They Shoot Zombies, Don't They?

#801-#900

The 1,000 Greatest Horror Films: #801-#900

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

Open Water

801. (+149) Open Water

Chris Kentis

2003 / USA / 79m / Col / Nature | IMDb
Blanchard Ryan, Daniel Travis, Saul Stein, Michael E. Williamson, Cristina Zenato, John Charles


“Chris Kentis, who wrote, directed, edited, and shot the film (with his wife, Laura Lau), is working with prime pulp material—but he doesn’t have a pulp sensibility. I mean this as a compliment. Shot on digital video and micro-budgeted, Open Water is terrifying precisely because it doesn’t go in for cheesy shock tactics and special effects. (Those sharks are real.) Strictly speaking, it’s not even in the shark-attack genre—it’s more like a black comedy about how things can go horribly wrong on vacation. You think you’re safe, and the next thing you know you’re lost at sea and something’s nibbling your gams. That’s an apt metaphor for a lot more than scuba diving.” – Peter Rainer, New York Magazine

Twisted Nerve

802. (+170) Twisted Nerve

Roy Boulting

1968 / UK / 112m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Hayley Mills, Hywel Bennett, Billie Whitelaw, Phyllis Calvert, Barry Foster, Frank Finlay, Salmaan Peerzada, Christian Roberts, Gretchen Franklin, Thorley Walters


““Twisted Nerve” is a Bouting Brothers movie and as such every scene is beautifully crafted from the way a camera slides under the stairs to how the light reflects off of a pair of scissors. It means that “Twisted Nerve” is just as likely to entertain those who like to study movies as it will for those seeking entertainment. What this all boils down to is that “Twisted Nerve” is still a fantastic movie, a fantastic character study with great performances all round, especially from Hywel Bennett who when combined with that whistling theme tune becomes sensationally ominous.” – Andy Webb, The Movie Scene

Vierges et vampires

803. (+94) Vierges et vampires

Jean Rollin

1971 / France / 95m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Marie-Pierre Castel, Mireille Dargent, Philippe Gasté, Dominique, Louise Dhour, Michel Delesalle, Antoine Mosin, Agnès Petit, Olivier François, Dominique Toussaint


“A film which is almost totally void of dialog in its first half and void of any significant characterization, REQUIEM FOR A VAMPIRE is an easily watchable surreal exercise in foreign filmmaking, crammed with bizarre comic art imagery strung together with various incidents of fetishistic kinkiness and sadism. With the usual low budget Rollin was allotted, he makes excellent use of some authentic gothic locations, and the picturesque, massive chateau makes for a better vampires’ liar than any studio could possibly provide. The use of oddball props, including rotted corpses affixed with squirming worms, severed arms protruding from stone walls, a line of hooded standing skeletons and assorted bats real and phony, add to the film’s unique appearance, and the clever use of colored lighting in some of the outdoor nighttime scenes is also noteworthy.” – George R. Reis, DVD Drive-In

The Burrowers

804. (new) The Burrowers

J.T. Petty

2008 / USA / 96m / Col / Western | IMDb
Clancy Brown, David Busse, William Mapother, Jocelin Donahue, Alexandra Edmo, Brighid Fleming, Karl Geary, Christopher Hagen, Doug Hutchison, Galen Hutchison


“An atmospheric, slightly loopy mix of western lore and monster movie shocks – best described as The Searchers meets The Thing… Though shot on a measly US$7million budget, The Burrowers recreates the early West and envisions pure evil with an A-grade attention to detail. As a throwback to the great B-movies of years gone by, it echoes the middle America-vs-monster movie Tremors (1990), the astronauts-vs-monster movie Alien (1979) and the lost campers-vs-monster movie Prophecy (1979). Like those films, The Burrowers is a choice example of this paranoid, claustrophobic, tummy-tightening genre.” – Simon Foster, Screen-Space

The Incredible Torture Show

805. (-26) The Incredible Torture Show

Joel M. Reed

1976 / USA / 84m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Seamus O’Brien, Luis De Jesus, Viju Krem, Niles McMaster, Alan Dellay, Dan Fauci, Helen Thompson, Ellen Faison, Ernie Pysher, Carol Mara


“A bizarre and irreverent plot which is seemingly just an excuse to exploit every taboo in a movie and take it to its distasteful extreme, [it] has to be seen to be believed. With the usual histrionic characters that are expected in a Troma movie and the excessive lengths that the plot evolves to shock and disgust, this is not a movie to take seriously. Fans of hardcore exploitation movies such as Last House on the Left and I Spit on your Grave may find Bloodsucking Freaks a bit difficult to digest with its campiness and farcical interpretation of the genre but would have to appreciate the depths of distaste that the movie is willing to sink to in order to achieve the desired reaction from the audience. A definite cult classic and a defining moment in Troma history in the guise of a sadistic and torturous voyage into the brainwashing and slavery industry where women are used as dartboards before being fed to their feral sisters.” – Pazuzu Iscariot, Horror Extreme

Bat sin fan dim: Yan yuk cha siu bau

806. (-76) Bat sin fan dim: Yan yuk cha siu bau

Herman Yau

1993 / Hong Kong / 96m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Anthony Wong Chau-Sang, Danny Lee, Emily Kwan, Chun Hung Cheung, Si Man Hui, James Ha Jim-Si, Eric Kei, Joh-Fai Kwong, Dave Lam Jing, King-Kong Lam


“While labeled as one of the most shocking Asian horror films, The Untold Story is surprisingly not as graphically gory as one would expect with such title; the shock and the horror originate not from what’s seen, but from what takes place in off-screen. Directors Danny Lee and Herman Yau build up a disturbing atmosphere, very much in tone with the unbalance mind of Wong. Employing a stylish narrative, directors Yau and Lee cleverly orchestrate the grotesque details of the crimes in such a harrowing, powerful way that, no matter that the actual act takes place off-screen, the horrific effect is still felt.” – J Luis Rivera, W-Cinema

Black Christmas

807. (+10) Black Christmas

Glen Morgan

2006 / Canada / 84m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Katie Cassidy, Michelle Trachtenberg, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Lacey Chabert, Kristen Cloke, Andrea Martin, Crystal Lowe, Oliver Hudson, Karin Konoval, Dean Friss


“It’s no Scream, but it lives up to its title, a black (comedy) Christmas movie, with halls decked with holly, mistletoe and a Christmas tree full of popped eyeballs. Unlike the recent When a Stranger Calls remake (which also starred [Katie] Cassidy), Black Christmas has the smarts to be playful, with a choice selection of festive slasher gags pushing the envelope of bad taste: a candy cane’s sucked into a stabbing weapon and angel-shaped cookie cutters do more than cut cookies. The result’s an undemanding multiplex filler – a ho-ho-horror movie that knows it’s the season to be jolly.” – Jamie Russell, BBC.com

V/H/S

808. (+135) V/H/S

Various

2012 / USA / 116m / Col / Anthology | IMDb
Calvin Reeder, Lane Hughes, Kentucker Audley, Adam Wingard, Frank Stack, Sarah Byrne, Melissa Boatright, Simon Barrett, Andrew Droz Palermo, Hannah Fierman


“Remarkably, given the premise, only one of the five short segments that make up V/H/S is an outright failure. The others — from such US indie darlings as House Of The Devil director Ti West, mumblecore luminary Joe Swanberg and fledgling YouTube collective Radio Silence — share an experimental bent, a knack for well-timed twists and they don’t pander to the squeamish. It puts these spooky miniatures head and shoulders above the bulk of this year’s featurelength horror fare… Forever chasing scares both cerebral and visceral, the filmmakers leave little space for cynicism and plenty for admiration — an invaluable accomplishment in a film form that’s so susceptible to weak spots.” – Charlie Lyne, Little White Lies

La cabina

809. (+169) La cabina

Antonio Mercero

1972 / Spain / 35m / Col / Black Comedy | IMDb
José Luis López Vázquez, Agustín González, Goyo Lebrero, Tito García, Carmen Martínez Sierra, Carmen Luján, María Vico, Felipe Martín Puertas, José Montijano, Blaki


“What La cabina manages to capture perfectly is the collective psychological blindness that emerges in totalitarian societies which allows most people to live a ‘normal’ life. While the crowd surrounding the phone box are initially sympathetic and concerned, once it becomes clear that they are powerless to help they quickly turn their backs in an attempt to ignore – or mock – the obvious elephant in the room, or ‘Man in the phone box’. In drawing out his reaction and that of the various characters who stumble across him, Mercero dances between light drama, comedy and Twilight Zone-esqu eeriness with such effortlessness that the impact of the ending is doubly horrific.” – Carl Swift, Black Lagoon

Vampire's Kiss

810. (+171) Vampire’s Kiss

Robert Bierman

1988 / USA / 103m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Nicolas Cage, Maria Conchita Alonso, Jennifer Beals, Elizabeth Ashley, Kasi Lemmons, Bob Lujan, Jessica Lundy, Johnny Walker, Boris Leskin, Michael Knowles


“Practically nothing happens other than gradual deterioration of any distinction between reality and fantasy, and the theme is closer in some ways to Jekyll and Hyde (with the emphasis almost entirely on Hyde) than to Dracula or Nosferatu. What really makes this worth seeing is Cage’s outrageously unbridled performance… Even for viewers like myself who have never been especially impressed with Cage, his over-the-top effusions of rampant, demented asociality are really something to see, and they give this quirky, somewhat out-of-control black comedy whatever form and energy it has.” – Jonathan Rosenbaum, Chicago Reader

Taxidermia

811. (new) Taxidermia

György Pálfi

2006 / Hungary / 91m / Col / Black Comedy | IMDb
Csaba Czene, Gergely Trócsányi, Marc Bischoff, István Gyuricza, Piroska Molnár, Gábor Máté, Géza Hegedüs D., Zoltán Koppány, Erwin Leder, Adél Stanczel


“Striking visuals attempt to match allegory; this is the stuff of Taxidermia. From the onset it’s quite clear that Taxidermia isn’t interested in being a typical horror film. The film blends elements of comedy, body horror, and political allegory into as unappealing of a package as possible. That is, however, the reason that Taxidermia is so appealing as a film. The images are often visceral to the extreme, repugnant in the way they depict the characters. People who see Taxidermia will probably never be able to look at competitive eating the same way again. Repugnance is the point of Taxidermia, or rather it is the point that is used to get to the root of the political issues that have plagued Hungary for years.” – Bill Thompson, Sound on Sight

The Crow

812. (+104) The Crow

Alex Proyas

1994 / USA / 102m / Col / Action | IMDb
Brandon Lee, Rochelle Davis, Ernie Hudson, Michael Wincott, Bai Ling, Sofia Shinas, Anna Levine, David Patrick Kelly, Angel David, Laurence Mason


“One key to the surprising success of “The Crow,” a movie adaptation of J. O’Barr’s comic book saga of a vengeful spirit in a murderous city, is the way its violence is capable of shocking us. The movie has a wild, shivery impact. It’s incandescently brutal and gory-and not just because it’s the infamous film whose star, Brandon Lee, died in a shooting accident on the set. The Lee tragedy-effectively disguised in the film, which was completed after his death-simply makes the picture obvious fodder for op-ed pieces about media violence and Hollywood irresponsibility. What’s scary about “The Crow” is the story and the style itself: American Gothic, Poe-haunted nightmare, translated to the age of cyberpunk science fiction, revenge movies and outlaw rock ‘n’ roll, all set in a hideously decaying, crime-ridden urban hell, populated by victims, cops and psychos.” – Michael Wilmington, Chicago Tribune

