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#601-#700

The 1,000 Greatest Horror Films: #601-#700

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

Pin

601. (-13) Pin

Sandor Stern

1988 / Canada / 103m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
David Hewlett, Cynthia Preston, Terry O’Quinn, Bronwen Mantel, John Pyper-Ferguson, Helene Udy, Patricia Collins, Steven Bednarski, Katie Shingler, Jacob Tierney

“Written and directed by Sandor Stern and adapted from the novel by Andrew Neiderman, Pin succeeds by treating its questionable premise with unflinching conviction. Stern’s direction, successfully building tension when required, is generally workmanlike – and this is what saves the film. A more sensationalistic treatment of the subject matter could easily have become ludicrous, but Stern’s entirely matter-of-fact approach makes the whole exercise oddly convincing.” – N. Emmett, Shadowgum

Cannibal ferox

602. (-12) Cannibal ferox

Umberto Lenzi

1981 / Italy / 93m / Col / Cannibal | IMDb
Giovanni Lombardo Radice, Lorraine De Selle, Danilo Mattei, Zora Kerova, Walter Lucchini, Fiamma Maglione, Robert Kerman, John Bartha, Venantino Venantini

“Cannibal Ferox is a popcorn cannibal flick, if such a thing can exist. Sure, Lenzi throws in the “we’re the savages” type dialogue that cannibal films seemingly all have, but the focus of the film is the gore and nothing else. A lot of dialogue is cheesy in the good way and there are a handful of familiar Italian horror faces to reminisce about and try to decipher just what the hell you’d seen them in before. The score and music in the film is great fun as well and fits the tone of the film perfectly.” – Brett H., Oh, The Horror

Blacula

603. (-32) Blacula

William Crain

1972 / USA / 93m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
William Marshall, Vonetta McGee, Denise Nicholas, Thalmus Rasulala, Gordon Pinsent, Charles Macaulay, Emily Yancy, Lance Taylor Sr., Ted Harris, Rick Metzler

“You might look at the genre and silly title and assume it’s just gonna be a bunch of soul music, funny trash talk with pimps and caddies, and a tenuous plot involving a vampire, but thats not the case at all. Blacula tries its best to be a legitimate horror film, keeping the traditional mythos and tropes in tact. It stays pretty true to the spirit of the Universal version of the Dracula story, with eternal love being Blacula’s motivation (and not just evil for evil’s sake).” – Ryan Matthew Ziegler, nine18pictures

Freddy vs. Jason

604. (-10) Freddy vs. Jason

Ronny Yu

2003 / Canada / 97m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Robert Englund, Ken Kirzinger, Monica Keena, Jason Ritter, Kelly Rowland, Chris Marquette, Brendan Fletcher, Katharine Isabelle, Lochlyn Munro, Kyle Labine

“Two dead horror franchises and two one-note jokes combine their burnt-out story lines and collective myths in “Freddy Vs. Jason,” and the result is a horror movie that’s better than it has any right to be… The Jason (‘Friday the 13th’) and the Freddy Krueger (‘Nightmare on Elm Street’) series were limp self-parodies long before they went dormant. But something in the combination of the two villains wakes things up. The presence of Freddy liberates this Jason entry from the monotony of a guy lumbering about with a ski mask and a sword, while the presence of Jason liberates this Freddy film from the monotony of the usual endless dream sequences… Director Ronny Yu… keeps it as light as possible.” – Mick LaSalle, SFGate

Il rosso segno della follia

605. (-43) Il rosso segno della follia

Mario Bava

1970 / Italy / 88m / Col / Giallo | IMDb
Stephen Forsyth, Dagmar Lassander, Laura Betti, Jesús Puente, Femi Benussi, Antonia Mas, Luciano Pigozzi, Gérard Tichy, Verónica Llimera, Pasquale Fortunato

“Forsyth’s over the top performance, Bava’s impeccable direction, and the fantastic art design of the film combine to create a fun giallo to rival the best of the genre. While this film may not be the most original of his works, Hatchet for the Honeymoon certainly is one to check out. The pacing is very sprightly, and this makes for a great night’s viewing. There’s not too much gore, most of the violence is implied rather than splattered across the screen, but there’s enough to keep horror fans happy and placate the thriller fans who dig the occasional gruesome tableau.” – J. Hurtado, Twitchfilm

Versus

606. (+52) Versus

Ryûhei Kitamura

2000 / Japan / 119m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Tak Sakaguchi, Hideo Sakaki, Chieko Misaka, Kenji Matsuda, Yuichiro Arai, Minoru Matsumoto, Kazuhito Ohba, Takehiro Katayama, Ayumi Yoshihara, Shôichirô Masumoto

“All in all, “Versus” delivers on its one basic promise: action, and tons and tons of action. This movie has, for lack of a better word, style. It is obviously a low-budget film, since there are barely any special effects of the computer variety, but many of the old-fashion practicals and gallons and gallons of fake blood variety. It’s gore at its finest, and it’s quite fine, let me assure you. Gorefiends will pray their eyes don’t fail them during the viewing.” – Beyond Hollywood

Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead

607. (-9) Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead

Lloyd Kaufman

2006 / USA / 103m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Jason Yachanin, Kate Graham, Allyson Sereboff, Robin L. Watkins, Joshua Olatunde, Caleb Emerson, Rose Ghavami, Khalid Rivera, Joe Fleishaker, Lloyd Kaufman

“Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead is a soft-core scatological zombie kitsch musical complete with social commentary. It was directed and co-written by Lloyd Kaufman, the company’s fabled president, who packs every skeevy genre in history into this mad, mod exploitation mishmash. Poultrygeist is as savage as Dawn of the Dead, as slapstick nutzoid as Evil Dead 2, as gag-on-your-popcorn gross as Pink Flamingos, and as dementedly foulmouthed literate as a Kevin Smith raunchfest. It’s genuine sick fun, and there isn’t a boring moment in it.” – Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly

Vinyan

608. (+69) Vinyan

Fabrice Du Welz

2008 / France / 96m / Col / Mystery | IMDb
Emmanuelle Béart, Rufus Sewell, Petch Osathanugrah, Julie Dreyfus, Amporn Pankratok, Josse De Pauw, Omm, Apisit Opasaimlikit, Kurlab Lay, Matt Ryder

“There’s a lot that’s questionable about Vinyan if you take it too literally. Would anyone go on such a perilous trip with so little preparation? And isn’t it a bit dodgy that all of the non-white foreigners are either gun-toting sleazebags or painted savages? But from those title credits onwards, the film boots you too far out of your comfort zone to let you do much questioning… To the chagrin of horror fans, no doubt, the film never takes away its protagonists’ options, instead allowing them to continue on an odyssey that’s weirdly beautiful, even if it isn’t what you’d call a relaxing holiday… It’s both a devastating drama about a loving couple’s grief, and a demonstration of how intense cinema can be.” – Nicholas Barber, The Independent

La chiesa

609. (+36) La chiesa

Michele Soavi

1989 / Italy / 102m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Hugh Quarshie, Tomas Arana, Feodor Chaliapin Jr., Barbara Cupisti, Antonella Vitale, Giovanni Lombardo Radice, Asia Argento, Roberto Caruso, Roberto Corbiletto

“Only Michele Soavi has ever come close to matching the breathtaking awe of a hyper-stylized Argento set piece. Soavi and Argento are no strangers to perfunctory storytelling, but while a Soavi tableaux may be considerably less colorful than Argento’s stained glass cinema, the man possesses a singular attentiveness for the poetry of signs and symbols. Though sometimes referred to as Demons 3, La Chiesa (The Church) is too visually breathtaking to be treated as another entry in Lamberto Bava’s schlocky Demons series… Soavi’s horror is terrifyingly suggestive, so much so that its difficult to determine what is real and what is the product of subconscious sexual desire and altered consciousness. There’s plenty of schmaltz to go around but there is no denying the dreaminess of Soavi’s stream-of-conscious horror show.” – Ed Gonzalez, Slant Magazine

Magic

610. (+23) Magic

Richard Attenborough

1978 / USA / 107m / Col / Evil Doll | IMDb
Anthony Hopkins, Ann-Margret, Burgess Meredith, Ed Lauter, E.J. André, Jerry Houser, David Ogden Stiers, Lillian Randolph, Joe Lowry, Bob Hackman

“Magic is an exceptional work of cinema that has much to offer to the viewer who is willing to indulge at different levels. Attenborough and Goldman conjure up a nightmarish world that grows creepier with every passing moment. Slowly but relentlessly, the viewer is sucked into the eerie world of endless uncertainties wherein he must come face to face with his deepest fears and innermost desires before being plunged into a psychological maelstrom of varied emotions. Magic is indeed magical! And it’s the dream-like director-actor pairing of two great English thespians, Richard Attenborough and Anthony Hopkins, which lifts the film above the other cinematic products of its kind.” – Murtaza Ali, A Potpourri of Vestiges

Creep

611. (-15) Creep

Christopher Smith

2004 / UK / 85m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Vas Blackwood, Ken Campbell, Kathryn Gilfeather, Franka Potente, Grant Ibbs, Joe Anderson, Jeremy Sheffield, Sean De Vrind, Ian Duncan, Debora Weston

““Creep” is a very atmospheric film, both in its early depiction of instantly recognisable London life, and its latter scenes of dark, oppressive tunnels that seem to have been influenced by the “Resident Evil” series of videogames. There are a good number of genuine scares, and the whole film has a claustrophobic feel which the director exploits to the full with uncomfortable moments, often involving the legions of rats which the creep seems to command. Similarly, in terms of blood, the film will certainly satisfy fans, with a good amount of splatter, and a couple of genuinely foul scenes that are sure to raise a shudder.” – James Mudge, Beyond Hollywood

Paperhouse

612. (-35) Paperhouse

Bernard Rose

1988 / UK / 92m / Col / Fantasy | IMDb
Charlotte Burke, Jane Bertish, Samantha Cahill, Glenne Headly, Sarah Newbold, Gary Bleasdale, Elliott Spiers, Gemma Jones, Steven O’Donnell, Ben Cross

“The film doesn’t turn into a message movie, and this stuff can be ignored by a less perceptive viewer. Or it can be explained by the way that Anna’s loneliness manifests itself in her dreams. Her father is, at one point, introduced in her dream by a guitar stinger more suitable for a slasher movie. At first that seems like a dated misstep, until we consider how each image is part of Anna’s skewed viewpoint. Her world, encapsulated by this large, creepy, mostly empty house, in the middle of a spacious field, is the suggestion that she hasn’t lived long enough to fill in the details. As a film, Paperhouse is about Anna’s discovery of something she didn’t quite understand before- her own mortality. And she spends the entire film learning about it piece by piece.” – Adam Lippe, Examiner.com

Straw Dogs

613. (-56) Straw Dogs

Sam Peckinpah

1971 / USA / 113m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Dustin Hoffman, Susan George, Peter Vaughan, T.P. McKenna, Del Henney, Jim Norton, Donald Webster, Ken Hutchison, Len Jones, Sally Thomsett

“Straw Dogs frustrates and compels not because it tells us easy things like “violence lurks in the hearts of men” (which it does), but because it ultimately refuses to make any absolute value judgments about such a statement. Peckinpah clearly believed that humans are inherently violent beings—he said as much in interview after interview. Yet, he was also a committed liberal democrat and humanist who detested the violence and scandal of the world around him. Thus, like its depictions of violence, the film’s stand on David’s descent into destruction to protect what’s his is, in the end, ambiguous.” – James Kendrick, Q Network Film Desk

