They Shoot Zombies, Don't They?

#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

Critters

601. (+317) 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

I Drink Your Blood

602. (+248) 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

Vampire Circus

603. (-60) 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

Friday the 13th Part III

604. (-23) Friday the 13th Part III

Steve Miner

1982 / USA / 95m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Dana Kimmell, Paul Kratka, Tracie Savage, Jeffrey Rogers, Catherine Parks, Larry Zerner, David Katims, Rachel Howard, Richard Brooker, Nick Savage


“This is the movie where the series first fully realized its true DNA as a slasher with atmosphere fantastical enough that siding with the masked maniac was okay. More importantly, it was wiling to add fun to its frights. If at all possible, see the film in 3-D at a revival screening with a live audience and what the film accomplishes will be thoroughly evident. With Jason’s character and behavior relatively settled at this point, and with the familiar mask finally adorning his face, “Friday the 13th” was free to be more comfortable in its identity and surer of its stride as the saga continued to develop. There is definitely a sense of déjà vu with the third chapter, in both the kills and in several mundane moments. But entrenched in its own formula, there is enough blood, enough brutality, enough comedy, and enough “Friday the 13th” to make “Part III” one of the most memorable installments, and the first real benchmark for everything that fans would come to expect from the series.” – Ian Sedensky, Culture Crypt

Saw II

605. (+98) Saw II

Darren Lynn Bousman

2005 / USA / 93m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Tobin Bell, Shawnee Smith, Donnie Wahlberg, Erik Knudsen, Franky G, Glenn Plummer, Emmanuelle Vaugier, Beverley Mitchell, Tim Burd, Dina Meyer


“”Saw II” is pitch-black, ugly, and stomach-churning in spots, but those are precisely the characteristics director Darren Lynn Bousman was shooting for. And the ending, building one twist and revelation upon another, craftily comes full-circle with the original “Saw,” making a fresh viewing of that one worthwhile before seeing the sequel. Rough around the edges, but knowing how to ratchet up distinct feelings of tense giddiness and extreme apprehension, “Saw II” is an exploitation flick with style and skill to go along with its stream of red stuff.” – Dustin Putnam, The Movie Boy

Tales from the Crypt: Demon Knight

606. (+51) Tales from the Crypt: Demon Knight

Ernest R. Dickerson

1995 / USA / 92m / Col / Black Comedy | IMDb
John Kassir, Billy Zane, William Sadler, Jada Pinkett Smith, Brenda Bakke, CCH Pounder, Dick Miller, Thomas Haden Church, John Schuck, Gary Farmer


“Take equal parts Night of the Living Dead and Aliens. Mix thoroughly with generous doses of sick humour and state-of-the-art gore. Toss in one shot of kinky sex and a few dozen naked breasts. Flavour with a thrashy metal soundtrack. Colour with a garish, comic book–style palette. Cook it all up and you’ll get something resembling Demon Knight, the first of three feature-length horror flicks to be presented under the Tales from the Crypt banner. You’ll also have 90 minutes’ worth of twisted, haywire, mind-warping fun, with action and visual shocks aplenty.” – Steve Newton, Ear of Newt

It! The Terror from Beyond Space

607. (+10) 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

Roadgames

608. (+230) 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 Slumber Party Massacre

609. (+124) 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

Fire in the Sky

610. (+143) Fire in the Sky

Robert Lieberman

1993 / USA / 109m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
D.B. Sweeney, Robert Patrick, Craig Sheffer, Peter Berg, Henry Thomas, Bradley Gregg, Noble Willingham, Kathleen Wilhoite, James Garner, Georgia Emelin


“What’s strange about Fire in the Sky is that it’s based on a true story. That’s what the makers of this movie want us to believe, anyway. On Nov. 5, 1975, in northeastern Arizona, Travis Walton was abducted by aliens. In the small fragment that he remembers of the five days and six hours that he was missing, he saw humanoids perform experiments on him… The movie is intentionally like a dramatized documentary. The producers want us to share their belief in Walton’s story. To make the story appear more believable, they use the real names of the loggers, shy away from fancy special effects that would distract the audience from the plot (the UFO looks like two pie-pans taped together, like Walton said it did), and, besides James Garner, don’t use any celebrity actors.” – John Jacobs, The Tech (MIT)

