Japanese David Fincher, while Fincher makes “Seven” seem cool, Kurosawa makes “Cure” real. This is not an over-stylized film. We see the murders like a witness, with far away static shots. When the detective is investigating, we are his partner and we stay a few paces away just listening. The film’s score is nearly non-existent, the scenes are filled with ambient sound, the rumbling of the ocean or a dryer. “Cure” is a movie to get lost in. From the very beginning we’re thrown into something where we’re never quite sure what is going on. It is wonderful to feel misplaced, knowing that this will not end with a foreseeable plot twist. There is no clear-cut conclusion. The film is not wrapped up in a nice neat little package. Kurosawa shows us a glimpse into this strange world and then pulls away, leaving us to figure out the answers, answers that may never come.” – Ross Williams, Film Threat

Under the Skin

321. (+266) Under the Skin

Jonathan Glazer

2013 / UK / 108m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy McWilliams, Lynsey Taylor Mackay, Dougie McConnell, Kevin McAlinden, D. Meade, Andrew Gorman, Joe Szula, Krystof Hádek

“Glazer reportedly spent ten years developing Under the Skin, and some aspects of it are so immaculately realized that they seem eerily inevitable. The audio design immerses the listener, its layered soundscapes suggesting how overwhelmed the alien might feel on earth. Glazer disorients the viewer through his use of the Steadicam, exploiting its uncannily smooth movement to suggest, as Stanley Kubrick did in The Shining, the perspective of a superhuman voyeur. The most impressive effects come during the seduction sequences, as Glazer creates the blank, ever-shifting environment of a nightmare… Like its protagonist, Under the Skin effectively draws us in while managing to stay beyond our grasp.” – Ben Sachs, Chicago Reader

La noche del terror ciego

322. (-30) La noche del terror ciego

Amando de Ossorio

1972 / Spain / 101m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Lone Fleming, César Burner, María Elena Arpón, José Thelman, Rufino Inglés, Verónica Llimera, Simón Arriaga, Francisco Sanz, Juan Cortés, Andrés Isbert

“The film is not, of course, flawless; like just about every other genre film made on that continent in that time period, the plot is too flimsy to withstand even a slight breeze of scrutiny (there’s a whole entire subplot involving Virginia’s ultimate fate that is of nearly no value to the story whatsoever), and most of the characters are die-cut from cardboard, although Bet is surely a more rounded figure than we often see in these films, and reasonably well performed. But honestly, no sane person goes into a film like this for the story. They go for the atmosphere, the terror, and the zombies, and all three of those things are in peak form here. As the kick-off to the European zombie film, Tombs is just about the finest example of the form that I have ever seen.” – Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy

The Bad Seed

323. (+15) The Bad Seed

Mervyn LeRoy

1956 / USA / 129m / BW / Evil Children | IMDb
Nancy Kelly, Patty McCormack, Henry Jones, Eileen Heckart, Evelyn Varden, William Hopper, Paul Fix, Jesse White, Gage Clarke, Joan Croydon

“The Bad Seed (1956) sets this thriller in the suburbs and explores the age-old questions of the effects of nurture and nature on behavior and how they relate to the criminal mind. Seed is based on Maxwell Anderson’s 1954 Broadway hit of the same name, and employs all , except one, of the play’s principal actors. The film received a few Oscar nominations, including a nod for the young Patty McCormack. Despite the amusing broad acting which garners the Camp classification that this film gets today, Seed tackles serious questions of behavior, heredity, childrearing and class warfare that can resonate with people in any era.” – Deborah Thomas, Examiner

The Sentinel

324. (-12) The Sentinel

Michael Winner

1977 / USA / 92m / Col / Haunted House | IMDb
Chris Sarandon, Cristina Raines, Martin Balsam, John Carradine, José Ferrer, Ava Gardner, Arthur Kennedy, Burgess Meredith, Sylvia Miles, Deborah Raffin

“With an impressive cast list, and some visuals that bring up memories of Lucio Fulci, The Sentinel is a great classic that everyone should watch. There’s something very dirty and disturbing about a lot of horror films from the 70s. Typically, they aren’t as violent as horror movies can be now, but they frequently have a skin crawling effect that is currently lacking in the genre. The Sentinel is uncomfortable for most of its running time. From the very strange neighbours in Alison’s new apartment building, to her terrible memories of the past, to an ending that you just won’t expect, almost every moment will leave you with chills.” – The film reel

God Told Me To

325. (-32) God Told Me To

Larry Cohen

1976 / USA / 91m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Tony Lo Bianco, Deborah Raffin, Sandy Dennis, Sylvia Sidney, Sam Levene, Robert Drivas, Mike Kellin, Richard Lynch, Sammy Williams, Jo Flores Chase

“A delirious mix of sci-fi, pseudo-religious fantasy and horror detective thriller, with Lo Bianco as the perfect existential anti-hero – a New York cop and closet Catholic, guiltily trapped between wife and mistress. His investigations into a bizarre spate of mass murders lead right to the top: Jesus Christ, no less, is provoking innocent citizens to go on a murderous rampage. God Told Me To overflows with such perverse and subversive notions that no amount of shoddy editing and substandard camerawork can conceal the film’s unusual qualities. Digging deep into the psyche of American manhood, it lays bare the guilt-ridden oppressions of a soulless society.” – SW, Time out

Piranha

326. (0) Piranha

Joe Dante

1978 / USA / 94m / Col / Nature | IMDb
Bradford Dillman, Heather Menzies-Urich, Kevin McCarthy, Keenan Wynn, Dick Miller, Barbara Steele, Belinda Balaski, Melody Thomas Scott, Bruce Gordon, Barry Brown

“That’s it in a nutshell, and yes, the storyline is both random and goofier than shit. Yet, that’s all part of Piranha‘s charm. This flick is by no means good; in fact, for the most part it’s just a really blatant rip-off of Jaws, but wow is it fun. We’re talking turn your brain off entertainment at its finest, folks. Piranha delivers more than its fair share of laughs, intentional and otherwise, while keeping in tune with the campy boobs and blood flicks of its time. None of it really makes any sense, but it’s a safe bet that by the time these creatures start their nibbling, plot holes will be the last thing on your mind.” – Steve “Uncle Creepy” Barton, Dread Central

La casa dalle finestre che ridono

327. (-31) La casa dalle finestre che ridono

Pupi Avati

1976 / Italy / 110m / Col / Giallo | IMDb
Lino Capolicchio, Francesca Marciano, Gianni Cavina, Giulio Pizzirani, Bob Tonelli, Vanna Busoni, Pietro Brambilla, Ferdinando Orlandi, Andrea Matteuzzi

“What is… haunting, is the number of questions, especially concerning the different villagers’ behaviours and motivations, that The House With Laughing Windows leaves entirely unresolved. For the film is not only about a particularly unspeakable series of crimes, but about the way a closed community’s code of silence can spread complicity and guilt far beyond the original wrongdoers. So while The House With Laughing Windows is certainly a gripping murder mystery, it is also an intelligent allegory… of post-war Italy’s struggles to emerge from the Fascist outrages of its recent past.” – Anton Bitel, Eye for Film

The Brides of Dracula

328. (-23) The Brides of Dracula

Terence Fisher

1960 / UK / 85m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Peter Cushing, Martita Hunt, Yvonne Monlaur, Freda Jackson, David Peel, Miles Malleson, Henry Oscar, Mona Washbourne, Andree Melly, Victor Brooks

“Terence Fisher proves just as adept at action in this film as he was with atmosphere and space in the original, resulting in a tremendously exciting climax with just enough imagination to leave us unconcerned about how much it borrows from other sources. Besides that, Brides is not just the equal of Dracula as a triumph of craftsmanship; in at least one important way, it’s a major step up. Though the film is still lighter than the modern viewer would think proper, it offers a much deeper collection of musty shadows than the first film had, and a crazy motif of colorful detail lighting that makes no sense in a strictly motivational way (i.e. there’s no reason that bright green lights should pour out of the inn’s back rooms), but serves a much greater purpose in showing just how off-kilter and nightmarish this whole Gothic world really is.” – Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy

The Faculty

329. (+7) The Faculty

Robert Rodriguez

1998 / USA / 104m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Jordana Brewster, Clea DuVall, Laura Harris, Josh Hartnett, Shawn Hatosy, Salma Hayek, Famke Janssen, Piper Laurie, Christopher McDonald, Bebe Neuwirth

“Scream writer, Kevin Williamson, has teamed up with Robert Rodriguez, the director of Tarantino’s Mexican vampire gorefest, From Dusk Till Dawn. The result is far more intelligent than you might dare suppose. As a teenage take on Invasion Of The Body Snatchers, it combines strong characters with paranoid thriller techniques – can I trust her? Is she one of them? – and wicked special effects. The film succeeds so well in a genre, where pastiche is the norm, by accepting absurdity as real. Rodriguez is less showy than he was with From Dusk Till Dawn and Desperado. He takes it seriously, as do the young actors, all of whom deserve praise. It makes the difference between shlock horror and interesting fear.” – Angus Wolfe Murray, Eye for film

The City of the Dead

330. (-46) The City of the Dead

John Llewellyn Moxey

1960 / UK / 78m / BW / Supernatural | IMDb
Dennis Lotis, Christopher Lee, Patricia Jessel, Tom Naylor, Betta St. John, Venetia Stevenson, Valentine Dyall, Ann Beach, Norman Macowan, Fred Johnson

“Horror film aficionados have long known about an underrated, little-recognized gem from the early ’60s called Horror Hotel. Due to its low budget, The City of the Dead was completely filmed on a sound stage. No scenes were filmed outside. However, instead of becoming a liability, this limitation actually works in the film’s favor, giving it a strong sense of claustrophobia, which makes the horror all the more palpable… One of the movie’s greatest virtues is its sense of a secluded other-worldly environment of near-Lovecraftian implications.” – Gary Johnson, Images Journal