Zombi Holocaust

614. (+54) Zombi Holocaust

Marino Girolami

1980 / Italy / 84m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Ian McCulloch, Alexandra Delli Colli, Sherry Buchanan, Peter O’Neal, Donald O’Brien, Dakar, Walter Patriarca, Linda Fumis, Roberto Resta, Franco Ukmar

“The writing is so weak and flimsy that you wonder why they bothered to begin with… But the beauty is that by the end of it, you won’t care. Everyone knows that it’s going to be exploitative but you will never guess at how badly. From having lead actress Alexandra Delli Colli get stripped full-frontal and placed onto a large sacrificial rock (which looks suspiciously like the one Ursula Andress got strapped to in The Mountain of the Cannibal God) to the copious amount of intestines on display, Zombie Holocaust punches for the lowest common denominators to hook its audience. Combining the two bloodiest sub-genres going promised that Zombie Holocaust would be a messy ride and it was certainly that. From open skull brain surgery to a zombie getting a motor boat propeller right to the face, there are plenty of gory set pieces on display.” – Andrew Smith, Popcorn Pictures

House of Dracula

615. (-70) House of Dracula

Erle C. Kenton

1945 / USA / 67m / BW / Vampire | IMDb
Lon Chaney Jr., John Carradine, Martha O’Driscoll, Lionel Atwill, Onslow Stevens, Jane Adams, Ludwig Stössel, Glenn Strange, Skelton Knaggs

“Silly as the film undoubtedly is, and this is a film that elevates silliness to a fine art, House of Dracula sill manages to be eminently watchable and it is easily one of the more entertaining of Universal’s classic horror films. As if the combined monstrosity of Dracula, Wolfman, and Frankenstein’s monster isn’t enough, we are also offered a hunchbacked nurse and a variant on the Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde story. As the mad scientist (who is clearly related to Fritz Lang’s Dr Mabuse), Onslow Stevens steals the show, delivering far more thrills than the anaemic Dracula and his jaded monstrous entourage. This is a film which ought to be unremittingly awful but it isn’t. It may not scale the heights of Universal’s other great monster movies of the 1930s and ’40s, but it is still an enjoyable, well-crafted horror romp, marred only by its unimaginably daft plot.” – James Travers, Films de France

Roadgames

616. (-8) Roadgames

Richard Franklin

1981 / Australia / 101m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Stacy Keach, Jamie Lee Curtis, Marion Edward, Grant Page, Thaddeus Smith, Steve Millichamp, Alan Hopgood, John Murphy, Bill Stacey, Robert Thompson

“Director Richard Franklin has openly confessed that his Road Games is an “Alfred Hitchcock derivative.” Replacing Jimmy Stewart’s apartment view in Rear Window with the fly-splattered windscreen of an 8-wheel truck, Road Games hurtles into a world of obsession, mistaken identity and psycho killers as if the master himself were in the passenger seat. But the sheer unhinged energy Franklin injects into the narrative make this more than just a simple pastiche. This is Hitchcock at 80mph and it doesn’t let up for a second.” – Tom Fallows, Classic-Horror

The Human Centipede (First Sequence)

617. (+5) 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

Critters

618. (-17) Critters

Stephen Herek

1986 / USA / 86m / Col / Monster | IMDb
Dee Wallace, M. Emmet Walsh, Billy Green Bush, Scott Grimes, Nadine Van der Velde, Don Keith Opper, Billy Zane, Ethan Phillips, Terrence Mann, Jeremy Lawrence

“While Critters rarely does any one thing good, its committment to the premise and its willingness to throw every idea at the camera makes it pretty entertaining. Sometimes it’s funny on purpose; sometimes it’s funny because it fails so bad at being scary. I guess it’s a long shot to make furballs and small hand puppets truly terrifying, but I think the creators were intentionally going for a 50s B-movie vibe. It’s the type of horror film that’s in no danger of freaking its audience out, so it splurges on goofy Critter antics (the alien subtitles are pretty hilarious) and the occasional exercise in gore FX.” – Mutant Reviewers

Dust Devil

619. (+54) Dust Devil

Richard Stanley

1992 / South Africa / 87m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Robert John Burke, Chelsea Field, Zakes Mokae, John Matshikiza, Rufus Swart, William Hootkins, Terry Norton, Russell Copley, Andre Odendaal, Luke Cornell

““Dust Devil” doesn’t rush its story, and it doesn’t intend on creating a fast pace. It’s slow, and steady, and sometimes sluggish, and with the constant narration, Stanley devotes much of the dialogue to exposition on the plot, and on mounting tension. Stanley relies on much of the settings of sand, dunes, mountains, and peaks to create a sense of the barren and void, a world where Dust Devil reigns and controls without hope of outwitting him. He has powers, and he’s utterly relentless, and Stanley lets us explore him while keeping him an enigma. “Dust Devil” is a surreal experience, but it’s also one truly underrated piece of work.” – Felix Vasquez Jr., Cinema Crazed

Squirm

620. (-31) Squirm

Jeff Lieberman

1976 / USA / 92m / Col / Nature | IMDb
Don Scardino, Patricia Pearcy, R.A. Dow, Jean Sullivan, Peter MacLean, Fran Higgins, William Newman, Barbara Quinn, Carl Dagenhart, Angel Sande

“As ridiculous as all this sounds, Squirm really doesn’t veer off into absolute camp—it’s the sort of movie that obviously invites mockery on the premise level but doesn’t actively wink at the audience to goad them into taking the piss out of it. Instead, Lieberman leads the audience right to the precipice and delivers exactly what’s to be expected from a killer worm movie: some grisly, squishy sequences meant to both amuse and disgust all at once.” – Brett Gallman, Oh, The Horror

Der Student von Prag

621. (-116) Der Student von Prag

Henrik Galeen

1926 / Germany / 110m / BW / Drama | IMDb
Conrad Veidt, Elizza La Porta, Fritz Alberti, Agnes Esterhazy, Ferdinand von Alten, Werner Krauss, Erich Kober, Max Maximilian

“Superior [to the 1913] version, thanks to some moody direction by Henrik Galeen (who was involved in either a writing or directorial capacities in an astonishing number of German horror movies, such as both versions of THE GOLEM, WAXWORKS, ALRAUNE and NOSFERATU) and a fine, powerful performance from Conrad Veidt, who may actually have been the finest horror actor of the silents and is here reunited with his CABINET OF DR. CALIGARI co-star Werner Krauss… there’s a real power in the growing horror of the story, and the final sequences in which Veidt is stalked by himself are absolutely chilling. In a sense, there’s no other horror movie out there quite like this one” – Dave Sindelar, Fantastic Movie Musings and Ramblings

La frusta e il corpo

622. (-7) La frusta e il corpo

Mario Bava

1963 / Italy / 91m / Col / Gothic | IMDb
Daliah Lavi, Christopher Lee, Tony Kendall, Ida Galli, Harriet Medin, Gustavo De Nardo, Luciano Pigozzi, Jacques Herlin

“Widely considered the father of the Italian giallo genre, Mario Bava has influenced the likes of modern-day giallo directors Dario Argento and Lucio Fulci, as well as Martin Scorsese, David Lynch, Guillermo del Toro and, most especially, Quentin Tarantino. The Whip and the Body is a gothic horror fantasy that finds Bava at the peak of his visual prowess. Though the giallo genre is often known for its reliance on graphic violence, Bava’s film is noticeably tame. What with its captivating lighting schemes, ghostly death sequences and lurid compositions (passageways are downright vaginal), it’s no wonder that Bava’s fetishistic film has attained cult status.” – Ed Gonzalez, Slant Magazine

Psychomania

623. (-26) Psychomania

Don Sharp

1973 / UK / 85m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Nicky Henson, Mary Larkin, Ann Michelle, Roy Holder, Denis Gilmore, Miles Greenwood, Peter Whitting, Rocky Taylor, Robert Hardy, Patrick Holt

“It remains an iconic, idiosyncratic anomaly in a creepshow category overrun by reanimated bodies and rotting monsters. Sure, fright fans like their zombies hobbled and hungry, patrolling the countryside for available brains. All the members of The Living Dead want to do is cause trouble and “blow some squares’ minds”. While it may have been intended as nothing more than double feature filler, a 90 minute companion piece to something more substantial, it actually wound up doing what few horror films can – it set itself apart from the rest of the paranormal pack. Cinematic scares are often predictable at best. While it avoids many of the basic bone rattling moves, Psychomania is still one memorable fright flick.” – Bill Gibron, Pop Matters

Full Circle

624. (-25) Full Circle

Richard Loncraine

1977 / Canada / 98m / Col / Haunted House | IMDb
Mia Farrow, Keir Dullea, Tom Conti, Jill Bennett, Robin Gammell, Cathleen Nesbitt, Anna Wing, Edward Hardwicke, Mary Morris, Pauline Jameson

“A couple years ago, I laid out a subcategory of 70s horror called “Melancholy Horror,” describing it as “a sub-genre of especially artistic horror/thriller/supernatural drama films that fill half of you with genuine scares, and the rest with a genuine sadness– or at least a sense of overwhelming alienation… They always make the most of their budgets, however, and come across as very impressionistic, hypnotic, and dreamlike; the 1970s film stock often lending sunlight, candlelight, and fall colors a special ethereal prominence.” THE HAUNTING OF JULIA is no masterpiece: it’s not as good as DON’T LOOK NOW or THE CHANGELING or AUDREY ROSE, three films that it resembles thematically. But in Melancholy Horror, atmosphere often trumps narrative quality, and JULIA has atmosphere in spades” – Sean Gill, Junta Juleil’s Culture Shock

The Cat and the Canary

625. (-7) The Cat and the Canary

Elliott Nugent

1939 / USA / 72m / BW / Comedy | IMDb
Bob Hope, Paulette Goddard, John Beal, Douglass Montgomery, Gale Sondergaard, Elizabeth Patterson, George Zucco, Nydia Westman, John Wray, George Regas

“This adaptation of John Willard’s 1922 play is notable for providing Bob Hope his starring debut, and for offering Paulette Goddard a chance to show off her sadly under-utilized comedic chops. The film’s “let’s scare the heroine to death” storyline — while imitated ad nauseum by countless later “old dark house” horror flicks — remains solidly suspenseful; you’re guaranteed to be kept in the dark (literally) about the identity of the killer. Director Elliott Nugent and cinematographer Charles Lang do a fine job keeping the proceedings appropriately spooky and atmospheric, though with Hope on board, there’s naturally plenty of corny levity (“Let’s all drink scotch and make wry faces.”).” – FilmFanatic

Willard

626. (-52) Willard

Daniel Mann

1971 / USA / 95m / Col / Nature | IMDb
Bruce Davison, Sondra Locke, Elsa Lanchester, Michael Dante, Jody Gilbert, William Hansen, John Myhers, J. Pat O’Malley, Joan Shawlee, Almira Sessions

“Despite it’s reputation as simply a horror film about a creepy guy who loves rats (a reputation confirmed by the forgettable Crispin Glover remake), Willard is actually much more than that. It’s a complex and sympathetic character study and for a few misfits in the audience, it gave us a protagonist we could finally identify with and a film that helped define our later lives. It was Willard and not Catcher in the Rye, where we finally came to recognize our own alienation.” – Jim Knipfel, Den of Geek

