31 Days of Horror Films


I have set myself the challenge of watching 31 horror films in the month of October. I have a list of films, but no set order as of yet.

Here is my list and a MiniMediaReview to go with it, enjoy and let me know what you think of any of these films:

Oct 31st

neon-demonThe Neon Demon – Another stunningly beautiful film from Nicolas Winding Refn this time looks at the cut-throat world of high fashion. Following the plight of a young model after moving to LA and being introduced to the darker side of the industry. Some shocking scenes and amazing cinematography give this film a lift but it feels slightly lacking in substance.

Horror Rating: 3/5, Overall  Rating: 3.5/5

 

Oct 30th

noesA Nightmare on Elm Street – One of my favourite horror films from my much younger days, scared me silly when I was younger, still holds some of the elements but feels a little tamer than previously. The best of the series though, before it went a bit silly!

 

Horror Rating: 2.5/5, Overall Rating: 3/5

 

Oct 29th

oculusOculus – The devastation that a haunted mirror causes on a family is revisited when the kids are grown up and attempt to destroy the object. A lot of tricks involving perception occur as the mirror attempts to protect itself. A decent effort at trying something new

 

Horror Rating: 3/5, Overall Rating: 3/5

 

 

Oct 28th

southbound_posterSouthbound – A horror anthology of various (very) tenuously interconnected tales deals more in gore than scares. An alright collection but nothing novel or interesting enough to elevate it above mediocre.

 

Horror Rating: 2/5, Overall Rating: 1/5

 

 

Oct 27th

scream_movie_posterScream – A wonderful concept of a film, a little bit of a meta-horror movie, self-referential and tongue in cheek. Manages to mix humour and the serious nature and pulls it off well.

 

Horror Rating: 3.5/5, Overall Rating: 3.5/5

 

 

 

Oct 26th

cabin-in-the-woodsThe Cabin in the Woods – A great tongue-in-cheek look at the classic horror tropes built up over the years. Fantastically ridiculous and, particularly towards the end, gore-splatteringly good. Perfect film for Halloween if it involves a few drinks as well

 

Horror Rating: 3.5/5, Overall Rating: 3/5

 

Oct 25th

train_to_busanTrain to Busan – What’s not to like about a high-speed train packed with super fast zombies hurtling through Korea whilst those surviving fight against the odds? This is fast paced, violent and brutal. Vivid colours fly out of the screen and it even manages some more poignant moments.

Horror Rating: 3.5/5, Overall Rating: 4/5

Review: Here

 

lights-outLights Out – The premise for Lights Out came from a very well made horror short only a couple of minutes long. Unfortunately, they maybe should have stopped at being a successful short as this, while it has some decent jump-scares, doesn’t transfer the fear and scares onto the big screen very well.

Horror Rating: 1.5/5, Overall Rating: 1.5/5

 

 

Oct 24th

fid14698It Follows – The steady drip-drip of information comes at you at the same speed as the metronomic demon who is chasing Jay throughout this film. Always threatening but never overtly scary. Just goes to show what happens when you’re promiscuous!

Top class synth soundtrack to go with this thoroughly modern horror film.

Horror Rating: 3.5/5, Overall Rating: 3.5/5

 

 

Oct 22nd

the-hordeLa Horde (The Horde) – Imagine if you will The Raid (group of cops lay siege to a tower block filled with criminals). Add to this one dose of crazy old soldier, a whole load of quite graphic violence and a shit load of rabid, fast, powerful zombies. Add a certain amount of je ne sais quoi and a lot of French swearing and you have this film! A decent adrenalin rush of action and bloody violence carries this film through.

Horror Rating: 3.5/5, Overall Rating: 2.5/5

 

 

Oct 21st

spring_2014_film_poster

Spring – This is a nice little film following the downs and ups of Evan as he escapes to Italy after his mother dies and meets Louse and falls in love. However, Louise is more than she seems and something isn’t quite right about her… More love story than horror story but it is interesting.

Horror Rating: 1/5, Overall Rating: 2.5/5

 

 

Oct 20th

poltergeistPoltergeist – I remember watching this as a young kid and it being scary as hell. It still holds some of its power but some of the effects do look dated. Manages to create an frightening atmosphere and a good twist. Oh, and clowns. This and IT probably have a lot of coulrophobia to answer for!

Horror Rating: 2.5/5, Overall Rating: 2.5/5

 

 

Oct 19th

i-saw-the-devil-poster

I Saw The Devil – Unashamedly brutal and violent. We follow the two main characters as they play out their game of cat and mouse and then have the tables turned. Bloody great story and film-making!

Horror Rating: 3/5, Overall Rating: 3.5/5

Review: Here

 

 

Oct 18th

dont-breathe

Don’t Breathe – Tense film, more thriller than horror but a good watch, plenty of action and hold-your-breath moments to keep it going. But what is it with all these home captivity themes?

