Reel Horror: Ryan’s 100 favorite Horror Films

| December 25, 2013

nightofthelivingdeadlobbyHorror movies are some of my most favorite movies. I do not remember the exact moment when I loved the horror and mayhem but I do recall when my Grandma Donna took my brothers and I to a local Walgreens. They had a bin that was full of 99 cent movies. She said “You boys can each pick a movie and watch it tonight.” We were so excited we dug through the bin and one cassette caught my eye. It was Night of the Living Dead. I don’t remember what my brothers got but Night of the Living Dead, stayed with me for the rest of my life. I can remember being too scared to finish the movie and I was hooked on horror forever. My mom would let us rent any movie we wanted and all I wanted was to get horror films. She would balk at first, but relent when I begged to see what Chucky was up to in Child’s Play 2. My love would continue into high school when my best friend Branden and I would go to Blockbuster Video and rent any horror movie that looked cool. Not all were winners but it was still fun and some of my most favorite memories from that time in my life. This list took me longer then I thought it would, I originally had planned to have it up on Halloween but I realized that I hadn’t seen some classic movies and I thought that I was not only depriving myself of great films but also hypocritical of me to have not seen them, so tonight I finished the list and present it to you as my definitive list of horror films, so sit back turn off the lights and enjoy reading about the boogeymen and women. (This list would not be what it is without the understanding of my mom. My mom never got why I loved horror movies but she never said no when I wanted to rent them, so thanks mom for letting me watch Last House on The Left when I was 10, and don’t worry I turned out fine). One last thing, this is my list and holds no preference to “critical” acclaim, it’s all mine and if you think I  missed one hit me up on the comments, and if I haven’t seen it I will, happily. Merry Christmas!

100. The Shining 

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This is a favorite among a lot of movie critics. I think that it is a well done movie and Jack Nicholson is the right amount of crazy to pull of a man who slowly descends into madness. Having rewatched this lately I was struck by how out of place Nicholson’s acting is at the beginning of the film. He is way too campy. But the movie starts picking up steam as soon as he and his family are isolated and that’s were the movie becomes terrifying. And of course Kubrick does an amazing job with the camera.

99. Deep Blue Sea

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Don’t laugh but this movie is tons of fun. I mean it features genetically enhanced giant sharks that kill a bunch of people. It’s violent and super cool. Well except for LL Cool J’s rap at the end of the film. But look how sexy Saffron Burrows is! The special effects are pretty good, plus Samuel L. Jackson is in it! If you are looking for a way to spend a fun two hours I totally recommend this film. And Thomas Jane plays a bad ass loner, I know a stretch for him!

98. The Last House On The Left (1972)

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This movie is really hard to watch. A truly shocking film that has everything that makes us queasy. Rape, murder, and the most deplorable human beings maybe ever on film. A couple of teenage girls on the way to rock concert are kidnapped by a gang of escaped convicts that do horrible things to them. After they are done with the girls they take cover in a house that happens to be one of the girls’ parents, revenge ensues. Tough to watch, but impossible to ignore.

97. Sweeny Todd (2007)

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Truth be told I am not the biggest Tim Burton fan. But his adaptation of the stage musical Sweeny Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street is his best film since Big Fish. The tunes are catchy and the horror gorey, also it’s great to see Johnny Depp do something different. I hope Mr. Burton decides to one day maybe challenge himself again because when he does the results are usually pretty good.

96. Event Horizon

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Before Paul W.S. Anderson made Resident Evil he made this little horror gem. When a spaceship dissapears into a black hole and suddenly returns a rescue crew decides to check it out, what happens next is a super violent and disturbing trip into madness. Stylish and lots of fun, Event Horizon owes a lot of it’s premise to Alien, but turns it on it’s head enough to keep the film fresh.

95. Psycho 4

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This is a little seen gem that stars Anthony Perkins once again as Norman Bates. Norman calls a local radio show and proceeds to tell the disc jockey about how he became the way he is. A wonderful performance by Perkins and some very unsettling mommy love makes Norman even more tragic. If you are a fan of Psycho you should definitely try and see this, it gives the character of Norman Bates a whole new layer.

94. Leprechaun

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This is one of the movies I can remember watching and having a lot of fun doing so. Warwick Davis plays an evil version of the magical elf who will stop at nothing to get his gold back, which of course means murder. Davis is wonderful as the Monster, playing it with lots of fun and menace. Also of note is this is Jennifer Aniston’s first movie, and she refuses to talk about it, I don’t know why I would be proud as hell to be in a Leprechaun movie.

93. Silver Bullet 

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Silver Bullet is based on my favorite Stephen King story,a novella called Cycle of the Werewolf. It tells the story of a boy who is bound to a wheelchair but is full of life. Corey Haim plays Marty the boy who is confined to his wheelchair, and when murders start happening around town he suspects that it might not be human. His suspicions are confirmed when he sneaks out and shoots a werewolf in the eye with a firework. The only thing that keeps this film from being in the upper echelon of Werewolf movies is that has some out of place camp, but still one fun movie.