Nattevagten

627. (+12) Nattevagten

Ole Bornedal

1994 / Denmark / 107m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Sofie Gråbøl, Kim Bodnia, Lotte Andersen, Ulf Pilgaard, Rikke Louise Andersson, Stig Hoffmeyer, Gyrd Løfquist, Niels Anders Thorn, Leif Adolfsson

“Tightly scripted, with just a drop of wicked black humour, the film delivers creepy hints of necrophilia, visceral shocks and heart-racing suspense. The one unconvincing note is the parallel between these murderous events and rehearsals for an amateur theatrical production of Mephisto. Otherwise, this is the kind of superior genre movie-making where the eerie fluttering of moths in a glass lampshade is as chilling as the screaming, hysterical violence that follows.” – Time Out

The Night Flier

628. (+16) The Night Flier

Mark Pavia

1997 / USA / 94m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Miguel Ferrer, Julie Entwisle, Dan Monahan, Michael H. Moss, John Bennes, Beverly Skinner, Rob Wilds, Richard K. Olsen, Elizabeth McCormick, J.R. Rodriguez

“THE NIGHT FLIER stays true to the source material, while changing a few things up that actually work better in this visual medium. Even though Dees is a complete and utter tool, we can’t help ourselves enjoy watching this despicable man go through a creepy investigation that ultimately leads to a confrontation that will decide his fate. In the realm of Stephen King adaptations, THE NIGHT FLIER is great. In the world of vampire films, it’s also great. This is an underrated gem of a movie that deserves more acclaim than it gets.” – Derrick Carter, For The Love Of Celluloid

House of Dark Shadows

629. (-10) House of Dark Shadows

Dan Curtis

1970 / USA / 97m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Jonathan Frid, Grayson Hall, Kathryn Leigh Scott, Roger Davis, Nancy Barrett, John Karlen, Thayer David, Louis Edmonds, Don Briscoe, David Henesy

“The soap opera Dark Shadows was Curtis’ baby and it ran on ABC from 1966-1971 hitting the peak of its popularity with the release of this film in 1970. While the show had many long running storylines and even storylines in different eras, Curtis decided that the film version was going to tell the Barnabas vampire tale alone. Audiences were a bit shocked by how much harsher the film version of the show was, with a Barnabas that was much less sympathetic and violence that was, well, violent. With a tightly focused vampire story, Curtis produced a film which has the feel of a classic Hammer film… The film is aided immeasurably in this regard by its location photography in upstate New York and Connecticut.” – Brian Holcomb, Kinetofilm

The Gate

630. (+24) The Gate

Tibor Takács

1987 / USA / 85m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Stephen Dorff, Christa Denton, Louis Tripp, Kelly Rowan, Jennifer Irwin, Deborah Grover, Scot Denton, Ingrid Veninger, Sean Fagan, Linda Goranson

“The most memorable aspects of THE GATE are unquestionably the special FX work. For a film of its size and scale, no other film boasts such an incredible production design. In addition to stop-motion animation, director Tibor Takacs also incorporates miniature set designs with gigantic demonic beasts as well as tiny minions that each interact with the children in a series of incredible green-screening shots that seamlessly meld the range of characters on screen. Though it takes its time in creating a growing tension and suspense, the gate literally unleashes hell on earth once it has been fully unlocked. THE GATE is the perfect argument against the use of computerized imaging in film, and serves as one of the strongest examples of a low budget Horror film accomplishing a big budget look and feel through imaginative FX and a unique plot.” – Carl Manes, I Like Horror Movies

Mute Witness

631. (+69) Mute Witness

Anthony Waller

1995 / Russia / 95m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Marina Zudina, Fay Ripley, Evan Richards, Oleg Yankovskiy, Igor Volkov, Sergei Karlenkov, Alec Guinness, Aleksandr Pyatkov, Nikolai Pastukhov, Aleksandr Bureyev

“Mute Witness has a keen sense of geography, and the camera movement is choreographed against the positions of the actors to sustain a remarkable cinematic tension. Sudina has a keen sense of her character, too, playing Billy as determined but terrified, smart but vulnerable. Her performance, along with Waller’s sure, straightforward direction, render some of the script’s more obvious implausibilities irrelevant in favor of sharp audience identification with Billy. And when the veracity of what she saw is called into question — was the ‘murder’ she witnessed really just a clever special effect? — the audience, too, is forced to reconsider its own experience of the murder on screen.” – Bryant Frazer, Deep Focus

The Skull

632. (+38) The Skull

Freddie Francis

1965 / UK / 83m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Peter Cushing, Patrick Wymark, Jill Bennett, Nigel Green, Patrick Magee, Peter Woodthorpe, Michael Gough, George Coulouris, April Olrich, Maurice Good

“Freddie Francis was good at showing off and overstating his camerawork, but in this film his ostentatiousness pays off, making the supernatural segments all the more fevered and disturbing. With little of the expected blood or semi-nudity on display, these inventive sequences of dread invoked by lighting, cinematography, editing and music are the tools The Skull has at its disposal to keep the audience’s attention, and while “subtlety” is certainly the wrong word to use, there is a certain adultness and elegance to evoking unease by such non-sensational means.” – Anton Mistlake, Mistlake’s Blog

Anatomie

633. (-33) Anatomie

Stefan Ruzowitzky

2000 / Germany / 103m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Franka Potente, Benno Fürmann, Anna Loos, Sebastian Blomberg, Holger Speckhahn, Traugott Buhre, Oliver Wnuk, Arndt Schwering-Sohnrey, Andreas Günther

“Anatomy starts off great, with Potente’s arrival at the school interspersed with sequences involving soon-to-be-operated-on victims awaking in a sinister-looking metallic room. There’s also some good stuff with Potente’s classmates, and their relationships with each other. But after a fairly intriguing explanation for the odd method of medical research, the film essentially turns into another Scream-type flick – with Potente running around trying to escape a psycho killer. Still, Potente is good and the atmosphere is effectively creepy, so Anatomy just might be worth a look.” – David Nusair, Reel Film Reviews

I Drink Your Blood

634. (-32) I Drink Your Blood

David E. Durston

1970 / USA / 83m / Col / Exploitation | IMDb
Bhaskar Roy Chowdhury, Jadin Wong, Rhonda Fultz, George Patterson, Riley Mills, John Damon, Elizabeth Marner-Brooks, Richard Bowler, Tyde Kierney, Iris Brooks

“Energetic, sloppy and entirely watchable (especially if you’re sitting down with bong and/or beer), David Durston’s I Drink Your Blood is true-blue camp all the way. Plus it’s vicious, violent, and frequently fall-down funny. Clearly created with a grindhouse-style audience in mind, IDYB doesn’t worry too much about the quality of what’s onscreen, but the quantity of outrageous shit it can pull off before the end credits hit the scene. Frankly you haven’t lived until you’ve seen a gang of Satanist hippies massacre a house full of rats before chowing down on rabid dogmeat and flying into a mega-murderous rage. Before it’s all over, I Drink Your Blood has turned into a decidedly stupider version of Romero’s original Night of the Living Dead, but the thing whizzes along like a really bad hit of acid. And while it’s highly unlikely to ever be considered a “good film” (by any definition of the phrase), there’s little denying that I Drink Your Blood delivers on its promise of wild, weird and frequently wacky material.” – Scott Weinberg, DVD Talk

It! The Terror from Beyond Space

635. (-28) It! The Terror from Beyond Space

Edward L. Cahn

1958 / USA / 69m / BW / Science Fiction | IMDb
Marshall Thompson, Shirley Patterson, Kim Spalding, Ann Doran, Dabbs Greer, Paul Langton, Robert Bice, Richard Benedict, Richard Hervey, Thom Carney

““IT, The Terror from Beyond” is a fun B picture that only Ed Cahn could have delivered back then. It has cheap scares, a foreboding atmosphere and loads of close calls and action. It is a genuine slice of pulp pie that satisfies and entertains. It has tension that is masterfully provided by Cahn, the story and the actors. It is intelligent and has like-able characters who deliver some quick and sometimes sophomoric dialog that fits the proceedings nicely. The film sports some dated but respectively nice looking special effects and Chan makes good use of shadows which do not let us see IT in it’s entirety for many of the confrontation scenes.” – Victor De Leon, Horror News

Shock Waves

636. (+31) Shock Waves

Ken Wiederhorn

1977 / USA / 85m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Peter Cushing, Brooke Adams, Fred Buch, Jack Davidson, Luke Halpin, D.J. Sidney, John Carradine, Don Stout, Clarence Thomas, Sammy Graham

“Director Wiederhorn allows his camera to act almost voyeuristic as it creeps through the trees to spy on the zombies that pop up from the murky water. They are presented as paranormal specters that are silhouetted by the blinding sun reflecting off the water. At times, we see them from an extreme distance, marching in formation and turning to barely acknowledge their gaunt commander as he pleads with them to stop their meaningless slaughter. It was these scenes that made me fall in love with Shock Waves, the film just subtle enough while every once in a while, getting right in our faces so we can see its soggy decay. We never see any scenes of mass carnage, the zombies preferring to drown their victims instead of gnawing at their flesh and sucking on their entrails. That fact that the film remains eerily tranquil throughout, never getting frantic or hurrying is what really makes this film such an effective little adventure.” – Steve Habrat, Anti-Film School

Vampire Circus

637. (-34) Vampire Circus

Robert Young

1972 / UK / 87m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Adrienne Corri, Thorley Walters, Anthony Higgins, John Moulder-Brown, Laurence Payne, Richard Owens, Lynne Frederick, Elizabeth Seal, Robin Hunter, Domini Blythe

“Modern viewers will indeed be amazed at the level of grue here. Throats are slashed, human beings torn limb from limb by ferocious beasts. Said vivisected bodies are discovered in horrific fashion, and gunshots blow holes in the back of hunky henchmen. This isn’t your pathetic piecemeal PG-13 shocker. From a crucifix to a cutlass, weapons draw gallons of blood here, and Young shows a real flare for fatalistic invention. Indeed, the director is Vampire Circus‘s certified wild card here. While sticking to the storytelling conventions rather well, he adds unique visual elements to the mix, including obvious homages to then arthouse cinema hits and moments of his own unique invention (a pair of aerialists are shot from below as they spin and contort in the air, giving their performance a surreal, hallucinogenic aura).” – Bill Gibron, Pop Matters

I corpi presentano tracce di violenza carnale

638. (-6) I corpi presentano tracce di violenza carnale

Sergio Martino

1973 / Italy / 89m / Col / Giallo | IMDb
Suzy Kendall, Tina Aumont, Luc Merenda, John Richardson, Roberto Bisacco, Ernesto Colli, Angela Covello, Carla Brait, Conchita Airoldi, Patrizia Adiutori

“So overloaded with red herrings that even Scandinavians would find it excessive, Torso is not the most complicated of whodunits. About an hour into the narrative, the identity of our villain is nothing more than a process of elimination. In essence, take whoever’s left alive, subdivide out the possible motives, and make with the Holmesian deductions. The answer, sadly, will seem pretty obvious. That doesn’t mean Martino can’t have a little frisky fun getting to the conclusion. If you like Me Decade ladies unclothed and submission, this movie is your ticket to titillation. Female mammaries are featured so often that they almost become a plot point. Similarly, Martino does his slasher genre best to handle every death from the killer’s bloody perspective. As the knife blade threatens another topless honey, it’s all so gratuitous and sleazy.” – Bill Gibron, Pop Matters