The Innkeepers

611. (+78) The Innkeepers

Ti West

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


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

The House on Sorority Row

612. (+120) The House on Sorority Row

Mark Rosman

1983 / 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

Et mourir de plaisir

613. (-65) Et mourir de plaisir

Roger Vadim

1960 / France / 87m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Mel Ferrer, Elsa Martinelli, Annette Stroyberg, Alberto Bonucci, René-Jean Chauffard, Gabriella Farinon, Serge Marquand, Edith Peters, Nathalie Lafaurie


“In some ways, Blood and Roses strikes me as a much-belated European response to Val Lewton’s horror movies for RKO. Like the majority of those films, Blood and Roses cloaks what is fundamentally a psychological thriller in a skin of supernatural horror, and circumvents the target audience’s natural antipathy for “rational” explanations by making the validity of the supernatural manifestations the story’s central mystery. Obviously, that demands from Vadim and his collaborators a much more acute understanding of people’s mental and emotional processes than was typically displayed by horror filmmakers in this era, together with a far greater investment in character development. At a time when most fright films were simplistic stories of good vs. evil, Blood and Roses presents a startlingly mature examination of sexual neurosis and the dark side of exactly the sort of romanticism in which escapist cinema normally trades.” – Scott Ashlin, 1000 Misspent Hours

The Lost World

614. (+142) 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

La frusta e il corpo

615. (-12) 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

Thir13en Ghosts

616. (+202) Thir13en Ghosts

Steve Beck

2001 / USA / 91m / Col / Haunted House | IMDb
Tony Shalhoub, Embeth Davidtz, Matthew Lillard, Shannon Elizabeth, Alec Roberts, JR Bourne, Rah Digga, F. Murray Abraham, Matthew Harrison, Jacob Rupp


“What we’re here for are the ghosts, the gore, and the cheesy thrills. Whatever else may be said about 13 Ghosts, it does deliver those. It also boasts gorgeous production design in the form of the centerpiece haunted house — a bizarre glass-walled structure that proves the old adage, “A house is not a home.” In this case, it isn’t even really a house, but a fantasticated machine “designed by the devil and powered by the dead.” The idea is more interesting than the execution, but at least it’s interesting… Subtle the film may not be, but it does know how to make the audience jump. It isn’t a good movie. It doesn’t pretend to be. It’s just a straightforward thrill ride for the Halloween season. Take it for that and you might have some fun with it.” – Ken Hanke, Mountain Xpress

Funny Games U.S.

617. (+135) Funny Games U.S.

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

The Cat and the Canary

618. (+24) 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

House of Dark Shadows

619. (-72) 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

Vamp

620. (+28) 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

Ta paidia tou Diavolou

621. (+121) Ta paidia tou Diavolou

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

The Human Centipede (First Sequence)

622. (+71) 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

Jiao zi

623. (+233) Jiao zi

Fruit Chan

2004 / Hong Kong / 91m / Col / Black Comedy | IMDb
Pauline Lau, Tony Leung Ka Fai, Bai Ling, Meme Tian, So-Fun Wong, Miriam Yeung Chin Wah, Miki Yeung


“A refreshing change from the usual lank-haired ghost stories of extreme Asian cinema, this Hong Kong horror trades on nausea rather than nerve-jangling. Cooked up by mysterious medicine woman Bai Ling, the titular delicacy takes years off desperate housewife Miriam Yeung thanks to a sinister special ingredient. It’s a blackly comic comment on society’s obsession with appearance… Fruit Chan’s movie is an expansion of his 37-minute contribution to 2002 omnibus Three Extremes. At times there’s a sense that it should’ve stayed in its shorter form; the plot treads water in places, especially in the lead-up to the final sick-trigger surprise. On the other hand, you can never have too much of ace cinematographer Chris Doyle’s (Hero, In The Mood For Love) lip-smacking work.” – Matthew Leyland, BBCi – Films