Oldeuboi

813. (-72) Oldeuboi

Chan-wook Park

2003 / South Korea / 120m / Col / Crime | IMDb
Min-sik Choi, Ji-tae Yu, Hye-jeong Kang, Dae-han Ji, Dal-su Oh, Byeong-ok Kim, Seung-Shin Lee, Jin-seo Yoon, Dae-yeon Lee, Kwang-rok Oh


“The violence remains appalling, but it’s an essential element in this brutally inspired mystery. The low-tech dentistry, the masticated octopod, they’re part of the modern hell in which a Korean businessman finds himself… [Oldboy] tantalizes and tortures you as it lures you into its mysterious vortex. You die from what you see and from what you don’t know. And it takes looking beyond the violence to realize the power of Choi’s performance… There is a conclusion to all this, an existential punch line that explains everything in a climactic pileup of melodramatic detail. But whatever you make of that, you will surely leave this movie shocked, shaken and surprisingly moved. And definitely stuck on that poor octopus.” – Desson Thomson, Washington Post

La horde

814. (new) La horde

Yannick Dahan & Benjamin Rocher

2009 / Germany / 90m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Claude Perron, Jean-Pierre Martins, Eriq Ebouaney, Aurélien Recoing, Doudou Masta, Antoine Oppenheim, Jo Prestia, Yves Pignot, Adam Pengsawang, Sébastien Peres


““La Horde” thankfully knows where its audience lies and its sole intent is to bring us as much gore and grue as possible while delivering on the action set pieces, and both counts are thankfully plentiful, which is why “La Horde” is one of the more memorable zombie romps I’ve seen in the past few years. It’s an action horror film with its head in the right place, and I loved it for that. For folks who can appreciate the modern take on the zombie culture, “La Horde” is an entertaining action horror film with thrills, chills, and gut munching that will whet the appetites of anyone looking for a good time. While it’s no masterpiece, it’s filled with tension and terror and a solid execution that will keep it on the good side of zombie enthusiasts all the way through.” – Felix Vasquez Jr., Cinema Crazed

Freddy's Dead: The Final Nightmare

815. (-58) Freddy’s Dead: The Final Nightmare

Rachel Talalay

1991 / USA / 89m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Robert Englund, Lisa Zane, Shon Greenblatt, Lezlie Deane, Ricky Dean Logan, Breckin Meyer, Yaphet Kotto, Tom Arnold, Roseanne Barr, Elinor Donahue


“The Nightmare movies have also, to this point, refused to take themselves too seriously, walking a line between absurd and creepy and placing a toe (or ten) on either side every once in a while. This movie goes whole hog into a tone that bordered on slapstick in more than one scene. Freddy is also back to his old self, quipping with his victims and vogueing as though he is, on some level, aware of the film audience. Even with much more history and backstory than we’ve gotten so far, this movie manages to stay squarely in the kind of territory that Nightmare does best.” – Sophie Day, Bloody Good Horror

Begotten

816. (+51) Begotten

E. Elias Merhige

1990 / USA / 72m / Col / Experimental | IMDb
Brian Salzberg, Donna Dempsey, Stephen Charles Barry, James Gandia, Daniel Harkins, Michael Phillips, Erik Slavin, Arthur Streeter, Adolfo Vargas, Garfield White


“Few motion pictures have the power to jolt an audience with the fury, imagination, and artistic violence of Begotten, a 1991 tour de force from Elias Merhige currently debuting on home video. This cryptic independent production is a film of eccentric brilliance, skillfully balancing the glorious and the grotesque in an unforgettable work of art. Perhaps the most striking aspect of Begotten is its cinematography. Filmmaker Merhige photographed his work on 16-mm black-and-white reversal film and then rephotographed the footage frame by frame on black-and-white negatives through density filters, a four-year labor that required 10 hours of work for each minute of the 78-minute film. The result is a visual work unlike any other – one that looks like an ancient ritual filmed on the scene thousands of years ago and only recently dusted off for viewing.” – Phil Hall, Wired

The Dark Half

817. (+54) The Dark Half

George A. Romero

1993 / USA / 122m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Timothy Hutton, Amy Madigan, Michael Rooker, Julie Harris, Robert Joy, Kent Broadhurst, Beth Grant, Rutanya Alda, Tom Mardirosian, Larry John Meyers


“The idea that something real – an absorbed twin, a tumor in the brain – and something fictitious, like a nom de plume, could both be somehow intertwined is a very rare plot-point in cinema, and perhaps the greatest compliment one could give Romero is that, rather than trying to explain it all away or invent a justification through science or medicine, the situation is allowed to be as nuanced and unclear as cinema can be without becoming lazy. If you take away the psychopomps and all other literary flourishes, there is still the story of a man being hunted by something he invented but doesn’t understand; if you take away the blood-lust of the revenge-film hierarchy, there’s still a man at war with himself, or a physical representation of himself. The Dark Half, for all its flaws, is a movie happy to exist in a limbo where reality and fantasy are conjoined and almost inseparable, and that at least is worthy of admiration.” – Adam Balz, Not Coming To a Theater Near You

Eight Legged Freaks

818. (new) Eight Legged Freaks

Ellory Elkayem

2002 / USA / 99m / Col / Nature | IMDb
David Arquette, Kari Wuhrer, Scott Terra, Scarlett Johansson, Doug E. Doug, Rick Overton, Leon Rippy, Matt Czuchry, Jay Arlen Jones, Eileen Ryan


“Decidedly goofy, Eight Legged Freaks is a modest horror comedy reminiscent of the campy B-movie creature flicks of yesteryear. Armed with cheesy humor and a tongue-in-cheek story, it offers light-hearted entertainment fit for a sci-fi monster movie marathon… Ultimately, Eight Legged Freaks is too polite to be a classic in its genre. But as horror comedies go, it’s breezy fun that recognizes its limitations and revels in its own absurdity. With that rare quality of self-awareness, it puts itself considerably above ill-conceived peers that take themselves too seriously.” – Andrew Manning, Radio Free Entertainment

The Neon Demon

819. (new) The Neon Demon

Nicolas Winding Refn

2016 / USA / 118m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Elle Fanning, Karl Glusman, Jena Malone, Bella Heathcote, Abbey Lee, Desmond Harrington, Christina Hendricks, Keanu Reeves, Charles Baker, Jamie Clayton


“For all its shimmery surface modernity, this story about the commodified consumption of youth is as old as the hills, a carefully choreographed carnival of voyeurism in which corruptible beauty is “the only thing” and every look comes with daggers. Motel rooms are stalked by beasts both real and metaphorical (Keanu Reeves giving good creep) and photographers are indistinguishable from serial killers (shades of Eyes of Laura Mars). But while Jesse may faint like Sleeping Beauty, with rose petals falling around her goldie locks, it’s her own image that grabs her by the throat. Mirrors are everywhere, to be stared into, scrawled upon, kissed and smashed. And the more Jesse looks, the more she sees nothing but herself…” – Mark Kermode, Guardian

The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence)

820. (new) The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence)

Tom Six

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


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

Hostel: Part II

821. (+137) Hostel: Part II

Eli Roth

2007 / USA / 94m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Lauren German, Roger Bart, Heather Matarazzo, Bijou Phillips, Richard Burgi, Vera Jordanova, Jay Hernandez, Jordan Ladd, Milan Knazko, Edwige Fenech


“As gruesome as [the filmmakers’] creations can appear, a twisted sense of humor underlies the entire operation, as if sheer outrageousness might offset the effects’ startling realism. Indeed, the only way to watch is to suspend any literal-minded analysis and appreciate Roth’s Grand Guignol sensibilities on their own level. Could Roth have accomplished the same thing without introducing such patently offensive imagery into the world? Absolutely, but then he wouldn’t have bested the recent efforts of his peers, who keep upping the ante with pics like “High Tension” and “Saw.” Nor would he have involved us so thoroughly in the action that we’re complicit in the pic’s incredibly satisfying climax. There are no innocents here — least of all the audience.” – Peter Debruge, Variety

Haze

822. (new) Haze

Shin’ya Tsukamoto

2005 / Japan / 49m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Shin’ya Tsukamoto, Takahiro Murase, Takahiro Kandaka, Masato Tsujioka, Mao Saito, Kaori Fujii


“Story-wise, there isn’t much to discuss. A nameless man (Tsukamoto) finds himself trapped in a very narrow passageway with no visible means of escape… Since there’s no clearly-defined characters and no real story to speak of, Tsukamoto relies on his ability to generate palpable suspense to carry the audience through this bleak cinematic nightmare. Watching our hero push his body through such narrow passages frequently forced me to confront my own deep-rooted fears of confined spaces, which only served to intensify the experience. It’s enough to push even the mildest claustrophobics to the proverbial breaking point. Tsukamoto’s inspired and frequently gut-wrenching performance also factors greatly into the film’s overall success.” – Todd Rigney, BeyondHollywood.com

The Lords of Salem

823. (+113) The Lords of Salem

Rob Zombie

2012 / USA / 101m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Sheri Moon Zombie, Bruce Davison, Jeff Daniel Phillips, Judy Geeson, Meg Foster, Patricia Quinn, Ken Foree, Dee Wallace, Maria Conchita Alonso, Richard Fancy


“Movies by Rob Zombie, the goth rocker turned cult filmmaker, aren’t for everybody. But he couldn’t care less. He makes movies exactly the way he wants to, with no thought of pleasing mainstream audiences. They can like it or lump it. His latest effort, “The Lords of Salem,” is true to form… [fans] will want to rush out to see this stylishly lensed work, which references Roman Polanski’s “Rosemary’s Baby” and Dario Argento’s “Suspiria,” Others are advised to look elsewhere for fun in the dark.” – V.A. Musetto, New York Post

Amityville II: The Possession

824. (-52) Amityville II: The Possession

Damiano Damiani

1982 / USA / 104m / Col / Haunted House | IMDb
James Olson, Burt Young, Rutanya Alda, Jack Magner, Andrew Prine, Diane Franklin, Moses Gunn, Ted Ross, Erika Katz, Brent Katz


“[Director] Damiani forgoes any authentic connection to the actual DeFeo case and opts for a very loose fictional retelling more suitable for grindhouse theaters. That’s not a complaint, but a compliment. Continuity and originality be damned, Amityville II: The Possession is so off the rails crazy that it’s fun. Bolstered by great effects and a higher budget, this sequel is not only better than the first film, but it’s the best in the series.” – Meagan Navarro, Bloody Disgusting

The Last Exorcism

825. (+117) The Last Exorcism

Daniel Stamm

2010 / USA / 87m / Col / Found Footage | IMDb
Patrick Fabian, Ashley Bell, Iris Bahr, Louis Herthum, Caleb Landry Jones, Tony Bentley, John Wright Jr., Shanna Forrestall, Justin Shafer, Carol Sutton


“The movie’s first forty-five minutes acts as a legitimately witty satire of religious fundamentalists and the now-totally-lame concept of exorcisms (“the spirit of Christ compels you … yawn”). When the stakes are raised in the final act, the audience has been utterly disarmed. And instead of winking at us and promising that it will be all right, they trust that we want to feel terror.” – Simon Miraudo, Quickflix

Marebito

826. (new) Marebito

Takashi Shimizu

2004 / Japan / 92m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Shin’ya Tsukamoto, Tomomi Miyashita, Kazuhiro Nakahara, Miho Ninagawa, Shun Sugata, Masayoshi Haneda, Ayumu Saitô