Hannibal

639. (+18) Hannibal

Ridley Scott

2001 / USA / 131m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Anthony Hopkins, Julianne Moore, Gary Oldman, Ray Liotta, Frankie Faison, Giancarlo Giannini, Francesca Neri, Zeljko Ivanek, Hazelle Goodman, David Andrews

“There is not one inessential scene in Hannibal — it’s extremely plot-centered, and those who treasured the quiet pockets of dread and sadness in Silence will miss those things here. (I would’ve liked a little more competitive scenery-chewing between Verger and Lecter, for instance.) Hannibal hits the ground running and sprints for more than two hours towards its grisly, by-now-infamous climax. What the movie lacks in emotional tonality, though, it more than makes up for in operatic Grand Guignol and dark comedy, as well as a ghoulish parody of a tragic love story. Lecter, it seems, is mesmerized by Clarice — her pain, her strength, but mainly her force of will. In the movie’s major departure from the book, the feeling is not mutual; Clarice wants to save Lecter, but only to bring him back to a cell. The choice he eventually gives Clarice — and himself — in a key moment defines both their characters superbly.” – Rob Gonsalves, eFilmCritic

Island of Death

640. (-19) Island of Death

Nico Mastorakis

1976 / Greece / 108m / Col / Exploitation | IMDb
Robert Behling, Jane Lyle, Jessica Dublin, Gerard Gonalons, Jannice McConnell, Ray Richardson, Marios Tartas, Efi Bani, Clay Half, Jeremy Rousseau

“In its exploration of the relationships that exist between cultural outsiders or tourists (and their patronising, often naïve interpretations of the ‘purity’ or ‘simplicity’ of the cultures they are visiting) and locals, Island of Death explores a similar dynamic to films such as Sam Peckinpah’s Straw Dogs (1971)… and John Boorman’s Deliverance (1972)… Like those films, Island of Death foregrounds the concealed brutality of the white, bourgeois ‘tourist’ (in this case, the couple of Chris and Celia), except in Mastorakis’ film – as compared with Peckinpah and Boorman’s pictures – the locals do nothing to provoke the ire of Chris and Celia, other than simply pursue their own desires.” – Paul Lewis, DVD Compare

Ghost Story

641. (-58) Ghost Story

John Irvin

1981 / USA / 110m / Col / Haunted House | IMDb
Fred Astaire, Melvyn Douglas, Douglas Fairbanks Jr., John Houseman, Craig Wasson, Patricia Neal, Alice Krige, Jacqueline Brookes, Miguel Fernandes, Lance Holcomb

“Ghost Story plays its horror cards in all suits, from classical atmospheric chills (and as a note to Irvin’s love for detail, watch how the wind doesn’t begin to blow in the graveyard until Houseman says, “And the wind began to blow”) to Dick Smith’s excellent zombie make-up. It’s not gory, really, but some scenes, such as a body falling from a high-rise, shattering through a glass roof, and landing with a thud next to a pool, are more brutal than usual–Irvin graphically captures the tragedy and weight of the fall in a way that splattered body parts simply couldn’t do. The film’s real strength, though, lies in its ability to create ghostly thrills via deep characters who have a reason to be scared. And that, combined with all the other unique, superb elements, make this a must see for any genre fans or any serious fan of film.” – Brandt Sponseller, Classic-Horror

Count Yorga, Vampire

642. (+50) Count Yorga, Vampire

Bob Kelljan

1970 / USA / 93m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Robert Quarry, Roger Perry, Michael Murphy, Michael Macready, Donna Anders, Judy Lang, Edward Walsh, Julie Conners, Paul Hansen, Sybil Scotford

“Count Yorga – Vampire (originally conceived as a soft-core porn film entitled The Loves of Count Iorga) is a nifty little low-budget exploitation effort that uses its resources to good effect. The shocks are crude but effective. Although relatively tame by later standards, the gore has a nasty edge to it, underlining the film’s cynical sensibility and downbeat ending… [it] survives on the strength of its title performance and on the inventiveness of its approach to modern day vampirism. Yorga may not be a very refined film, but it packs a lot of attitude, and there’s no denying that the surprise ending is like a wicked little punch in the face.” – Steve Biodrowski, Cinefantastique

Dr. Phibes Rises Again

643. (+31) Dr. Phibes Rises Again

Robert Fuest

1972 / UK / 89m / Col / Black Comedy | IMDb
Vincent Price, Robert Quarry, Valli Kemp, Peter Jeffrey, Fiona Lewis, Hugh Griffith, Peter Cushing, Beryl Reid, Terry-Thomas, John Cater

“Like any good sequel, ‘Dr. Phibes Rises Again’ builds on the first film, recycling what worked while adding some new elements…. If there is a weakness, it is that the sequel tends to emphasize the campy humor at the expense of the horror. With Phibes now nominally the hero, the audience is not really expected to be frightened by him; instead, we are invited to identify and laugh along with him as he polishes off everyone in his way. Still, this is a small price to pay for the faster-paced plot and many imaginative and amusing touches that make this an extremely entertaining fantasy adventure, if not a very scary horror film.” – Steve Biodrowski, Cinefantastique

The Slumber Party Massacre

644. (-35) The Slumber Party Massacre

Amy Holden Jones

1982 / USA / 77m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Michelle Michaels, Robin Stille, Michael Villella, Debra De Liso, Andree Honore, Gina Smika Hunter, Jennifer Meyers, Joseph Alan Johnson, David Millbern, Jim Boyce

“Even if one wanted to ignore the obvious overtones, they’re left with a pretty rad little slasher with impressive gore and ass-kicking girls. I’m not sure why anyone would want to discard the interesting subtext, though—it’s much more fun to read it as a film by two women who were quick to call the slasher genre out on its bullshit. Their initial vision may have been somewhat thwarted, but the hints in the margins here result in a slasher film that’s actually more interesting now than it was when I first watched it as a kid (when I was interested in it for all the things Brown and Jones were trying to highlight, of course).” – Brett Gallman, Oh, The Horror

The Boogey Man

645. (-19) The Boogey Man

Ulli Lommel

1980 / USA / 82m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Suzanna Love, Ron James, John Carradine, Nicholas Love, Raymond Boyden, Felicite Morgan, Bill Rayburn, Llewelyn Thomas, Jay Wright, Natasha Schiano

“The film has an effectively Southern gothic atmosphere to it and even the stiff performances and unnatural dialogue help to give the film a certain dream-like atmosphere. I know quite a few people who argue that Ulli Lommel is the worst director of all time but he actually comes up with some effectively surreal and disturbing images… Whether by intentional design or not, these flashes of genuine fright and oddness are all the more effective because they’re surrounded by such mundane material. The end result is a film that’s either brilliant or terrible depending on which point you actually start watching it.” – Lisa Marie Bowman, Horror Critic

The Wolfman

646. (+37) The Wolfman

Joe Johnston

2010 / USA / 103m / Col / Werewolf | IMDb
Simon Merrells, Gemma Whelan, Emily Blunt, Benicio Del Toro, Mario Marin-Borquez, Asa Butterfield, Cristina Contes, Anthony Hopkins, Art Malik, Malcolm Scates

“Universal’s update of one its iconic monster properties, like most of director Joe Johnston’s work, solidly gets the job done as a brisk, bloody entertainment… if this film perhaps strongly recalls another, it’s Tim Burton’s 1999 take on Sleepy Hollow, what with its touches of macabre humor and giddy torrents of bloodshed… For all the gore, though, this doesn’t quite qualify as horror, for the film is never really scary and maybe fleetingly creepy, but then atmosphere has never really been Johnston’s strong suit; what has always been, however, is staging exciting set pieces, and the action sequences deliver.” – Michael Dequina, TheMovieReport

Saw III

647. (+35) Saw III

Darren Lynn Bousman

2006 / USA / 108m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Tobin Bell, Shawnee Smith, Angus Macfadyen, Bahar Soomekh, Donnie Wahlberg, Dina Meyer, Leigh Whannell, Mpho Koaho, Barry Flatman, Lyriq Bent

“After helming the good, if somewhat generic Saw II, the second time is clearly the charm for [Darren Lynn Bousman]. He gets into the splatter spirit early and often. What’s particularly fulfilling, especially in light of all the wonderfully disgusting Jigsaw puzzle setpieces in the film, is how rounded and deep the narrative is. Almost all the characters, from serial killer in training Amanda (Shawnee Smith bringing it once again) to desperate, disconnected doctor Lynn go through some major mental changes during the course of the story, and Bousman allows the movie to meander to provide such a potent underscoring. Also, unlike other franchise films, Saw III actually makes an effort to incorporate elements we saw in the first two installments to keep the overall concepts linked and truly fascinating.” – Bill Gibron, DVD Verdict

Funny Games

648. (-31) Funny Games

Michael Haneke

2007 / USA / 111m / Col / Home Invasion | IMDb
Naomi Watts, Tim Roth, Michael Pitt, Brady Corbet, Devon Gearhart, Boyd Gaines, Siobhan Fallon, Robert LuPone, Susi Haneke, Linda Moran

“This transposed Funny Games registers more strongly than the original as a film about privileged white people… Next to their Austrian equivalents, Corbet and Pitt seem less outwardly presentable, more outlandish and fey… While both iterations of Funny Games are schematic to a fault, their anti-illusionism opens up a Pandora’s box of unanswered questions. Haneke scolds us for our bloodlust, yet leaves us wondering how the suffering of a fictional character can carry any weight at all. As onscreen narrators employed to articulate these puzzles, Peter and Paul could be cousins to the Joker in The Dark Knight or Javier Bardem’s smiling assassin in No Country For Old Men.” – Jake Wilson, The Age

Strait-Jacket

649. (+2) Strait-Jacket

William Castle

1964 / USA / 93m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Joan Crawford, Diane Baker, Leif Erickson, Howard St. John, John Anthony Hayes, Rochelle Hudson, George Kennedy, Edith Atwater, Mitchell Cox

“It’s tempting to enjoy Straight-Jacket for all the external reasons; there’s a compelling perversity in watching the movie and knowing that Joan Crawford’s real daughter wrote a book accusing her mother of being a monster that tried to ruin her life. It’s also enjoyable to know that William Castle was over the moon working with names like Robert Bloch and Joan Crawford, thinking that he was finally creating that elusive A-picture. But I love Straight-Jacket for just being what it is: a cooky 1960s shocker that makes absolutely no sense and is full of great moments. That alone would guarantee at least a few fingers. But having Joan Crawford, wig askew and gams on full display, in the center of it all easily elevates this one to FIVE FINGER-ed classic status.” – Tower Farm Reviews

Vredens dag

650. (new) Vredens dag

Carl Theodor Dreyer

1943 / Denmark / 97m / BW / Drama | IMDb
Kirsten Andreasen, Sigurd Berg, Harald Holst, Albert Høeberg, Emanuel Jørgensen, Sophie Knudsen, Preben Lerdorff Rye, Lisbeth Movin, Preben Neergaard