92. Feast

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Some of my favorite horror movies are a blend of outlandish horror and comedy. Feast delivers on both and then some. The movie takes place in a bar were the patrons are under siege from monsters of unknown origin. It’s crazy and violent and lots of fun, plus keep an eye out for Jason Mewes he makes a fun cameo.

91. Subspecies

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In the early 90’s Full Moon was a studio that thrived in the straight to video market, and while most if their movie were horrible a couple were not too bad. The best of the bunch was a peculiar vampire tale called Subspecies. The vampire Radu is in search of the mythical Bloodstone which is said to be the blood of all saints. The makeup effects are pretty good and Anders Hove is terrific as Radu. Plus Angus Scrimm is in it so it can’t be that bad.

90. Cabin Fever

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Eli Roth’s Cabin Fever is a pretty disgusting film that is pretty awesome. Five friends rent a cabin in the woods and become victims of a flesh eating virus. The make up is outstanding and when the virus takes over the group not only do they physically change so too do their feelings for one another, sex scenes in movies have nothing on this one.

89. The Sixth Sense

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There was a time when M. Night Shyamalan made great movies. His first is one of his best. The story is of a boy who has a sixth sense that can see dead people. Which terrifies him and his mother reaches out to Dr. Malcolm Crowe played wonderfully by Bruce Willis. Of course the movies twist was all the talk but the subtle performances and solid direction is what makes this a truly great film.

88. Insidious

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A truly terrifying film that tells the story of a boy that slips into a coma with no medical explanation. The mother of the child is certain that their house is haunted and begs her husband move them. He does and they soon learn that their house wasn’t haunted but their child is. Spooky and an ending that will leave you gasping this is one of the best new horror films.

87. Gingersnaps

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Gingersnaps is a werewolf movie unlike any other. Brigitte and Ginger are sisters that are obsessed with death and when Ginger is bitten by a werewolf, their lives change forever. I love horror films that are different and Gingersnaps is different but it is also a well told story of sisterly love and devotion. A must see.

86. Underworld

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Underworld is a badass movie that stars a badass Kate Beckinsale as a werewolf hunter named Selene. It turns out that werewolves and vampires have been fighting for centuries, with vampires being the species that is the one that lives above ground and are wealthy. The Lycans live in the sewers like dogs and it’s Selene’s job to exterminate them. Beckinsale is awesome is this film and Len Wisemen does a fantastic job as director. I like all the Underworld movies, I just think they are cool.

85. The Burning

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Oh The Burning. Yes it is extremely cheesy but it is also lots of fun. After a prank goes wrong a lonesome camp caretaker seeks his revenge. The main selling point of this film is the make up effects by Tom Savini and they are pretty sweet, the highlight is when Cropsy kills a bunch of teenagers in a raft.

84. Final Destination

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 When teenager Alex has a vision that the plane he is on explodes he freaks out causing him and his friends to be kicked off the plane. While he is being yelled at the plane takes off and explodes. He soon learns that he and his friends were supposed to die and Death is pissed that they didn’t so he seeks out his revenge. The opening of this film is really scary and the way the kids meet their doom is gruesome as well. If you would like to hear how this movie came about we did 2 interviews with it’s writer Jeffery Reddick, the first one is up now the second one hopefully soon, great listen if I say so myself.

83. The Fly (1986)

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The Fly is one disgusting film of what happens to a scientist when he messes with things he can’t understand. Jeff Goldblum is great as Seth Brundle who’s latest experiment goes horribly wrong. His tranformation into a fly/human hybrid is disturbing and heart breaking. David Cronenberg shows why he is one of the best horror directors out there.

82. A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors

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What happens when the kids of Elm Street fight back? Freddy is in for one long night. One of the better sequels in the Nightmare world, Nightmare 3 has some cool kills and one badass Freddy. Jeffery Reddick mentioned in an interview that this is his favorite Elm St. sequel, hard to argue but I like one better…

81. From Dusk til Dawn

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Robert Rodriguez used to make cool movies and this is one of his best. When the Gecko brothers hole up at the Titty Twister bar after a bank robbery they are in for one hell of a night, lots of Vampires! Clever and bloody this one has it all. Plus I think Clooney is wicked awesome as a bad guy he should do more roles like this.

80. Night of the Living Dead (1990)

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Remakes get a bad rap but some of them are pretty good, Night of the Living Dead’90 doesn’t reach the heights of the original but it is an effective thriller directed by Tom Savini. This film follows the beats of the original for the first 30 minutes but it soon becomes its own film. Changes to the characters keep things fresh and interesting. The best part of this film is Tony Todd as the reluctant hero Ben, his monologue he tells about how he escaped a diner is haunting.

79. Willard (2003)

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A criminally underrated horror remake (again!) that stars Crispin Glover as a social outcast that befriends a large rat in his home. Soon Ben starts killing people that harm Willard, at first Willard is appalled but he soon learns that Ben is his best friend and having a homicidal rat as your friend a has its benefits.

78. The Changling

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George C Scott stars in this film as a man that is staying at a mansion he soon learns that he is not alone and he is being haunted by a ghost. The Changling is a very suspenseful ghost story, plus it also is a mystery that adds to the drama, Scott is terrificand the movie is very creepy.