Viy

331. (-15) Viy

Konstantin Ershov & Georgi Kropachyov

1967 / Soviet Union / 77m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Leonid Kuravlyov, Natalya Varley, Aleksey Glazyrin, Nikolay Kutuzov, Vadim Zakharchenko, Pyotr Vesklyarov, Vladimir Salnikov, Dmitriy Kapka, Stepan Shkurat, Georgiy Sochevko

“Running a tight 72 minutes, this film never overstays its welcome and wisely leaves the viewer wanting more. The second and third witch attacks are among Ptushko’s finest work, as the witch rides her coffin in circles through the air, monsters pour from the walls, giant hands erupt from the floor, and “Viy” himself makes an appearance for the grand finale. The rest of the film is a skillful example of the balance between wonder and dread, with religion playing a prominent role from the opening moments to the final, ironic closing lines.” – Mondo Digital

Tourist Trap

332. (-31) Tourist Trap

David Schmoeller

1979 / USA / 90m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Chuck Connors, Jocelyn Jones, Jon Van Ness, Robin Sherwood, Tanya Roberts, Dawn Jeffory, Keith McDermott, Shailar Coby, Arlecchino, Victoria Richart

“With an atmosphere recalling such memorably intense shockers as The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, and anticipating such future horror classics as The Evil Dead, Tourist Trap just might be one of the most underappreciated low-budget horror films of the 1970s. Favoring unsettling sound and imagery in favor of gratuitous gore and shock tactics, and featuring a giddily loony performance by Chuck Connors, Tourist Trap’s nightmarish atmosphere and logic propel it a step ahead of its contemporaries. Numerous scenes of screaming mannequins menacing their victims have a certain way of getting under your skin despite the temptation toward awkward laughter, with a surreal night-terror logic often teetering between downright silly and absolutely horrifying. ” – Allmovie

Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter

333. (+12) Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter

Joseph Zito

1984 / USA / 91m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Kimberly Beck, Peter Barton, Corey Feldman, Erich Anderson, Crispin Glover, Clyde Hayes, Barbara Howard, Lawrence Monoson, Joan Freeman, Judie Aronson

“The difference with this film is what sets it apart from most of the series: It’s dark and extremely brutal. The first three tried to be serious but had moments of lightness and even in the midst of the bloody attacks you could either flinch or laugh at what you were watching. Part 4 is vicious and cruel. Rather than showcasing stupendous new special effects techniques, the murder scenes are just people getting gorily butchered. Some characters might be asking for it, but at times even I was wincing (and I’ve sat through more horror films than I would ever care to count).” – Kyle, Mutant Reviewers

Dead of Night

334. (-71) Dead of Night

Bob Clark

1972 / Canada / 88m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
John Marley, Lynn Carlin, Richard Backus, Henderson Forsythe, Anya Ormsby, Jane Daly, Michael Mazes, Arthur Anderson, Arthur Bradley, David Gawlikowski

“Part of the reason that Deathdream has captivated audiences throughout the last thirty years is the understated and creepy way in which it unfolds. Although evident from the first few scenes, the film never explicitly reveals that Andy is actually dead until more than halfway through, adding a level of ambiguity to his sinister actions. This charges the film with a sense of mystery and encourages the audience to piece together the plot themselves. Although effective as a flat-out horror film, Deathdream was also one of the first films to be critical of the Vietnam War, focusing on the lingering effects of the conflict on soldiers returning to America. The stress disorders and drug addiction that many veterans experienced are alluded to, but more importantly, this film is filled with sense that the war has changed not only Andy, but the entire country. Ormsby’s screenplay portrays Andy as the ultimate corrupted innocent, a survivor (although not in the strictest sense of the word) of an experience that literally left him dead inside.” – Canuxploitation

Frontière(s)

335. (-5) Frontière(s)

Xavier Gens

2007 / France / 108m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Karina Testa, Samuel Le Bihan, Estelle Lefébure, Aurélien Wiik, David Saracino, Chems Dahmani, Maud Forget, Amélie Daure, Rosine Favey, Adel Bencherif

“There’s enough blood in the unrated French horror film “Frontier(s)” to satiate even the most ravenous gore hounds. The real surprise here is that this creepy, contemporary gross-out also has some ideas, visual and otherwise, wedged among its sanguineous drips, swaying meat hooks and whirring table saw. Much like other recent French-language horror films (“High Tension,” “Calvaire,” “Inside”), this one owes a debt to the modern American slasher flick, the original “Texas Chain Saw Massacre,” among many others, though “Frontier(s)” adds an amusingly glib and timely political twist to its wholesale carnage… “Frontier(s)” finally works because its shivers are as plausible as they are outrageous.” – Manohla Dargis, The New York Times

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2

336. (+7) The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2

Tobe Hooper

1986 / USA / 101m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Dennis Hopper, Caroline Williams, Jim Siedow, Bill Moseley, Bill Johnson, Ken Evert, Harlan Jordan, Kirk Sisco, James N. Harrell, Lou Perryman

“”The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2” is as potent a follow-up as one could expect from the series, unapologetically traveling in fresh directions while serving up audiences the gory goods. The cinematography by Richard Kooris is vibrant and alive, taking full advantage of the locations and making particularly effective use of the neon colors at the radio station and the rainbow-colored Christmas lights strung along the walls of the Sawyers’ underground hell. The soundtrack is also superb, with choice cuts from The Cramps, Oingo Boingo, Timbuk 3, Concrete Blonde, Lords of the New Church, and Stewart Copeland nicely complementing the action. When it comes to humor-laced horror that isn’t an outright spoof, there are few films that work quite as well (or with the same amount of bravado) as “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2.”” – Dustin Putnam, The Movie Boy

Saam gaang yi

337. (+10) Saam gaang yi

Fruit Chan & Takashi Miike & Chan-wook Park

2004 / Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea / 118m / Col / Anthology | IMDb
Bai Ling, Pauline Lau, Tony Leung Ka Fai, Meme Tian, Miriam Yeung Chin Wah, Sum-Yeung Wong, Kam-Mui Fung, Wai-Man Wu, Chak-Man Ho, Miki Yeung

“These short films collectively are an ambitious, well-conceived, beautifully presented example of what can be achieved when a director is allowed to present a completely original concept around a common theme, without censorship or meddling studio hands to muck things up. While most if not every frame presented shows an original and new spin on the term “horror”, these films present an elegance that surpasses one singular, often cheaply-perceived genre. Each director has his strength: for Fruit Chan, a strong narrative and a coherent and intriguing plotline; for Chan-Wook Park , a macabre new version of the classic guts and gore mystery; and for Takashi Miike, it’s a surprisingly sympathetic, subtle, and thoughtful philosophical work that is as heavy on the eyes as it is on the viewer’s emotions.” – Tyler Robbins, Snowblood Apple

Son of Frankenstein

338. (-15) Son of Frankenstein

Rowland V. Lee

1939 / USA / 99m / BW / Monster | IMDb
Basil Rathbone, Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Lionel Atwill, Josephine Hutchinson, Donnie Dunagan, Emma Dunn, Edgar Norton, Perry Ivins, Lawrence Grant

“Boris Karloff’s man-made monster is revived in the castle of Frankenstein to provide material for another adventure of the ogre. Basil Rathbone, son of the scientist-creator, returns from America to the family estate, becomes intrigued with the dormant ogre and revives him with idea of changing the brute nature within. There are secret passages and panels; surprise opening of doors; and well-timed sound effects to further create tense interest. For offering of its type, picture is well mounted, nicely directed, and includes cast of capable artists.” – Variety Staff, Variety

La chute de la maison Usher

339. (-8) La chute de la maison Usher

Jean Epstein

1928 / France / 63m / BW / Gothic | IMDb
Jean Debucourt, Marguerite Gance, Charles Lamy, Fournez-Goffard, Luc Dartagnan, Abel Gance, Halma, Pierre Hot, Pierre Kefer

“What was theoretical in Epstein’s The Three-Sided Mirror is here freer, more lucid and ethereal, and from its first image of a visitor with busy fingers wading through a tangle of trees and branches to the final orgy of poetic destruction, the director intensely considers the push-pull relationship between life and art—the precarious soul-suck between the two and the chaos their battle risks. When Debucourt’s Usher looks at his painting, he is both staring at the visage of his elusive wife’s representation and the audience itself. Epstein treats celluloid not unlike Usher’s canvas—a delicate, fragile thing to draw on (slow or fast, sometimes twice, thrice, four times over)—and to look at the screen of this film is to witness a portal into a complex, heretofore unknown dimension of cinematic representation.” – Ed Gonzalez, Slant Magazine

Tesis

340. (+59) Tesis

Alejandro Amenábar

1996 / Spain / 125m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Ana Torrent, Fele Martínez, Eduardo Noriega, Xabier Elorriaga, Miguel Picazo, Nieves Herranz, Rosa Campillo, Paco Hernández, Rosa Ávila, Teresa Castanedo

“In spite of its subject matter, Tesis is not a gore film. At a number of points throughout the film, it appears that Amenabar is about to show the audience some particularly grisly sight, only for the camera to pull away just at the last moment; Amenabar, instead, preferring to focus on Angela’s reaction to what she is seeing. Angela insists that she is only interested in violent movies from a purely academic standpoint and that she considers what she is seeing to be disgusting, yet she is every bit as fascinated by it as Chema. In Tesis, Angela serves as a proxy for the viewer. Anyone who wants to watch a film like this to begin with, must have a certain desire to see violent imagery and in the final scene, Amenabar takes his audience to task for having such a desire.” – Genevieve Hayes, Murder and Angst