Curtains

624. (+235) 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

We Are What We Are

625. (+308) 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 Boogey Man

626. (+141) 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

Feast

627. (+160) Feast

John Gulager

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


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

Revenge of the Creature

628. (-9) 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 Deadly Spawn

629. (new) 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

Don't Go in the House

630. (+230) 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

631. (+256) 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

I corpi presentano tracce di violenza carnale

632. (+359) 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

Magic

633. (-97) 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

Prom Night

634. (-41) 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

Mimic

635. (+29) Mimic

Guillermo del Toro

1997 / USA / 105m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Mira Sorvino, Jeremy Northam, Alexander Goodwin, Giancarlo Giannini, Charles S. Dutton, Josh Brolin, Alix Koromzay, F. Murray Abraham, James Costa, Javon Barnwell


“Told in the darkly dreamy style of a particularly grim fairy tale, the creepy, beautifully designed Mimic embraces the clichs of the big-bug story-scientific hubris and the inevitable revenge of nature-and makes them seem, if not fresh, then certainly as robustly vital as the oversized vermin that stalk its pervasive shadows. Mimic also has an unusually high yuck factor, involving all manner of sticky, slippery, squishy things, but to call it a gross-out movie would be, well, grossly inaccurate. Making his U.S. debut, Mexican director Guillermo Del Toro (Cronos) rejects the adrenaline-charged, roller-coaster ride approach that drives so many recent thrillers in favor of constructing a densely imagined nightmare of damp streets and nightmare alleys.” – Maitland McDonagh, Film Journal

A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master

636. (+140) 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

Twilight Zone: The Movie

637. (+133) 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

Urban Legend

638. (+161) 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

Nattevagten

639. (+60) 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

Children Shouldn't Play with Dead Things

640. (+109) Children Shouldn’t Play with Dead Things

Bob Clark

1973 / 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 Town That Dreaded Sundown

641. (+8) 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

Fiend Without a Face

642. (+211) 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

Alone in the Dark

643. (+221) 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 Night Flier

644. (-98) 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

La chiesa

645. (+143) 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

The Car

646. (new) 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

Rituals

647. (+145) 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

La setta

648. (+14) 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

Dracula Has Risen from the Grave

649. (-193) Dracula Has Risen from the Grave

Freddie Francis

1968 / UK / 92m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Christopher Lee, Rupert Davies, Veronica Carlson, Barbara Ewing, Barry Andrews, Ewan Hooper, Marion Mathie, Michael Ripper, John D. Collins, George A. Cooper


“Fortunately, the production values and Gothic atmosphere remain as lush as ever, and former cinematographer Freddie Francis does a spectacular job in the director’s chair, milking every scene for maximum visual impact, emphasizing not only the Gothic horror but also the romance. He puts the camera in close during Dracula ravishment of Maria, creating a seductive intimacy that goes even a little bit beyond what director Terence Fisher had focused on in HORROR OF DRACULA and DRACULA, PRINCE OF DARKNESS.” – Steve Biodrowski, Cinefantastique Online

The Raven

650. (-197) 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

Strait-Jacket

651. (-71) 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

Maniac

652. (+34) 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

Donnie Darko

653. (+260) 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 Gate

654. (+56) 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

Friday the 13th Part VII: The New Blood

655. (+172) 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

Identity

656. (+157) 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

Hannibal

657. (-119) 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

Versus

658. (+127) 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

The Gorgon

659. (-64) 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

Dèmoni 2

660. (new) Dèmoni 2

Lamberto Bava

1986 / Italy / 88m / Col / Possession | IMDb
David Edwin Knight, Nancy Brilli, Coralina Cataldi-Tassoni, Bobby Rhodes, Asia Argento, Virginia Bryant, Anita Bartolucci, Antonio Cantafora, Luisa Passega, Davide Marotta


“Lamberto Bava returns to gore territory in this bloody, but dimwitted sequel to his surprise 1986 video hit… Putting aside the simplistic plot, lousy dialogue, and atrocious acting, Demons 2 is watchable for one reason: the bloody mechanical and makeup effects by Sergio Stivaletti. Most of his dripping, drooling transformation sequences are first-rate with highlights including a nasty little boy who actually “births” a monster that resembles one of the title creatures from Gremlins. This Gremlin-demon is a lousy effect, but makes for a few intended laughs. This film marked the acting debut of the young Asia Argento” – Patrick Legare, AllMovie