“It’s safe to say that Marebito is a substantial departure from Shimizu’s other work, not to mention the work of many of his contemporaries. This is partly due to Chiaki Konaka’s eclectic script, which mixes elements of hollow-Earth theory and H.P. Lovecraft, throwing in references to Madame Blavatsky, Werner Herzog, and Kolchak: The Night Stalker along the way. Konaka deliberately avoids explanations and shifts course a few times, leaving the viewer unsure whether what they’re seeing is reality or delusion. Shimizu builds upon this foundation by constructing a deeply claustrophobic atmosphere. The use of confined spaces, handheld cameras, and the absence of long shots all contribute to the feeling of confinement and draw the viewer in, something that can make you noticeably uncomfortable during the film’s more effective moments.” – Jim Harper, Flipside Movie Emporium

Bone Tomahawk

827. (+104) Bone Tomahawk

S. Craig Zahler

2015 / USA / 132m / Col / Western | IMDb
Kurt Russell, Patrick Wilson, Matthew Fox, Richard Jenkins, Lili Simmons, Evan Jonigkeit, David Arquette, Fred Melamed, Sid Haig, Maestro Harrell


“There’s an elegance to Bone Tomahawk that doesn’t let up even when it veers into cult-movie territory. Zahler is a patient director, willing to let scenes unfold, with tension developing organically. He uses music sparingly; the early scenes in town are almost unnaturally quiet, with the moody, minimalist score (credited to Jeff Herriot and Zahler himself) only kicking in once the search party strikes out for the territory. As the men become more and more desperate, the camera comes in closer and closer. But even the final act is devoid of the kind of unhinged stylistic hysteria that can take over films that upend genre. You could even say that’s what makes it so disturbing — the director’s unflinching eye reveals both character and violence.” – Bilge Ebiri, Vulture

Tras el cristal

828. (new) Tras el cristal

Agustí Villaronga

1987 / Spain / 110m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Günter Meisner, David Sust, Marisa Paredes, Gisèle Echevarría, Imma Colomer, Josuè Guasch, David Cuspinera, Ricardo Carcelero, Alberto Manzano


“Like the film’s characters, we find ourselves party to scenarios involving the most extraordinary fetishisation of suffering and death, horrors which invoke a troubling combination of impressions: they are sensual, grotesque, dreamlike, oddly beautiful, almost pornographic, usually painful to witness. But however horrifying the experience, Tras el cristal is bound to make for rewarding viewing. It is profoundly disturbing, potently evocative and easily one of the most lyrical nightmares ever concocted.” – Chris Gallant, Kino Eye

Eaten Alive

829. (-68) Eaten Alive

Tobe Hooper

1977 / USA / 91m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Neville Brand, Mel Ferrer, Carolyn Jones, Marilyn Burns, William Finley, Stuart Whitman, Roberta Collins, Kyle Richards, Robert Englund, Crystin Sinclaire


“Even though dated, [Eaten Alive] delivers everything you could want from a Video Nasty, and delivers it head on, in your face and makes no excuses. This is a film which only needs the most basic of plots simply to tie together the scenes of carnage. This is a film which relishes, and glorifies its violence and unsavoury characters, and this is a film which demands you take your head out of your ass and just enjoy horror for what it is. [Eaten Alive] is a horror intended to be enjoyed on face value, there is nothing deep or meaningful here, and you certainly will not need to use your brain. All you have to do is sit back and enjoy the madness, the insanity, the completely mad ride into the Starlight Hotel, its owner Judd and is beloved pet Croc out back.” – Matt Wavish, Horror Cult Films

Homicidal

830. (-52) Homicidal

William Castle

1961 / USA / 87m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Glenn Corbett, Patricia Breslin, Eugenie Leontovich, Alan Bunce, Richard Rust, James Westerfield, Gilbert Green, Joan Marshall


“Despite its obvious flaws, however, Homicidal comes across today as a reasonably enjoyable cult film, primarily because all its ludicrous elements add up to such silly fun. Plus, though the primary plot twist is far too easy to guess, the hidden secret behind this twist comes as a genuine surprise. If you forget that Homicidal was ever meant as a serious rival to Hitchcock’s masterpiece, you’ll probably get a kick out of its enjoyably campy approach to sibling rivalry, gender, loyalty, and murder.” – Film Fanatic

Paranormal Activity 2

831. (new) Paranormal Activity 2

Tod Williams

2010 / USA / 91m / Col / Found Footage | IMDb
David Bierend, Brian Boland, Molly Ephraim, Katie Featherston, Seth Ginsberg, Sprague Grayden, William Juan Prieto, Jackson Xenia Prieto, Micah Sloat


“Following the series’ conceit of presenting edited found footage, “Paranomal Activity 2” consists of house surveillance videos and some interactions caught by camcorder. Much of what’s captured on tape and hard drives is mundane, but it’s precisely the ordinariness and long takes in these scenes that can make them so unnerving when the supernatural element disrupts the tranquility… It’s in this manner that “Paranomal Activity 2” consistently succeeds at constructing jump moments with deliberation during routine home settings. The scares in “Paranomal Activity 2” aren’t as frequent or always as well built as the original film’s, but those that exist are still pretty effective.” – Mark Pfeiffer, Reel Times: Reflections on Cinema

My Bloody Valentine

832. (-13) My Bloody Valentine

Patrick Lussier

2009 / USA / 101m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Jensen Ackles, Jaime King, Kerr Smith, Betsy Rue, Edi Gathegi, Tom Atkins, Kevin Tighe, Megan Boone, Karen Baum, Joy de la Paz


“Most of the three-dimensional effects are precisely what you would expect, with everything from pickaxes to tree limbs to various body parts coming out of the screen. It’s undeniably hokey, but also giddily effective, turning what might otherwise be a routine slash-and-hack job into a ridiculously gory theme park ride (the fact that “3-D” is part of the film’s official title is a clue as to how important it is to its effectiveness). Director Patrick Lussier plays everything to the hilt, taking additional license with the third dimension to goose the audience with both old-school make-up special effects and digital trickery that, in the movie’s first true shock moment, puts an eyeball right in your lap.” – James Kendrick, QNetwork

Popcorn

833. (+53) Popcorn

Mark Herrier

1991 / USA / 91m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Jill Schoelen, Tom Villard, Dee Wallace, Derek Rydall, Malcolm Danare, Elliott Hurst, Ivette Soler, Freddie Simpson, Kelly Jo Minter, Karen Lorre


“Reggae, a Zaza score, a Vincent Price-ish villain with shades of Freddy Krueger, the film is a mish-mash of several different influences and makes for quite a unique film. It may not be the scariest or goriest movie that you could choose to watch during a festive October evening, but wearing it’s love of horror films of the past on its sleeve, I can’t help but recommend it. It’s a lot like mixing a bag of M&Ms into your warm buttery popcorn. Sure, it doesn’t completely fit, but somehow makes for a delicious taste uniquely its own.” – Wes R., Oh, The Horror

Lake Placid

834. (+129) Lake Placid

Steve Miner

1999 / USA / 82m / Col / Nature | IMDb
Bill Pullman, Bridget Fonda, Oliver Platt, Brendan Gleeson, Betty White, David Lewis, Tim Dixon, Natassia Malthe, Mariska Hargitay, Meredith Salenger


““Lake Placid” is smart enough to acknowledge that the monsters are usually the most interesting characters in monster movies, but – even better – it’s also smart enough to ensure that the people here are worthy of the monster. An usually witty creature feature, “Lake Placid” was a box-office flop: It was released when theatrical monster movies were out of fashion, and at a moment when old-school practical special effects were augmented but not yet replaced by computer-generated imagery. Thank goodness: It’s the obviously real physicality of the fake crocodile (created by Stan Winston’s studio) that gives this movie its heft, while the clever script by David E. Kelley – yes, the creator of “Doogie Howser” and “Ally McBeal” – gives it its bite.” – John Beifuss, Commercial Appeal

Schock

835. (-69) Schock

Mario Bava

1977 / Italy / 95m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Daria Nicolodi, John Steiner, David Colin Jr., Ivan Rassimov


“Shock differs sharply from earlier Bava features as it is much more understated – there is no gothic setting, no baroque décor, and no elaborate costumes. Obviously saddled with a much more economical budget this time around, Bava chose to concentrate on creating a tense, claustrophobic environment within the confines of a family home – and succeeds admirably. He blends psychosomatic and paranormal themes into a nice ambiguous twist – it’s up to the viewer to decide whether the house is really haunted or entirely a creation of Dora’s tormented mind.” – Michelle R., Digital Retribution

Diary of the Dead

836. (-267) Diary of the Dead

George A. Romero

2007 / USA / 95m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Michelle Morgan, Joshua Close, Shawn Roberts, Amy Lalonde, Joe Dinicol, Scott Wentworth, Philip Riccio, Chris Violette, Tatiana Maslany, Todd Schroeder


“Diary may initially struggle to get up to speed as it reprises business from the earlier films, but Romero has lost none of his wild inventiveness. This film has more left-field weirdness and edgy suspense than Land, with unexpected characters (a deaf, dynamite-throwing Amish farmer), grim jokes (the zombie birthday clown who bleeds when his red nose is pulled off) and horror scenes you have never seen before (in a crowded, gloomy warehouse, amid reserves of gasoline, a single, hard-to-find zombie mingles with jittery, well-armed folk). It turns out that despite decades of experiment, there are still spectacular new ways of killing zombies on screen (a slow acid-dissolve of the skull), while presenting state-of-the-art make-up effects vérité-style recalls the impact of the gruesome intestine-gobbling scene in 1968.” – Sight and Sound

Happy Birthday to Me

837. (-103) Happy Birthday to Me

J. Lee Thompson

1981 / Canada / 111m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Melissa Sue Anderson, Glenn Ford, Lawrence Dane, Sharon Acker, Frances Hyland, Tracey E. Bregman, Jack Blum, Matt Craven, Lenore Zann, David Eisner


“One of the strongest entries in the 80s splatter canon, Happy Birthday to Me is both quite simplistic and unusually sophisticated for a slasher. On the one hand, it’s clearly driven by the petulant, juvenile pangs of youth and will resonate with anyone who was ever jilted on their birthday by a group of friends (hopefully it doesn’t resonate too much because things will get awkward and bloody in a hurry). But on the other hand, this one sets itself apart from its contemporaries by spinning one hell of a yarn around this concept, as it’s lined with enough twists and turns that would even make giallo masters blush. In many ways, Happy Birthday to Me is a perfect stopgap between that genre and the standard issue American body count flick; it really can’t be claimed as either, which makes it all the more intriguing.” – Brett Gallman, Oh, The Horror

Aftermath

838. (new) Aftermath

Nacho Cerdà

1994 / Spain / 30m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Pep Tosar, Jordi Tarrida, Ángel Tarris, Xevi Collellmir


“Aftermath is a deeper look into what disturbs Cerda. It is a clinical look at what happens after death but has not a stitch of spirituality to it, keeping its focus on the physical. It deletes the former question in the mind-body problem, leaving only a defenseless empty shell. Aftermath is a notorious film. Having garnered a reputation as “one of the most vile things to be ever put on film” from festival screenings and bootleg copies, it stands in clear contrast to the other two films. It is intense. It is unflinching. Yet, at its core it is subtle, hauntingly beautiful, and every bit as rich in detail and composition as any other great film has ever been.” – DW Bostaph Jr, Dread Central