Night of the Comet

341. (-30) Night of the Comet

Thom Eberhardt

1984 / USA / 95m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Robert Beltran, Catherine Mary Stewart, Kelli Maroney, Sharon Farrell, Mary Woronov, Geoffrey Lewis, Peter Fox, John Achorn, Michael Bowen, Devon Ericson

“The easiest way to describe a popcorn flick like Night of the Comet would be to call it a mash up between George Romero’s Dawn of the Dead (1978) and John Hughes’ The Breakfast Club (1985). The wacky offbeat sensibility of Night of the Comet is a joy to behold. For genre fans, it’s easy to fall in love with a farcical 80s sci-fi horror movie with zombies. It’s the whimsical warmth of Thom Eberhardt’s direction that gives this movie its heart. It’s obvious he’s a genuine fan of B-movies. Like other cult classic B-movies there is more to Night of the Comet than its wacky sense of humour. It contains genuine terror. An electric piece of cult cinema, Night of the Comet is a classic! ” – Curtis Owen, My reviewer

The Picture of Dorian Gray

342. (-9) The Picture of Dorian Gray

Albert Lewin

1945 / USA / 110m / BW / Gothic | IMDb
George Sanders, Hurd Hatfield, Donna Reed, Angela Lansbury, Peter Lawford, Lowell Gilmore, Richard Fraser, Douglas Walton, Morton Lowry, Miles Mander

“Albert Lewin’s direction is masterful. He uses shadow to crank up tension and atmosphere, without ever going over the top into out and out horror. The set design is brilliant, Dorian’s childhood school room, where he hides the painting, is wonderful. Lewin shot the film in black and white, save for a couple of Technicolor shots of the portrait. The portrait’s original beauty, when it is simply a painting of Dorian, and the later incarnation, as it takes on all of Dorian’s faults and turns the figure into a monster, are all breathtaking. The supporting cast is wonderful, George Sanders steals every scene he is in, rattling off Wilde’s rich and wry observations without stopping to breathe… The glaring mistake here is Hurd Hatfield in the title role… As Dorian commits murders and suicides begin swirling around him, Hatfield looks oblivious, not unfeeling or menacing.” – Charles Tatum, eFilmCritic Reviews

Blue Velvet

343. (+11) Blue Velvet

David Lynch

1986 / USA / 120m / Col / Mystery | IMDb
Isabella Rossellini, Kyle MacLachlan, Dennis Hopper, Laura Dern, Hope Lange, Dean Stockwell, George Dickerson, Priscilla Pointer, Frances Bay, Jack Harvey

“The most brilliantly disturbing film ever to have its roots in small-town American life. Shocking, visionary, rapturously controlled, its images of innocence and a dark, bruising sexuality drop straight into our unconscious where they rest like depth charges. Lynch has become a master at giving form to what is not permitted – rage, revulsion, our darkest imaginings – and by making them tangible, lets us acknowledge them… “Blue Velvet” takes us behind the working-class American facade, beneath the Technicolor grass, literally underground to the churning turmoil of black, shiny beetles below.” – Sheila Benson, Los Angeles Times

The Hunger

344. (+15) The Hunger

Tony Scott

1983 / UK / 97m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Catherine Deneuve, David Bowie, Susan Sarandon, Cliff De Young, Beth Ehlers, Dan Hedaya, Rufus Collins, Suzanne Bertish, James Aubrey, Ann Magnuson

“It’s a largely sensual movie, in both senses of that word: it is about experiencing moments communicated through just about every means other than sensible character psychology. I can easily understand why somebody would find the movie accordingly hollow and annoying in its hip violence, but for horror to have this kind of impressionist impact, it must be doing something great, even if that something isn’t quite in line with the film’s intimations that it wants to be about human experiences of sex and longing (the “hunger” of the title”). It’s one of the most viscerally impressive horror movies of the ’80s, it plays the “tragic sexual vampire” card without defanging the monsters, and it’s consistently gorgeous – I can’t quite decide whether The Hunger is successful at being the exact film it sets out to be, but it is a very successful film of some sort, and that’s close enough.” – Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy

The Curse of the Werewolf

345. (-46) The Curse of the Werewolf

Terence Fisher

1961 / UK / 91m / Col / Werewolf | IMDb
Clifford Evans, Oliver Reed, Yvonne Romain, Catherine Feller, Anthony Dawson, Josephine Llewellyn, Richard Wordsworth, Hira Talfrey, Justin Walters, John Gabriel

“Lon Chaney, Jr.’s Wolf Man may be cinema’s most famous lycanthrope, but there can be little doubt that this 1960 film from Hammer Productions is the best werewolf movie ever made. It features all of the studio’s classic virtues: beautiful sets, effective music, colorful photography, solid scripting, memorable performances, and a muscular directorial approach that relishes depicting horror for the maximum emotional impact.” – Steve Biodrowski, Cinemafantastique

[Rec]²

346. (-29) [Rec]²

Jaume Balagueró & Paco Plaza

2009 / Spain / 85m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Jonathan D. Mellor, Óscar Zafra, Ariel Casas, Alejandro Casaseca, Pablo Rosso, Rafa Parra, Pep Molina, Andrea Ros, Àlex Batllori, Pau Poch

“The story being depicted elaborates on the original scenario and is endlessly intriguing. We only got a taste of the virus’ demonic nature in the original and here, that concept is expanded in a frightening manner. This is no longer the story of crazed infected humans running around biting each other’s faces off; it’s a terrifying tale of deadly people being influenced by a demonic source… Balagueró and Plaza really know what they’re doing. The continuation of their story is what keeps you intrigued, but it’s the eeriness and constant need to be prepared for what’s lurking around the corner that makes this film downright as horrifying as it is relentless. REC 2 it isn’t as good as its predecessor, but only finds itself a notch below, making it an enjoyable and honorable sequel” – Perri Nemiroff, CinemaBlend

Blood Feast

347. (-15) Blood Feast

Herschell Gordon Lewis

1963 / USA / 67m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
William Kerwin, Mal Arnold, Connie Mason, Lyn Bolton, Scott H. Hall, Christy Foushee, Ashlyn Martin, Astrid Olson, Sandra Sinclair, Gene Courtier

“When asked in a 1982 interview if he’d ever been offended by a film, John Carpenter opined, “Yes, I have. There was a movie called ‘Blood Feast’…” This notorious item, the work of cult favorite and “Godfather of Gore” Herschell Gordon Lewis, was the first real American splatter film (of course, foreign movies ranging from 1960’s Jigoku to the Hammer films all the way back to Un Chien Andalou had been distributing plasma for years). As such, it enjoys an avid following that has nothing much to do with its quality ? or lack thereof; in fact, its fans treasure its very dearth of professionalism.” – Rob Gonsalves, eFilmCritic.com

Psycho II

348. (-8) Psycho II

Richard Franklin

1983 / USA / 113m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Anthony Perkins, Vera Miles, Meg Tilly, Robert Loggia, Dennis Franz, Hugh Gillin, Claudia Bryar, Robert Alan Browne, Ben Hartigan, Lee Garlington

“Director Richard Franklin, working from Tom Holland’s screenplay, has infused Psycho II with a deliberate sensibility that echoes the original film’s slow build, and although the pacing is occasionally just a little too sedate for its own good (ie the first half feels more like a psychological drama than a horror flick), Franklin effectively lures the viewer into the proceedings by emphasizing Perkins’ striking performance and by offering up a handful of admittedly suspenseful interludes… Psycho II boasts an increasingly compelling mystery at its core that ensures the film grows more and more engrossing as it progresses – with the inclusion of a few unexpected twists lending the movie’s third act a surprisingly engrossing quality that proves impossible to resist.” – David Nusair, Reel Film Reviews

Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me

349. (+4) Twin Peaks: Fire Walk with Me

David Lynch

1992 / USA / 135m / Col / Mystery | IMDb
Sheryl Lee, Ray Wise, Mädchen Amick, Dana Ashbrook, Phoebe Augustine, David Bowie, Eric DaRe, Miguel Ferrer, Pamela Gidley, Heather Graham

“The film is alarmingly dark. It isn’t especially funny, or quirky, or even much in keeping with the spirit of the series. But in its own singular, deeply strange way, Fire Walk With Me is David Lynch’s masterpiece… Laura’s world is morally confused, and Lynch presents it as basically illegible: the only way he can show us the truth is by articulating it in code, shrouding it in fantasy and mystery and conspiratorial intrigue. It’s why the film seems, at times, like a puzzle. The contrasting halves of the film’s bifurcated narrative find two worlds crashing together, the first a plane of frustrated desire and inscrutable mystery, the second a void into which a young woman is swallowed up. The procedural elements of the first are fundamentally disconnected from the tragedy of the second, suggesting that, in the final estimation, we can’t really on institutions to protect us. They’re solving the wrong case.” – Calum Marsh, Village Voice

Halloween III: Season of the Witch

350. (+10) Halloween III: Season of the Witch

Tommy Lee Wallace

1982 / USA / 98m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Tom Atkins, Stacey Nelkin, Dan O’Herlihy, Michael Currie, Ralph Strait, Jadeen Barbor, Brad Schacter, Garn Stephens, Nancy Kyes, Jonathan Terry

“Was it a cheat that Halloween III skipped out on more Michael Myers mayhem? Well, it certainly was annoying that the advertising didn’t let audiences know that little fact in the teasers and trailers. And a great many fans are still pissed about that to this very day… But, to be frank, people need to lighten up about this third entry because Season of the Witch is actually a pretty terrific little midnight movie, in keeping with John Carpenter’s other chillers of the era, specifically The Fog and The Thing. On many levels, the films kinda play like an eerie trilogy of haunting ghost stories, filled with monsters, mad men and vengeful ghouls… Season of the Witch has grown in popularity over the years as fans have healed from the initial sting and gave the film a second chance.” – R. L. Shaffer, IGN DVD

