By: Count Krakovich, Asshat Vampire
3.5 readers, you have spent the past month defeating many vampires with my sage wisdom, so now it is time to treat yourself to a monster movie marathon!
Without further ado, here is a list of the Top Ten Horror Films you should watch this Halloween:
#10 – Night of the Living Dead (1968)
George A. Romero invented the zombie genre with his 1968 classic. It’s low budget but that’s ok. Creepy hands busting through the walls of a house cost little but scare lots.
“They’re coming to get you Barbara.” Scary!
#9 – Nightmare on Elm Street Series (Started in 1984 then Kind of Went On Forever)
Notorious child murderer Freddy Kruger (Robert Englund) beats a murder rap on a technicality but gets burned alive by neighborhood parents in an act of vigilante justice.
Freddy, with his burned up face, fedora, striped turtleneck sweater and razor glove, ends up haunting teenagers’ dreams and somehow, if he kills them in a dream, they die in real life, thus the teens must avoid sleeping.
So…OK…not exactly a feel good family friendly movie. But the first film does give us a young Johnny Depp and ironically, he’s not the one in all the makeup in this picture.
Directed by horror legend Wes Craven.
#8 – Friday the 13th (Long Running Franchise that Began in 1980)
As a young lad, Jason Voorhees drowns at Crystal Lake because the teenage counselors were incompetent as shit and thats what you get for sending your kid to live under the care of dumb hormonal teenage camp counselors who, let’s face it, aren’t that much smarter than your kid to begin with.
Hell, if they were to remake this movie today, Jason would be drowning while all the teenage counselors busy themselves with cell phone selfies.
But like Elsa, Jason is not able to let it go. He comes back again and again, always in a hockey mask, slashing away to the point where you honestly wonder why someone doesn’t shut this damn camp down.
Not that it would matter as Jason takes his show on the road, goes up against Freddy Kruger in Jason vs. Freddy and even ends up in space in the year 2455 in 2001’s shark jumping Jason X.
Don’t send your kids to camp, 3.5 readers.
#7 – Scream (1996)
This 1990s film and its sequels sought to parody the slasher film tropes of the 1970s and 1980s by featuring a killer who is obsessed with horror tropes vs. teens who use their horror trope knowledge to survive for as long as they can.
The opening scene with Drew Barrymore answering a call only to get a creepy question, “Do you like scary movies?” is iconic. Neve Campbell, Courtney Cox and David Arquette (as incompetent law man Dewey) are at their best in this and it makes me sad so much time has past because it feels like this movie was just out in the box office yesterday but alas, as I write this, I realize it has been 20 years.
Boo! I have survived Ghostface but time, that sneakiest of all killers, is slowly getting me.
#6 – Scary Movie (2000)
The Wayans Brothers walked a fine line when they parodied Scream, which was, in and of itself, a parody of slasher movies. But whereas Scream featured enough seriousness to keep the plot moving, Scary Movie was an all out lampooning of the horror genre.
The subsequent sequels have been cringeworthy suggesting that people today just don’t get the Zucker-esque, Airplane style slapstick that the Wayans Brothers loved in the past.
But the original gave us the adorable Anna Farris and to this day, whenever I see a woman on the big screen running away from a killer, I find myself echoing the advice of Shorty Meeks (Marlon Wayons) – “Run, bitch! Run!”
Don’t trip and fall. Don’t go upstairs. Don’t stand around. Just run, bitch. Run bitch, indeed.
#5 – The Shining (1980)
Jack Nicholson stars as Jack Torrance, a writer who takes a gig as the caretaker of a hotel. The winters in the hotel’s area are so bad that he’s told up front that he’ll be snowed in and stir crazy for months.
Get paid to sit around and write? Sounds like a gig my 3.5 readers/aspiring writers and I would be into.
Alas, the hotel is creepy as hell, Jack loses his mind, grabs an axe, and terrorizes his wife (Shelley Duvall) and young son, Danny (Danny Lloyd.)
#4 – The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)
It’s on the list because it does have a cult following amongst horror fans but I particularly don’t care for it because this film, its sequels, and other films like it i.e. The Hills Have Eyes give us more of a look into the gore than necessary.