Mama

839. (new) Mama

Andrés Muschietti

2013 / Spain / 100m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Jessica Chastain, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Megan Charpentier, Isabelle Nélisse, Daniel Kash, Javier Botet, Jane Moffat, Morgan McGarry, David Fox, Dominic Cuzzocrea


“Mama proves to be a great horror film for about half of its running time — the half in which we can’t see who or what this Mama character is… unfortunately, the more we learn about Mama, the more it seems as though she’s just malnourished and misunderstood… To make up for the dearth of suspense, there is at least great acting. Chastain toughens up to portray one of those rare heroines in a horror film who isn’t about to walk down to the basement on her own when the power is out… Devotees of this genre should make a point of seeing the film, if only because it’s a great example of how to be creepy without resorting to cliché. But don’t expect any true horror to emerge” – Vanessa Farquharson, National Post

When a Stranger Calls Back

840. (new) When a Stranger Calls Back

Fred Walton

1993 / USA / 94m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Carol Kane, Charles Durning, Jill Schoelen, Gene Lythgow, Karen Elizabeth Austin, Babs Chula, John B. Destry, Duncan Fraser, Jenn Griffin, Gary Jones


“When a Stranger Calls Back was made for TV, which actually makes it more impressive (seeing as how made for TV horror movies have a history of sucking donkey balls). While the movie itself is slightly better than mediocre, the opening sequence is what makes the film. Julia is a young babysitter who spends a night in a middle class neighborhood. A knock arrives at the front door by a person having car distress. Without ruining the sequence for those that haven’t seen the movie, the suspense is built up very slowly (the scene is about 15 minutes in length) until the “coupe de gras” which will delight even the most well-seasoned horror fan. I have heard that the opening sequences for both of the “Stranger” movies are perhaps the most well-directed scenes in the history of horror. I can’t completely deny that statement.” – Jenn Dlugos, Classic-Horror.com

Red White & Blue

841. (new) Red White & Blue

Simon Rumley

2010 / USA / 104m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Amanda Fuller, Marc Senter, Jon Michael Davis, Nick Holden, Patrick Crovo, Mary Mathews, Noah Taylor, Julian Haddad, Ernest James, Jenny Gravenstein


“Restraint pays dividends for British writer/director Simon Rumley in this devastating and demanding revenge tragedy set in Austin, Texas. A low-budget tale of broken lives and misguided retribution, Rumley’s slow-burner is driven by superbly nuanced performances, with Amanda Fuller’s emotionally scarred nymphomaniac gradually forming a relationship with a mysterious Iraq War veteran… When the brutality finally explodes, Rumley continues to focus on reactions rather than action, the harrowing events hitting harder by being kept predominantly off-screen.” – Sloan Freer, Radio Times

Maximum Overdrive

842. (-69) Maximum Overdrive

Stephen King

1986 / USA / 98m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Emilio Estevez, Pat Hingle, Laura Harrington, Yeardley Smith, John Short, Ellen McElduff, J.C. Quinn, Christopher Murney, Holter Graham, Frankie Faison


“Stephen King had big problems with filmmakers, who’d often “ruin” his great books/stories with all the terrible adaptations of his short stories and books coming out, so what does he do? Writes and directs his own, which got hailed as King’s worst film ever, though I think “Graveyard Shift” and “Mangler” were the worst ones. I really enjoyed this one however. It’s a real stinker if you are expecting good horror and a decent film, but otherwise, if you’re looking for a fun, ridiculous, campy b-movie to watch with the friends to crack up at, you’re sure to enjoy this one… the pace doesn’t move fast and the film runs out of steam in the last half hour, but otherwise, this is a great b-movie that provides a 98 minute laughfest.” – Andrew Borntreger, BadMovies.org

Black Death

843. (new) Black Death

Christopher Smith

2010 / UK / 102m / Col / Historical Drama | IMDb
Sean Bean, Eddie Redmayne, John Lynch, Tim McInnerny, Kimberley Nixon, Andy Nyman, David Warner, Johnny Harris, Emun Elliott, Tygo Gernandt


“As it turns out, no one is without sin in “Black Death,” a grungy, cynical little number from the British director Christopher Smith that slams Christians against pagans with little love for either… With old-fashioned style and old-school effects — you can feel the weight of the broadswords and the crunchy resistance of every hacked head — “Black Death” takes Dark Ages drama to the limits of moral ambivalence. Here, excessive piety and rampant paganism are equally malevolent forces, the film’s baleful view of human nature mirrored in Sebastian Edschmid’s swampy photography. As is emphasized in a nicely consistent coda, the Lord’s side and the right side are not necessarily one and the same.” – Jeannette Catsoulis, New York Times

The Watcher in the Woods

844. (new) The Watcher in the Woods

John Hough

1980 / USA / 84m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Bette Davis, Lynn-Holly Johnson, Kyle Richards, Carroll Baker, David McCallum, Benedict Taylor, Frances Cuka, Richard Pasco, Ian Bannen, Katharine Levy


“It’s curious to observe how Watcher edges towards genuine terror before retreating back into Disney’s comfort zone. Some blame studio executive Ron Miller for this inconsistency of tone, his reluctance to allow the film its darker elements resulting in a series of unhappy compromises… It’s all too tempting to consider what could have been, or indeed what briefly was, given that the original 1980 cut remains similarly out of reach. Nevertheless, even in its most widely viewed form The Watcher in the Woods is a haunting, unusual film, steeped in a strange magic that’s only enhanced by the dense thicket of rumour and myth that surrounds it.” – Joseph Stannard, Sight & Sound

Zibahkhana

845. (new) Zibahkhana

Omar Khan

2007 / Pakistan / 77m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Kunwar Ali Roshan, Rooshanie Ejaz, Rubya Chaudhry, Haider Raza, Osman Khalid Butt, Rehan, Najma Malik, Sultan Billa, Salim Meraj, Razia Malik


““Hell’s Ground” is being touted as ‘Pakistan’s first gore’ movie, and while it certainly offers more blood and guts than the original “Saw,” it is still relatively tame by Herschel Gordon Lewis standards or the recent American remake. It is surprisingly effective, with the cultural perspective adding spice to the mix (the well to do teens speak English, for example, until adrenaline reduces them to their native tongue; Baby’s mother is ostensibly seeking a wife for her son). In addition to the “Saw” like shot compositions, Khan uses plenty of visual and aural Lollywood references and even a few animated asides. The acting is above average for the genre, with Baby a unique treat.” – Laura Clifford, Reeling Reviews

The Cottage

846. (+99) The Cottage

Paul Andrew Williams

2008 / UK / 92m / Col / Black Comedy | IMDb
Andy Serkis, Reece Shearsmith, Jennifer Ellison, Steven O’Donnell, James Bierman, Cat Meacher, Danny Nussbaum, Logan Wong, Jonathan Chan-Pensley


“The Cottage improves immeasurably following an out-of-left-field plot twist that hits at around the 55-minute mark – as the film, in a manner reminiscent of From Dusk Till Dawn, essentially morphs into a far more entertaining and altogether horrific endeavor than its comparatively sedate opening might’ve indicated. The degree to which the movie is redeemed by its impossible-to-anticipate third act is consequently quite staggering, as one can’t help but derive a fair amount of enjoyment from the downright brutal situation the central characters find themselves embroiled in. The inclusion of an appropriately grisly finale only cements The Cottage’s effective late-in-the-game turnaround.” – David Nusair, Reel Film Reviews

Thinner

847. (-246) Thinner

Tom Holland

1996 / USA / 93m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Robert John Burke, Joe Mantegna, Lucinda Jenney, Michael Constantine, Kari Wuhrer, Bethany Joy Lenz, Time Winters, Howard Erskine, Terrence Garmey, Randy Jurgensen


“So why… is Thinner simply an entertaining movie and not one of the best King ones? It’s hard to put a finger on but there just seems to be something missing. It might be because side characters aren’t developed quite enough and I found the shift in the last third to be not as effective as what came before it. It also becomes a little hard to root for Billy when he can be a pretty unlikeable lout at times. As is, this is an enjoyable effort and one of the rare gypsy based horror flicks out there – with the best being, of course, Drag Me to Hell. If you’re into King, or want a quickly paced time with stellar effects work, then you should check this out.” – Chris Hartley, The Video Graveyard

Tôkyô zankoku keisatsu

848. (new) Tôkyô zankoku keisatsu

Yoshihiro Nishimura

2008 / Japan / 110m / Col / Splatter | IMDb
Eihi Shiina, Itsuji Itao, Yukihide Benny, Jiji Bû, Ikuko Sawada, Cay Izumi, Mame Yamada, Ayano Yamamoto, Akane Akanezawa, Kotoha Hiroyama


“Comic book gore and a plot exploited to provide maximum fighting time, Tokyo Gore Police succeeds in its bid to push the few boundaries it sets for itself to the limit. Namely trying to think of the most ghastly mix of organic and mechanic bodies, then have them destroyed with a bucket load of blood after they’ve killed a dozen expendable police officers. One for splatter-fest fans, it hits the spot magnificently if you can handle the onslaught. Think The Evil Dead on a rampage through Tokyo and you’re getting close.” – Mike Barnard, Future Movies

Necronomicon

849. (-183) Necronomicon

Christophe Gans & Shûsuke Kaneko & Brian Yuzna

1993 / USA / 96m / Col / Anthology | IMDb
Jeffrey Combs, Tony Azito, Juan Fernández, Brian Yuzna, Bruce Payne, Belinda Bauer, Richard Lynch, Maria Ford, Peter Jasienski, Denice D. Lewis


“Anthologies must be difficult to create because there aren’t a lot of great ones out there. Necronomicon is a rare anthology that delivers the scares, gore, and Lovecraftian shenanigans in near-flawless fashion. It’s quite the accomplishment and one that I’m surprised isn’t placed on a similar pedestal as Re-animator and From Beyond. Brian Yuzna and Christophe Gans are such a perfect duo here with Shûsuke Kaneko completing the triad… In Necronomicon, the team have elevated the effectiveness of Lovecraft due to the fact that the short stories are given a chance to be just that; short.” – Matthew Caldwell, The Dark Spectrum

The Ugly

850. (new) The Ugly

Scott Reynolds

1997 / USA / 93m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Paolo Rotondo, Paul Glover, Christopher Graham, Darien Takle, Rebecca Hobbs, Roy Ward, Cath McWhirter, Carolyn Beaver, Caelem Pope, Jennifer Ward-Lealand


“This movie also managed to pull off quite a hat trick on me. At its core, Simon is a heartless killer but the film manipulated me in feeling lots of sympathy for him throughout. Paolo Rotondo’s riveting turn as Simon had a lot to do with that as well, but so did Reynolds’ gripping visuals. A note on the directing: not only was Reynolds able to evoke emotion through his aesthetic style, but he also managed to offer us quite an arresting picture that went from slow, morbid build-ups to flashier, quick cuts constantly. The play in both extremes gave the picture a mucho original feel.” – The Arrow, Arrow in the Head

Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers

851. (new) Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers

Dwight H. Little

1988 / USA / 88m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Donald Pleasence, Ellie Cornell, Danielle Harris, George P. Wilbur, Michael Pataki, Beau Starr, Kathleen Kinmont, Sasha Jenson, Gene Ross, Carmen Filpi


“Director Little manages to evoke some sense of tension every so often, with Loomis’ attempts to warn police about Myers re-entering Haddonfield, while Jamie and Rachel become victim to Michael’s murderous rampage. Once again under Akkad’s presence, Michael becomes another routine masked slasher who has a knack for doling out some painful murders, and “The Return” is changes its narrative mid-way from a stalk and slash to a suspenseful mission involving Rachel’s efforts to keep Jamie alive. While it’s definitely not the best of the series, it’s an entertaining slasher film with a very good final scene that stands out among the other titles in the series.” – Felix Vasquez Jr., Cinema Crazed

