Well, the time has come. We’re less than a week away from all hollows eve and my countdown of the twenty best horror movies has come to a close. Below are my top five choices and all of them have given me fond frightening memories. As always make sure you read with the lights on so you don’t get too scared.
5. The Lost Boys:
The Lost Boys is probably one of the best vampire movies and it gave an interesting twist to rebelling teens. What was so great about this movie, like most eighties horror movies, is that it put characters before scares. Don’t get me wrong, there were plenty of scary moments but they were used at the right moments. What also made this movie so relatable and tense was the fact that Corey Haim and Jason Patric’s mom didn’t believe them about the Kiefer Sutherland’s vampire gang. It pitted these kids against horrible monsters with no sign of assistance from the adults. The finale itself was so great and the twist that the mother’s boyfriend was the head vampire shocked and surprised. Plus, you can’t forget the grandpa showing up last minute to save the day. The Lost Boys is a fantastic movie and the themes are still relevant today even if the hairstyles aren’t.
4. The Shining:
The Shining is probably my favorite Stephen King adaptation – even though it’s only about half – and is definitely my favorite Stanley Kubrick film. I think Kubrick did such a superb job of meticulously putting every detail in place. What I think made this film so amazing, besides the ominous days of the week, was that the hotel itself was the star of the film. It had such a power to it that it sends chills down my spine just thinking about it. Don’t get me wrong, Jack Nicholson’s descent into madness was great, the twins were terrifying and bear fellatio was downright frightening, but none of those things held a candle to the hotel. What I loved the most about The Shining was the suspense of the film. When Danny was riding around the hotel I kept waiting for something to pop up around the corner and just when I felt safe he happens upon the twins. I think The Shining is a classic horror movie and will remain so for many years to come.
3. The Exorcist:
Very filmmakers these days actually make effective possession movies and it’s all due to the king daddy or should I say queen mommy of them all, The Exorcist. I personally can’t name a possession movie that is more terrifying than this one because Linda Blair and her projective pea soup – say that three times fast – set the bar pretty high. The reason that I found this movie so terrifying – besides spinning heads, pea soup and foul play with religious artifacts – is the fact that the evil being is a little girl. The fact that someone as innocent as this child could fall prey to something as evil as the demon is unnerving and shows that no one is safe. I think the special effects are still pretty impressive by today’s standards. I’m just really surprised that this movie hasn’t fallen victim to the remake craze.
2. A Nightmare on Elm Street (Original):
Well, aside from the dastardly villain from my number one pick, there is no one scarier than the slasher of nightmares, Freddy Krueger. The original Nightmare on Elm Street is a really scary movie for a lot of reasons. I will say that after revisiting this movie a few years after my childhood it felt very dated, but there was still something about it that gave me chills. What’s so terrifying about A Nightmare on Elm Street is that it makes one of our most basic needs of sleeping unsafe. We’re supposed to feel safe when we cozy up under our blankets and head off to dreamland, but that’s when our perpetual nightmares begin. I think my favorite scene is when Johnny Depp takes the long dirt nap. As you watched that scene and his eyes grew heavy, you knew it was going to be permanent lights out and without fail Freddy pulled Nancy’s beau through his bed to his demise. A Nightmare on Elm Street also made me terrified of jump roping girls. Don’t try to deny it, whenever those little brats start chanting their voodoo you know you get a little scared.
We’ve finally come to my number one pick for the best horror movie and the award goes to none other than John Carpenter’s masterpiece, Halloween. This is the quintessential slasher film and my all time favorite. The reason that I find Michael Meyers so scary is because there seems to be no real rhyme or reason why he killed his sister Judith and went after Laurie. He was just a silent killer that decided to murder anyone and thing that got in his way. I think the opening sequence is probably one of the best parts of the film because you have no idea who is watching Judith and her boyfriend from outside and the way the scene was shot first person added a level of creepiness. The late and great Donald Pleasance was awesome as Doctor Loomis, though his character did take pretty dramatic turn in the sequel. I’d probably be a little flabbergasted if I shot a man six times and he got up and walked away. This is one of many movies that I wish I could’ve been around to see it on the big screen. While I’ve been a fan of most of the Halloween sequels, I still believe that the writers eventually took the scariest element of Michael away when they gave reasoning behind his actions. It was almost as disappointing as when I found out that Darth Vader was really just Hayden Christiansen with a mask on.
Thank you for tuning in these past couple of weeks to be nerdy with me. I hope you’ve enjoyed my countdown and I’d love to hear you sound off in the comments below with your favorite horror movies. Don’t forget to follow me on Facebook and Twitter and please help me spread the good word of the nerd.