77. The Innkeepers

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Ti West makes movies that are slow burns and not everyone appreciates them. Which is a bummer because The Innkeepers is really good. The film takes place at the most haunted hotel in America and on the last night it’s open its two innkeepers are determined to prove that the Inn is truly haunted, the film slowly builds the terror and suspense but doesn’t skimp on great character moments.

76. Creepshow

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Horror anthologies are usually hit or miss but Creepshow is one that rises above the rest. Told in a fun EC comic format each tale is a little campy with a hint of horror, plus it has one of the coolest movie posters ever.

75. 28 Days Later

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This infection movie is pretty scary. When a man wakes up from a coma he finds that the world he once knew is gone. In its place is a world overrun by infected humans that commit horrendous acts of violence and a virus that takes control of you almost immediately. If it wasn’t for Danny Boyle’s tendency to tell his films through weird drug fueled quick cuts this would be higher on my list.

74. Candyman

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Taking a urban legend and making it a horror film is nothing new but it is done very well in Candyman. Tony Todd is the murderous Candyman who is summoned by a skeptic Virgina Madsen, and soon all hell breaks loose. Cool effects are sprinkled throughout this tale of revenge.

73. The Exorcism of Emily Rose

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Scott Derrickson crafts a story that offers a lot of questions but a few answers. Laura Linney plays Erin Bruner a lawyer that takes a case involving a negligent homicide. On trial is Father Moore who is accused of fabricating the story of how a young girl, Emily Rose died in his care while he was performing an exorcism on her. It’s a really well made movie and you are never quite sure who’s story to believe.

72. Dog Soldiers

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I love crazy violent movies and this is one of the craziest. During a routine exercise in rural Scotland, soldiers are savagely attacked by huge werewovles. The creature effects are totally bad ass and it was one of the movies I got because I loved the box art, not always a smart decision but this one turned out well, this is directed by Neil Marshall who will make another appearance on this list.

71. Jack Frost (1997)

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No not the lame movie staring Michael Keaton, this one is about a serial killer who on his way to be executed gets in an accident and his body bonds with snow making him a killer snowman! Yes it’s stupid but I think it’s really fun and also funny. Plus Jack is a smart ass, with lines like, “It’s not fu@*!ng Frosty!”

70. Night of the Creeps

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Part sci-fi, part horror, all fun! Night of the Creeps is a fun hybrid of a movie that not too many people have seen. When a dead student from the 50’s escapes from his cryogenic holding tube he soon infects the local students turning them into zombies. The film is funny but Tom Atkins journey is also heartbreaking as a cop trying to escape his past, but his past comes shambling back to him, Thrill Me!

69. Jeeper’s Creepers

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A brother and sister that are driving home for spring break are terrorized by an unseen trucker. What they don’t know is the trucker is actually a flesh eating monster who is hunting them on the last day of his hunt. The Creeper is awesome and the first 45 minutes play like a road thriller that slowly morphs into a monster movie.

68. Fright Night (2011)

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Yes I already expect backlash for picking the remake over the original, but I truly believe it’s a better film. Colin Farrell is awesome as the vampire Jerry and the movie is very suspenseful. Anton Yelchin stars as Charley who thinks his handsome and mysterious new neighbor might be a vampire. David Tennent is also great as the Vegas performer Peter Vincent, trust me this movie is really good.

67. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)

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Another remake?! Sorry but when they are done well like this film I think there is no shame in liking it as well as the original. One thing that this film does better then the original classic is it’s shot better and is a little more scary(don’t worry the original shows up much later.). Leatherface for one is treated more seriously then he ever was before and it makes him one of cinemas most imposing boogeymen. But you know the story a group of teens picks up the wrong hitchhiker and all hell breaks loose. Also, R. Lee Ermey is really scary as Sheriff Hoyt.

66. The Town That Dreaded Sundown

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One of my favorite movie titles ever, The Town That Dreaded Sundown is a “true story” about a killer that terrorized the town of Texarkana in 1946 and was never caught. There are some truly scary scenes in this film and if it wasn’t for the weird slapstick humor in the film I think this picture would be more well regarded today. Regardless the villain is scary and he kills teens in very creative ways, you will never look at a trumpet the same.

65. Tucker and Dale Vs. Evil

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A lot of fun is to be had in this horror comedy send up. If you are familiar with all the tropes of horror movies this movie will be lots of fun for you. Tucker and Dale are friends and simple guys, they just want to go fishing at their cabin in the woods. Soon a group of teens stumble upon them and mistake the lads for a couple of killer hillbillies. It’s gory and funny plus there is a really hot chick in it.

64. Friday The 13th (2009)

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Another Friday the 13th? And a remake? Yes and yes. Friday 2009 is a return to a running and scary Jason. The opening to the film is fantastic as it takes about 25 minutes before the title card comes on screen, You know the story a group, of young people are terrorized by an unstoppable killer. Well shot and well acted, yes good acting in a Friday film. Derek Mears is great as Voorhees.

63. Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers

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After the mistake that was Halloween 3, the producers realized that they needed to bring Michael Myers back. He comes back to terrorize his niece Jaime. Danielle Harris is great as the young and innocent niece of Myers. The movie does a great job reestablishing the Halloween vibe, and the ending is truly great. It’s a bummer that they changed it for the sequel but doesn’t hurt it’s impact.