Body Parts

852. (+146) Body Parts

Eric Red

1991 / USA / 88m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Jeff Fahey, Lindsay Duncan, Kim Delaney, Zakes Mokae, Brad Dourif, John Walsh, Paul Ben-Victor, Peter Murnik, Nathaniel Moreau, Sarah Campbell


“One of the things about Body Parts that makes it so different from other horror films of the early nineties is its killer action sequences. Of course, there are tense and suspenseful moments in the film, but while other movies toil away in the undercurrent of dread that they work so hard to create, Body Parts leans on the gas with bar fights, car wrecks, and footraces. The whole film culminates in one of the most awesome car chases ever committed to film… Dikker’s score won him the 1992 Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy & Horror Films Saturn Award for Best Music, and the award is well-deserved” – James Jay Edwards, FilmFracture

The Relic

853. (+113) The Relic

Peter Hyams

1997 / USA / 110m / Col / Monster | IMDb
Penelope Ann Miller, Tom Sizemore, Linda Hunt, James Whitmore, Clayton Rohner, Chi Muoi Lo, Thomas Ryan, Robert Lesser, Diane Robin, Lewis Van Bergen


“On paper The Relic probably reads like the kind of movie that would be made for the Syfy channel nowadays, but with a budget rumoured to be around the forty million dollar mark this was far from a B-grade cheapie, and director Peter Hyams used Hollywood’s fat cheque books to produce a slick, atmospheric and entertaining creature feature… Some twelve years after it was released The Relic isn’t fondly remembered by too many, which is a shame as it is a reasonably smart and well acted movie that doesn’t skimp on the essentials like creature action and gore and mixes its straighter faced drama with cheesy monster mayhem and genuinely atmospheric suspense sequences almost perfectly.” – Craig Villinger, Digital Retribution

Quarantine

854. (-32) Quarantine

John Erick Dowdle

2008 / USA / 89m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Jennifer Carpenter, Steve Harris, Jay Hernandez, Johnathon Schaech, Columbus Short, Andrew Fiscella, Rade Serbedzija, Greg Germann, Bernard White, Dania Ramirez


“Spotlights constantly flashing into the building’s windows from buzzing helicopters, police sirens wailing outside, and blaring bullhorn announcements create an relentless feeling of discomfort. The constant drone nearly irritates. And a lack of light — the electricity is cut to the building — coupled with the hand-held camera’s narrow field-of-vision give us an extreme sense of claustrophobia. Despite its lack of originality, the film’s script is actually quite tight and plays a huge part in the effectiveness of the film. The writers managed to avoid the oft-traversed pitfalls that slap the viewer back to reality with situations that don’t seem real… or with people who don’t behave as we’d expect. Here we’re totally convinced and find ourselves completely absorbed in the tragic situation at hand. Especially in a post-911 world, it’s not unrealistic to think we could find ourselves abandoned by authority. Now more than ever, we realize that every man for himself can be the difference between life and death.” – Frank Wilkins, Reel Talk

Saam gaang yi

855. (new) Saam gaang yi

Fruit Chan & Takashi Miike & Chan-wook Park

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


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

Leprechaun

856. (-188) Leprechaun

Mark Jones

1993 / USA / 92m / Col / Comedy | IMDb
Warwick Davis, Jennifer Aniston, Ken Olandt, Mark Holton, Robert Hy Gorman, Shay Duffin, John Sanderford, John Voldstad, Pamela Mant, William Newman


“Davis was said to have wanted this role as a bad guy after coming off a career drought, with a lead role in Willow as “the good guy.” It’s without a doubt, that the Leprechaun franchise would have never even been conceived or enjoyed as much without Davis in the lead role. He carries the movies, and every scene without him is lacking severely because the cast cannot carry the film. I would call Leprechaun an example of pure nineties cheese and also a movie I’m sure Jennifer Anniston would like to erase from her resume… There is some mild gore, Davis owns the role and has a couple of shining moments. This is definitely not a movie I’d show to kids. That little bastard is creepy looking and could haunt a little child’s dreams.” – Richard Taylor, Severed Cinema

Lik Wong

857. (new) Lik Wong

Ngai Choi Lam

1991 / Hong Kong / 91m / Col / Martial Arts | IMDb
Siu-Wong Fan, Mei Sheng Fan, Ka-Kui Ho, Yukari ôshima, Chi-leung Chan, Tetsurô Tanba, Gloria Yip, Philip Kwok, Bill Lung Biu, Yiu-Sing Cheung


“A martial arts film like no other, with characters’ fists not just making full contact with their opponents’ bodies, but actually going through them. When one person in ‘The Story of Ricky’ threatens to turn another ‘into mincemeat’ or to cut them ‘into little pieces’, their words are meant all too literally… Based on a popular Japanese manga, and released in 1991, ‘The Story of Ricky’ has the honour of being the first totally sex-free Hong Kong film to receive a Category 3 rating (equivalent to the 18 certificate here). Apart from ‘Ichi the Killer’, it is the only live-action film ever to capture the anarchic, excessive, highly stylised violence of manga… a truly visceral film that will leave you feeling battered and bruised, but strangely liberated nonetheless.” – Anton Bitel, Movie Gazette

Die Schlangengrube und das Pendel

858. (+113) Die Schlangengrube und das Pendel

Harald Reinl

1967 / Germany / 80m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Lex Barker, Karin Dor, Christopher Lee, Carl Lange, Christiane Rücker, Vladimir Medar, Dieter Eppler


“Based tenuously on Edgar Allan Poe’s story “The Pit and the Pendulum,” German director Harald Reinl’s 1967 gothic outing (which is also known as The Castle of the Walking Dead and Blood of the Virgins) is a fun and shivering ride into the macabre. Reinl has spent much of his entire career dealing with spooks and chills, and wastes no time getting the mood lathered on quickly with the execution of Regula at the beginning of the film… From there, after setting up his main protagonists and the shadow of dread that Regula has cast over the countryside, he truly gets things moving with the adventure through the haunted forest as he dishes out gobs of thick fog, arms and legs growing out of trees, and plenty of corpses hanging from the limbs.” – Ryan Midnight, Inside Pulse

Hands of the Ripper

859. (-7) Hands of the Ripper

Peter Sasdy

1971 / UK / 85m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Eric Porter, Angharad Rees, Jane Merrow, Keith Bell, Derek Godfrey, Dora Bryan, Marjorie Rhodes, Lynda Baron, Marjie Lawrence, Margaret Rawlings


“While the character development is certainly the main cause for the sinister atmosphere in this tale, the director also must be give props for having a very keen eye for subtlety. Even though this film features much gorier deaths than we expect from Hammer, the gore never seems over-the-top. This is because the director shows just enough so you capture how horrible the crime was, but does not linger on it too much that you actually go “eeeewwwww… gross.” He didn’t want us to come away from this movie thinking it was a low-grade “hack em up film” Instead he focused our attention on the horror behind Anna’s multiple personalities. This is most seen in the end scene, which I will not ruin for anyone. What I can say is that while there was defiantly room to go with the lowest common gore denominator at the movie’s climax, he instead showed off some very impressive camera work and emphasized the suspense and tragedy instead.” – Jenn Dlugos

The Man Who Changed His Mind

860. (-225) The Man Who Changed His Mind

Robert Stevenson

1936 / UK / 66m / BW / Science Fiction | IMDb
Boris Karloff, John Loder, Anna Lee, Frank Cellier, Donald Calthrop, Cecil Parker, Lyn Harding


““The Man Who Changed His Mind” is perhaps one of the most intense horror films from the 1930s that I’ve come across. From the first time Boris Karloff’s chain-smoking mad scientist crosses paths with Anna Lee’s brilliant and independent-minded surgeon, you know things are going to end badly for more than one of the film’s characters. But even with that knowledge, you’re not going to guess how badly and for whom until the story is all but done unfolding. Even after nearly 75 years, this is a horror film that countless modern-day filmmakers need to study and emulate’ their films would be far better for it.” – Steve Miller, Shades of Gray

The Mangler

861. (-154) The Mangler

Tobe Hooper

1995 / USA / 106m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Robert Englund, Ted Levine, Daniel Matmor, Jeremy Crutchley, Vanessa Pike, Demetre Phillips, Lisa Morris, Vera Blacker, Ashley Hayden, Danny Keogh


“Just because The Mangler isn’t good doesn’t mean it isn’t worthwhile… There’s so much to recommend, simply due to the sheer watchability of it. Robert Englund’s performance is so great. It’s so confusing that it makes you question what both he and Hooper were thinking when coming up with this character… When the machine does completely come to life at the end, it’s the best, most absurd thing that happens during the entire running time. It feels like the only climax The Mangler could have had. Because it’s just ridiculous. But as campy, stupid and bizarre as it is, you’re never not entertained.” – Nat Brehmer, Wicked Horror

Monkey Shines

862. (-33) Monkey Shines

George A. Romero

1988 / USA / 113m / Col / Nature | IMDb
Jason Beghe, John Pankow, Kate McNeil, Joyce Van Patten, Christine Forrest, Stephen Root, Stanley Tucci, Boo, Janine Turner, William Newman


“Horror fans have seen these things before, but to Romero’s credit where many filmmakers would use this story as a launching pad for gory set pieces and offer up a symphony of murder at the monkey’s hand, here the emphasis is more on the psychological aspect of things. As Allan breaks down we get inside his head a bit thanks to the genuinely strong performance from Jason Beghe. We don’t always like him but the movie is calculating enough to ensure that we do always understand him. This makes the more macabre scenes in which the murders do take place considerably more suspenseful than they would be had they just been simple gore films. As Allan’s anger grows and he starts to crack, the film does grow in intensity thanks to the character development that came before it starting to pay off in interesting ways.” – Ian Jane, DVDTalk

Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan

863. (-16) Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan

Rob Hedden

1989 / USA / 100m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Todd Caldecott, Tiffany Paulsen, Tim Mirkovich, Kane Hodder, Jensen Daggett, Barbara Bingham, Alex Diakun, Peter Mark Richman, Ace, Warren Munson


“Directed by Rob Hedden, Jason Takes Manhattan is the one installment that I have a love/hate relationship with. I hate that I love it because it’s probably one of the weakest installments in the entire franchise but yet, there are so many great moments too including the rooftop boxing match between Jason and Julius, Jason knocking over the thugs boombox, the scene in the diner with a future “Jason”, and sewer-face Jason at the end… Overall, as a horror fan, even the weakest of movies can still hold a place in my heart and Jason Takes Manhattan is definitely one of them. I mean, taking the serial killer and putting him on a boat isn’t the silliest thing you could do — you could always send him to space.” – Heather Wixson, Dread Central

From Beyond the Grave

864. (+128) From Beyond the Grave

Kevin Connor

1974 / UK / 97m / Col / Anthology | IMDb
Ian Bannen, Ian Carmichael, Peter Cushing, Diana Dors, Margaret Leighton, Donald Pleasence, Nyree Dawn Porter, David Warner, Angela Pleasence, Ian Ogilvy