The Man Who Laughs

351. (+24) The Man Who Laughs

Paul Leni

1928 / USA / 110m / BW / Melodrama | IMDb
Mary Philbin, Conrad Veidt, Julius Molnar, Olga Baclanova, Brandon Hurst, Cesare Gravina, Stuart Holmes, Sam De Grasse, George Siegmann, Josephine Crowell

“Like many a German expressionist nightmare, The Man Who Laughs (based on a novel by Victor Hugo) is a collision of non-complementary angles and framing that confuses as often as it elucidates. At the same time—and unlike Caligari or Leni’s own Waxworks—it is also remarkably clean in its delineation of action. In the same manner that Veidt is both the film’s central monster as well as its main source of pathos (all but laying out the blueprint for James Whale’s Frankenstein), the film’s fascination with bric-a-brac and its tendency toward spare, minimalist compositions is evidence of a stylistic schism.” – Eric Henderson, Slant Magazine

Splinter

352. (-42) Splinter

Toby Wilkins

2008 / USA / 82m / Col / Body Horror | IMDb
Charles Baker, Jill Wagner, Paulo Costanzo, Shea Whigham, Rachel Kerbs, Laurel Whitsett

“A really smart little horror flick. How horrific is it? I’m far from brave, but good at temporary detachment – at the eager restoration of disbelief – and I still had to turn away at several points… This modest little genre piece is smarter than most of the overproduced and heavily marketed studio fare that’s been filling the multiplexes this fall. It’s short, taut, nicely shot, well-acted, astutely directed, specific where it might have been generic, original enough to be engrossing and derivative enough to be amusing. In other words, it knows exactly where it belongs and how to be its best self. What a revolutionary concept.” – Joe Morgenstern, Wall Street Journal

Angst

353. (+5) Angst

Gerald Kargl

1983 / Austria / 83m / Col / Crime | IMDb
Erwin Leder, Robert Hunger-Bühler, Silvia Rabenreither, Karin Springer, Edith Rosset, Josefine Lakatha, Rudolf Götz, Renate Kastelik, Hermann Groissenberger, Claudia Schinko

“Kargl’s genius here is to show everything in real time, with numerous close-ups and diegetic sound. Viewers get to experience none of the pleasure (whether guilty or gleefully acknowledged) that comes from watching stylized, aestheticized killing—replete with slow-motion camerawork, overlapping edits and a meticulously composed mise-en-scene. Instead, writer-cinematographer Zbigniew Rybczynski alternates close-up point-of-view shots of the victim and her attacker and some canted overhead shots besides, constantly altering our relationship to the action. We have no one to identify with, or rather, no one person with whom to identify, experiencing not only the old woman’s terror but the killer’s increasing excitement and determination as well.” – Steven Jay Schneider, CE Review

Seconds

354. (-10) Seconds

John Frankenheimer

1966 / USA / 106m / BW / Science Fiction | IMDb
Rock Hudson, Salome Jens, John Randolph, Will Geer, Jeff Corey, Richard Anderson, Murray Hamilton, Karl Swenson, Khigh Dhiegh, Frances Reid

“Frankenheimer and his cinematographer James Wong Howe (who justifiably won the Oscar) are operating in full baroque mode from the shadowy, off-kilter crowd scenes in Grand Central. Wong’s canted, expressionist angles and lusciously dark and pinprick-sharp depth of focus become even more overpowering in the film’s third act, as Arthur is kicked back into the company’s infernal machinery. He failed to remake himself as an all-new kind of American and so is now meant for the scrap heap like every other worn-out cog in the machine. Within a few years, the capitalist and consumerist critique that Seconds put to such thrilling use would be more commonplace in a film industry desperate for counter-cultural cachet. But unlike many of those rebel statements against the mainstream, Frankenheimer’s film understood that there were no easy answers to Arthur’s kind of despair.” – Chris Barsanti, PopMatters

Mil gritos tiene la noche

355. (-30) Mil gritos tiene la noche

Juan Piquer Simón

1982 / USA / 85m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Christopher George, Lynda Day George, Frank Braña, Edmund Purdom, Ian Sera, Paul L. Smith, Jack Taylor, Gérard Tichy, May Heatherly, Hilda Fuchs

“Throughout the course of the narrative we’re given absurd red herrings, hammy acting, and bad dubbing all set to the tune of pure nihilistic gore and grue that involves the shadowy figure mutilating these women in the most horrific ways imaginable and stealing parts of their bodies. The mystery leads us down many roads and suspects where Simon plays with the audiences perceptions and allows them a guess or two with tricky camera shots and slight of hand, but by the time the climax rolls around it’s clear he’s just given up and is intent on making the most out of this insane scenario while making his stamp on the horror genre living in cult infamy. “Pieces” is such a fun little blood soaked gem, you’ll be surprised if you don’t see it again immediately after to catch its little nuances.” – Felix Vasquez Jr., Cinema Crazed

The Innkeepers

356. (+64) The Innkeepers

Ti West

2011 / USA / 101m / Col / Haunted House | IMDb
Sara Paxton, Pat Healy, Alison Bartlett, Jake Ryan, Kelly McGillis, Lena Dunham, Brenda Cooney, George Riddle, John Speredakos, Sean Reid

“The suspense built up in this story is real. I wasn’t on the edge of my seat but there was a knot in my stomach as I wondered what was going to happen next. From a creepy basement visit with the ghost to a scene where the aging actress warns Claire about the spirit world, this movie is slow but tantalizing. “I’m just here for one last bit of nostalgia,” the hotel’s final visitor says, a nod to why the film works so well. It’s a nostalgic film that should remind viewers of what suspense really feels like. Suspense isn’t watching a man getting hacked into pieces. It’s watching a woman realize that she’s in too deep when she starts asking too many questions about paranormal activity. And that what “The Innkeepers” delivers.” – John Hanlon, Big Hollywood

The Crazies

357. (-16) The Crazies

George A. Romero

1973 / USA / 103m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Lane Carroll, Will MacMillan, Harold Wayne Jones, Lloyd Hollar, Lynn Lowry, Richard Liberty, Richard France, Harry Spillman, Will Disney, Edith Bell

“The underlying cynicism and despair about individual initiative and governmental intervention reflect the social insecurity of the period when The Crazies was released. The senseless prolongation of the war in Viet Nam and the decay of urban centers gnawed at the public mood, leading not to renewed social activism, but to the self-defeating narcissism that typified the latter years of the ‘70s. Romero’s horror films—like those of John Carpenter, Wes Craven, and David Cronenberg—illustrated a mood of entropy. The monsters these directors conjured may have been figments of their imagination, but they drew attention to very real horrors. And, at a time when SARS and terrorism exercises are daily news, the fabricated panic of The Crazies feels more than a little close to home.” – David Sanjek, Popmatters

Predator

358. (+72) Predator

John McTiernan

1987 / USA / 107m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Arnold Schwarzenegger, Carl Weathers, Elpidia Carrillo, Bill Duke, Jesse Ventura, Sonny Landham, Richard Chaves, R.G. Armstrong, Shane Black, Kevin Peter Hall

“McTiernan’s second directorial effort is just about the epitome of ‘80s macho action, with human action figure Schwarzenegger kicking ass while leading a team of racially diverse (and stereotypical) juiceheads prone to spouting one-liners, posing like pro wrestlers (hence The Body’s participation), and firing machine guns with wild abandon. The racial connotations of the Predator (thanks to his dreadlocks) provide a queasy minority-monster subtext, though if that’s true, Jim and John Thomas’ story also functions as an allegorical portrait of indigenous Third World forces rising up against American might. Such undercurrents, however, are just about trampled underfoot by the film’s vigorous tough-guy bluster.” – Nick Schager, Lessons of Darkness

Koroshiya 1

359. (-4) Koroshiya 1

Takashi Miike

2001 / Japan / 129m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Tadanobu Asano, Nao ômori, Shin’ya Tsukamoto, Paulyn Sun, Susumu Terajima, Shun Sugata, Toru Tezuka, Yoshiki Arizono, Kiyohiko Shibukawa, Satoshi Niizuma

“‘Ichi the Killer’ is a bizarre sado-masochistic love story, an unnerving excursion into criminal and sexual extremes, and a comicbook explosion of lurid colours and freakish characters – but most of all, it is a furious, frenetic and at times very funny piece of bravura filmmaking, with outstanding performances, spectacular setpieces, dizzying moodswings, a killer soundtrack, and a mindbending conclusion. Guaranteed to amaze, shock, disgust and intrigue in equal measure, ‘Ichi the Killer’ is one of the most striking films ever made.” – Movie Gazette

Perfect Blue

360. (+73) Perfect Blue

Satoshi Kon

1997 / Japan / 81m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Junko Iwao, Rica Matsumoto, Shinpachi Tsuji, Masaaki ôkura, Yôsuke Akimoto, Yoku Shioya, Hideyuki Hori, Emi Shinohara, Masashi Ebara, Kiyoyuki Yanada

“This striking picture… [pulls] off the rare trick of telling a story worth doing in live action while managing visual effects only possible in the cartoon medium… Though it’s a neat woman-in-peril thriller, this is most striking as a look into the life of a Japanese media sensation, used up at the end of her teens, and squashed into a tiny apartment with her goldfish and too many ghosts. The film even goes so far as to expose the bizarre streak of paedophilia in Japanese pop culture, whereby it’s all right for a doll-like girl child to be a fantasy object but a sexual woman is shockingly transgressive. Perfect Blue is scary, funny, poignant and thoughtful, but also delivers thriller set-pieces that rank with the best of De Palma or Argento” – Kim Newman, Empire