62. The Strangers

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The fear of being isolated and being terrorized for no reason is the premise of this effective thriller. Scott Speedman and Liv Tyler play a couple on the outs, the reason why is told through flashbacks, and gives the movie even a bigger sense of dread. Well made and the villains are very scary.

61. Land of the Dead

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A much welcome return of George Romero to the zombie genre that acts as continuation of the world he made in he’s previous films.  The dead have overran the world, survivors are living in a city protected by rivers and an army who stand guard at fences. Like all Romero zombie films the zombies are usually not the only villains in his films. In Land Dennis Hopper is great as Kaufman who is the leader of the wealthy at a luxurious building called Fiddler’s Green. The zombies also start to learn the habits of the humans and decide to attack instead of stand around and wait to be slaughtered.

60. Intruder

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I had no idea this movie existed until about a year ago. But it is a great entry into the slasher genre. It also stars Sam Raimi and is directed and written by Scott Spiegel who co-wrote Evil Dead II, so it is in the same tone, plus the kills are really cool and inventive a special edition Blu-Ray is available and it is worth every penny.

59. The Ring (2002)

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The Ring created the Japanese horror movie craze here in America and for good reason. The story of a video tape that if you watch in seven days you will die, is very unsettling. Naomi Watts plays a reporter named Rachel who is investigating the tape, and she uncovers a story that not only tests her but also her young daughter. This film is a slow burn and when Samara emerges from the TV it goes from a scary moment in a movie to one of the most iconic scenes ever.

58. The Conjuring

conjuringNot only a box office sensation this year (2013) but also a very effective haunted house movie. The Warrens are real life paranormal investigators  who are called to a farm house where a family is being terrorized by an unseen spirit. Directed by the talented James Wan The Conjuring again takes its time to tell its story allowing you to care for the family and be upset when something bad happens to them. A well done movie in a year where horror films really made headlines.

57. An American Werewolf in London

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John Landis directed this off beat horror film that has shades of dark comedy. Two friends back packing through Europe are savagely attacked by a werewolf. One dies, one is bitten and cursed to be a werewolf. This movie has one of the greatest werewolf transformations ever. Also it moves quickly, it’s gruesomely violent and also  funny.

56. Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon

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Speaking of off beat horror films, this clever film follows a documentary crew as they film an inspiring mass murder named Leslie Vernon. Leslie describes the difficulty of being a killer like Freddy and Jason and allows the film crew to ask a variety of questions. Shot like a documentary until it shifts to Leslie stalking and killing it then changes to a normal horror movie and it is really good.

55. Evil Dead (2013)

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While most people could not believe they remade Evil Dead, they quickly changed their minds when the first red-band trailer was released. This film is scary and incredibly violent but the performance by Jane Levy as Mia truly shines as she gets run through the ringer. Huge props to Fede Alvarez for making me a believer in this film.

54. The Gift

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Sam Raimi directed this supernatural thriller that stars Cate Blanchett as Annie a woman who is somewhat of a psychic and is asked by local law enforcement to help find a missing girl. Blanchett is great as usual but the real revelation here is the amazing work turned in by Keanu Reeves. The movie is a slow burn but it is very suspenseful as the story of a small towns dirty secrets are reveled.

53. The Descent

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The Descent is a heart stopping thriller about a group of thrill seeking spelunkers who journey into an underground cave that is over run by hideous monsters. Wonderfully shot and truly scary, make sure that you see the original ending as it is much more inline with the tone of the movie.

52. The Thing

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Amazing special effects and awesome directing by John Carpenter make this one unforgettable movie experience. Adding to the tension is the alien that kills is able to shift in to the shape of its victim, so you never feel like anybody is safe. Great setting as well.

51. The Mummy (1932)

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With the finding of King Tut’s tomb the world caught mummy fever. Universal produced its first original monster movie. Boris Karloff plays the mummy, Imhotep who is buried alive and is awaken thousands of years later searching for hos long lost love. Great make-up and wonderfully shot, The Mummy was ahead of its time technically. Also Karloff once again is spectacular as the lovelorn Imhotep.

50. Friday The 13th Part 2

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After the shock ending of Friday one, the producers soon realized that they needed to find a way to get Jason into the next film. Sean Cunningham hated the idea, but he has admitted he was wrong and quite possibly cinemas greatest horror monster was born. The story isn’t new but the movie is faster and meaner then Friday 1, part 2 is one hell of a ride.

49. Sleepaway Camp

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Sleepaway Camp is best remembered now for its insane ending, but what seems to be forgotten is the actual journey to get there. Taking place at a summer camp people are soon being picked off one by one and all signs point to Ricky, who goes to lengths to protect his cousin Angela. The movie is funny and some of the deaths really creative, but the highlight are the performances by Felissa Rose as Angela and friend of the Reel Nerds Jonathan Tiersten as Ricky. This film has been notoriously hard to find, but good news as scream factory has a Blu Ray release planned for next year.

