Thursday, July 19, 2012

A Macabre Project

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In recent years I have come to adore horror films, and I always get excited talking about them. This obsession started in high school when a group of girlfriends and I would spend nearly every Friday night of our junior and senior years watching 5-6 horror films that we had picked out earlier in the evening at Blockbuster, gorging ourselves on alfredo pizza, configuring a system so that none of us had to go to the bathroom alone, and then driving to Krispy Kreme in the wee morning hours (while listening to Queen or The Darkness) to remind ourselves that the world was a happy place. It is because of these many Friday nights that I have come to love horror films.

Around Christmas time, my younger brother asked me to make a list of must see horror films for him, after we had just watched Halloween and he loved it. So, I did. I tried to remember all of the horror movies that my friends and I had watched in high school, as well as the films I viewed in a college horror film theory class, but alas, I could not remember them all. Therefore, this list is severely lacking.

This list will be short of body torture movies like the Saw series or Hostel (I just don't like these, sorry), as well as Asian horror cinema because I cannot always remember the names of the movies (I have the same problem with Bollywood films).

This is the version of the list as I sent it to my brother, complete with my own commentary. I have the list broken down into decades and briefly describe what "type" of horror movie was being produced at the time. I did not come up with this breakdown of horror sub-genres, it is pretty standard, and has served me well.

I want to make a list of spoof horror/campy horror films next. I have already included some in this list because they are classics.

I consider this list a project in progress. I hope to add to it and make it more thorough. Please contribute!!! 

1890s-1920s –
Superstition and Creatures of the Night

The Hunchback of Notre Dame
The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari
The Phantom of the Opera
The Monster
The Phantom Carriage
The Lost World
London After Midnight
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

1930s-1940s –
Gothic Horror and Classic Monsters. The Beginnings of Cult Horror

Bride of Frankenstein
Son of Frankenstein
The Invisible Man
The Mummy
The Wolf Man
Mystery of the Wax Museum
Island of Lost Souls
White Zombie
The Body Snatcher
Cat People
I Walked with a Zombie
King of the Zombies
The Ape Man
The Most Dangerous Game
The Golem

1950s-1960s –
Emergence of Contemporary Horror in the Atomic Age. Armegedon/End of the World-Horror and Demonic Horror.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers
The Thing From Another World
Peeping Tom
Dr. Terror’s House of Horrors
The Birds
Rear Window
The Tomb of Ligeia
The Turn of the Screw
House on Haunted Hill
The Innocents
The Haunting
Rosemary’s Baby
Night of the Living Dead
Blood Feast
Two Thousand Maniacs
The Last Man on Earth
The Maze
The Creature from the Black Lagoon

1970s-1980s –
Rise of the Occult and the Birth of Slasher Films. Death of the Nuclear Family

The Exorcist
Audrey Rose
Alice, Sweet Alice
The Omen
The Sentinel
The Hills Have Eyes
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
Dawn of the Dead
The Shining
Friday the 13th
A Nightmare on Elm Street
Black Christmas
Evil Dead (watch all three and get yourself a ‘boomstick’)…you’ll understand
Fright Night
The Lost Boys
The Amityville Horror
Children of the Corn (watch all of them, true insanity...glowing pee is the enemy)
Last House on the Left (pretty graphic and violent. I had a hard time with it)
I Spit on your Grave (this is a rape/revenge movie. This was a popular sub-genre in the ‘70s because of
the ERA movement in America)
The Wicker Man
The Watcher in the Woods
An American Werewolf in London
Don’t Look Now
The Hunger
Gremlins (Christmas time scary movie!)
The Fly
Little Shop of Horrors
Troll 2 (don’t mess with Troll.)
Trick or Treat (this has Ozzy Osbourne in it!)
Elvira, Mistress of the Dark (not really a horror film, but a cult classic)
Pet Sematary
The Rocky Horror Picture Show (Cult classic.)
When A Stranger Calls

A Brief Interlude –
Sci-Fi Horror in the 1970s-1980s

Alien (Grant says watch all of them...I didn't really like them)
Up From the Depths
The Thing

The 1990s –
Anything Goes in Horror. Slashers to Social Horror Films. (Most of the ‘90s were mostly spent making sequels to horror films of the ‘70s and ‘80s. These should also be seen but I did not include them on this list. Basically, except for a few films, the ‘90s sucked for horror films. You got things like Carnasaur 3 and Lawnmower Man 2)

Silence of the Lambs
The Dark Half
Urban Legend
I know what you did Last Summer
Scream (all sequels are good…and play more into horror film theory as they go. Must watch)
Dead Alive
Interview with the Vampire
Buffy the Vampire Slayer
From Dusk ‘til Dawn
The Craft
The Relic
Carnival of Souls
The Blair Witch Project
Sleepy Hollow (not really scary, but a good one!)
Single White Female (yuppie horror, first world problems)
From Hell
The Moth Man Prophecies

2000s –
Full Blown Horror. Original Concepts and Cult Classics. Asian Horror Dominates. Horror Movies begin to make fun of themselves.

The Ring
The Grudge
Ju-On (Original ‘Grudge’)
Cabin Fever
Freddy vs. Jason
Final Destination
Brotherhood of the Wolf
Let the Right One In
The Others
The Skeleton Key
Resident Evil
28 Days Later
28 Weeks Later
Dawn of the Dead
BONUS POINTS : Shaun of the Dead
Wrong Turn
Wolf Creek
Paranormal Activity
30 Days of Night
Hostel (intense body horror)
The Woman in Black
The Cabin in the Woods
Dark Shadows
Versus (ridiculous Japanese vampire horror movie. Totally awesome)
Jeepers Creepers
Session 9
Ghost Ship
Darkness Falls
Dead and Breakfast (best soundtrack and goofy zombie movie combo. Must see)
Romasanta (cool foreign werewolf movie)
Dark Water
The Fog
The Mist
Snakes on a Plane
The Village
American Zombie (documentary style)
Blood and Chocolate (okay...I just like werewolf movies...this is a pretty terrible movie and you will get made fun of for watching it).
Grindhouse Double Feature: Deathproof and Planet Terror
I Am Legend
The Orphanage
From Hell
White Noise
The Strangers
Drag me to Hell (and this is why you follow horror film rules! Never, ever, kill a kitten)
The Haunting in Connecticut

1 comment:

  1. You have got to watch the series The Kingdom (not the American remake Kingdom Hospital) and have you seen Bergman's Hour of the Wolf? if not watch it.