Tag Archives: Halloween

Horror Movies You May Have Missed Part V: The Bit Where The Series Goes Disastrously Downhill Until The Inevitable Remake In Twenty Years

26 Oct

I know I only wrote about this the other day, but screw it: I didn’t leave you with enough films to fill up the entire twenty-four hours of Halloween. So here are a few more movies. Take your pick!

 

American Mary

This film has garnered rave reviews in the horror circuit, and for good reason. American Mary is the story of a young medical student who enters the world of underground surgery. She then begins to use her surgery talents in two ways – to become the most sought-after surgeon in the body modification scene, and to seek justice on those who have wronged her. Including a great performance from the always wonderful Katharine Isabelle, American Mary is a grotesque treat.

 

Three… Extremes

I love a good horror anthology, and Three… Extremes is one of the best. Taking some of the top talents of Asian cinema – Fruit Chan, Park Chan-wook and Takashi Miike – Three… Extremes delivers a trio of very different but wonderfully compelling horror shorts. The pick of the bunch, for me at least, is Miike’s Box, a beautifully shot chiller.

 

Maniac Cop

Someone dressed as a policeman is running around New York City killing innocent people. Is it a member of the public, or is it a genuine cop on a killing spree? Detective Frank McRae is trying to find out, with the help of Jack Forrest, played by horror demi-god Bruce Campbell, a cop framed for the murders. An over-the-top slasher, Maniac Cop is low on scares but is a hell of a lot of fun.

 

My Little Eye

A group of people enter a secluded house for a reality TV show. The goal – to live in the house for six months. At the end of that time, they will receive 1 million dollars, as long as none of them leave. However, things may not be as they seem. Shot entirely through hidden cameras, My Little Eye gives the impression that your are watching the feed directly, and as such is incredibly immersive. Watch for a minor role from Bradley Cooper, too.

 

The Exorcist III

Yes, it’s a horror sequel. Yes, Exorcist II: The Heretic was awful. But you know what? The third part is actually a very good horror flick. Directed by the writer of the original Exorcist novel and screenplay adaptation, it tells the story of a detective hunting a serial killer. What concerns him about the killings is that they resemble those of a serial killer who died fifteen years earlier. A little corny but still packing some good scares, The Exorcist III is worth watching for Brad Dourif’s performance alone.

 

Calvaire

This movie has made me never want to visit Belgium again, and that’s a shame because I damn love chocolate and waffles. Travelling singer Marc Stevens gets stranded in the middle of a wood, yet is thankfully led to an inn during the middle of the night. Almost certainly an acquired taste, Calvaire is highly disturbing and very quirky, and plays out as equal parts Fargo, Misery and Deliverance.

 

Mutant

I love a good cheesy 80s horror, and Mutant fits the bill. Also known as Night Shadows, it’s an unintentionally hilarious zombie romp. Full of classic bad-character-decision moments, and some inexplicable design choices – such as the zombies terrifyingly bleeding, erm, custard from their hands – it’s the perfect choice if you prefer some cruel laughs instead of scares. Here’s the entire movie.

 

Killer Crocodile

Continuing the so-bad-it’s-good vibe, here’s a 1989 creature feature that just begs to be watched. A group of environmentalists travel to a tropical delta to investigate the dumping of toxic waste. Unfortunately, this toxic waste has also created a giant crocodile that is hell bent on killing as many people as possible – including the audience, who will likely die of laughter. Jaws this ain’t.

 

May

May is a wonderful and strangely moving psychological horror, about a young woman who struggles to connect with other people. A tale of relationships, it delves deeply into May’s psychology and day-to-day troubles. Topped off by fantastic performances from Angela Bittis, Anna Faris and personal mancrush Jeremy Sisto, May is a cut above your average indie horror.

 

Ghostwatch

Ghostwatch is still one of the most controversial programmes in British TV history. Billed as a real-life investigation into the paranormal, this Michael Parkinson-presented documentary caused an unprecedented number of complaints, leading to the BBC putting a ban on broadcasting it for another decade. Although a little bit cheesy to watch now, some of the scenes are still very scary – particularly those regarding the poltergeist called Pipes.