48. 28 Weeks Later

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28 Weeks Later has one of the greatest openings of any horror film hands down. The rage virus outbreak has decimated London and after 28 weeks the UN is allowing citizens to return to a quarantined area of the city. Of course that is a false sense of security as the virus soon makes it into the quarantine. Better shot and a better story then the original, I hope someone revisits this world as it is fascinating.

47. Hatchet

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Hatchet is a call back to American slasher films of the 80’s and is a lot of fun. The film tells the story of Victor Crowley a wrongly killed deformed child, who’s ghost terrorizes anyone who enters his swamp. The violence is over the top good and the script is also very clever. It’s also a treat to see Kane Hodder back as a film monster. Lots of fun.

46. Slither

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Black comedy that is also a splatter fest, Slither is one hell of a ride. An alien plague of slug like creatures is turning a small town residents into zombie-like mutants. A great cast rounds out this fun movie includes Nathan Fillion, Elizabeth Banks, and Michael Rooker.

45. Child’s Play

childs-play-movieEvery child had a creepy toy when they were growing up, and the makers of Child’s Play make good use of that fear. When serial killer Charles Lee Ray is shot by police while trying to escape, he curses a Good Guy doll with his soul. Now as a killer doll named Chucky, Ray must attempt to get into the body of young Andy before he is stuck in the doll forever. Funny and gory is always a great combo and Child’s Play has some to spare.

44.  Re-Animator

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Funny, check. Bloody, check. Insanely weird, hell yes. Stuart Gordon’s Re-Animator is loosely(very loosely) based on a story by horror legend H.P. Lovecraft about a man who uses a serum to reanimate dead tissue, of course this has horrible consequences. Jeffery Combs is super disturbing as Dr. Herbert West and you have no idea what he is thinking which has you seating on the edge of your seat throughout the films duration.

43. The Lost Boys

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Before glittering vampires it was cool to be punk rock vampires. Joel Schumacher crafted this tale of vampires that prey 0n the town of Santa Clara and when brothers Michael and Sam move to town the gang recruits Michael. As Michael slowly transforms into a vampire, his brother enlists the help of vamp experts The Frog Brothers. Another fun horror film, The Lost Boys also has cool effects and some instantly quotable lines.

42. Bubba Ho-Tep

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Bruce Campbell plays Elvis Presley who fakes his own death and is now living in a retirement  home. His buddy is an African-American who believes he is John F. Kennedy. Soon the spectre of a dead mummy known as Bubba Ho-Tep is sucking the souls of all their friends. If this movie sounds insane you would be right, but it is great, amazing performances by Campbell and Ossie Davis make you believe both of their stories. You will be cheering when they start fighting back too, it is comedy gold.

41. Freddy vs. Jason

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After years of teasing and false starts horror fans finally got what they wanted, Freddy vs Jason! Freddy is stuck in limbo because no one remembers him. So he devises a plan where he resurrects Jason to kill teens on Elm Street knowing he will get the blame and the kids will start remembering him, giving him his power back. The final fight between Freddy and Jason is awesome and who really cares how they get there as long as they try to kill each other when they do.

40. Zombieland

220px-Zombieland-posterCan a movie about the zombie apocalypse be funny? Totally. Zombieland follows Columbus a young man trying to get back to Ohio to find his family after the world is overrun by zombies. He has very specific rules that he follows and it’s kept him alive. Along the way he meets the wild card Tallahassee and sisters Wichita and Little Rock. Funny and horrific with a dash of heart, Zombieland is good fun.

39. Hellrasier

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From the twisted mind of Clive Barker came Hellraiser. Like most Barker films this film relies on thought provoking horror along with gore. When an unfaithful wife’s lover is killed he escapes Hell, but he is not alone as a couple of demons are on his tail. The imagery  in this film is amazing and Pinhead makes one hell of a boogeyman.

38. Wes Craven’s New Nightmare

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Wes Craven’s New Nightmare was years ahead of its time and was not fully appreciated at the time of its release. Heather Langenkamp plays herself and she is being terrorized by Freddy. Of course everyone thinks she’s crazy, Freddy’s not real, or is he? With everyone playing themselves from Craven to Robert England even Bob Shaye is in on the film. Where does the fiction end and the real world begin is one of the questions that this film asks, also it asks why is Freddy so loved? Isn’t he a murderer? Great stuff.

37. Friday the 13th (1980)

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You’re all Doomed! The movie that started the slasher sub genre, yes Halloween came before but Friday the 13th is the film that gave the template for most slasher films in the early 80’s. When a group of young adults attempt to open a summer camp that has had its share of tragedies they start dying in gruesome ways. If you haven’t seen this film I won’t spoil it for you but it does have one of the best twist endings in horror history. The impact of this film cannot be ignored.

36. The Exorcist

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Another film that I’m sure most people would have higher, but this is where I think it belongs. The tale of a young girl possessed by a demon is terrifying and when the exorcism starts it is some of the most disturbing moments in film. Wonderfully acted and shot, this is one of the few horror films that was nominated for best picture, truly groundbreaking.

35. The Invisible Man

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This film has one of the greatest performances in horror history and that is Claude Rains as The Invisible Man. After an experiment leaves Jack Griffin invisible it also makes him psychotic. The longer he stays invisible the more mad he is. He kills and attacks anyone who gets in his way, will he harm his fiancee? The special effects are  pretty amazing considering this film is over 80 years old. I love this film.