The Stepford Wives

361. (-27) The Stepford Wives

Bryan Forbes

1975 / USA / 115m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Katharine Ross, Paula Prentiss, Peter Masterson, Nanette Newman, Tina Louise, Carol Eve Rossen, William Prince, Carole Mallory, Toni Reid, Judith Baldwin

“The Stepford wives are, in fact, not women; they are bloodless, soulless robots, created by the men in Stepford to replace their presumably intelligent and enterprising wives who might see more to life than getting the upstairs floor to a glistening shine and having sex whenever their husbands desire it. Much is made of the fact that the women in Stepford had once belonged to a popular feminist group, which shows that, prior to their replacement, they had been independent thinkers. This is one of the keys to the film and the understanding that it does not look down on women… The robots are simply a twisted male fantasy of the ultimate woman: sexy, submissive, and mentally vacant. That this fantasy is pathetic in the extreme says much about the film’s view of the male animal and his capacity for feeling and imagination.” – James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk

Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma

362. (+34) Salò o le 120 giornate di Sodoma

Pier Paolo Pasolini

1975 / Italy / 116m / Col / Exploitation | IMDb
Paolo Bonacelli, Giorgio Cataldi, Umberto Paolo Quintavalle, Aldo Valletti, Caterina Boratto, Elsa De Giorgi, Hélène Surgère, Sonia Saviange, Sergio Fascetti, Bruno Musso

“Pier Paolo Pasolini’s last feature (1975) is a shockingly literal and historically questionable transposition of the Marquis de Sade’s 120 Days of Sodom to the last days of Italian fascism. Most of the film consists of long shots of torture, though some viewers have been more upset by the bibliography that appears in the credits. Roland Barthes noted that in spite of all its objectionable elements (he pointed out that any film that renders Sade real and fascism unreal is doubly wrong), this film should be defended because it “refuses to allow us to redeem ourselves.” It’s certainly the film in which Pasolini’s protest against the modern world finds its most extreme and anguished expression. Very hard to take, but in its own way an essential work.” – Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader

Wait Until Dark

363. (+11) Wait Until Dark

Terence Young

1967 / USA / 108m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Audrey Hepburn, Alan Arkin, Richard Crenna, Efrem Zimbalist Jr., Jack Weston, Samantha Jones, Julie Herrod

“Young’s remarkable ability to create a believable oppressive locality in Wait Until Dark obscures plot holes and irrationalities right up to the film’s extended final showdown. By the time Suzy realizes she’s completely and hopelessly alone in her apartment (she’s sent the dorky Lisa off on a futile mission to locate Sam at Asbury Park), the cumulative effect of Hepburn’s palpable desolation and Arkin’s ruthlessness (combined with Henry Mancini’s overpoweringly harrowing score) bring the film to a justly celebrated climactic bacchanalia, complete with one of suspense cinema’s first and most effective shock leaps.” – Eric Henderson, Slant Magazine

Signs

364. (+42) Signs

M. Night Shyamalan

2002 / USA / 106m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Mel Gibson, Joaquin Phoenix, Rory Culkin, Abigail Breslin, Cherry Jones, M. Night Shyamalan, Patricia Kalember, Ted Sutton, Merritt Wever, Lanny Flaherty

“What makes Signs such an odd but enthralling film is the way its story is open to interpretation. Taken literally, it’s War of the Worlds populated with characters carrying a lot of baggage. At the same time, it’s a metaphor for faith and an examination of how beliefs shape reality. In fact, the surreal and detached atmosphere offers debate for what exactly is “real” in this movie. Enough peculiarities pop up here and there to make you wonder… If you’re not interested in symbolism with your cinema, rest assured that Signs also boasts a good deal of thrills at face value. Tension and unease abound, and the movie has its fair share of sudden jolts and monsters in unseen places.” – Andrew Manning, Radio Free

Non si sevizia un paperino

365. (-23) Non si sevizia un paperino

Lucio Fulci

1972 / Italy / 102m / Col / Giallo | IMDb
Florinda Bolkan, Barbara Bouchet, Tomas Milian, Irene Papas, Marc Porel, Georges Wilson, Antonello Campodifiori, Ugo D’Alessio, Virgilio Gazzolo, Vito Passeri

“The signature Fulci bit is also the devastating culmination of the film’s autopsy of corrupt patriarchy, a bravura episode of pitiless, protracted violence against Bolkan’s lupine “witch,” chains, pipes, torn flesh scored outrageously to radio channel-surfing and capped with a sendup of Il Bidone. An oversized crucifix hangs in the woods, although Fulci remains utterly distrustful of church piety, small-town virtue and even childhood innocence – what Bouchet and Milian ultimately unearth isn’t the solution to a mystery, but the awareness of Fulci’s horror erupting as vividly and messily from bucolic vistas as from decomposing zombies.” – Fernando F. Croce, CinePassion

The Human Centipede (First Sequence)

366. (-9) The Human Centipede (First Sequence)

Tom Six

2009 / Netherlands / 92m / BW / Body Horror | IMDb
Dieter Laser, Ashley C. Williams, Ashlynn Yennie, Akihiro Kitamura, Andreas Leupold, Peter Blankenstein, Bernd Kostrau, Rene de Wit, Sylvia Zidek, Rosemary Annabella

“So what is the use of a genre film that doesn’t conform to the conventions of genre? Plenty. You know this movie is called The Human Centipede. You will watch the film knowing you will see a human centipede. And when it is over, you will be able to claim you have now seen a human centipede. The evocative title, the lack of motive and the absence of genre tropes are completely intentional – Six is giving us what we want, reminding us all the while that getting exactly what we want is usually the last thing we should ever really have. Basically, The Human Centipede is a better, more effective satire (experiment?) than Michael Haneke’s Funny Games.” – Simon Miraudo, Quikflix

Calvaire

367. (-19) Calvaire

Fabrice Du Welz

2004 / Belgium / 88m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Laurent Lucas, Brigitte Lahaie, Gigi Coursigny, Jean-Luc Couchard, Jackie Berroyer, Philippe Nahon, Philippe Grand’Henry, Jo Prestia, Marc Lefebvre, Alfred David

“It helps to find the very dark, dark humor in “Calvaire,” a grueling, disgusting and quite effective horror film from Belgium. Part “Psycho,” part “Deliverance” and all creepy, it is simultaneously off-putting and absorbing… What sells this movie is the realistic attention to detail and the bravura direction of Fabrice Du Welz, who draws a gut-wrenching performance from Lucas, who cries, squeals and screams with the best of them… this feels different and fresh. At the very least, it gets under your fingernails.” – G. Allen Johnson, San Francisco Chronicle

Angustia

368. (+39) Angustia

Bigas Luna

1987 / Spain / 86m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Zelda Rubinstein, Michael Lerner, Talia Paul, Àngel Jové, Clara Pastor, Isabel García Lorca, Nat Baker, Edward Ledden, Gustavo Gili, Antonio Regueiro

“With this film I get the feeling of having got two different film for the price one and the whole thing is definitely greater than the sum of it parts. I loved the over-the-top melodrama of The Mommy with its grisly eye horror, vengeful madwoman and deeply trippy hypnosis scenes but I also thought Anguish itself was nice tense thriller film too all framed nicely together to form a wry and entertaining examination of the relationship between the audience and the film. This film had me gripped me right up until the old man in the cloth cap got up and left the cinema.” – Peter Anderson, Nameless Horror

American Mary

369. (+115) American Mary

Jen Soska & Sylvia Soska

2012 / Canada / 103m / Col / Body Horror | IMDb
Katharine Isabelle, Antonio Cupo, Tristan Risk, David Lovgren, Paula Lindberg, Clay St. Thomas, John Emmet Tracy, Twan Holliday, Nelson Wong, Sylvia Soska

“We’ve seen medical gear — gurneys, rubber aprons, cutlery — in myriad horror movies, “The Human Centipede,” “Dead Ringers” and “Audition” among them. But maybe not metaphors like the caged bird Mary keeps, in a nod to Jean-Pierre Melville, or her uncommon path to self-sufficiency (at one point she literally sews up her own wound), a transformation skillfully elucidated by Ms. Isabelle. This film — the second from the Soskas, and shot in their hometown, Vancouver, British Columbia — combines gore, quiet dread, feminist conviction and a visual classicism, often using a red palette, with impressive, unbelabored dexterity. (In an amusing sequence, the Soskas play goth twins who want to surgically exchange their left arms.)” – Andy Webster, The New York Times

Feast

370. (-20) Feast

John Gulager

2005 / USA / 95m / Col / Comedy | IMDb
Balthazar Getty, Henry Rollins, Navi Rawat, Judah Friedlander, Josh Zuckerman, Jason Mewes, Jenny Wade, Krista Allen, Clu Gulager, Anthony ‘Treach’ Criss

“We’re introduced to our buffet of victims in unique style, as each cast member is presented with accompanying text giving their nickname (“Hero,” “Grandma,” “Bozo”), occupation, and life expectancy. Such an obvious goof on horror movie cliché nets some laughs, but might lead you to think you’re in for another excruciating post-modern genre wankfest. Such concern is unwarranted, happily, and the audience finds out rather quickly that everything presented in the first five minutes was a diversion, and absolutely no character is safe… This is a superior horror film. It hits hard and fast, letting up only to inject some black humor and amp up the tension again before coming back for more. “Feast” is nasty, brutish, and short, just like Hobbes said all horror flicks should be.” – Pete Vonder Haar, Film Threat

Cujo

371. (-15) Cujo

Lewis Teague

1983 / USA / 93m / Col / Nature | IMDb
Dee Wallace, Danny Pintauro, Daniel Hugh Kelly, Christopher Stone, Ed Lauter, Kaiulani Lee, Billy Jayne, Mills Watson, Sandy Ward, Jerry Hardin