 

And that’s that! Ten more horrors to watch. Hopefully that will do you until next year. I mean, I need at least that long to get through some more underrated horror flicks, right?

Wrong!

Wrong!

Even More Horror Movies You May Have Missed

25 Oct

Crikey! It’s been a while. But with Halloween just around the corner it’s about time I shared a few overlooked frightening films, spooky stories, and monstrous movies. Now before I get lost under my own smug alliteration, let’s get cracking!

 

The Changeling

There’s no better way to start a Halloween movie night than with a traditional ghost story, and The Changeling is a perfect example of one. A composer loses his family in a tragic accident, and moves to a secluded manor house. Whilst there, he is visited by the spectre of a child. An atmospheric slow-burner, the payoff is worth the wait. Whatever you do, don’t go in the attic.

 

Tucker & Dale vs. Evil

If you’d rather have something more light-hearted, try this instead. Two hillbillies take a well-earned holiday by a woodland lake. Unfortunately, their plans are ruined by the unfortunate arrival of a bunch of college teens. A wonderful horror subversion, Tucker & Dale vs. Evil is a trope-playing laugh riot. I’ve posted a scene rather than the trailer below, as it is best to go into this film blind, to experience it all fresh.

 

Jug Face

Keeping with the rural theme, Jug Face is an interesting, character-driven horror. Living in the middle of the woods, a small commune worships a strange pit in the ground. The pit grants prosperity, growth, peace, but only as long as it gets what it wants in return – sacrifices. Ada learns that she is to be the next sacrifice, and tries to hide it from the rest of her family. Can she escape from what her religion demands?

 

The Bay

Disclaimer: don’t watch this film when eating. The inhabitants of a Chesapeake Bay town start falling under strange and deadly afflictions. Could it be tied to the deaths of a pair of environmental researchers? Told in a found footage style, from a series of different accounts, The Bay follows the mould of Jaws – the dangers of nature overlooked by complacent leaders.

 

Cargo

This Swiss sci-fi horror knows how to build tension. A skeleton crew keeps a deep-space cargo vessel running. Laura, one of this crew, stays sane through talking with her sister, who lives on the paradise world of Rhea. However, it becomes apparent that there is another being on the ship. The setting is perfect, the isolation and the dark industrial look keeping viewers on the edge.

 

Noroi: The Curse

This Japanese mockumentary already has a fearsome reputation, but it’s yet to break into the top echelons of horror imports. An investigative reporter looks into a series of strange events – supposedly psychic children, disappearances, deaths. What he discovers leads him to try and stop the manifestation of a terrible demon. Genuinely unsettling, Noroi is a real treat.

 

The Frighteners

Peter Jackson is, of course, best known for his work with the Lord of the Rings films. If you’re a horror fan you’ve probably seen – and loved – his earlier gory works, such as Dead Alive and Bad Taste. One film that is often overlooked, though, is comedy The Frighteners. Teaming up with Robert Zemeckis as Executive Producer, the film has a wonderful cartoonish, chaotic vibe for fans of Ghostbusters or Gremlins.

 

Antiviral

If you prefer something high-concept in your horror, then try Antiviral. Directed by Brandon Cronenberg, son of the acclaimed body horror master David Cronenberg, Antiviral shows us a world where celebrity culture and genetic engineering have disastrously combined – allowing true fans to infect themselves with the same strains of disease as their idols. It’s a fantastic debut, a terrifying world imagined well – Antiviral is bound to get under your skin.

 

Lie Still

A low-budget English horror, Lie Still follows John Hare, unemployed and recently single. He moves into an old apartment building, but soon realises that he may not be alone. Extremely low-key, it’s a surprisingly effective film, helped by the suitably dark setting and tapping into genuine fears of what goes bump in the night.

 

Sauna

A historical horror, Sauna is a Finnish film set at the end of a war between Russia and Sweden. Whilst negotiating new borders, two brothers come across a village in the middle of some marshlands. There, they are faced to confront the acts they have committed.  Bleak yet artistic, with a fantastic and open-ended plot, Sauna is a real gem – not only terrifying, but a great film all round.

 

Have a Happy Halloween, everyone! And guess what? There are more horror recommendations to come!

You better believe it!

You better believe it!