“Often seen as an allegory on the Nazi occupation of Denmark, this austere and very sombre account of the persecution of witches in 17th century Denmark is arguably Dreyer’s most pessimistic film. When a pious elderly parson sends an old woman to the stake, she curses him. His young wife (the daughter of a woman suspected of witchcraft) falls in love with her stepson; the affair induces the parson’s death. Is the wife, then, herself a witch? Dreyer remains wisely ambivalent, preferring instead to focus on the powerful, earthly emotions of fear and love: the grim, grey confession chambers – location of perhaps the most discreet yet horrific torture scenes in cinema – embody the former, rippling streams and sun-dappled meadows the latter. Almost paradoxically, Dreyer evokes the soul through the physical world; the result is a masterpiece, its slow, measured pace and stark visuals achieving an almost unbearable emotional intensity.” – Geoff Andrews, Time Out

The Lost World

651. (-37) The Lost World

Harry O. Hoyt

1925 / USA / 106m / BW / Science Fiction | IMDb
Bessie Love, Lewis Stone, Wallace Beery, Lloyd Hughes, Alma Bennett, Arthur Hoyt, Margaret McWade, Bull Montana, Frank Finch Smiles, Jules Cowles

“Great chunks of Doyle’s plot are discarded and replaced with dramatic dinosaur scenes. And this is what makes The Lost World so memorable and important to the development of fantasy on screen. Sure, by modern CGI standards O’Brien’s stop-motion animation is at times jerky and primitive, but these scenes are still impressive. O’Brien and his team employed techniques of animation and monster-creation that he later perfected in King Kong, and even today the dinosaurs of The Lost World are among the best ever put on screen… It built the mold for much of what came afterward, and those of us who enjoy fantastical films have much to thank it and Willis O’Brien for.” – Mark Bourne, The DVD Journal

The Innkeepers

652. (-41) 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

Donnie Darko

653. (0) Donnie Darko

Richard Kelly

2001 / USA / 113m / Col / Mystery | IMDb
Jake Gyllenhaal, Holmes Osborne, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Daveigh Chase, Mary McDonnell, James Duval, Arthur Taxier, Patrick Swayze, Mark Hoffman

“Maybe Richard Kelly’s fate is to be the cult circuit’s Michael Cimino — forever admired for one great film amid subsequent missteps, including a director’s cut of the same movie. Kelly has yet to match the mysterious mood or magnitude of his filmmaking debut, 2001’s “Donnie Darko” — a collision of time-travel sci-fi, commentary on ’80s Reaganomics malaise and teen angst that’s simultaneously witty and poignant… And what works as nervy comedy also foreshadows Donnie’s burden and reinforces Kelly’s thematic idea that teens can be capable of amazing, world-changing things. Concluding with compassionate nobility and an unforgettable epilogue, “Donnie Darko” represented the one moment when Kelly’s eccentricities weren’t extraneous and ambition matched his grasp.” – Nick Rogers, The Film Yap

The House on Sorority Row

654. (-42) The House on Sorority Row

Mark Rosman

1982 / USA / 91m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Kate McNeil, Eileen Davidson, Janis Ward, Robin Meloy, Harley Jane Kozak, Jodi Draigie, Ellen Dorsher, Lois Kelso Hunt, Christopher Lawrence, Michael Kuhn

“The score by Richard Band is victorious in setting the mood, deploying an orchestral warmth that carries the movie to a richly cinematic level, while [the] editing concentrates on smooth transitions and tension, building the picture into a legitimately effective chiller, even with a few pokey spots of exposition. Rosman takes cues from the suspense masters and infuses “The House on Sorority Row” with traditional stalking sequences and mysterious happenings, most tied to court jester imagery. The helmer also makes good use of the location, working through basements and bedrooms, while the pool area plays a critical part in the story. The feature is unexpectedly competent, providing refreshing attention to the stages of fear, while allowing for some college student stupidity to open up the viewing experience, with most of the male characters complete oafs, reinforcing the strong feminine viewpoint of the movie.” – Brian Orndorf, Blu-ray

Alone in the Dark

655. (-12) Alone in the Dark

Jack Sholder

1982 / USA / 92m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Jack Palance, Donald Pleasence, Martin Landau, Dwight Schultz, Erland van Lidth, Deborah Hedwall, Lee Taylor-Allan, Phillip Clark, Elizabeth Ward, Brent Jennings

“Director Sholder borrows from many of Carpenter’s storytelling staples, even including the slaying of a sexy babysitter, but for all intents and purposes, those derivations are forgiven. Because, it all sums up as a harrowing glimpse into madness, that becomes a wonderful variation on “Straw Dogs.” Folks like Jack Palance and Martin Landau give utterly menacing performances, as they dive into the personalities of these pure animals, and we’re aware that like it or not, Dr. Potter will have to fight them off eventually. What begins as a revenge film then transforms into a definite survival horror picture in the vein of “Night of the Living Dead” as Potter and his family must fend off the foursome of murderers and attempt to seek help from local police.” – Felix Vasquez Jr., Cinema Crazed

The Vault of Horror

656. (+62) The Vault of Horror

Roy Ward Baker

1973 / UK / 87m / Col / Anthology | IMDb
Daniel Massey, Anna Massey, Mike Pratt, Erik Chitty, Jerold Wells, Terry-Thomas, Glynis Johns, Marianne Stone, John Forbes-Robertson, Curd Jürgens

“One of the last of Amicus’ portmanteau horror movies, The Vault of Horror was, like Tales from the Crypt before it, based on the popular but at the time controversial comics from William Gaines’ 1950s E.C. line. The originals were marked not simply by their gruesome traits, but by their black sense of humour as well, yet the glee with which they were presented was somewhat lacking when producer and writer Milton Subotsky brought his adaptations to the screen – in fact, they were a little dry. There’s nothing wrong with the stories themselves, as they all have decent set ups and fitting punchlines, it’s just that a more than a modicum of jokiness could have lifted them above the routine. As it is, they are more quietly amusing than all-out thrill rides.” – Graeme Clark, The Spinning Image

La novia ensangrentada

657. (+32) La novia ensangrentada

Vicente Aranda

1972 / Spain / 100m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Simón Andreu, Maribel Martín, Alexandra Bastedo, Dean Selmier, Ángel Lombarte, Montserrat Julió, Maria-Rosa Rodriguez

“Like DAUGHTERS OF DARKNESS and Jean Rollin’s erotic vampire thrillers of the same period, Vincent Aranda’s BLOOD SPATTERED BRIDE contains nudity and gore amidst the usual gothic European surroundings. However, this film does not wallow in endless softcore lesbian lovemaking scenes, but rather exploits the kinship between the two female antagonists with stylized class… Although sluggish in pacing, the film still succeeds and is a favorite amongst Euro horror buffs. Most of the meat is in the third act, but the discovery of the vampire Mircalla – buried in the beach sand, breathing through a snorkel and having her bare breasts dug out – is unforgettable.” – George R. Reis, DVD Drive-In

Severance

658. (+4) Severance

Christopher Smith

2006 / UK / 96m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Toby Stephens, Claudie Blakley, Andy Nyman, Babou Ceesay, Tim McInnerny, Laura Harris, Danny Dyer, David Gilliam, Juli Drajkó, Judit Viktor

“A tidy mixture of old and new horror motifs, the British-German thriller “Severance” is sometimes scary, often silly and occasionally jaw-droppingly daring. While it initially invokes such German silent classics as “Nosferatu” and “The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari,” it quickly introduces a modern bogeyman: war criminals who were unleashed during the Soviet breakup… “Severance” can be taken as a political satire aimed at the military-industrial complex and its promoters, but despite its pretensions, it’s no “Lord of War.” At heart, it’s a sophisticated variation on “Friday the 13th,” a splatter film with a slightly more interesting collection of targets.” – John Hartl, Seattle Times

Prom Night

659. (-25) Prom Night

Paul Lynch

1980 / Italy / 92m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Leslie Nielsen, Jamie Lee Curtis, Casey Stevens, Anne-Marie Martin, Antoinette Bower, Michael Tough, Robert A. Silverman, Pita Oliver, David Mucci, Jeff Wincott

“Lynch’s Prom Night is quite chilling, entertaining, and absolutely not a boring film, which surely will be appreciated by horror film lovers and others as well. This film does aim to terrify the audience and makes them want to stop watching it somewhere in the middle due to way too many blood and violent scenes… But, you will still watch since it is smartly executed, with interesting lines, and solid performances by the entire cast, This refreshes our memory and reminds us, once again, why we love so much the films of the sweet 80s.” – Ulkar Alakbarova, Movie Moves Me

The Deadly Spawn

660. (-31) The Deadly Spawn

Douglas McKeown

1983 / USA / 81m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Charles George Hildebrandt, Tom DeFranco, Richard Lee Porter, Jean Tafler, Karen Tighe, James L. Brewster, Elissa Neil, Ethel Michelson, John Schmerling, Judith Mayes

“The Deadly Spawn is one underrated horror movie that most fans of B-horror films will love. It is like a mixture of a 1960s sci-fi flick and a splatterflick akin to The Evil Dead. The puppets and gore effects are great to behold and there is plenty of blood to spread around. Despite a few hiccups in sound and acting skills the story will hold most viewers until the end. And the movie is worth it alone for the attack of the mini-spawns on the grandma’s luncheon party. If your looking for something fairly mindless and fun then The Deadly Spawn may be just the ticket.” – Noah Patterson, A Slice of Horror

Vamp

661. (-41) Vamp

Richard Wenk

1986 / USA / 93m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Chris Makepeace, Sandy Baron, Robert Rusler, Dedee Pfeiffer, Gedde Watanabe, Grace Jones, Billy Drago, Brad Logan, Lisa Lyon, Jim Boyle

“[T]he make up effects are fantastic with Grace Jones taking on the form of clawed monster with grotesque results, while every vampire has their own distinct personality and form allowing them individual bouts of horror with every lunge at our characters. Sandy Baron is a considerably excellent reluctant hero who becomes a vampire hunter as the film progresses, learning to survive among the rats in the sewers who desperately want to kill him to save their goddess Katrina. “Vamp” is a wonderful trip down memory lane and a horror comedy that still holds up to this day with vampires who were actually horrifying at one point in time.” – Felix Vasquez Jr., Cinema Crazed

Curtains

662. (-38) Curtains

Richard Ciupka

1983 / Canada / 89m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
John Vernon, Samantha Eggar, Linda Thorson, Anne Ditchburn, Lynne Griffin, Sandee Currie, Lesleh Donaldson, Deborah Burgess, Michael Wincott, Maury Chaykin

“In lieu of a straightforward plot pitting dopey teens against a psychopath picking them off one at a time, “Curtains” has an entirely adult cast and a layered narrative that embraces its eccentricities. The central goal is not to merely slice through the ensemble—though this does happen, as well—but to explore the seedier cutthroat politics of moviemaking and the desperation that often comes when reality does not match up to one’s aspirations. Beyond that, the film features a truly disconcerting killer cloaked in an old hag’s mask, and a round-up of outstanding horror setpieces, two in particular saturated with an eerie mood and theatrical ingenuity.” – Dustin Putnam, The Movie Boy

Fiend Without a Face

663. (-21) Fiend Without a Face

Arthur Crabtree

1958 / UK / 75m / BW / Science Fiction | IMDb
Marshall Thompson, Kynaston Reeves, Kim Parker, Stanley Maxted, Terry Kilburn, James Dyrenforth, Robert MacKenzie, Peter Madden, Gil Winfield, Michael Balfour