34. The Monster Squad

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Basically The Goonies meets the Universal Monsters, The Monster Squad is one of my most favorite films when I was a kid. The good news is it still holds up very well. Dracula plans to rule the world and when a group of kids who are in a monster club figure out his plan they are the only ones that can save us. Funny and some great monster make up make this more then some kids film. The Wolfman transformation in the phone booth is chilling but the tension is levitated when one of the kids is cornered by the Wolfman and is told to kick him in the nards, which he does to great effect.

33. Let Me In

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A heartbreaking tale of a centuries old vampire that is stuck in the body of young girl. Also the story of an outcast boy dealing with his parents divorce find friendship with each other. Another American remake which I believe is far better then the original(please don’t hate). The performances by Kodi Smit-McPhee and Chloe Grace Moretz are breathtaking. And Matt Revees directs the film with confidence and style.

32. Dawn Of The Dead (2004)

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The original Dawn of the Dead is one of the most beloved horror films of all time, so remaking it is a scary idea in itself.  But Zack Snyder only used the name and the setting of the mall and put a whole new spin on the zombie genre. The zombies are fast and scary and the opening is fantastic. Overcoming the black mark that was already given to this film before it was released was no small feat and Snyder has gone on to direct huge Hollywood hits 300 and Man of Steel.

31.Dracula (1931)

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The most important horror film ever. Dracula made it cool to be the bad guy with a hypnotizing performance by Bela Lugosi as the Count. This film started the monster craze and it’s also one of the very first films that had sound. But it’s Lugosi’s performance that is most remembered and for good reason, with lines like “The children of the night…what music they make!” Chilling!

30. Drag Me To Hell

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After he finished Spider-Man 3 Sam Raimi took a 2 year break and when he came back he unleashed this horror comedy gem. Trying to move up at her bank Christine evicts an old gypsy from her home, the gypsy curses her and when she dies, the gypsy returns to finish the curse. Scary and zany just like we like our Sam Raimi this film was a fine return to the genre where he cut his teeth. The ending is shockingly good.

29. Frailty

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Bill Paxton and Matthew McConaughey star in this slasher film about how a religious fanatic father’s visions lead him to commit murder. What makes Frailty great is you are never sure what is real and what is in the fathers head, giving the film a surreal sense of dread. Expertly shot and paced Frailty will have you guessing until the end.

28. In the Mouth of Madness

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Sam Neill plays a insurance investigator who is put on the case to find a missing author named Sutter Cane who’s novels have an effect on the people that read them. What happens next is a slow descent into madness as John finds the town Cane sets his novels in. On the surface it seems like a normal New England town but upon investigation there is something evil lurking in the town. Unsettling creepy this film will have you asking what is real and what is fiction.

27. Return of the Living Dead

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What if Night of the Living Dead really happened and the government covered it up? That’s the premise of this fun zombie tale. Two bumbling workers in a oddities warehouse unknowingly unleash a gas that brings the dead back to life and they crave flesh! Funny, scary, running zombies they’re all here, plus it’s the first movie where the zombies utter the phrase “Brrraains…”

26. Saw

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It might be hard to remember when Saw came out it was groundbreaking. The story of people who don’t deserve to live and are put to the test in horrific and painful ways. Prove you want to live and you will. The first Saw is such a tight thriller and made so well with such a small budget, plus it has a crazy ending. Lots to like in Saw.

25. Friday the 13th: The Final Chapter

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Jason finally gets his in the fourth installment of the Friday the 13th saga. Thought to be dead at the end of Part 3 Jason escapes the morgue and makes his bloody way back to Crystal Lake. Jason does die at the end and it is gory good. This might be the ultimate Friday the 13th film, while not my favorite it has all the elements you expect, nudity, violence and some wicked deaths.

24. The Wolfman (1941)

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What I love most about Universal Monsters is that most of them are misunderstood or unwillingly made monsters, and no more is that more true then for Larry Talbot in The Wolfman. Upon returning to his family in England Talbot is viscously attacked by a wolf, he soon finds himself cursed when the moon is full. Lon Chaney gives are sympathetic and touching performance as Talbot and Jack Pierce’s make up is stunning.

23. Scream

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The horror genre needed a hit in 1996. Not only at the box office but with critics as well. They got it with Wes Craven’s brilliant Scream. Taking what we now about slasher films and letting the audience in on the joke is why Scream is so fun. Plus the opening is one of the best in horror. By killing the biggest star 20 minutes into the movie told us that all bets are off.

22. Trick ‘r’ Treat

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The best horror anthology almost got lost. Pegged for a theatrical release Trick ‘r’ Treat was dumped on DVD. Each story is unique and the one constant is a little demon named Sam, you see Sam makes sure that you follow all of the rules of Halloween or he makes sure something unpleasant will happen to you. I love this film and Sam is such a unique villain, it eventually found an audience and we are getting a sequel, pretty cool.