“The attacks are startling, and Cujo unleashes his wrath on the helpless pair who can do nothing but hope for the dog to grow bored with its assaults and move on to another target. But his rage seems almost supernatural to where Donna and her son are just prime targets Cujo almost lusts toward mauling under its diseased teeth and nails. With subtexts about sin and infidelity coming around to become our ultimate undoing, “Cujo” is still a very effective and terrifying nature run amok film. With excellent editing and direction from Teague that make this a horror film worthy of its classic status, “Cujo” is a favorite. Dee Wallace provides yet another riveting performance in a nature run amok horror classic that hasn’t aged a bit. Wonderful performances, an primal villain, and a compelling story make this a horror gem worthy of re-discovering time and time again.” – Felix Vasquez Jr., Cinema Crazed

Nightbreed

372. (+12) Nightbreed

Clive Barker

1990 / USA / 102m / Col / Fantasy | IMDb
Craig Sheffer, Anne Bobby, David Cronenberg, Charles Haid, Hugh Quarshie, Hugh Ross, Doug Bradley, Catherine Chevalier, Malcolm Smith, Bob Sessions

“One can hardly be too upset when a film is exuberant and grandiose in the way Nightbreed is; after all, Barker’s fiction (like Stephen King’s, now that I think of it—no wonder Barker earned an endorsement from the master) often sends audiences hurtling down rabbit hole after rabbit hole—it’s not enough for Nightbreed to focus on a secret society of monsters and its prophecies, so it follows that there would also be a bloodthirsty butcher from a slasher flick hunting them down. That the two modes sometimes find difficulty jelling seems besides the point—the film might be exhausting, but it’s equally as breathtaking whenever Barker really lets loose and indulges the most unhinged parts of his macabre id, where men and monsters spill each other’s bloods among gothic ruins.” – Brett Gallman, Oh, the Horror!

Manhunter

373. (-27) Manhunter

Michael Mann

1986 / USA / 119m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
William Petersen, Kim Greist, Joan Allen, Brian Cox, Dennis Farina, Tom Noonan, Stephen Lang, David Seaman, Benjamin Hendrickson, Michael Talbott

“Michael Mann’s vision of Thomas Harris’ novel is as close to the heart of the book as you could get. The complex plot is told from opposing views, based around Graham’s pivotal role. Although the killer does not appear until almost halfway into the movie, we experience his viewpoint through Graham’s intense investigation, leaving us with a disturbing feeling of voyeurism but also one of frustration as we sympathise with the police. Being caught in the middle in this way helps build tension and suspense throughout the film. William Peterson’s performance as the troubled Will Graham is central to a film in which all the actors are excellent, not least Brian Cox delivering a first and chilling screen incarnation of Hannibal Lecter.” – Ali Barclay, BBC

Jigoku

374. (-9) Jigoku

Nobuo Nakagawa

1960 / Japan / 101m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Shigeru Amachi, Utako Mitsuya, Yôichi Numata, Hiroshi Hayashi, Jun ôtomo, Akiko Yamashita, Kiyoko Tsuji, Fumiko Miyata, Akira Nakamura, Kimie Tokudaiji

“Jigoku is a beautiful film. Its play with lighting effects, colour gels and jarring camera angles makes everything – both on earth and below – seem an off-kilter nightmare, while the soundtrack of jazz, wood percussion and theremin only adds to the sense of disorientation. Realism this is not, but Nakagawa is nonetheless concerned with depicting a society that has lost its moral balance, at a time when memories of war-time horror were still fresh in the Japanese mind, while post-war modernisation was engendering its own anxieties about over-permissiveness and the dissipation of traditional values.” – Anton Bitel, Eye For Film

Jisatsu sâkuru

375. (+19) Jisatsu sâkuru

Shion Sono

2001 / Japan / 99m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Ryo Ishibashi, Masatoshi Nagase, Mai Hosho, Tamao Satô, Takashi Nomura, Rolly, Joshua, Masato Tsujioka, Kôsuke Hamamoto, Kei Nagase

“As frustrating as Suicide Club may be, there is no denying that it does succeed in hooking viewers with its highly original concept. The film manages to establish a sense of creeping dread; the anticipation of what lurks around each corner proves far more terrifying than the cheap scare tactics employed in other films. Ryo Ishibashi exudes a sense of decency and commitment to his mission—qualities that have a definite payoff later in the film. As Kuroda, Ishibashi gives the viewers a solid protagonist they can latch onto during the dark journey ahead. The lack of clear answers will frustrate many (this reviewer included) but what Suicide Club attempts to say and do, coupled with its success in executing some of those goals, makes the film worth recommending. And even with its baffling conclusion, there’s at least one lesson to be gleaned from Suicide Club: J-Pop may be hazardous to your health.” – Calvin McMillin, Love HK Film

The Funhouse

376. (-10) The Funhouse

Tobe Hooper

1981 / USA / 96m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Elizabeth Berridge, Shawn Carson, Jeanne Austin, Jack McDermott, Cooper Huckabee, Largo Woodruff, Miles Chapin, David Carson, Sonia Zomina, Ralph Morino

“Menacingly scored by composer John Beal, the booming orchestrations complimenting the onscreen action, “The Funhouse” is a scary, fantastical, and most of all intelligent thriller that, like the original “Halloween,” proves slasher films can be sleek and upscale without going for low-rent gore tactics. The climax, rising to a fever pitch within the bowels of the funhouse, is first-rate, while the final scene subtly says a lot without spelling things out.” – Dustin Putnam, The Movie Boy

Lo squartatore di New York

377. (-15) Lo squartatore di New York

Lucio Fulci

1982 / Italy / 91m / Col / Giallo | IMDb
Jack Hedley, Almanta Suska, Howard Ross, Andrea Occhipinti, Alexandra Delli Colli, Paolo Malco, Cinzia de Ponti, Cosimo Cinieri, Daniela Doria, Babette New

“The ugly duckling and the slashed nipple, a Géricaultian composition. A bald steal from Friedkin’s Cruising introduces the view under the Brooklyn Bridge, the credits roll over a freeze-frame of a purplish, severed hand gripped by an old man’s dog. One young woman is slaughtered while trapped in the belly of the Staten Island Ferry (the cityscape vanishes in the distance, the switchblade fills the screen), another is mutilated backstage at a 42nd Street sex club (green and scarlet neon bathes the splayed corpse), two of the pit-stops in Lucio Fulci’s American Sodom Tour… Fulci’s most corrosive vision. What comes in from Fleischer’s The Boston Strangler goes into Fincher’s Seven.” – Fernando F. Croce, CinePassion

Deliria

378. (-17) Deliria

Michele Soavi

1987 / Italy / 90m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
David Brandon, Barbara Cupisti, Domenico Fiore, Robert Gligorov, Mickey Knox, Giovanni Lombardo Radice, Clain Parker, Loredana Parrella, Martin Philips, James Sampson

“If most surreal horror is something like a messy dream, Soavi’s debut is something almost better, a film in which dreamlike horror keeps interfering with something almost realistic, from the moment that dance number erupts in a back alley, to the deliberately obnoxious joke ending. It is horror expressed as purely as it can be, not so very frightening, but massively unsettling and chaotic, an exercise in crafting 90 minutes of uncanny sensory overload just for the pure brutal delight in doing it. This is, as such things go, not a terribly “meaningful” horror movie, theme-wise; but oh how very wonderfully it captures the capriciousness of the inexplicable and the psychotic!” – Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy

Final Destination 2

379. (+2) Final Destination 2

David R. Ellis

2003 / USA / 90m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Ali Larter, A.J. Cook, Michael Landes, David Paetkau, James Kirk, Lynda Boyd, Keegan Connor Tracy, Jonathan Cherry, Terrence ‘T.C.’ Carson, Justina Machado

“While watching the original isn’t necessary to enjoy the sequel, it certainly contributes to a deeper appreciation of the pair of films overall. Part two doesn’t just repeat the premise and scenes of part one–it intricately links to its predecessor with impressive continuity and offers a legitimate reason for why death comes a-knockin’ once more. Characters and circumstances from the original end up having direct ties to the seemingly random characters of the sequel. In many ways, Final Destination 2 also patches up some of the weaker points of the original… but ends up replacing them with new shortcomings. Still, the central premise of a stalking death remains interesting, and there is enough eye-popping violence to keep the pace brisk.” – Andrew Manning, Radio Free Entertainment

Night of the Living Dead

380. (+6) Night of the Living Dead

Tom Savini

1990 / USA / 92m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Tony Todd, Patricia Tallman, Tom Towles, McKee Anderson, William Butler, Katie Finneran, Bill Moseley, Heather Mazur, David W. Butler, Zachary Mott

“The idea of remaking the classic “Night of the Living Dead” would certainly seem like sacrilege to many fans. Yet the resulting movie stands on its own merits as a taut if slightly sterile horror film… Zombie films always suffer in critical terms. But what this boils down to, just as the original does, is a classic siege situation. Tempers fray, fear builds, the final stand-off looms and this movie exploits the form well, with some real tension building among some fine shock moments. Some purists will not condone this remake, but there’s little denying that this is a better horror film than most made in the 1990s.” – Almar Haflidason, BBC.com

The Blood on Satan's Claw

381. (-61) The Blood on Satan’s Claw

Piers Haggard

1971 / UK / 97m / Col / Gothic | IMDb
Patrick Wymark, Linda Hayden, Barry Andrews, Michele Dotrice, Wendy Padbury, Anthony Ainley, Charlotte Mitchell, Tamara Ustinov, Simon Williams, James Hayter