Lady in White

661. (+84) 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

Severance

662. (+276) 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

The Addiction

663. (-134) 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

Deadgirl

664. (+291) 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

Teeth

665. (+86) Teeth

Mitchell Lichtenstein

2007 / USA / 94m / Col / Comedy | IMDb
Jess Weixler, John Hensley, Josh Pais, Hale Appleman, Lenny von Dohlen, Vivienne Benesch, Ashley Springer, Laila Liliana Garro, Nicole Swahn, Adam Wagner


“While “Carrie” is the obvious influence (with genital transmogrification instead of telekinesis, and the other sex doing the bulk of the bleeding), “Teeth” could be seen as a “Reefer Madness” for the New Chastity Generation. The camp sensibility, however, is fully self-aware, not unlike certain Todd Haynes’ movies: the Barbie-doll biopic “Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story,” or the black-and-white venereal horror/sci-fi segment of “Poison.” Writer-director Lichtenstein, best known for his central part in Robert Altman’s 1983 film of David Rabe’s “Streamers,” straddles one line between earnestness and facetiousness and another between horror and satire, shifting and pivoting from one to the other. Most of the time his balance is just right.” – Jim Emerson, Chicago Sun-Times

American Mary

666. (+268) 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

Shock Waves

667. (-22) 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

Zombi Holocaust

668. (+123) 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

Perfect Blue

669. (+176) Perfect Blue

Satoshi Kon

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


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

The Skull

670. (-65) 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

Gok-seong

671. (+258) Gok-seong

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

Lo strano vizio della Signora Wardh

672. (+74) 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

Dust Devil

673. (-76) 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

Dr. Phibes Rises Again

674. (-140) 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 Skeleton Key

675. (new) The Skeleton Key

Iain Softley

2005 / USA / 104m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Kate Hudson, Gena Rowlands, John Hurt, Peter Sarsgaard, Joy Bryant, Maxine Barnett, Fahnlohnee R. Harris, Marion Zinser, Deneen Tyler, Ann Dalrymple


“The setting, the house, and the stories surrounding it invoke the mood the film feeds on, and the cinematography and sound use it well. The conclusion is smart and not a studio-directed decision, because all the evidence of it is onscreen from the first scene. Better yet, while the film ends satisfactorily, it also seeds the set up an equally interesting sequel if all the players agreed to return. The Skeleton Key may not be a slasher film with buckets of fake blood, but fans of Gore Verbinski’s remake of The Ring already understand what a creepy atmosphere, a good ghost story, and a great heroine can bring to a modern thriller.” – Grim D. Reaper, Movie Crypt

Dead End

676. (+92) Dead End

Jean-Baptiste Andrea & Fabrice Canepa

2003 / USA / 85m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Ray Wise, Lin Shaye, Mick Cain, Alexandra Holden, Billy Asher Rosenfeld, Amber Smith, Karen S. Gregan, Sharon Madden, Steve Valentine, Jimmie F. Skaggs


“Jean-Baptiste Andrea and Fabrice Canepa’s Grimm fable is hardly blessed with originality, its road trip to hell device being a staple of everything from The Texas Chainsaw Massacre to the recent Wrong Turn. Moreover, those with even a passing acquaintance with the genre will guess how the movie pans out long before it reaches its abrupt and rather unsatisfying conclusion. Where it scores is in its canny exploration of family dynamics and a jet-black gallows humour that will have you tittering into your popcorn… while there’s ultimately less to Dead End than meets the eye, it remains an ingenious exercise in nerve-shredding tension that makes a virtue of its limited means.” – Neil Smith, BBC

Vinyan

677. (+287) 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

The Little Girl Who Lives Down the Lane

678. (+128) The Little Girl Who Lives Down the Lane

Nicolas Gessner

1976 / Canada / 100m / Col / Mystery | IMDb
Jodie Foster, Martin Sheen, Alexis Smith, Mort Shuman, Scott Jacoby, Dorothy Davis, Clesson Goodhue, Hubert Noël, Jacques Famery, Mary Morter