21.The Evil Dead (1981)

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Ferociously original Sam Raimi’s first film The Evil Dead is a true horror classic. When a group of college kids unknowingly unleash an evil entity that posses them. Over the top violence and inventive use of the camera would become a staple for Raimi. This movie is so cool and done so well with a micro budget it would catapult it’s star and makers into Hollywood.

20. The Cabin In The Woods

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Another film that takes what you know about horror films and uses it against you is a winner. Fun and gruesome this film has something for every horror movie fan. A group of young people head to a cabin where they are subjected to a ritual that is being done without their knowledge. Joss Whedon and Drew Goddard craft quite a tale, the ending is so great, keep an eye out for the unicorn!

19.  Creature From The Black Lagoon

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The last of Universal’s Monsters is one of the greatest. On a journey to the Amazon jungle scientists are searching for a prehistoric monster, they can’t catch him but he sets his eyes on their beautiful companion. Amazing monster effects plus incredible underwater filming make this one of the most unforgettable monster movies of all time.

18. Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein

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Maybe not a straight up horror film but a great film none the less. Universal was looking for way to get more mileage out of their monsters paired them up with the comedy duo Abbott and Costello. This slapstick horror film takes what you love about monster movies and adds comedy to them. Stand out moments, when Costello believes Dracula is rising from his coffin only to find no one believes him. Another is when Costello is in the same hotel room as The Wolfman oblivious to the fact that the monster almost gets him a couple of times. This is a must watch and maybe the most fun you will have watching a movie.

17. Sinister

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Terrifying film about a crime novelist who discovers footage of families being murdered and decides to write his next novel about them. He soon learns that maybe he should have left the films alone as there is a demon watching him as well. Ethan Hawke is wonderful as a desperate man trying to write his next big hit, the film is unsettling and scary, and yet another film with a powerful ending.

16. Day of The Dead

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The dead have won. The whole Earth is overrun with the walking dead and a small group of survivors are holed up underground in Florida working on a way to eliminate the threat. Tough movie to love as none of the characters are redeemable but that’s what makes this movie so fascinating. You do not like any of them but you also want them to figure out a way to save humanity. Maybe the only character we root for is Bub, a zombie who seems like he can be trained. Bleak and unsettling this is the darkest day in horror for sure.

15. You’re Next

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Taking what we know about home invasion movies and turning it just enough to keep you guessing. When a family gathers for their parents 35th wedding anniversary they soon come under attack by people wearing animal masks. Sharni Vinson totally kicks ass as Erin and I love that she is not a damsel in distress but a totally bad ass survivor chick, one of my favorite films from 2013.

14. Halloween

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The movie that made men who stalked teenagers and killed them a genre, But what is lost in Carpenters greatest movie is the fact that there is hardly any blood. The scares come from the clever use of steady cam and POV shots. Michael Myers killed his own sister when he was six, escapes from an insane asylum and returns to his home town to bring a new reign of terror. Such a great movie and so influential to modern horror.

13. Shaun of The Dead

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Shaun is going nowhere. He spends every night at his local pub, works at a local electronics shop and takes his girlfriend for granted. When the zombie outbreak strikes he must spring into action to save his girlfriend and his mum. Extremely funny and also does not skimp on the zombie gore, Shaun of the Dead is one of the greatest zombie films of all time.

12. Alien

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Moody, scary and some effective jump scares make Alien the ultimate sci-fi/horror film. When commercial space ship Nostromo receives a distress call from a planet they go searching for survivors. Instead they find something much worse. Stunning character design and spot on directing make this one unforgettable trip into space, plus a woman is the bad ass in this film making Ripley one of the screens greatest heroes.

11. A Nightmare On Elm Street

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Wes Craven rewrote the world of slashers with Freddy Krueger. A demon that exploits teenagers where they cannot be protected, in their dreams. I love Freddy in this film, this was before he became a wise ass. In Nightmare he was scary and unknown. How could you stop someone who can be dreamed back to life? Who was he before a dream demon? Not only is this a clever slasher film it also is a mystery as well. And did I mention bloody? See Johnny Depp’s film debut where he gets sucked into his bed and is spewed out  in a geyser of blood.

10. The Texas Chainsaw Massacretexasc

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is one of the most unsettling films of all time. When five friends visit their grandfather in rural Texas they are terrorized by a family of cannibals and of course Leatherface, the chainsaw madman. Full of shicking moments(look out for the sledge hammer!) Texas Chainsaw is as gruesome as they come. The way Tobe Hopper shot the film as well adds to its uneasiness. The dinner scene alone is blood curdling.

9. Frankenstein

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 The most misunderstood monster of all time, Frankenstein’s monster is as iconic as they come.  Dr. Frankenstein has the mad idea to use body parts from recently deceased men to fashion them together to create a man. Obsessed with bringing his creation to life he doesn’t realize the mistakes he is about to make, as the Monster has to learn to live again. Karloff is absolutely breathtaking and incredibly sympathetic as the Monster, watching it you feel sorry for him and also scared at the same time, what a performance.And what a movie, a must see.