“The first of this film’s strengths is that it takes itself seriously. The stories could easily lend themselves to parody or black comedy, but Connor and his screenwriters never fall for that temptation. With the exception of “The Elemental,” which does have one broad, comic character, the stories in this film are presented as straightforward ghost stories. This presentation lends the film a foreboding quality that inculcates a sense of unease that pervades all of the stories. We never get the feeling that the cast or the filmmakers feel that they are above this kind of film, and this adds a sense of believability to the stories.” – Eric Miller, Classic-Horror

Poltergeist II: The Other Side

865. (+54) Poltergeist II: The Other Side

Brian Gibson

1986 / USA / 91m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
JoBeth Williams, Craig T. Nelson, Heather O’Rourke, Oliver Robins, Zelda Rubinstein, Will Sampson, Julian Beck, Geraldine Fitzgerald, John P. Whitecloud, Noble Craig


“If I’m being as objective as possible, I know that the movie just doesn’t measure up to the truly classic first film. There’s no doubt about that… But this doesn’t matter. Poltergeist II is fun, not just the usual, so-bad-it’s-good variety of horror film fun — though it is that, occasionally — but actual fun. You can’t help but enjoy how ridiculously far out it’s willing to go while still remaining completely straight-faced. What other film features a tequila worm monster, killer braces, a levitating chainsaw, and the wackiest failed doomsday prophet this side of Harold Camping?” – Casey Broadwater, Blu-ray.com

Wendigo

866. (+16) Wendigo

Larry Fessenden

2001 / USA / 91m / Col / Monster | IMDb
Patricia Clarkson, Jake Weber, Erik Per Sullivan, John Speredakos, Christopher Wynkoop, Lloyd Oxendine, Brian Delate, Daniel Sherman, Jennifer Wiltsie


“Writer/director Larry Fessenden throws everything including the kitchen sink into the visuals. “Wendigo” is a very good-looking film, even if a brief sequence using handheld cameras early on gets to be a bit tedious. The movie, despite being a slow and laborious character study, still manages to move well. Fessenden proves that he was paying attention in film school when the professors were talking about motifs and themes, and as a result the film’s visualization is swarming with secondary and third meanings — that is, if one cares to pick them out. Don’t go into “Wendigo” expecting a horror movie. Despite the title, the film is more about man’s interaction, and lack thereof, with one another than it is about a mythical beast. The film is never scary, but rather shocking in its nonchalant attitude toward human nature and violence.” – Nix, Beyond Hollywood

Fascination

867. (-9) Fascination

Jean Rollin

1979 / France / 80m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Franca Maï, Brigitte Lahaie, Jean-Marie Lemaire, Fanny Magier, Muriel Montossé, Sophie Noël, Evelyne Thomas, Agnès Bert, Cyril Val, Myriam Watteau


“The story breaks down more or less into a series of surreal erotic episodes, with Rollin lingering over his trademark dreamy lesbian love scenes and plenty of nudity from the gorgeous Lahaie. However, as in Rollin’s best films no matter how off-kilter and strange the imagery, the plot proves surprisingly coherent when approached on its own terms as a waking dream. Rollin takes a cultured, elegant approach to sexploitation-horror with the emphasis on the poetic and magical aspects. He milks the dreamlike atmosphere provided by that fantastically evocative, mist-shrouded chateau, for all its worth and conjures other indelible images from close-ups on blood-stained lips to Lahaie’s big scythe-wielding moment. Arguably the finest hardcore porn star-turned straight actress, the future novelist/talk show host is mesmerising here.” – Andrew Pragasam, The Spinning Image

Westworld

868. (+83) Westworld

Michael Crichton

1973 / USA / 88m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Yul Brynner, Richard Benjamin, James Brolin, Norman Bartold, Alan Oppenheimer, Victoria Shaw, Dick Van Patten, Linda Gaye Scott, Steve Franken, Michael T. Mikler


“In the 1970’s, writers were still being inspired by the technology of the Disneyland theme park attractions… The machines start breaking down in a pattern that spreads like a disease, thus predicting the computer virus, but calling it a “central mechanism psychosis”. Of course, this plot device was recycled for Jurassic Park… The long final act with the unstoppable robot with infra-red vision anticipates elements of The Terminator, Predator (right down to a crucial plot point), even the robo-vision of Robocop. In fact, the American Cinematographer articles about Westworld… point out that the gunslinger’s electronic viewpoint was the first [film] sequence to use actual computer imaging” – Mark Hodgson, Black Hole DVD Reviews

Swamp Thing

869. (+12) Swamp Thing

Wes Craven

1982 / USA / 91m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Louis Jourdan, Adrienne Barbeau, Ray Wise, David Hess, Nicholas Worth, Don Knight, Al Ruban, Dick Durock, Ben Bates, Nannette Brown


“This is one of those movies like “Infra-Man” or “Invasion of the Bee Girls”: an off-the-wall, eccentric, peculiar movie fueled by the demented obsessions of its makers. “Swamp Thing” first saw the light of day, so to speak, as a hero in a celebrated series of DC Comics… [Wes Craven] betrays a certain gentleness and poetry along with the gore; in fact, this movie is a lot less violent than many others in the same genre. Craven’s inspiration seems to come from James Whale’s classic “Bride of Frankenstein” (1935), and he pays tribute in scenes where his swamp monster sniffs a flower, admires a young girl’s beauty from afar, and looks sadly at a photograph in a locket.” – Roger Ebert, RogerEbert.com

Bloody Birthday

870. (+8) Bloody Birthday

Ed Hunt

1981 / USA / 85m / Col / Evil Children | IMDb
Lori Lethin, Melinda Cordell, Julie Brown, Joe Penny, Bert Kramer, K.C. Martel, Elizabeth Hoy, Billy Jayne, Andrew Freeman, Susan Strasberg


“Directed by Ed Hunt, you get the distinct impression that Bloody Birthday was stalking the same crowd that came out in droves for Halloween. Released just four years after Michael Myers broke loose, Hunt’s horror shares many of the same tropes, including Lethin’s final girl, the sexy being punishable by death and – in retrospect – a healthy dose of post-70s kitsch. Obviously, Bloody Birthday didn’t share the runaway success of John Carpenter’s classic but that doesn’t make it any less potent. Despite an undeniably flimsy back story for its killer kids, the way they conduct their bloody business is pretty memorable. The three terror tykes… are never short of an evil plan and turn out performances that implore you to hate them, adding to the film’s endurability for modern eyes.” – Simon Bland, HorrorTalk

Body Melt

871. (new) Body Melt

Philip Brophy

1993 / Australia / 81m / Col / Body Horror | IMDb
Gerard Kennedy, Andrew Daddo, Ian Smith, Regina Gaigalas, Vincent Gil, Neil Foley, Anthea Davis, Matthew Newton, Lesley Baker, Amy Grove-Rogers


“The trouble is that, by doing his thing so well, director Philip Brophy has left audiences unsure if his film is a spoof – but you only have to pay attention to its innovative camerawork, perfectly arranged lighting and seamless continuity to realise that there’s a lot of talent behind it. Whilst it would be entertaining either way, it’s clearly more than just a halfhearted slice of exploitation movie-making – it’s a hilarious tribute to the best-loved cliches of the genre, and the affection and understanding that have gone into it mean it has real spirit, energy and character.” – Jennie Kermode, Eye For Film

The Call of Cthulhu

872. (+113) The Call of Cthulhu

Andrew Leman

2005 / USA / 47m / BW / Supernatural | IMDb
Matt Foyer, John Bolen, Ralph Lucas, Chad Fifer, Susan Zucker, Kalafatic Poole, John Klemantaski, Jason Owens, D. Grigsby Poland, David Mersault


“[A] rousing throwback to the silent film era, the time where horror meant the twang of the score, and actually paying attention, focusing on the horror of our actors as they face this menace. In the silent era, actors were more based upon their facial expressions and presence upon the screen, and “The Call of Cthulhu” captures the mood of those old silent films, with the sheer goth of HP Lovecraft… Leman’s direction is gorgeous with wonderful set pieces, and beautiful cinematography, while the story’s tension mounts minute to minute for the big pay off. For a film that didn’t really seem to have a big budget, it sure had some fantastic special effects, especially in the climax where the sailors finally go above and beyond this legend.” – Felix Vasquez Jr., Film Threat

Deep Rising

873. (+76) Deep Rising

Stephen Sommers

1998 / USA / 106m / Col / Action | IMDb
Treat Williams, Famke Janssen, Anthony Heald, Kevin J. O’Connor, Wes Studi, Derrick O’Connor, Jason Flemyng, Cliff Curtis, Clifton Powell, Trevor Goddard


““Cheese Rising” might have been a more apt title for this Giant Monster from the Depths throwback. Despite its obvious drawbacks, however, this patently silly horror show is good, stupid fun if you can just manage to leave your intellect at home for a while… the film manages the look and feel of something far more than the sum of its many-tentacled parts… despite Deep Rising’s off-the-scale cheese factor, it’s still a rollicking good time, frequently poking fun at itself and assorted horror film conventions… While the film is essentially Aliens aboard a luxury liner, Sommers keeps thing fast and loose, negotiating some splendid action set-pieces within the cramped confines of the mammoth ship” – Marc Savlov, Austin Chronicle

Paranormal Activity 3

874. (new) Paranormal Activity 3

Henry Joost & Ariel Schulman

2011 / USA / 83m / Col / Found Footage | IMDb
Lauren Bittner, Christopher Nicholas Smith, Chloe Csengery, Jessica Tyler Brown, Hallie Foote, Dustin Ingram, Johanna Braddy, Katie Featherston, Sprague Grayden


“This paradox—the less you see the more you think you see, or the more you think about seeing—is what used to make horror go. Before Tom Savini and Dan O’Bannon, and before the essential redundancy of torture porn, scary movies depended on viewers’ imaginations. The Paranormal Activity films return to that low-budget idea, with an exponentially high profits pay-off. Their plots are rudimentary, and this third installment’s architecture is both banal and ludicrous (as it elucidates how the sisters came to know the demon plaguing them in the first two films, it wades into hoary-old-witches waters). But you don’t go to horror movies for story. You go for sensation, to be moved. Paranormal Activity 3 not only gets that, it also asks you to get it, to be aware of how you’re being moved, and your part in the moving.” – Cynthia Fuchs, Pop Matters

ParaNorman

875. (+64) ParaNorman

Chris Butler & Sam Fell

2012 / USA / 92m / Col / Zombie | IMDb
Kodi Smit-McPhee, Tucker Albrizzi, Anna Kendrick, Casey Affleck, Christopher Mintz-Plasse, Leslie Mann, Jeff Garlin, Elaine Stritch, Bernard Hill, Jodelle Ferland


““ParaNorman” creeps and crawls out of the mind of writer/co-director Chris Butler, a storyboard artist who honed his skills on Tim Burton’s “Corpse Bride” and Henry Selick’s “Coraline.” It’s no wonder, then, that when Butler receives free rein to tell his own story, he comes up with a spooky, creature-infested campfire story laced with valuable lessons about teamwork, responsibility, courage and the celebration of our inner outcast… After a creaky start, “ParaNorman” comes to life once the dead rise. Zombies stomp, trees throw dagger branches, purple-faced clouds loom, and this roller-coaster ride through an expertly crafted house of terrors culminates with an unfortunately busy finale” – Sean O’Connell, Washington Post

Cosa avete fatto a Solange?

876. (new) Cosa avete fatto a Solange?