When we’re talking horror movies, all that is necessary for the audience to see is a knife slash, a blood spurt, a dead body on the fall. No need to go all out and show people being hacked up in gruesome detail.
I mean, seriously, I’m a vampire and even I get grossed out by this, bleh!
#3 – The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
To the best of my knowledge, this is the only horror film that has received the Oscar for best picture.
Now, there are people who will argue that this film is really a mystery with horror undertones but come on, when you have a dude that eats liver with fava beans and a nice chianti, that’s some scary shit.
Forget the werewolves and the zombies that you’ll never see. Forget the vampires that you’ll only see when you read my columns on this pitiful blog.
This film took the audience into scary minds of two twisted serial killers, Hannibal Lecter and Buffalo Bill, two men who managed to fool society into thinking they were harmless for years until their addiction to murder was exposed.
Bleh! Now that’s some scary shit.
Jodie Foster as Clarice Starling, stumbling about in the dark while Bill gets up close with his night vision goggles and she doesn’t know that he’s right next to her?
Bleh! Scary shit.
I’m a vampire and even I don’t want to put the lotion in the basket.
2002’s Red Dragon is also a worthwhile prequel, telling the story of how FBI agent Will Graham (Ed Norton) caught Lecter and then used his advice to track down “the Tooth Fairy” killer.
2001’s Hannibal and 2007’s Hannibal Rising I say, at the risk of becoming Hannibal’s dinner, not worth your time. They are very bleh, bleh.
#2 – Saw (2004)
2004’s Saw and its sequels upped the ante as serial killer Jigsaw, introduced to his victims as a puppet who appears on video with a sinister voice, puts people into elaborate traps in which they must do terrible, horrible things to themselves and others in order to survive.
The violence is disgusting and over the top but as mindless as it all seems, the film does have a message – stop complaining about how hard life is and how you wish it was over because if you were actually stuck in a life threatening situation, your survival instinct would kick in and you would do something horrible to survive.
Appreciate life, 3.5 readers. It is better than the alternative, bleh.
#1 – Halloween (1978)
The slasher film to end all slasher films. Some might say this film is where all those slasher film tropes began.
As a boy, a young troubled Michael Myers slashes his sister to death on Halloween night. Years later, in 1978, an adult Michael Myers escapes a sanitarium, returns to his old neighborhood and starts slashing away at Laurie Strode (a young Jamie Lee Curtis before she resigned herself to the boy haircut) and her friends.
Multiple sequels and reboots. They made an H20 (Halloween Twenty Years Later) in 1998 and it saddens me to no end that they could be making an H40 soon.
Bleh, if a slasher doesn’t get you, time will. Wait, why am I worried? I’m a vampire, bleh.
- Psycho – Norman loves his mother.
- Hocus Pocus – if you like the costumes and the candy but don’t want to get too scared. A film so old that Sarah Jessica Parker was considered the hot one of the witch trio.
- Shaun of the Dead and/or Young Frankenstein – if you want to laugh on Halloween
- The Exorcist – Yeah, this should have made the list, come to think of it. The scariest film yet about demonic possession, so scary that Hollywood probably could never top it.
- Carrie – Another by the master of horror, Stephen King. Unpopular girl. Popular kids play a cruel joke on her. Her telekinetic mind powers flare and chaos ensues. Be nice to everyone, 3.5 readers. You never know who has telekinetic powers.
- The Blair Witch Project – Released in 1999, the filmmakers behind it did a lot with very little. The premise was that this film was “found footage” i.e. a tape a bunch of youngsters made while carrying their camcorder around in the woods while looking for a witch. Its mostly shaky hand held footage of kids running away and screaming though it is scary and creepy. Sadly, due to its success, it inspired countless films where newcomers to the movie industry with low budgets shoot their films as “found footage” or as one character holding the camera and they’re all just awful. Totally awful. It worked one time and will never work again so stop doing it, bleh.
- Dawn of the Dead – George A. Romero returns 10 years later in 1978 with a film about a zombie takeover of a shopping mall. Kids, a shopping mall was a place that people went to in order to purchase goods and supplies. They existed long before Amazon figured out how to fly crap to your house via drones.
Bleh! Did I miss your favorite scary movie, 3.5 readers?
Share in the comments, bleh.