“Director Arthur Crabtree kept the formulaic story moving forward and the mood grimly earnest. His straight-ahead style serves the material without ruffles or flourishes, although his pacing is too leisurely through the first half. But when the monsters show at the climax, that’s when the oh-boy starts. They’re brought to life via Harryhausen-style stop-motion animation that’s better than you might expect while still maintaining a pleasurable cheese factor. Naturally, expect to whistle past gaps in plot logic (where’s all that light coming from in that sealed windowless crypt? Is dynamiting the control room to a nuclear reactor ever really a good idea?), which should be all part of the fun.” – Mark Bourne, DVD Journal

Identity

664. (-8) Identity

James Mangold

2003 / USA / 90m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
John Cusack, Ray Liotta, Amanda Peet, John Hawkes, Alfred Molina, Clea DuVall, John C. McGinley, William Lee Scott, Jake Busey, Pruitt Taylor Vince

“The great thing about a movie like this is that it only reveals knowledge when it expects its own characters to be on the same page; if they are out of the loop, we are stuck right alongside them. And perhaps that’s what identity itself is all about, too: learn things as they come to you rather than have everything implanted in your head ahead of schedule. Watching the film is one of the most engaging experiences you will have at the movies; it is a taut, intelligent and fresh hybrid of a thriller that has as many effective ideas as a mind has brain cells. It tells a story not unlike the conventional murder mystery on the surface, but one very much stimulating and challenging once its skin has been ripped away.” – Peter Anderson, Nameless Horror

Piranha 3D

665. (+97) Piranha 3D

Alexandre Aja

2010 / USA / 88m / Col / Nature | IMDb
Richard Dreyfuss, Ving Rhames, Elisabeth Shue, Christopher Lloyd, Eli Roth, Jerry O’Connell, Steven R. McQueen, Jessica Szohr, Kelly Brook, Riley Steele

“Sometimes a title can tell you everything you need to know. Such is the case with Piranha 3D, a film in which prehistoric piranhas fly out of the screen at your face. If that sounds like a good time at the movies then run to the cinema immediately. Filled with recognisable faces, packed with excessive blood and gore and jokes as corny as they are hilarious, Piranha 3D is, if nothing else, the most honest and unpretentious piece of filmmaking of 2010… Aja has found a wonderful mix of horror and laughs and even manages some scenes of tension that’ll have you gripping your armrest. Piranha 3D is a pure, unadulterated fun.” – Glenn Dunks, Trespass Magazine

The Return of the Vampire

666. (new) The Return of the Vampire

Lew Landers

1943 / USA / 69m / BW / Vampire | IMDb
Bela Lugosi, Frieda Inescort, Nina Foch, Miles Mander, Roland Varno, Matt Willis

“The Return of the Vampire is an interesting, WWII-set take on the overdone vampire genre that gets point[s] for having a female Van Helsing character… The script, written by Randall Faye, Griffin Jay, and Kurt Neumann, doesn’t just explore the boundaries of the genre through the female protagonist; they introduce and hone a supernatural world living just below the surface of our real one. The war is raging in London, with the dropping of bombs literally unearthing the vampiric plague that could decimate the world; in essence, the war and vampirism are the same. It could be too on-the-nose, but I thought it was intriguing that the script doesn’t lie to the audience.” – Kristen Lopez, Journeys in Classic Film

We Are What We Are

667. (-42) We Are What We Are

Jim Mickle

2013 / USA / 105m / Col / Drama | IMDb
Kassie Wesley DePaiva, Laurent Rejto, Julia Garner, Ambyr Childers, Jack Gore, Bill Sage, Kelly McGillis, Wyatt Russell, Michael Parks, Annemarie Lawless

““We Are What We Are” is mostly not terrifying, offers almost nothing in the way of traditional horror-movie shocks and jolts, and does not get bloody until the last 20 minutes or so. (At which point, whoo-boy.) It’s a sinister, wistful and even sad portrait of one family that has followed the insanity and bloodthirstiness of American history into a dark corridor with no exit. There’s a hint of Terrence Malick (or David Lowery, of “Ain’t Them Bodies Saints”) in the often-gorgeous photography of Ryan Samul, and a hint of Shakespearean grandeur in Sage’s portrayal of a dignified and honorable American father infused with an ideology of madness. I’m pretty sure I’ve never seen an exploitation film played so effectively as human tragedy.” – Andrew O’Hehir, Salon

The Stone Tape

668. (+45) The Stone Tape

Peter Sasdy

1972 / UK / 90m / Col / Haunted House | IMDb
Michael Bryant, Jane Asher, Iain Cuthbertson, Michael Bates, Reginald Marsh, Tom Chadbon, John Forgeham, Philip Trewinnard, James Cosmo, Neil Wilson

“It is a genuinely scary and affecting piece of work, and applying rational thought to the ghost makes it more terrifying, not less. The Stone Tape continues to work because it does such a good job of raising questions to which we still don’t know the answers, even if our recording and computing equipment has changed beyond recognition. The fear of the inexplicable remains, and Jane Asher finds something malevolent recorded in the stone that defies our understanding. The feeling at the end of watching is that the surface of the stone has only just been scratched. Who knows what memories are locked up in the walls that surround us?” – Aliya Whiteley, Den of Geek

The Cars That Ate Paris

669. (+10) The Cars That Ate Paris

Peter Weir

1974 / Australia / 91m / Col / Black Comedy | IMDb
John Meillon, Terry Camilleri, Kevin Miles, Rick Scully, Max Gillies, Danny Adcock, Bruce Spence, Kevin Golsby, Chris Haywood, Peter Armstrong

“With echoes of Nabokov and Ballard, this is the story of an ordinary man drawn into a world where nothing is as it seems, and where the logical rules he has followed all his life can only lead him down the wrong road… Effortlessly employing surrealist and fantasy tropes in a story that is, ultimately, never very far from the possible, Weir steers us on a dizzying journey through autophilia, survivalist politics, and the darker side of human nature. Above all, the town’s very special cars will stick in your memory. Modified into something ferociously unnatural and yet curiously animal, they are at once works of art and deadly killing machines.” – Jennie Kermode, EyeForFilm.co.uk

The Car

670. (-24) The Car

Elliot Silverstein

1977 / USA / 96m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
James Brolin, Kathleen Lloyd, John Marley, R.G. Armstrong, John Rubinstein, Elizabeth Thompson, Roy Jenson, Kim Richards, Kyle Richards, Kate Murtagh

“As you watch The Car, pay attention to how the cinematography and the music propel the film to something far more artistically adept than it has any right to be. The use of sweeping vistas, and the gorgeous framing of specific sequences, make The Car as beautiful as it is entertaining. The music may sound familiar to horrorphiles; harboring tinges of the eerie French horn arrangement from the beginning of The Shining, which would be released three years later. They both seem to be formidable iterations of the Gregorian chant “Dies Irae.” Despite its b-movie trappings, The Car is high-quality horror from start to finish and film deserving of far more attention and accolades than its unfortunate obscurity affords.” – Brian Salisbury, Film School Rejects

Pâfekuto burû

671. (-2) Pâfekuto burû

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

Revenge of the Creature

672. (-44) Revenge of the Creature

Jack Arnold

1955 / USA / 82m / BW / Science Fiction | IMDb
John Agar, Lori Nelson, John Bromfield, Nestor Paiva, Grandon Rhodes, Dave Willock, Robert Williams, Charles Cane

Revenge of the Creature is surpassed by its predecessor in all but one regard: the Gill-man becomes a clear victim of circumstance and will thus evoke compassion from those of a sensitive inclination. Specifically, the creature is abducted from his natural environment and put on display for exploitative purposes; therefore, the Gill-man’s savagery in the final act occurs within a decidedly justifiable context—much in contrast to Creature from the Black Lagoon, wherein the ethics of invading an animal’s territory and suffering the consequences thereof are presented through an ambiguous perspective.” – Jon Davidson, Midnite Reviews

The Witches

673. (+15) The Witches

Nicolas Roeg

1990 / UK / 91m / Col / Fantasy | IMDb
Anjelica Huston, Mai Zetterling, Jasen Fisher, Rowan Atkinson, Bill Paterson, Brenda Blethyn, Charlie Potter, Jane Horrocks, Anne Lambton, Sukie Smith

“Based on Roald Dahl’s 1983 children’s fantasy, executive produced by Henson and directed by Nicolas Roeg, it’s the kind of literate, imaginative children’s fantasy we see too rarely… Forgetting the new, questionably “upbeat” ending, Roeg and Scott have served Dahl well, embellished him intelligently… But what [Roeg has] also done is put disturbing flesh on Dahl’s fancies, visualize the witches with such revolting detail, and the mouse-eye view with such horrific vividness, that the movie takes on an unnerving pulse and threat. The setting becomes overwhelming, the evil palpable; Dahl’s book with its light, ironic tone, candy-coated the fear.” – Michael Wilmington, Los Angeles Times

Urban Legend

674. (-36) Urban Legend

Jamie Blanks

1998 / USA / 99m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Jared Leto, Alicia Witt, Rebecca Gayheart, Michael Rosenbaum, Loretta Devine, Joshua Jackson, Tara Reid, John Neville, Julian Richings, Robert Englund

“The notion of a new horror film devoted to urban legends is somewhat redundant, given that horror films routinely mine urban legends and arguably represent them. Urban Legend, a first feature directed by 26-year-old Australian Jamie Blanks, places the modern-day folktale at the center of what might otherwise be yet another Scream offshoot… As horror movies and first directing efforts go, Urban Legend offers decent suspense and a few genuine jolts; it has a kind of loud, insistent charm, which eventually grinds down. James Chressanthis’ wide-screen cinematography is attractive and assured, but Silvio Horta’s screenplay scarcely breaks new ground, content instead with serving up stock characters in familiar settings.” – Ed Kelleher, Film Journal International

Maniac

675. (-23) Maniac

Franck Khalfoun

2012 / USA / 89m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Nora Arnezeder, Brian Ames, America Olivo, Genevieve Alexandra, Liane Balaban, Jan Broberg, Aaron Colom, Joshua Delagarza, Alex Diaz, Megan Duffy

“With the accomplished Maxime Alexandre serving as cinematographer, and Raphael Hamburger providing a euro-trashy synth score, Maniac proves exploitative horror flicks need not seem hastily slapped together to unsettle and disturb. Maniac is technically impressive, which is more than can be said for most schlock of its ilk. If you’re watching Maniac to admire cinematic handiwork, to ponder our culpability in slasher flicks, or to compare Wood’s performance with the original’s Joe Spinell, I can safely recommend it.” – Simon Miraudo, Quickflix

Twilight Zone: The Movie

676. (-39) Twilight Zone: The Movie

Joe Dante & John Landis & George Miller & Steven Spielberg

1983 / USA / 101m / Col / Anthology | IMDb
Dan Aykroyd, Albert Brooks, Vic Morrow, Doug McGrath, Charles Hallahan, Rainer Peets, Kai Wulff, Sue Dugan, Debby Porter, Steven Williams