Massimo Dallamano

1972 / Italy / 107m / Col / Giallo | IMDb
Fabio Testi, Cristina Galbó, Karin Baal, Joachim Fuchsberger, Günther Stoll, Claudia Butenuth, Camille Keaton, Maria Monti, Giancarlo Badessi, Pilar Castel


“The film is full of little ironies, and it is able to alight on moments that seem inconsequential because of an incredibly patient and careful method of storytelling. The precise narrative is complimented by the beautiful and meticulous widescreen cinematography of Aristide Massaccesi; rarely has the frame been used to such excellent effect in a gialli. Another touch of pure class is the score by Ennio Morricone which is one of his most memorable. What Have You Done to Solange? is an unforgettable and poignant film, it is a quietly devastating examination of lost innocence.” – Shaun Anderson, The Celluloid Highway

Rock 'n' Roll Nightmare

877. (new) Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare

John Fasano

1987 / Canada / 83m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Jon Mikl Thor, Jillian Peri, Frank Dietz, David Lane, Teresa Simpson, Adam Fried, Denise Dicandia, Jesse D’Angelo, Rusty Hamilton, Cindy Cirile


“If Cheez Whiz and hairspray are your favorite aerosols, then “Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare” just might be for you. Made in 1987, this stillborn brainchild from Canadian rocker Jon Mikl Thor, who both writes and stars, is a hair-metal slasher that mistakes schlock for shock… Rudimentary puppets, softcore sex and bombastic tunes provide some amusing highlights, but the real reason for seeing “Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare” is the ludicrous final 15 minutes. It’s like a 1980s music video adaptation of a 1970s comic book.” – Jamie S. Rich, The Oregonian

Screamers

878. (-178) Screamers

Christian Duguay

1995 / Canada / 108m / Col / Science Fiction | IMDb
Peter Weller, Roy Dupuis, Jennifer Rubin, Andrew Lauer, Charles Edwin Powell, Ron White, Michael Caloz, Liliana Komorowska, Jason Cavalier, Leni Parker


Screamers has an interesting, multi-layered plot, with lots of twists and turns… Overall, the film shows us a great vision of a futuristic dystopia, where big corporations travel the solar system in search of resources and riches. The deceit and betrayal suffered by our protagonist provide a sense of despair and isolation. And the Screamers add threat, uncertainty and fear. All of these elements combine to make this an intriguing film about one man’s fight for survival when all hope seems lost.” – Emma Hutchings, Suspend Your Disbelief

Child's Play 2

879. (-5) Child’s Play 2

John Lafia

1990 / USA / 84m / Col / Evil Doll | IMDb
Alex Vincent, Jenny Agutter, Gerrit Graham, Christine Elise, Brad Dourif, Grace Zabriskie, Peter Haskell, Beth Grant, Greg Germann, Raymond Singer


“An inevitable sequel that’s not as good as its progenitor, but better than most movies with the numbers 2 through 8 in their titles… “2” actually gets clever at the end, when Andy (Alex Vincent) and sidekick Kyle (Christine Elise) battle Chucky in the Good Guys factory amid moving conveyor belts, hydraulic presses and molding units. As surreal as it is suspenseful, the climax may be a little too sophisticated for the genre, but it manages to lower its expectations at the last minute.” – Richard Harrington, Washington Post

Mr. Sardonicus

880. (new) Mr. Sardonicus

William Castle

1961 / USA / 89m / Col / Gothic | IMDb
Ronald Lewis, Audrey Dalton, Guy Rolfe, Oskar Homolka, Vladimir Sokoloff, Erika Peters, Lorna Hanson


“While there is plenty of lurid subject matter throughout Mr. Sardonicus, the film would be nothing without its sinister gothic atmosphere, something that makes the film a perfect fit for a chilly October evening. There are castles hidden by twisted trees, graveyards nestled inside dead gardens, heavy shadows cast over the characters, and thick sheets of fog that hang heavy in the air and coil around like ghostly specters. Castle’s finishing touch is the rotten corpse that leers out from its open grave, a visual jolt that hits the viewer like a strong cup of coffee. There is no doubt that the people over at Hammer Studios were most likely smiling over what Castle achieved here. This atmosphere gives Mr. Sardonicus plenty of personality and on its own, it is enough to give the viewer goosebumps, but the make-up effects really make this picture a macabre affair.” – Steve Habrat, Anti-Film School

Tales from the Darkside: The Movie

881. (-5) Tales from the Darkside: The Movie

John Harrison

1990 / USA / 93m / Col / Anthology | IMDb
Deborah Harry, Christian Slater, David Johansen, William Hickey, James Remar, Rae Dawn Chong, Matthew Lawrence, Robert Sedgwick, Steve Buscemi, Julianne Moore


“Director John Harrison doesn’t do too much wrong here, but he’s helped immensely by three decent stories, a fun wraparound, and a collection of great actors in the main roles […] There’s plenty of dark humour, there’s just enough gore to keep fans of the red stuff happy, and there are some enjoyable practical effects (some enjoyable for being good, and some enjoyable for being amusingly fake). It’s also perfectly paced, coming in at about 90 minutes, therefore preventing any one tale from outstaying its welcome.” – Kevin Matthews, For It Is Man’s Number

The Believers

882. (-210) The Believers

John Schlesinger

1987 / USA / 114m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Martin Sheen, Helen Shaver, Harley Cross, Robert Loggia, Elizabeth Wilson, Harris Yulin, Lee Richardson, Richard Masur, Carla Pinza, Jimmy Smits


“In 1987 John Schlesinger directed this neo-noir horror film adapted from the 1982 novel The Religion by Nicholas Conde. The subject is voodoo, or more specifically the religion known as Santería, a mix of Roman Catholicism and Afro-Caribbean religious rituals and traditions. In an attempt to not disparage an entire religion, in the movie the real villains practice an offshoot called brujería, which is Spanish for witchcraft. At any rate, The Believers was criticized by some for perpetuating negative stereotypes. If you can look past that, however, this is a solidly entertaining thriller with a terrific cast led by Martin Sheen.” – Patrick Nash, Three Movie Buffs

Friday the 13th: A New Beginning

883. (-63) Friday the 13th: A New Beginning

Danny Steinmann

1985 / USA / 92m / Col / Slasher | IMDb
Melanie Kinnaman, John Shepherd, Shavar Ross, Richard Young, Marco St. John, Juliette Cummins, Carol Locatell, Vernon Washington, John Robert Dixon, Jerry Pavlon


“Setting the movie in and around a mental institute provides some freshness, plus an amusingly excessive early moment in which a twitchy inmate hacks up a fellow resident just for being fat and annoying. The “mystery” killer gets an array of sinister close-ups just in case we can’t guess for ourselves, and many characters are introduced for the purpose of having flares / meat cleavers / machetes shoved into their bodies. The deepest character development is to give one guy a stutter.” – Steven West, Horrorscreams

Threads

884. (new) Threads

Mick Jackson

1984 / UK / 112m / Col / Nuclear War | IMDb
Karen Meagher, Reece Dinsdale, David Brierly, Rita May, Nicholas Lane, Jane Hazlegrove, Henry Moxon, June Broughton, Sylvia Stoker, Harry Beety


“Threads is perhaps the strongest anti-nuclear film ever made, the closest thing available to a documentary on post-apocalyptic life. The film takes its title from the concept that all life on earth is interconnected as if by invisible “threads.” The ultimate message of the film is that nuclear war is not simply an issue for politicians to debate, or for just the major nuclear powers. The threat of nuclear war affects all individuals equally and, as such, each individual is responsible for doing something about it. Even in the post-Cold War world of today, it is difficult to imagine anyone viewing Threads and not walking away from the film with that massive burden in the forefront of their minds.” – David Carter, Not Coming to a Theater Near You

The Man They Could Not Hang

885. (-76) The Man They Could Not Hang

Nick Grinde

1939 / USA / 64m / BW / Science Fiction | IMDb
Boris Karloff, Lorna Gray, Robert Wilcox, Roger Pryor, Don Beddoe, Ann Doran, Joe De Stefani, Charles Trowbridge, Byron Foulger, Dick Curtis


“The Man They Could Not Hang is a crime drama with dark horror elements; the only thing keeping it from being a complete murder mystery is the fact that the murderer is not a mystery at all. Truth be told, the movie follows a pretty predictable path. Nevertheless, the screenplay, adapted by Karl Brown… drips with tension and suspense… Although Dr. Savaard is one of Karloff’s least sympathetic characters, his performance is both subtle and melodramatic, and the audience still finds itself wanting to root for him, even when he makes the jump from hero to villain for the second half of the movie. It may not have been as big of a hit as some of his other films, but The Man They Could Not Hang helped to transform Boris Karloff from horror icon to legitimate movie star.” – James Jay Edwards, FilmFracture

Blade II

886. (new) Blade II

Guillermo del Toro

2002 / USA / 117m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Wesley Snipes, Kris Kristofferson, Ron Perlman, Leonor Varela, Norman Reedus, Thomas Kretschmann, Luke Goss, Matt Schulze, Danny John-Jules, Donnie Yen


“Director Guillermo del Toro effortlessly switches gears from these sequences to quiet explorations of dark, brooding settings typical of the horror genre and back again. The horror scenes have genuine tension to them, and del Toro is always aware of the grotesque nature of the material. He’s not afraid to showcase pools of blood, dismemberment, characters sliced in half, vampires dissolving, and, of course, Reaper dissections. The story is pure comic book, which essentially means that it should be ignored to enjoy the strengths of the film. Eventually, though, the storyline delves into some mythology similar to another famous horror story, and there’s actually something a bit insightful about these scenes. Along with the more disturbing elements, the film has the feel of a graphic novel. Scenes are dark, dreary, and atmospheric. The performances, led by Wesley Snipes’ complete immersion into the fun of his role, are pure camp—just right for this material.” – Mark Dujsik, Mark Reviews Movies

Dans ma peau

887. (+70) Dans ma peau

Marina de Van

2002 / France / 93m / Col / Body Horror | IMDb
Marina de Van, Laurent Lucas, Léa Drucker, Thibault de Montalembert, Dominique Reymond, Bernard Alane, Marc Rioufol, François Lamotte, Adrien de Van, Alain Rimoux


“It’s mostly the suggestion of what Esther is doing to herself that worms its way into your mind and won’t leave you alone, and that’s what people were finding so uncomfortable that they couldn’t continue to watch the film. Being confronted with a sudden boundary between “me” and “my body” isn’t something many of us have dealt with, and our innate inclination for self-preservation tells us to run from the suggestion that such a thing is possible. That might make In My Skin the ultimate horror movie, one the proposes that, given the right stimulus, we ourselves could be our own worst mortal danger.” – MaryAnn Johanson, Flick Filosopher

Joy Ride

888. (new) Joy Ride

John Dahl

2001 / USA / 97m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Steve Zahn, Paul Walker, Leelee Sobieski, Jessica Bowman, Stuart Stone, Basil Wallace, Brian Leckner, Mary Wickliffe, McKenzie Satterthwaite, Dell Yount


“Directed by the meticulous John Dahl (1994’s “The Last Seduction”), who excels at telling noirish stories of murder and mayhem, “Joy Ride” is an absolutely merciless thriller–exciting, marvelously crafted, strongly acted, and with more than a few moments destined to increase your heartbeat. Taking a short premise that could be described as “three victims terrorized by a giant truck,” director Dahl and screenwriters Clay Tarver and J.J. Abrams thankfully do not clutter the ingenious storyline with lots of subplots, nor do they feel it necessary to ever visually unveil the psychopath behind the big rig. Not knowing exactly what Lewis, Fuller, and Venna are up against makes for an even more unshakably eerie experience.” – Dustin Putnam, The Movie Boy