8. The Evil Dead 2

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Taking what we loved about The Evil Dead and turning it up to 11, Evil Dead 2 is one of the greatest horror/comedies of all time. The first 20 minutes is a basic retelling of the first film but as soon as Ash is hit by “The Force” all bets are off. Ash is able to fight his possession and tries to find a way to vanquish the evil. Bruce Campbell puts himself through hell as he fights not only the Demons but also himself, his fight with his evil hand is one of the greatest hand to hand fights ever. Funny and violent this is a great movie.

7. Dawn of the Dead (1978)

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Taking place after Night of the Living Dead, the zombie outbreak is getting out of control. Several people take shelter in a local mall, After they cleanse it of zombies they are living the high life, of course their greed is their undoing and it doesn’t take long for the mall to become desirable for others. George Romero hits a home run again in the zombie genre which many believe is his masterpiece. Dawn of the Dead is not only a great horror film, but a great film period. Strong performances and horrible acts of violence are just some of the highlights of this gem.

6. The Bride of Frankenstein 

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Making sequels better then the originals is tough. The Bride of Frankenstein takes what made Frankenstein so great and improves on it. Dr. Frankenstein is asked to make a female version of his monster, reluctantly he agrees. This film is an absolute stunning piece of early film. The regret the Monster has, how he makes a “friend” are all stand out moments, but favorite is when the Monster speaks to the evil Dr. Pretorius and he asks him if he knows who he is and the Monster responds “Yes, I know. Made me from dead. I love Dead…hate living”. Lines like that make this the most heartbreaking horror film of all time, and that’s before the Monster is even introduced to his “bride”.

5. Friday the 13th Part 6: Jason Lives

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My favorite Jason movie from my favorite horror series. After the debacle of Part 5, the producers of Friday the 13th realized they needed to bring Jason back. Writer-Director Tom McLoughlin made this film as more of a gothic horror vibe as Jason is resurrected by a bolt of lightning. The film also pokes fun at what’s come before and even has a moment when an actor breaks the fourth wall. Well shot and made, Friday 6 made up some lost ground from the previous installment and had fun. Plus it has some really wicked Jason kills and it concludes the Tommy Jarvis arc in  satisfying way. Great job Mr. McLoughlin.

4. Psycho (1960)

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Norman Bates is a great character. He seems so normal, but he has a dark secret. A terrifying study of ones mental state, Psycho is one of the greatest movies of all time, not just in the horror genre. When Marion Crane steals money from her employer’s client she goes on the run. She checks into the secluded Bates Motel where she meets the shy owner, Norman. Before long Marion is savagely murdered in one of the most iconic scenes ever filmed. Psycho is such a great blend of genres, horror, noir, and mystery. It also has one of the greatest twist endings of all time. If you haven’t seen this film, go see it now please.

3. Jaws

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 The movie that made us afraid to go in the water. From the opening notes of the theme to last battle on the Orca this film will have you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end. A giant great white shark is terrorizing a small island town of Amity. After several attacks and no luck catching the shark, the local police chief, a fisherman, and a marine biologist decide to hunt a destroy the shark. Wonderful performances from top to bottom and amazing direction from a then unproven Steven Spielberg make this one of the greatest films of all time.

1. (Tie) Night of the Living Dead

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Hands down the scariest movie ever made, Night of the Living Dead had one of the biggest impacts on my film loving life. When Barbra and her brother Johnny visit their mothers grave, Johnny is attacked and killed by a man. We soon learn that this is no man but a reanimated corpse. The dead have come back to life and are feasting on the living. Barbra runs to a farmhouse and she takes shelter with other survivors including Ben, an African American man who escaped death at a diner. Also a family is in the basement and racial tensions rear its ugly head and soon the threat is inside and outside. This movie is so great. It’s scary, socially powerful and has an ending that will never be forgotten. This is the greatest horror film of all time…

1. (Tie) Army of Darkness

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But if you are talking about my favorite film of all time it would be the horror mash up, Army of Darkness. This is actually the third part in the Evil Dead trilogy and it picks up right after Evil Dead 2 ended, with Ash unable to stop the portal and being sucked into the past. There he misspeaks words causing the dead to rise and finds time to bed the beautiful Shelia. This movie is goofy and great. I love every aspect of it. Yes, you can pick out inconsistencies in Ash’s character and some lapses in logic but it doesn’t mean this movie is any less great. I can watch this movie over and over and still love it. I’m pretty sure I’ve watched this film over a hundred times and i still laugh and still love it.

I hope you enjoyed my list and if you think I missed something hit me up in the comments and I will either watch it or tell you why it didn’t make the cut.

About the Author:

As far as nerds go, there are not many reeler than Ryan. His love for movies is unmatched. He also loves comic books. When you combine comic books and movies Ryan is at his happiest. He enjoys all forms of pop culture and prides himself on knowing more then average nerds. Ryan has a couple of characters he prefers over the rest, first and foremost is Spider-Man. He also loves Ash from the Evil Dead. Ryan also enjoys Finishing people in Mortal Kombat and hopping on Goombas. He has attended Comic-Con and several Starfests with his good buddy Brad. He is amazed on how awesome Brad is at designing Reel Nerds pages. But don’t tell Brad he needs to stay humbled. Favorite movie: Army Of Darkness Favorite Genres: Action, Horror, Comic Book, Comedy
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