“TWILIGHT ZONE THE MOVIE was a slick, randomly creepy and easy watch. When hit the mark, it did it from fair to great. When it missed, it did by a yard. With a stronger wrap around story, more variety to Landis’ tale and Spielberg’s sissy, stops the flick dead in its tracks entry taken out, the movie would’ve been tighter and stronger if you ask me. But when all was stabbed and bled dry, there was enough groovy-groove-groove stuff in here to warrant a sit down.” – Arrow in the Head

A Clockwork Orange

677. (+30) A Clockwork Orange

Stanley Kubrick

1971 / UK / 136m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Malcolm McDowell, Patrick Magee, Michael Bates, Warren Clarke, John Clive, Adrienne Corri, Carl Duering, Paul Farrell, Clive Francis, Michael Gover

““A Clockwork Orange” is about the rise and fall and rise of Alex in a world that is only slightly less dreadful than he is… Yet Kubrick has chosen to fashion this as the most elegantly stylized, most classically balanced movie he has ever made–and not, I think, by accident… It seems to me that by describing horror with such elegance and beauty, Kubrick has created a very disorienting but human comedy, not warm and lovable, but a terrible sum-up of where the world is at. With all of man’s potential for divinity through love, through his art and his music, this is what it has somehow boiled down to: a civil population terrorized by hoodlums, disconnected porno art, quick solutions to social problems, with the only “hope” for the future in the vicious Alex.” – Vincent Canby, New York Times

A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master

678. (-42) A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master

Renny Harlin

1988 / USA / 93m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Lisa Wilcox, Andras Jones, Danny Hassel, Rodney Eastman, Tuesday Knight, Ken Sagoes, Brooke Bundy, Nicholas Mele, Toy Newkirk, Brooke Theiss

“Though patently silly, the film is certainly gory enough to offer some halfway decent chills, even if the deaths themselves seem relatively un-scary and low-risk. (Besides, how many surviving characters are likely to make it through the next movie?) But with an overstuffed frame and a relentless soundtrack featuring The Fat Boys, Billy Idol, and — you guessed it — Tuesday Knight herself, does the film really need to add genuine fear to the sensory overload?” – Leo Goldsmith, Not Coming to a Theater Near You

Don't Go in the House

679. (-49) Don’t Go in the House

Joseph Ellison

1979 / USA / 82m / Col / Exploitation | IMDb
Dan Grimaldi, Charles Bonet, Bill Ricci, Robert Osth, Dennis M. Hunter, John Hedberg, Ruth Dardick, Johanna Brushay, Darcy Shean, Mary Ann Chinn

“Think of Don’t Go In The House as a modern-day take on Psycho, and replace knives with flamethrowers and you’ve got the idea. In fact, it shares more with Psycho than a lot of the gorier slasher films from the era like The Prowler and My Bloody Valentine in that much of the film is more a psychological study of a severely disturbed individual irredeemably harmed by his mother, and that the film doesn’t really wallow in the explicit gore that other slasher films like Maniac did at the time. That’s not to say Don’t Go In The House isn’t unsettling or disturbing – it most certainly is, most notably in the film’s most infamous scene where Donny roasts his first victim in his self-made crematorium. The scene is chillingly clinical in its coldness, and the effects are surprisingly – and nauseously – well executed.” – Stuart Giesel, Digital Retribution

Mais ne nous délivrez pas du mal

680. (-49) Mais ne nous délivrez pas du mal

Joël Séria

1971 / France / 102m / Col / Drama | IMDb
Jeanne Goupil, Catherine Wagener, Bernard Dhéran, Gérard Darrieu, Marc Dudicourt, Michel Robin, Véronique Silver, Jean-Pierre Helbert, Nicole Mérouze

“Never released in the United States and “banned” for blasphemy, this potent dose of pretty poison presents a wonderfully deceiving package. The story of two teenage convent girls who “dedicate ourselves to Satan” could have been some dippy horror movie — a T&A fest with demons and multiple slayings and loads of sex. It could have been one of those ’70s horror films that make you run for the shower directly upon watching because even your soul feels soiled. But that’s not what Don’t Deliver Us From Evil is attempting. Really about the obsessive nature of female friendship, of girls suffering a tedious, square world filled with hypocrisy and becoming hopped up by literature and the forbidden and hellfire and all the stuff that’s so intense when you’re 15, the movie is a fiendish paean to the freaky bad girl — girls who, when staring into that bland void would rather, quite literally, burn out than fade away.” – Kim Morgan, Sunset Gun

Lady in White

681. (-20) Lady in White

Frank LaLoggia

1988 / USA / 113m / Col / Mystery | IMDb
Lukas Haas, Len Cariou, Alex Rocco, Katherine Helmond, Jason Presson, Renata Vanni, Angelo Bertolini, Joelle Jacobi, Jared Rushton, Gregory Levinson

“The overall mood of the movie changes from charming to alarming and back to charming as the story unfolds to its incendiary ending atop the cliffs by the white cottage. LaLoggia’s simple, old-time, approach using in-camera effects combined with basic process shots build his story in an economical but creative way. Like a good ghost story, simple elements combine to create an ethereal dread, making Lady in White a memorable movie.” – JM Cozzoli, Zombos’ Closet

Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things

682. (-42) Children Shouldn’t Play with Dead Things

Bob Clark

1972 / USA / 87m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Alan Ormsby, Valerie Mamches, Jeff Gillen, Anya Ormsby, Paul Cronin, Jane Daly, Roy Engleman, Robert Philip, Bruce Solomon, Alecs Baird

“Many people have written this film off as, like I mentioned above, campy, but there’s something deliberate in the tone that the director crafted for this film. He loaded the script with silly lines and inside jokes that you would traditionally hear when in close quarters with a theatrical group such as this one, yet offsets that harmless scenario with the hauntingly macabre idea of a group of kids desecrating a cemetery and then walking off with one of it’s inhabitants to just goof off with it. I think the combination is both fun and demented and I enjoy those ingredients each and every time I view this film. The characters are so off the wall and have such different personalities that you just enjoy listening to the ridiculous things that come out of their mouths. There’s enough one liners and quotable lines in this one that it’s hard to get bored and that’s not including the hauntingly vibrant soundtrack.” – Jay Shatzer, The Lucid Nightmare

The Flesh and the Fiends

683. (+23) The Flesh and the Fiends

John Gilling

1960 / UK / 97m / BW / Gothic | IMDb
Peter Cushing, June Laverick, Donald Pleasence, George Rose, Renee Houston, Dermot Walsh, Billie Whitelaw, John Cairney, Melvyn Hayes, June Powell

“While many films from the sixties have quickly become dated thanks to modern filmmaking, this film actually seems to be just as fresh as if it were written only last year. Sure, there are some lengthy dialogue passages indicative of the era and a few of the performances have that acting feel common to most films prior to the seventies, but I can think of very few films from that period of time whose script could easily be re-submitted today to a major Hollywood studio and filmed for contemporary audiences just as it appeared on the page. Iím not sure if that has a little something to do with the fact that the film is filled with uncharacteristically large amounts of nudity and violence that were common only to grindhouse films of the time, but it is absolutely amazing how well this film still stands up over forty years later.” – The Deuce Grindhouse Cinema Database

Halloween H20: 20 Years Later

684. (+32) Halloween H20: 20 Years Later

Steve Miner

1998 / USA / 86m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Jamie Lee Curtis, Adam Arkin, Michelle Williams, Adam Hann-Byrd, Jodi Lyn O’Keefe, Janet Leigh, Josh Hartnett, LL Cool J, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Branden Williams

“Scream scripter Kevin Williamson, a true-blue Halloween fan, revitalized the moribund stalk-and-slash genre with clever dialogue, self-referential irony and a healthy respect for horror traditions. Although he’s not credited as a screenwriter on H20 (he’s listed up with the co-executive producers), Williamson’s hand is all over it, from the sharp in-jokes to the fact that the about-to-be-terrorized teens are watching Scream 2 on TV before the real screaming starts. And it’s a blast… Director Steve Miner, who cut his teeth on Friday the 13th sequels, does a more than respectable job, supplying the requisite false scares (including a very effective sequence involving a mother, her little girl, and a highway rest-stop bathroom) and keeping the whole business moving at a brisk clip.” – Marc Savlov, Austin Chronicle

American Mary

685. (-19) 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

Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood

686. (-31) Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood

John Carl Buechler

1988 / USA / 88m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Jennifer Banko, John Otrin, Susan Blu, Lar Park-Lincoln, Terry Kiser, Kevin Spirtas, Susan Jennifer Sullivan, Heidi Kozak, Kane Hodder, William Butler

“[It] really wants to do something different. “Different,” in this case, means gene-splicing elements from another film into the familiar formula, and the result – about a face-off between the hulking masked maniac and a troubled teen with telekinesis – is fondly if not quite respectfully called “Carrie Meets Jason.” You cannot really take the results seriously, but they are fun, offering both an interesting subplot and a chance to see something never really shown in a Friday film before: Jason getting his ass handed to him on a platter. “Purists” might object to seeing their favorite anti-hero dissed so badly, but anyone looking for a good time should be able to get at least a few chuckles out of seeing Jason meet his match.” – Steve Biodrowski, Cinefantastique

Gokseong

687. (-16) Gokseong

Hong-jin Na

2016 / South Korea / 156m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Do-won Kwak, Jung-min Hwang, Jun Kunimura, Woo-hee Chun, Hwan-hee Kim, Jin Heo, So-yeon Jang, Han-Cheol Jo, Chang-gyu Kil, Do-Yoon Kim

“A tense blend of genres, The Wailing succeeds at combining a mood of deep unease with visceral gore, buddy cop comedy, and a hallucinogenic mix of horror tropes, and in this sense the film becomes a unique creation of its own, setting its terrible events against the gorgeous landscapes and mountains of South Korea. And although overlong and not without flaws, there is enough in The Wailing to warrant a viewing, and the subtle force of the film confirms Na Hong-jin’s reputation as a director to be reckoned with.” – Pamela Jahn, Electric Sheep

The Penalty

688. (+38) The Penalty

Wallace Worsley

1920 / USA / 90m / BW / Crime | IMDb
Charles Clary, Doris Pawn, Jim Mason, Lon Chaney, Milton Ross, Ethel Grey Terry, Kenneth Harlan, Claire Adams

“As far as film villains go, you’d be hard pressed to find one more unique than Chaney’s Blizzard. Bitter, hate-filled and with machinations that take a simple crime thriller and turn it into a potentially gruesome tale about a man virtually consumed with thoughts of revenge and a lust for power. To that end, ‘The Penalty’ is surprisingly captivating – being that you’re never quite sure just how far the film will take things once Blizzard gains the upper hand. Addiitonally, Worsely’s clever, sometimes suggestive direction and the emotive cinematography by Dan Short combine to create a rather compelling, if somewhat overly symbolic feature that still manages to be an entertaining film by today’s standards. For those familiar with his later work that would make him a legend, ‘The Penalty’ stands as a remarkable accomplishment for Chaney’s imagination and skill as both an actor and special effects guru.” – Kevin Yeoman, High-Def Digest

Deadgirl

689. (-25) Deadgirl

Marcel Sarmiento & Gadi Harel

2008 / USA / 101m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Shiloh Fernandez, Noah Segan, Candice Accola, Eric Podnar, Jenny Spain, Andrew DiPalma, Nolan Gerard Funk, Michael Bowen, David Alan Graf, Susan Marie Keller