“The Blood on Satan’s Claw, a 1971 horror potboiler from English genre studio Tigon, lacks the moral underpinnings of Michael Reeves’ cautionary classic Witchfinder General but resembles it in setting and atmosphere… The Blood on Satan’s Claw clarifies the relationship between wickedness and virtue by showing how evil, in the guise of rebellious children and especially a seductive teenager, can be vanquished by vigilance and bravery on the part of Christian men… It’s not just an enjoyable chiller with sex, violence, costume drama, and some amusing hairstyles, but also a dramatization — using the abolition of Catholic royalty from the English throne as a historical marker — of the tension between reason and superstition, between modern science and the long, regularly irresistible history of mythology.” – Bryant Frazer, Deep Focus

Dead Silence

382. (+35) Dead Silence

James Wan

2007 / USA / 89m / Col / Evil Doll | IMDb
Ryan Kwanten, Amber Valletta, Donnie Wahlberg, Michael Fairman, Joan Heney, Bob Gunton, Laura Regan, Dmitry Chepovetsky, Judith Roberts, Keir Gilchrist

“So what makes Dead Silence more creepy and clever than the dozens of horror films that have preceded it in this decade? It comes directly from the talents of director James Wan and writer Leigh Whannell. The scenarios they set in motion combine logical storytelling with strong suspense filmmaking and keep us in the audience in a constant state of alert, sitting on the edge of our seat, unable to predict what is going to happen next. Wan and Whannell never retreat to the typical horror cliches to achieve their scares. There are no unnecessary shock cuts, no red herrings and no abuse of bombastic musical scoring to tell audiences when to be scared. Where so many modern horror films are utterly predictable, the Saw pictures, all written by Whannell with producer credits for Wan on Saw 2 and 3, and now Dead Silence avoid predictibility by employing great staging and scene setting. The audience is so busy covering their eyes in anticipation of the next scare, they simply don’t have time to predict what comes next.” – Sean Kernan, Smart-Popcorn

Dracula: Prince of Darkness

383. (-44) Dracula: Prince of Darkness

Terence Fisher

1966 / UK / 90m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Christopher Lee, Barbara Shelley, Andrew Keir, Francis Matthews, Suzan Farmer, Charles ‘Bud’ Tingwell, Thorley Walters, Philip Latham, Walter Brown, George Woodbridge

“This classic vampire approach still works for me, despite the 40 plus year old imagary. Sure it’s got its age to contend with and modern horror filmaking is a whole different sport to this but serve me up a slow moving, creepy Dracula luring you into his cape for a nibble above where vamps seem to be at the moment… Movies need to get back to classic vampire imagary like this again and make them scary. Dracula Prince of Darkness, while pretty silly as a movie has the king of all Transylvanian blood suckers doing everything right and this is a fine place to be reminded of just how great Dracula can be.” – Marcus Doidge, DVDActive

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

384. (-6) Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Tim Burton

2007 / USA / 116m / Col / Musical | IMDb
Johnny Depp, Helena Bonham Carter, Alan Rickman, Timothy Spall, Sacha Baron Cohen, Jamie Campbell Bower, Laura Michelle Kelly, Jayne Wisener, Ed Sanders, Gracie May

“In lesser films, songs can prove to be an alienation device by emphasising the constructed artifice of the film, foregrounding the performance aspect and losing the audience’s belief in the onscreen events. Here, they fit in seamlessly as part of the cohesive and bold direction from Burton. The calibre of acting is uniformly sublime from the veteran thespians to the younger performers. Depp and Bonham Carter complement each other well as the devious couple, their sunken eyes often saying more than several pages of script. Similarly, Burton’s expressionistic landscapes also convey a great deal, with the rare flashes of bright colour serving a narrative function by transporting us into the warmer memories of Barker/Todd. They also highlight the brutal barber’s potential for compassion and good, eroded by the injustices of humanity.” – Ben Rawson-Jones, Digital Spy

Amer

385. (+13) Amer

Hélène Cattet & Bruno Forzani

2009 / Belgium / 90m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Cassandra Forêt, Charlotte Eugène Guibeaud, Marie Bos, Bianca Maria D’Amato, Harry Cleven, Jean-Michel Vovk, Bernard Marbaix, Thomas Bonzani, François Cognard, Delphine Brual

“This is basic movie Freud, elegantly mounted. The soundtrack (footsteps, dripping taps, creaking doors, banging shutters) is ominously exaggerated. The close-ups are extreme. Colours change melodramatically to fit the shifting moods. The music is borrowed from old horror films. The dialogue is at first sparse, then non-existent. Luis Buñuel (sliced eyeballs, insects crawling out of bodies), Mario Bava and Dario Argento are affectionately alluded to. Viewers are left to create their own narratives or absorb the events into their own dreams and nightmares. This is art-house horror, a pure cinema for connoisseurs, a return to late-19th-century decadence.” – Philip French, The Guardian

Jurassic Park

386. (+56) Jurassic Park

Steven Spielberg

1993 / USA / 127m / Col / Adventure | IMDb
Sam Neill, Laura Dern, Jeff Goldblum, Richard Attenborough, Bob Peck, Martin Ferrero, Joseph Mazzello, Ariana Richards, Samuel L. Jackson, BD Wong

“A true movie milestone, presenting awe- and fear-inspiring sights never before seen on the screen. The more spectacular of these involve the fierce, lifelike dinosaurs that stalk through the film with astounding ease… They appear only for brief interludes, but the dinosaurs dominate “Jurassic Park” in every way. Amazingly graceful and convincing, they set a sky-high new standard for computer-generated special effects. But thoughts about how those effects were achieved aren’t likely to surface while the film is under way. The most important thing about the dinosaurs of “Jurassic Park” is that they create a triumphant illusion. You will believe you have spent time in a dino-filled world.” – Janet Maslin, The New York Times

The Incredible Shrinking Man

387. (-11) The Incredible Shrinking Man

Jack Arnold

1957 / USA / 81m / BW / Science Fiction | IMDb
Grant Williams, Randy Stuart, April Kent, Paul Langton, Raymond Bailey, William Schallert, Frank J. Scannell, Helene Marshall, Diana Darrin, Billy Curtis

“Not merely the best of Arnold’s classic sci-fi movies of the ’50s, but one of the finest films ever made in that genre. It’s a simple enough story: after being contaminated by what may or may not be nuclear waste, Williams finds himself slowly but steadily shedding the pounds and inches until he reaches truly minuscule proportions. But it is what Richard Matheson’s script (adapted from his own novel) does with this basic material that makes the film so gripping and intelligent… a moving, strangely pantheist assertion of what it really means to be alive. A pulp masterpiece.” – Geoff Andrew, Time Out

What Lies Beneath

388. (+16) What Lies Beneath

Robert Zemeckis

2000 / USA / 130m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Michelle Pfeiffer, Katharine Towne, Miranda Otto, James Remar, Harrison Ford, Victoria Bidewell, Diana Scarwid, Dennison Samaroo, Jennifer Tung, Eliott Goretsky

“A slick cross between a Hitchcock movie (two in particular, but to identify them would give away too much) and Stir of Echoes, What Lies Beneath is a supernatural thriller whose plot struggles to hold water. It’s the sort of thriller where the twists and surprises are decided first, and then the writers hang the story around those twists as best they can… What Lies Beneath works – to the extent that it works – because of Robert Zemeckis… Zemeckis is synonymous with slick, but he does have an impressive record of making the most out of material even when it’s weak. He gets an audience to care about what’s going on in a story rather than think about what’s wrong with the story. He knows how to entertain.” – Carlo Cavagna, AboutFilm.com

Race with the Devil

389. (-38) Race with the Devil

Jack Starrett

1975 / USA / 88m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Peter Fonda, Warren Oates, Loretta Swit, Lara Parker, R.G. Armstrong, Clay Tanner, Carol Blodgett, Phil Hoover, Ricci Ware, Paul A. Partain

“What sets “Race with the Devil” apart from all the others of its ilk is that Starrett takes his time in developing the ensuing carnage between the cult and our helpless victims and takes a route very similar to “Duel” where no matter how far they run, their nightmares catch up with them. This leaves us with some truly memorable and freakish incidents involving the hanging of a cat and a slithery intruder that shrinks their world more and more as the time rolls on. They’re not sure who they can trust and that makes this more of a mystery since most of the cult remains faceless and without remorse. They’re truly vile villains who can be just about anyone they desire and they chase our foursome through county after county attempting to silence them. “Race with the Devil” is something out of the mind psychedelic storytellers since it’s such a tense and urgent piece of filmmaking with a talented cast who make us believe we’re being sucked in as they are.” – Felix Vasquez Jr., Cinema Crazed

Young Frankenstein

390. (+33) Young Frankenstein

Mel Brooks

1974 / USA / 106m / Col / Comedy | IMDb
Gene Wilder, Peter Boyle, Marty Feldman, Madeline Kahn, Cloris Leachman, Teri Garr, Kenneth Mars, Richard Haydn, Liam Dunn, Danny Goldman

“It’s a silly, zizzy picture — a farce-parody of Hollywood’s mad-scientist—trying-to-be-God pictures, with Wilder as the old Baron Frankenstein’s grandson, an American professor of neurology, who takes a trip to the family castle in Transylvania. Peter Boyle is the Frankenstein monster, and Madeline Kahn is the professor’s plastic-woman fiancée, who becomes the monster’s bride. It isn’t a dialogue comedy; it’s visceral and lower. It’s what used to be called a crazy comedy, and there hasn’t been this kind of craziness on the screen in years. It’s a film to go to when your rhythm is slowed down and you’re too tired to think… You can go to see it when you can barely keep your eyes open, and come out feeling relaxed and recharged.” – Pauline Kael, New Yorker

Hatchet

391. (-23) Hatchet

Adam Green

2006 / USA / 85m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Joel David Moore, Tamara Feldman, Deon Richmond, Kane Hodder, Mercedes McNab, Parry Shen, Joel Murray, Joleigh Fioravanti, Richard Riehle, Patrika Darbo