Delicatessen

889. (new) Delicatessen

Marc Caro & Jean-Pierre Jeunet

1991 / France / 99m / Col / Black Comedy | IMDb
Pascal Benezech, Dominique Pinon, Marie-Laure Dougnac, Jean-Claude Dreyfus, Karin Viard, Ticky Holgado, Anne-Marie Pisani, Boban Janevski, Mikael Todde, Edith Ker


“Set to the cadence and meanderings of a truly odd household of inmates/tenants, Delicatessen cunningly unfolds a futuristic domain of perverse gadgets and their owners who, in turn, run amok in a macabre and highly melancholy manner. Brutal machinery and fragile humanity are forever at odds, with love and devotion the only chance for survival. But can the cannibal elite of the tenement repel the attack of the subversive troglodytes? The juxtaposition of themes becomes increasingly delirious… Sure to be heralded as a masterpiece of vision and not merely a cult film, Delicatessen is so laden with humor and madness, brutality and tenderness, viewers will be left dumbstruck by the sheer style of the adventure alone.” – Roger Hurlburt, South Florida Sun-Sentinel

Mumsy, Nanny, Sonny & Girly

890. (new) Mumsy, Nanny, Sonny & Girly

Freddie Francis

1970 / UK / 102m / Col / Black Comedy | IMDb
Michael Bryant, Ursula Howells, Pat Heywood, Howard Trevor, Vanessa Howard, Robert Swann, Imogen Hassall, Michael Ripper, Hugh Armstrong


“Girly is not the nightmarish blur of sex, color, and violence one would expect judging by the poster. Instead, it is a slow, psychological meditation, a playful look into the disturbing details of suppressed sexuality, morbid isolation, and the notion of insanity by proxy. We are led into a world fully contained within a decaying mansion, but we aren’t met with a parade of bloody horrors and gleefully violent imagery; instead, we are witness to a coy, clever game of cat and mouse, where no action or emotion is ever true. Comically depraved actions and lustful yearnings hidden behind a strange veil of morality are commonplace.” – James Merolla

10 Cloverfield Lane

891. (new) 10 Cloverfield Lane

Dan Trachtenberg

2016 / USA / 103m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
John Goodman, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, John Gallagher Jr., Douglas M. Griffin, Suzanne Cryer, Bradley Cooper, Sumalee Montano, Frank Mottek


“Long before 10 Cloverfield Lane gets to the issue of whether or not there are monsters above ground, it’s evident that Howard is monster enough below it: a figure of frustrated, resentful masculinity (he alleges, offhand, that his ex-wife turned his daughter against him) finally crowned with the authority he feels has long been denied him. While the original Cloverfield deliberately positioned its cast of twentysomethings to be dwarfed by a largescale disaster, 10 Cloverfield Lane is rewardingly claustrophobic, keeping its focus tight on the characters and their cramped space while whatever disasters there are loom outside the bunker.” – Allison Willmore, Buzzfeed News

The Legend of the 7 Golden Vampires

892. (-213) The Legend of the 7 Golden Vampires

Roy Ward Baker

1974 / UK / 83m / Col / Vampire | IMDb
Peter Cushing, David Chiang, Julie Ege, Robin Stewart, Szu Shih, John Forbes-Robertson, Robert Hanna, Shen Chan, James Ma, Hui-Ling Liu


“By the early ‘70s, the beloved English horror and science-fiction studio Hammer was losing it. After about 15 years spent turning out distinctive, entertaining films made on modest budgets, the studio tried to stay relevant by resorting to desperate variations on classic horror themes… One of the more bizarre developments was Hammer’s decision to team up with Hong Kong’s Shaw Brothers, the production company behind numerous kung-fu hits… It’s pretty much as ridiculous as it sounds, but there’s something inherently entertaining about make-up-splattered vampires, distinguished British actors, and martial artists squaring off in periodic eruptions of kung-fu fighting.” – Keith Phipps, The Onion A.V. Club

Grace

893. (new) Grace

Paul Solet

2009 / USA / 84m / Col / Evil Children | IMDb
Jordan Ladd, Stephen Park, Gabrielle Rose, Serge Houde, Samantha Ferris, Kate Herriot, Troy Skog, Malcolm Stewart, Jeff Stone, Jamie Stephenson


“Many horror filmmakers say they want to capture the look and feel of classic ’70s horror films like “The Exorcist” or “Rosemary’s Baby,” but Solet has achieved it on many levels combining the film’s quiet and somber tone with a haunting ambient score to keeps you on the edge of your seat. That said, the movie certainly isn’t one for the squeamish, which was quickly discovered from one of the stories that circulated around the movie’s famous midnight premiere at Sundance when two men apparently fainted, but who’s to blame them? This is clearly the sickest and most disturbing movie you’ll see this year, extremely effective on every level without cowtowing to the overused formulas that have become standard in modern horror.” – Edward Douglas, Coming Soon

P2

894. (new) P2

Franck Khalfoun

2007 / USA / 98m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Wes Bentley, Rachel Nichols, Simon Reynolds, Philip Akin, Stephanie Moore, Miranda Edwards, Paul Sun-Hyung Lee, Grace Lynn Kung, Bathsheba Garnett, Philip Williams


“Save for an early bit involving a cell phone (do they ever work in horror films?), there’s nothing here that wouldnít feel out of place in the bottom half of a ’70s drive-in double feature. The cast helps things out considerably. [Rachel Nichols] wavers believably between totally freaked and righteously wrathful, while Bentley’s Taser-wielding lonelyheart manages to shift between laughable, psycho, and strangely affecting, sometimes in a single scene. Your mileage may vary, depending on your general tolerance for B-picture skuzz, but taken as a whole (and despite the awful title), P2 makes for more than serviceable, no-frills exploitation fare.” – Andrew Wright, The Stranger

Mientras duermes

895. (new) Mientras duermes

Jaume Balagueró

2011 / Spain / 102m / Col / Thriller | IMDb
Luis Tosar, Marta Etura, Alberto San Juan, Petra Martínez, Iris Almeida, Carlos Lasarte, Amparo Fernández, Roger Morilla, Pep Tosar, Margarita Rosed


“As the film’s character based plot wraps its well scripted hands around the viewer’s neck, the same noose closes in on César, as he dodges and uses his false smiles and quick thinking to avoid detection. Both eerily realistic and uncomfortable, the viewer can never be sure whether what they are watching borders on the absurd. But the movie loses all pretension that is found in more Americanised horrors, and avoids the temptation of over-scoring itself in an attempt to add drama, and instead lets the looks and silence in-between them to create the tension. This ensures a well rounded but by no means flat film, that will leave you squirming in, and on of the edge of, your seat.” – Ross Shapland, Shapstik on Screen

The Last House on the Left

896. (+63) The Last House on the Left

Dennis Iliadis

2009 / USA / 110m / Col / Rape and Revenge | IMDb
Garret Dillahunt, Michael Bowen, Josh Coxx, Riki Lindhome, Aaron Paul, Sara Paxton, Monica Potter, Tony Goldwyn, Martha MacIsaac, Spencer Treat Clark


“Craven’s original had a grungy no-budget tawdriness – the Benny Hill production values and incongruously bouncy music made it all the more disturbing. This time around, we’re braced for what’s coming, partly because director Dennis Iliadis escorts us down the altogether safer road of dark, rainy and ominous… The cast bring a level of reality to this that’s surprisingly impressive – both Goldwyn and Garret Dillahunt push their roles a couple of notches above protective dad and generic psycho, respectively. Where Iliadis botches things is with two moments of ridiculous excess, involving a garbage disposal and a microwave, which jut out of the scenario like shameless sops to the torture-porn dollar.” – Tim Robey, Daily Telegraph

Under the Shadow

897. (new) Under the Shadow

Babak Anvari

2016 / Iran / 84m / Col / Supernatural | IMDb
Narges Rashidi, Avin Manshadi, Bobby Naderi, Arash Marandi, Aram Ghasemy, Soussan Farrokhnia, Ray Haratian, Hamid Djavadan, Behi Djanati Atai, Bijan Daneshmand


“Those cracks in the ceiling are hiding a lot more than dry rot in “Under the Shadow,” a satisfyingly tense and atmospheric thriller set in a haunted Tehran apartment during the terrifying final days of the Iran-Iraq War. Slyly merging a familiar but effective genre exercise with a grim allegory of female oppression, Babak Anvari’s resourceful writing-directing debut grounds its premise in something at once vaguely political and ineluctably sinister; imagine an Asghar Farhadi remake of “The Babadook” and you’re halfway there… In its harrowing final moments, “Under the Shadow” reveals itself as a horror story rooted in the dreams and pathologies that mothers pass down to their daughters, and the defiant gestures it may take for cycles of persecution to be broken.” – Justin Chang, Variety

Starry Eyes

898. (new) Starry Eyes

Kevin Kolsch & Dennis Widmyer

2014 / USA / 98m / Col / Psychological | IMDb
Alex Essoe, Amanda Fuller, Noah Segan, Fabianne Therese, Shane Coffey, Natalie Castillo, Pat Healy, Nick Simmons, Maria Olsen, Marc Senter


“A savage allegory about the sacrificial, soul-crushing price of fame and recognition in a town notoriously guilty for building up its talent only to tear them down, the perfectly titled “Starry Eyes” spares no one. Shooting on location in Los Angeles… writer-directors Kevin Kolsch and Dennis Widmyer paint a despairing but, from certain angles, accurate portrait of Hollywood’s grim underbelly. Beyond the sunshine and palm trees is an imminent danger that nears, each callback Sarah receives taking her closer to the part and further from her identity… Soaked in viscera and complemented by composer Jonathan Snipes’ phenomenally foreboding old-school, synth-heavy music score, the powerful finished product announces Kolsch and Widmyer as filmmaking forces to watch and remember.” – Dustin Putman, TheFrightFile.com

Exorcist II: The Heretic

899. (-8) Exorcist II: The Heretic

John Boorman

1977 / USA / 118m / Col / Possession | IMDb
Linda Blair, Richard Burton, Louise Fletcher, Max von Sydow, Kitty Winn, Paul Henreid, James Earl Jones, Ned Beatty, Belinda Beatty, Rose Portillo


“One of the craziest films ever released by a major studio, a semi-coherent Grand Guignol romp involving telekinesis, James Earl Jones in a bee costume, and an airborne demon named “Pazuzu”… Exorcist II: The Heretic certainly has its defenders, chief among them Martin Scorsese, Pauline Kael, and Keith Phipps. Scorsese preferred it to The Exorcist while Pauline Kael gushed that it “had more visual magic than a dozen movies,” which is true only if those movies were directed by Uwe Boll or shot on grandma’s video camera.” – Nathan Rabin, The Onion A.V. Club

Tutti i colori del buio

900. (new) Tutti i colori del buio

Sergio Martino

1972 / Italy / 94m / Col / Giallo | IMDb
George Hilton, Edwige Fenech, Ivan Rassimov, Julián Ugarte, George Rigaud, Maria Cumani Quasimodo, Nieves Navarro, Marina Malfatti, Luciano Pigozzi


“All the Colors of the Dark isn’t a typical giallo, even though it’s usually lumped in with the rest of the genre. While it shares some themes and visual cues with Rosemary’s Baby, I think reducing it to a pastiche of that film doesn’t do it justice. When Sergio Martino allows the film to fire on all cylinders there’s a great synergy between the hallucinatory camerawork, the lurid plot twists, and Bruno Nicolai’s bleak, yet occasionally upbeat score.” – Dollar Theater Massacre