“One of the things that make Nicolas Gessner’s film crazier than most ‘70s killing sprees, is that it’s a 13-year-old girl murdering everybody. This, alone, should disturb us – but it doesn’t. Because all the people that die by Jodie Foster’s hands – or rather, in Jodie Foster’s house – had it coming. We don’t know these people that well, but what we do know about them would certainly make us want to kill them too (perhaps not us now, but us in the ‘70s). They are intrusive, harassing, irritating and arrogant, self-involved and out-of-touch. We should be disturbed every time someone dies in the little girl’s house down the lane, but all we can really find in us to do is cheer for her. We don’t disapprove of what she does, we’re just taken aback with how mature and matter-of-fact about it all she is.” – Angeliki Coconi, Unsung Films

The Cars That Ate Paris

679. (+102) 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 Last Winter

680. (+181) The Last Winter

Larry Fessenden

2006 / USA / 101m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Ron Perlman, James Le Gros, Connie Britton, Zach Gilford, Kevin Corrigan, Jamie Harrold, Pato Hoffmann, Joanne Shenandoah, Larry Fessenden, Oscar Miller


“The Last Winter, like many great horror movies, builds upon existing conventions within its genre – the creature feature film – but injects into its narrative contemporary anxieties and tensions that should force horror fans to re-evaluate that genre’s template, meaning, and aesthetic value. With a potent dose of realism – the film’s themes and dialogue echo reports on the evening news – The Last Winter is one of those unique horror films that makes the genre so hauntingly relevant. After watching The Last Winter, viewers will not only gain a newfound respect for classic 1950s creature feature films, and particularly those set in polar regions, but they’ll also gain important insights into some of global society’s most daunting challenges: namely, global warming, climate change, and human ecology.” – Chris Justice, Classic-Horror

The Dunwich Horror

681. (-114) 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

Saw III

682. (+313) 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

The Wolfman

683. (+13) 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

Tarantula

684. (-94) Tarantula

Jack Arnold

1955 / USA / 80m / BW / Nature | IMDb
John Agar, Mara Corday, Leo G. Carroll, Nestor Paiva, Ross Elliott, Edwin Rand, Raymond Bailey, Hank Patterson, Bert Holland, Steve Darrell


“Riddled with clichés and populated by cardboard cutout characters spewing the most obvious lines (“I’ve never seen anything like this!”) and daffy dialogue (“Did you ever see your best friend die in your arms?”), Tarantula lumbers along to its inevitable end (U.S. armed forces to the rescue!) set to urgent, super-dramatic music and gasp-inducing special effects. Actually, the f/x — for the period, and the B-factor — are pretty impressive. The ambling arachnid set against the desert dunes looks almost plausible, even as its furry feet occasionally seem to glide above-ground. Also sublime is the sole female lead, a bullet-brassiered Stephanie “Steve” Clayton (Mara Corday, who was also in The Giant Claw), a grad student who steps into the fray with high heeled pumps and 50s femme fearlessness (punctuated by the occasional girly scream).” – Staci Layne Wilson, Horror.com

Tales from the Hood

685. (+77) Tales from the Hood

Rusty Cundieff

1995 / USA / 98m / Col / Anthology | IMDb
Clarence Williams III, Joe Torry, De’aundre Bonds, Samuel Monroe Jr., Wings Hauser, Tom Wright, Anthony Griffith, Michael Massee, Duane Whitaker, David Alan Grier


“All four of the stories differ in tone – some are darkly comic, others outright gruesome – yet they share a thoughtful quality. Each one addresses some kind of relevant issue: racist cops, domestic violence, people who inexcusably cling to the ideals of the Jim Crow South, and black-on-black killings. What happens in them is appropriately eerie. More vitally, they give you something to think about. Despite having been released 22 years ago, none of the tales have lost their sting. They hold on to their urgency, making every bit as much of an impact now as they did then.” – Mike McGranaghan, Aisle Seat