“For people who miss the early-’80s heyday of the slasher film, Hatchet will seem like a gift from the horror-movie gods; for everyone else, it’ll at least be a fun way to kill 80 minutes… There’s nothing revolutionary about Hatchet; with its simplistic plot and cameos from horror legends Robert Englund and Tony Todd, it’s a deliberate throwback to the uncomplicated slasher movies of yore. But Green re-creates the style with affection and a knack for building suspense. The acting is above average, the bits of comic relief are actually funny, and multiple limbs are severed in highly graphic fashion. What more could you ask for?” – Josh Bell, Las Vegas Weekly

Noroi

392. (-21) Noroi

Kôji Shiraishi

2005 / Japan / 115m / Col / Found Footage | IMDb
Jin Muraki, Rio Kanno, Tomono Kuga, Marika Matsumoto, Angâruzu, Hiroshi Aramata, Yôko Chôsokabe, Dankan, Tomomi Eguchi, Gôkyû

“Noroi’s sense of realism may be unmatched in found-footage, and the journey of its idealistic, headstrong protagonist makes for gripping viewing; it’s the inseparable nature of the film’s form and content, however, that makes it a contender for one of the best horror films I’ve ever seen. Kobayashi’s film must feel real or else his journey would feel fake. If Noroi possessed the slightest suggestion of falsehood, the audience would have free reign to retreat to a comfortable spectator’s position, ready to let this fiction play out without any personal consequence. By convincing us of its veracity and giving us a protagonist whose drive for earth-shaking answers mirrors our own, Noroi directly interrogates our hunger for truth. In seeking truth, Noroi concludes, we become swallowed up by it. We’ve sought out Pandora’s box and wrest it open, and we deserve whatever comes out.” – Julian Singleton, Cinapse

Quella villa accanto al cimitero

393. (-5) Quella villa accanto al cimitero

Lucio Fulci

1981 / Italy / 87m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Catriona MacColl, Paolo Malco, Ania Pieroni, Giovanni Frezza, Silvia Collatina, Dagmar Lassander, Giovanni De Nava, Daniela Doria, Gianpaolo Saccarola, Carlo De Mejo

“A “video nasty,” THE HOUSE BY THE CEMETERY brings the blood in a big way, thanks to Fulci’s special effects muse Giannetto De Rossi. There are painstakingly long decapitations, stabbings, throat-removals and more throughout the film, all presented with disgusting Eurohorror depth and detail. Even though not the most horrific of Fulci’s career, THE HOUSE BY THE CEMETERY is by no means for the weak at heart, especially those adverse to creepy, crawly insects. Above all else THE HOUSE BY THE CEMETERY is a damn fine Fulci film, and a good launching point for those who want to get into European Horror and giallo. Good gore, fantastic atmosphere and heartfelt performances are on display, all topped off with the standard, bleak Fulci ending.” – Ken W. Hanley, Fangoria

Riget

394. (-30) Riget

Lars von Trier & Morten Arnfred

1994 / Denmark / 286m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Ernst-Hugo Järegård, Kirsten Rolffes, Holger Juul Hansen, Søren Pilmark, Ghita Nørby, Jens Okking, Baard Owe, Birgitte Raaberg, Peter Mygind, Vita Jensen

“The horror aspects of the show are compelling, but in many ways Riget is a somewhat generic hospital soap opera, drawing you in to the lurid goings-on that happen once the rubber gloves come off. It’s a familiar format, and an effective one, but in much the same way that Twin Peaks lured unsuspecting viewers in with a murder mystery and a seemingly recognizable small town setting, Von Trier uses the power struggles and trysts of the medical staff as a springboard into the surreal and fantastic. In fact, the influence of David Lynch’s TV masterpiece, which aired a few short years before, permeates the show […] There’s also something very Lynchian about its disorienting tonal shifts, going from corporate thriller to gruesome darkness to offbeat comedy in the blink of an eye, which adds a bitingly satirical dimension to the proceedings.” – Thomas Michalsky, WFMU’s Beware of the Blog

The Plague of the Zombies

395. (-58) The Plague of the Zombies

John Gilling

1966 / UK / 91m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
André Morell, Diane Clare, Brook Williams, Jacqueline Pearce, John Carson, Alexander Davion, Michael Ripper, Marcus Hammond, Dennis Chinnery, Louis Mahoney

“Plague of the Zombies plays the sort of inventive games with the concept of zombification that you rarely see now that the zombie movie has become a fully-fledged sub-genre. Brought back to life by Caribbean witchcraft, the white eyed, grey skinned creatures of the title sit somewhere between the voodoo-revived corpses of 1940s Val Lewton and the living dead to come of George Romero and his imitators. The mystery here is not what is happening – a pre-title sequence confirms voodoo is at work in this small Cornish town and reveals who it’s being used on – but why local people are being systematically led to their deaths and transformed into undead shells of their former selves.” – Slarek, CineOutsider

The Cat and the Canary

396. (+5) The Cat and the Canary

Paul Leni

1927 / USA / 108m / BW / Haunted House | IMDb
Laura La Plante, Creighton Hale, Forrest Stanley, Tully Marshall, Gertrude Astor, Flora Finch, Arthur Edmund Carewe, Martha Mattox, George Siegmann, Lucien Littlefield

“It’s a stylishly well-executed old-fashioned horror-suspense thriller that’s laced with a macabre humor, arty German expressionism, an uncommon architectural style and sets a strong mysterious mood. It was a forerunner of the Universal horror films of the 1930s, which copied many of its eerie effects such as clutching hands, disappearing bodies, a masked killer, secret passageways, and sliding panels. It came at the apex of the silents, when such films as Garbo in Love and De Mille’s The King of Kings also appeared. Critics at the time said it lifted the mystery genre into the realm of art. Though even creaky for that time, Leni plays it more for laughs than scares.” – Dennis Schwartz, Ozus’ World Movie Reviews

The Spiral Staircase

397. (-14) The Spiral Staircase

Robert Siodmak

1945 / USA / 83m / BW / Mystery | IMDb
Dorothy McGuire, George Brent, Ethel Barrymore, Kent Smith, Rhonda Fleming, Gordon Oliver, Elsa Lanchester, Sara Allgood, Rhys Williams, James Bell

“With its stark expressionistic design and cinematography, to say nothing of its atmospheric Gothic set, The Spiral Staircase hss not just the feel but the actual living substance of the darkest nightmare. The enormous swathes of shadow which drape the sinister mansion interior and dwarf the protagonists resemble the talons of some gigantic night beast that is constantly on the verge of striking. From the very first shot to the very last, there is a sense of menace and anticipation that is both spellbinding and terrifying, slowly building to a dizzying climax in the final nerve shattering ten minutes. No wonder the film shocked audiences when it was first released – it has much the same impact today, particularly if you watch it alone, with the lights turned out – preferably in a dark old house…” – James Travers, French Film Site

Das Testament des Dr. Mabuse

398. (-29) Das Testament des Dr. Mabuse

Fritz Lang

1933 / Germany / 122m / BW / Crime | IMDb
Rudolf Klein-Rogge, Gustav Diessl, Rudolf Schündler, Oskar Höcker, Theo Lingen, Camilla Spira, Paul Henckels, Otto Wernicke, Theodor Loos, Hadrian Maria Netto

“What is perhaps most striking about Das Testament des Dr Mabuse is its scale and sophistication. Not only does it qualify as a masterpiece on artistic grounds (some of its imagery is the stuff of film legend), but it is by far and away the most ambitious dramatic thriller of its time, thanks to some extraordinary action sequences (which incudes one of cinema’s most imaginative car chases). Lang uses sound almost as effectively as he uses image to tell his story and create an unsettling mood of paranoia and anticipation.” – James Travers, French Film Site

Ghost Busters

399. (+10) Ghost Busters

Ivan Reitman

1984 / USA / 105m / Col / Comedy | IMDb
Bill Murray, Dan Aykroyd, Sigourney Weaver, Harold Ramis, Rick Moranis, Annie Potts, William Atherton, Ernie Hudson, David Margulies, Steven Tash

“What Reitman’s film did was blend genres in a way that was truly novel and is still tough to pull off. When I read about the series being rebooted, I always wince because I feel like someone will get the recipe wrong. It’ll either be too funny, or too serious. ‘Ghostbusters’ is the rare tentpole that’s hilarious throughout, but also has real stakes… Watching the film now, it can’t help but feel miraculous just to see how seamlessly all the elements blend together, and how on-point everyone from the actors to the special fx guys, to the set designers, composers, etc., were here… This pretty much made Murray the cult icon he is today, with him being the “cool-guy funny man” which is a tough gig to pull off.” – Chris Bumbray, JoBlo’s Movie Emporium

Taste of Fear

400. (+15) Taste of Fear

Seth Holt

1961 / UK / 78m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Susan Strasberg, Ronald Lewis, Ann Todd, Christopher Lee, John Serret, Leonard Sachs, Anne Blake, Fred Johnson

“The best writer doesn’t get far without a great director, and Seth Holt proved to be up to the task. In these ages of computerized technology and “jump out at you scares,” the method of “slowly graduating creepiness” has all but been lost. But while modern techniques get tired very quickly (especially to us true horror fans), primal fear never gets old. And this is what Taste of Fear taps into. The scenes where the corpses appear are absolutely crap-inducing, mostly because Holt takes his sweet time in drawing you into the scene, slowly but relentlessly building the suspense. It’s the primordial Hitchcock formula at its finest, and for this reason, Taste of Fear is far more effective than most of its modern counterparts. “Jump out at you scares” have their time and place, but they are quick shots of adrenaline and moments later you are back to normal. But a director who can keep your adrenaline pumping for long stretches at a time will, by default, be much more intriguing.” – Jenn Dlugos, Classic-Horror