Horror Rating: 2/5, Overall Rating: 2.5/5

 

 

 

Oct 17th

the-witch

The Witch – A bleak and grim tale of a family exiled from their society for being too devout and forced to try to look after themselves out in the wilderness. Slowly but surely the dark forces tear apart this family. Really good film-making in telling this story and keeping the dread and questioning going until the end.

Horror Rating: 3/5, Overall Rating: 4/5

Review: Here

 

Oct 16th

intruders

Intruders – Playing on the idea of preying on the weak and themes of captivity and retribution it starts out well. However, the premise falls a bit flat towards the end leaving you wondering what could have been.

Horror Rating: 2/5, Overall Rating: 2.5/5

 

 

Oct 15th

exorcist

The Exorcist – Once again an old horror film stands the test of time. It just feels very real and basic and that adds an extra layer to the threat posed by the possession. It maybe lost a bit on this last watch through but it can still provide the shocks and horror that are required.

Horror Rating: 4/5, Overall Rating: 3.5/5

 

 

Oct 14th

devils-backbone

The Devil’s Backbone – Guillermo Del Toro’s Spanish ghost story of a little boy, murdered and back to claim justice does just about enough. Great work from the young cast but it doesn’t quite hold the fear and the tension that it could have.

Horror Rating: 2/5, Overall Rating 2.5/5

 

 

Oct 13th

30_days_of_night_teaser_poster

30 Days of Night – This is the 28 Days Later of vampire films. Dynamic and pulsating with violence and gore it is a thrilling watch. You are left with a felling of hopelessness for the poor population of Barrow, Alaska.

Horror Rating: 3.5/5, Overall Rating: 4/5

Review: Here

 

Oct 12th

the_mist_poster

The Mist – A mysterious mist soon makes a trapped-in nightmare as a group of people are attacked from the outside and persecuted from within. A really good tale of confinement and hysteria under duress. And the ending……

Horror Rating: 3.5/5, Overall Rating: 3.5/5

Review: Here

 

Oct 11th

halloween_1978_theatrical_poster

Halloween – A bona-fide classic of the horror genre. From the moment that the signature music starts up and then you get a Point-of-view camera angle of Michael, to the end where you are left with no resolution it is a great film.

Horror Rating: 3.5/5, Overall Rating: 4/5

 

 

Oct 10th

insidious_poster

Insidious – A decent supernatural following a young boy with the power to astral project who goes too far and struggles to return. There are some scary moments but the finale falls a little flat after doing so well to build the tension and fear.

Horror Rating: 3.5/5, Overall Rating: 3/5

 

 

Oct 9th

Thirst – This one to come as I haven’t finished watching it yet!

Oct 8th

flatliners

Flatliners – A stellar cast of young actors (for 1990) play God in trying to unlock the answers to death. Paranoia and guilt from the past take over and infest their daily lives. A good example of not messing around with things you don’t know about.

Horror Rating: 2.5/5, Overall Rating: 3.5/5

 

 

Oct 7th

28dayslater

28 Days Later – Danny Boyle brings us into the new world of energetic, fast, violent zombies and it’s a blast. Cillian Murphy brings his best in his role as he battles not only the rage-filled but the equally heinous humans.

Horror Rating: 3.5/5, Overall Rating: 4/5

 

 

Oct 6th

neardark

Near Dark – A vampire/action/western/love story. Oh yeah, it’s got the lot! Bill Paxton takes the cake with his performance as a kill-happy, bolshy vampire as they try to assimilate the newly turned Caleb into their tight-nit gang.

Horror Rating: 1.5/5, Overall Rating: 3.5/5

Review: Here

 

Oct 5th

orphan

Orphan – Disturbing tale of deception and manipulation that destroys a family caught up in the innocent-seeming storyline. A fantastic role to play for the titular Esther and she does it so well carrying off childlike behaviour with worldly wisdom. Chilling
performance.

Horror Rating: 3/5, Overall Rating: 3.5/5

Review: Here

 

Oct 4th

psycho_1960

Psycho – A beautifully shot film it still holds the interest as we follow the story of Marion Crane arriving at the Bates Motel and the subsequent events and investigations. Anthony Perkins is simply superb as Norman Bates, innocent, creepy and awkward but with an underlying edge.

Horror Rating: 2/5, Overall Rating: 4/5

Review: Here

 

Oct 3rd

the-invitation

The Invitation – An interesting concept and a well crafted film that builds well to its conclusion. A few twists and turns on the way keep you guessing as to it’s final path.

Horror Rating: 2.5/5, Overall Rating: 4/5

Review: Here

 

 

Oct 2nd

housebound-small

Housebound – A really good NZ film, always feels like it is on the verge of breaking into the absurd, not so much with the supernatural but creepy with an interesting storyline.

Horror Rating: 2.5/5, Overall Rating: 3.5/5

 

 

Oct 1st

noroi

Noroi:The Curse – A decent found footage investigation, but nowhere near the level of horror I was expecting.

Horror Rating: 2/5, Overall Rating: 2.5/5

Review: Here

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