Linkeroever

686. (+149) Linkeroever

Pieter Van Hees

2008 / Belgium / 102m / Col / Mystery | IMDb
Eline Kuppens, Matthias Schoenaerts, Sien Eggers, Marilou Mermans, Frank Vercruyssen, Robbie Cleiren, Ruth Becquart, Tinneke Boonen, Sara De Bosschere


“A bizarre blend of urban drama, erotic thriller and occult mystery set in Antwerp… This modern horror tries to recreate the chills that were so brilliantly achieved by Roman Polanski in both Rosemary’s Baby and The Tenant, and by Robin Hardy in The Wicker Man; as well as the weirdness that made Lars von Trier’s The Kingdom a masterpiece of the genre. Technically the film is well crafted, with creative camerawork, moody photography (that perfectly captures the urban decay of this part of northern Europe) and sombre scoring. There are moments of pure scariness, like the strange physical manifestations that Marie suffers in the course of her journey – including icky secretions and thick hairs growing out of non-healing wounds… While it’s no masterpiece, and the film begs a better ending, Left Bank is a skilful exercise in atmospherics.” – Peter Fuller, Movie Talk

Killer Klowns from Outer Space

687. (+297) Killer Klowns from Outer Space

Stephen Chiodo

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


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

The Witches

688. (+182) 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

La novia ensangrentada

689. (-30) 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

Seance on a Wet Afternoon

690. (+198) Seance on a Wet Afternoon

Bryan Forbes

1964 / UK / 121m / BW / Psychological | IMDb
Kim Stanley, Margaret Lacey, Marie Burke, Maria Kazan, Lionel Gamlin, Marian Spencer, Richard Attenborough, Godfrey James, Judith Donner, Ronald Hines


“The film’s opening is slowly and deliberately paced, as we see Myra and Bill exchange increasingly strained and sinister dialogue while making rather mysterious and methodical preparations around their house. Strong character scenes between the submissive husband and the increasingly unbalanced wife play effectively alongside the suspenseful kidnap and ransom sequences. This approach is seen at its best in the film’s central twelve minute section, in which Bill’s frantic collection of the ransom at Piccadilly Circus underground station is intercut with a sedate policeman’s interview with Myra back home. The scene effectively juxtaposes big city anonymity with suburban familiarity.” – Sergio Angelini, BFI

House

691. (-178) House

Steve Miner

1986 / USA / 93m / Col / Haunted House | IMDb
William Katt, George Wendt, Richard Moll, Kay Lenz, Mary Stavin, Michael Ensign, Erik Silver, Mark Silver, Susan French, Alan Autry


“Even though the creatures in the film are truly disgusting, there is a lack of blood and gore. That makes this the perfect kind of film for the horror hunting 12 year old kids out there. Just creepy and gruesome enough to satisfy their curiosity, but not enough to have them sleep with the lights on. The lighthearted nature that some of the more frightening scenes take helps to ease the tension. House ranks up there as one of the best horror comedies around, sitting in a list that includes Evil Dead 2 and Dead Alive. There’s a lot to enjoy here, and it’s pretty fast paced, rarely slowing down once the insanity starts. If you haven’t had a chance to watch this one yet, I suggest picking it up right now. You won’t be disappointed.” – The Film Reel

Count Yorga, Vampire

692. (-68) 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

Return of the Living Dead III

693. (+169) Return of the Living Dead III

Brian Yuzna

1993 / USA / 97m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Kent McCord, James T. Callahan, Sarah Douglas, Melinda Clarke, Abigail Lenz, J. Trevor Edmond, Jill Andre, Michael Decker, Billy Kane, Mike Moroff


“While it isn’t as gleefully excessive as the previous year’s Dead Alive, Return of the Living Dead III is an incredible display of body horror and splatter. Yuzna’s always been a sort of poor-man’s Cronenberg, but he’s hit some incredible highs during his career, with this being one of them. Not content to merely create nondescript, shambling zombies, Yuzna embraces the franchise’s legacy of unique designs. Tarman might be absent, but he’s not completely missed, as Yuzna conjures up a fun array of creatures, including one that has an elongated spine after his head is almost severed from its body. The accompanying eviscerations, impalements, and, (of course) brai(iiiiii)n eating are messy and gooey, so it’s a great practical effects showcase.” – Brett Gallman, Oh, The Horror