“A good deal of the effect of “Deadgirl” rests on the atmospheric widescreen cinematography by Harris Charalambouse, which belies what must have been an extremely low budget (the long tracking shots in which the camera prowls the underground tunnels beneath the asylum are honestly gripping), and Phillip Blackford’s editing, which isn’t afraid to take things slowly, though in the action moments it’s appropriately swift and abrupt. Effects-wise, the picture is hardly state-of-the-art, and in fact the level of gore is pretty modest compared to the avalanche of blood and innards that fans of torture-porn are accustomed to. The fact that it’s relatively subdued by modern standards may, in fact, limit the movie’s popularity among the gross-out crowd, at the same time that its storyline turns off more mainstream viewers. That would be too bad, because “Deadgirl” is, despite some weaknesses, a surprisingly effective character study dressed up as a grisly horror movie.” – Frank Swietek, One Guy’s Opinion

The Town That Dreaded Sundown

690. (-49) The Town That Dreaded Sundown

Charles B. Pierce

1976 / USA / 90m / Col / Crime | IMDb
Ben Johnson, Andrew Prine, Dawn Wells, Jimmy Clem, Jim Citty, Charles B. Pierce, Robert Aquino, Cindy Butler, Christine Ellsworth, Earl E. Smith

“By the conclusion of “The Town That Dreaded Sundown”, a brief confrontation between the authorities and the killer occurs, but nothing comes of it, the “Phantom” mysteriously vanishing afterwards as if into thin air. In the closing moments, the viewer is left to ponder not only the whereabouts of the culprit, but the effect that such inconceivable crimes can have on a community. “The Town That Dreaded Sundown” leaves one with such striking moments of stark, raw terror that it puts many less serious horror films to shame. After all, these crimes actually happened, and just the thought of that is petrifying.” – Dustin Putnam, The Movie Boy

Lo strano vizio della signora Wardh

691. (-19) Lo strano vizio della signora Wardh

Sergio Martino

1971 / Italy / 98m / Col / Giallo | IMDb
George Hilton, Edwige Fenech, Conchita Airoldi, Manuel Gil, Carlo Alighiero, Ivan Rassimov, Alberto de Mendoza, Bruno Corazzari, Marella Corbi, Miguel del Castillo

“‘The Strange Vice of Mrs Wardh’ is not a beautiful film in the usual sense. There are no lavish shots of the breathtaking cities of Europe nor does one see any overt attempt to dazzle the viewer with aesthetic style. Instead, we are presented with a sleazy, bleak and repellent film brimming with atmosphere and brutality and from which one can take a vulgar sense of enjoyment. This is an example of repugnant beauty, the way in which a dark subject can be treated in such a manner that it becomes strangely absorbing. A few pacing problems aside, ‘The Strange Vice of Mrs Wardh’ is a strong all-around offering for those interested in a slow-burn, mature mystery-horror movie.” – Chris Austin, Cult Reviews

Rituals

692. (-45) Rituals

Peter Carter

1977 / USA / 100m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Hal Holbrook, Lawrence Dane, Robin Gammell, Ken James, Gary Reineke, Murray Westgate, Jack Creley, Michael Zenon

“Rituals is truly a defining slasher film. Although much less known than its brothers, cousins and further mutations as a result of inbreeding, it certainly isn’t due to lack of quality. Slasher enthusiasts celebrate celluloid masochism; they thrive on cinematic pain for pleasure. Without a doubt the subgenre is full of fun and there are all kinds of treasures to find, but it is an area of horror where stereotypes aren’t merely accepted, but are encouraged. It’s for this reason that films like Humongous or The Forest are incredibly well known for such obscurities. The amazing cover/poster art and quirky taglines didn’t hurt, either. Unlike the typical slasher film, Rituals doesn’t go out of its way to thrill the audience with a cheap kill or tit flash; it will have you writhing on the edge of your seat with suspense.” – Brett H., Oh, The Horror

Coraline

693. (+97) Coraline

Henry Selick

2009 / USA / 100m / Col / Fantasy | IMDb
Dakota Fanning, Teri Hatcher, Jennifer Saunders, Dawn French, Keith David, John Hodgman, Robert Bailey Jr., Ian McShane, Aankha Neal, George Selick

“You know from the very first sequence that Coraline is an extraordinary movie that is going to rattle the bejeezus out of young audience members and – the truth be told – their fathers as well… the most imaginative film in memory, a carnival of wonders – magical gardens, a charmingly choreographed circus of mice, a couple of old actresses who get together to put on a fairly lewd but very funny variety show – that at the same time seems to come directly from your nightmares. Seeing Other Mother change from button-eyed ideal to long-necked witch with steel-needle fingers and a hunger to keep you prisoner, is a deeply shaking transformation that isn’t easy to throw off once the show is over. Coraline will haunt you.” – Jay Stone, Canada.com

Fritt vilt

694. (+3) Fritt vilt

Roar Uthaug

2006 / Norway / 97m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Ingrid Bolsø Berdal, Rolf Kristian Larsen, Tomas Alf Larsen, Endre Martin Midtstigen, Viktoria Winge, Rune Melby, Erik Skjeggedal, Tonie Lunde, Hallvard Holmen

“Roar Uthaug’s debut feature is a conventional but nicely handled slasher pic that makes good use of spectacular mountain range locations. Widescreen lensing format and above-average perfs add a touch of class to the tale of five snowboarders who take shelter in the wrong mysteriously abandoned (or is it?) ski lodge… Likeable characters are given more personality than the usual genre cannon fodder, and, while the basic premise is routine, pic orchestrates its scares with brute effectiveness. The only letdown is the killer himself, a generic “Halloween”-y faceless ghoul in goggles and heavy winter wear.” – Dennis Harvey, Variety

La setta

695. (-47) La setta

Michele Soavi

1991 / Italy / 112m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Kelly Curtis, Herbert Lom, Mariangela Giordano, Michel Adatte, Carla Cassola, Angelika Maria Boeck, Giovanni Lombardo Radice, Niels Gullov, Tomas Arana

“As much as I usually champion self-indulgence, I have to say that The Sect’s high standing in Argento and Soavi’s oeuvre seems to have more to do with the restraint they show in all respects. As I mentioned, the oil painting-like visuals never take over and the cinematographic techniques aren’t just techniques; they’re storytelling aids. In the same vein, the Goblin-like score doesn’t sound like you accidentally left an early-70s Pink Floyd disc blasting on the stereo while you try to watch a movie-instead it’s understated and always perfect. The gore doesn’t seem intended only to earn a prominent placement in Fangoria-it always serves some other purpose. The surrealness isn’t an excuse for the lack of a coherent script. Etc. Best of all, perhaps, The Sect has the properties that many horror fans think define the genre-it’s creepy and scary.” – Brandt Sponseller, Classic-Horror

The Raven

696. (-46) The Raven

Roger Corman

1963 / USA / 86m / Col / Comedy | IMDb
Vincent Price, Peter Lorre, Boris Karloff, Hazel Court, Olive Sturgess, Jack Nicholson, Connie Wallace, William Baskin, Aaron Saxon

“It’s a breezy lark, funny without being brazenly hilarious, and feeling not at all like a Poe movie, though the contrast between Daniel Haller’s ubiquitous sets (and, once more that House of Usher fire footage) and the matinee silliness of the story is pretty damned appealing all on its own. The film manages to poke fun at the Poe movie formula without ever actually mocking it, a fine needle to thread; but Corman’s filmography is pockmarked by examples of self-lacerating light humor, though he is not customarily thought of in those terms. Anyway, it’s a charmingly off-kilter hybrid, not a comic masterpiece and not a Gothic classic, but hugely entertaining on its own very low-key terms.” – Tim Brayton, Antagony & Ecstasy

The Gorgon

697. (-38) The Gorgon

Terence Fisher

1964 / USA / 83m / Col / Gothic | IMDb
Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, Richard Pasco, Barbara Shelley, Michael Goodliffe, Patrick Troughton, Joseph O’Conor, Prudence Hyman, Jack Watson, Redmond Phillips

“Of all the Hammer Horror films, The Gorgon features some of the most straightforward debate between science and faith, with the analytical minds challenged by the appearance of the Greek mythological creature appearing in a village and turning citizens into solid stone… Finding this type of conflict in one of the minor Hammer Horror films certainly is a surprise that elevates the material, but it’s not the only reason to see it. The gothic mood that made Hammer a household name is present, along with the excitable Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee, who both provide a good mix of dread and discovery in their performances… While it’s not one of the tent poles of Hammer Horror, The Gorgon still has enough engaging elements to make it a memorable and unique member of the Hammer canon.” – Jae K. Renfrow, Sound on Sight

The Dunwich Horror

698. (-17) The Dunwich Horror

Daniel Haller

1970 / UK / 90m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Sandra Dee, Dean Stockwell, Ed Begley, Lloyd Bochner, Sam Jaffe, Joanne Moore Jordan, Donna Baccala, Talia Shire, Michael Fox, Jason Wingreen

“One of the first appearances of the Necronomicon on the big screen was director Daniel Haller’s 1970 creep-fest The Dunwich Horror… even though the script takes a few liberties with Lovecraft’s original story, it is a surreal mix of a supernatural occult thriller and an alien monster movie. Because it was adapted from a short story and expanded into a feature length movie (by L.A. Confidential screenwriter Curtis Hanson and Lock Up scribe Henry Rosenbaum), the story does drag a bit in places, but the plot moves in a way that makes sense towards a classic B-movie climax, and the characters, although stereotypical, are well written enough to carry the scenes in which action is light.” – James Jay Edwards, FilmFracture

The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence)

699. (+121) The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence)

Tom Six

2011 / USA / 91m / BW / Body Horror | IMDb
Laurence R. Harvey, Ashlynn Yennie, Maddi Black, Kandace Caine, Dominic Borrelli, Lucas Hansen, Lee Nicholas Harris, Dan Burman, Daniel Jude Gennis

“If you are a true fan of horror then you will appreciate what Six is doing. If you are not you may ask why put yourself through the grinder and watch something as uncomfortable and disturbing as this? Well the answer for a horror fan is that there’s something deeply satisfying about going to the dark side, to looking as what can lurk inside a person and discover that the most terrifying thing is the darkness that can lie within the human soul. It’s also a carefully constructed work of art that makes us think about how we view violence, about how we have been lulled into numbness by horror films that sanitize violence and make it palatable so that you can walk out of a Hollywood horror film and only talk about where to go to dinner. Six wants to jolt you in order to remind you that violence in films should offend you, should upset you.” – Beth Accomando, KPBS

The Addiction

700. (-37) The Addiction

Abel Ferrara

1995 / USA / 82m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Lili Taylor, Christopher Walken, Annabella Sciorra, Edie Falco, Paul Calderon, Fredro Starr, Kathryn Erbe, Michael Imperioli, Jamal Simmons, Robert W. Castle

“Shot in b/w, with an effectively murky jungle/funk/rap score, this is the vampire movie we’ve been waiting for: a reactionary urban-horror flick that truly has the ailing pulse of the time. AIDS and drug addiction are points of reference, but they’re symptoms, not the cause. Ferrara’s chiaroscuro imagery is as striking as anything in Coppola’s Dracula, while the voice-over narration often recalls Apocalypse Now. Scary, funny, magnificently risible, this could be the most pretentious B-movie ever – and I mean that as a compliment.” – Time Out