The Reflecting Skin

694. (+303) The Reflecting Skin

Philip Ridley

1990 / UK / 96m / Col / Drama | IMDb
Viggo Mortensen, Lindsay Duncan, Jeremy Cooper, Sheila Moore, Duncan Fraser, David Longworth, Robert Koons, David Bloom, Evan Hall, Codie Lucas Wilbee


“Ridley’s debut film is clearly reminiscent of Lynch, but the differences reveal more than the similarities. Ridley’s sense of humor is less flamboyant than Lynch; he also tends to handle his bizarre touches with more subtlety. Most significantly, for better or worse, The Reflecting Skin has a literary sensibility missing in Lynch. It feels like a adaptation of an out-there experimental novella. That’s precisely what we might expect from a first time director whose previous career was as a novelist and playwright… What this web of symbols all may mean, if anything, is left to the viewer to decide… Obviously, there is a theme of loss of moral innocence, and also a theme of encroaching age and decay. But, for the most part, Ridley fills the screen with unresolved metaphors that seethe and boil just below the surface of the narrative.” – Greg Smalley, 366 Weird Movies

Hatchet

695. (+89) Hatchet

Adam Green

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


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

Rear Window

696. (-45) Rear Window

Alfred Hitchcock

1954 / USA / 112m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
James Stewart, Grace Kelly, Wendell Corey, Thelma Ritter, Raymond Burr, Judith Evelyn, Ross Bagdasarian, Georgine Darcy, Sara Berner, Frank Cady


“It’s one of Alfred Hitchcock’s inspired audience-participation films: watching it, you feel titillated, horrified, and, ultimately, purged. The story is set mainly in a Greenwich Village apartment with a view into the rooms across the courtyard, but in Hitchcock’s hands this small space contains multitudes. Here, he pushed the subjective-camera technique—putting the audience into the minds of his characters—to new heights… It’s an astonishing visual and psychological coup. Hitchcock’s brilliant satire of cramped city life and his masterly evocation of urban voyeurism suddenly generate primal fear and profound insight.” – Michael Sragow, New Yorker

Fritt vilt

697. (new) 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

Yeogo goedam II

698. (+191) Yeogo goedam II

Tae-Yong Kim & Kyu-dong Min

1999 / South Korea / 98m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Gyu-ri Kim, Yeh-jin Park, Yeong-jin Lee, Jong-hak Baek, Min Han, Seung-Yeon Han, Jae-in Kim, Hyo-jin Kong, Hye-mi Lee, Seong-Eon Lim


“These days, films that depict gay characters are slowly becoming more commonplace, but when Memento Mori was released in its native country, it was a fairly big deal. Homosexuality was an extremely taboo topic even in 1999, so when such themes were prominently presented in a mainstream horror film, many eyebrows were raised. Luckily, the writing/directing team of Tae-yong Kim and Kyu-dong Min had the foresight to abandon all exploitative pretenses… The filmmakers handle the romantic aspect in all the right ways, coaxing out its most tragic qualities without overdoing the melodrama.” – A. J. Hakari, Passport Cinema

Matango

699. (+270) Matango

Ishirô Honda

1963 / Japan / 89m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Akira Kubo, Kumi Mizuno, Hiroshi Koizumi, Kenji Sahara, Hiroshi Tachikawa, Yoshio Tsuchiya, Miki Yashiro, Hideyo Amamoto, Takuzô Kumagai, Akio Kusama


“Honda portrays the way in which the rapid economic growth of Japan has resulted in a population divorced from these cultural and natural origins. The rigid mechanical efficiency of a modern society is revealed to be merely illusionary, as the hierarchy crumbles steadily the further this ship of fools is removed from it. Carried away by the forces of nature on a freak ocean tide, the film’s irreversible conclusion is that of evolution turning full circle; man becomes mushroom as he reverts back to the primordial sludge.” – Jasper Sharp, Midnight Eye

Mute Witness

700. (-40) Mute Witness

Anthony Waller

1994 / 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