The Top 10 Horror Movies of the Past Decade.
Here we are at the end of the year. Its just dawned on me that this is the end of a decade. It kind of snuck past us you know. It has been an very influential time in our world, and it is always reflected in film. so I give you my list of the top 10 horror movies of our past decade. This list is not based on the movies that made the most money or showed the most gore. Its based on which movies truly stuck to me and got under my skin from the time first viewed to now. at the end of my list Ill include my honorable mentions. So get ready to be scared S***less.
10. The Strangers
This is one of those movies that really had to grow on me. At first I was quite bored at its opening, but then things ramped up to uncomfortable extremes. Its mainly about a couple who are going through an awkward night and retire to their perfectly isolated home. Then it begins to suddenly creep on you. Scenes where the Liv Tyler Character is in the kitchen, and the intruder is just standing there just out of sight just gets me. You would wonder why their being tormented for this entire night? the intruders simply respond ” because you where home…”
The horrible feeling that this can possibly happen to anyone is what gives this movie its teeth. There isn’t a unstoppable killing machine or a creature born from science fiction. its the bored teenagers in your neighborhood, or the adventurous couple who wonders if they can do horrible acts and see that they can. I can say that after giving this movie a chance I had to make sure all locks and windows were secure.
9. Hard Candy
At first I had no idea this movie was even a horror movie. It starred adorable Ellen Page, and she had this red ridding hood sensibility to her that I wrote off as cheesy. I could have never been more wrong about this movie. Its about a sexual predator that is luring young women online to his place. Connecting to Page’s character was the first of the character’s mistakes. This is where the movie takes some very strange turns.
For the remainder of the movie your alliances are pulled back and forth to whom you sympathize with. It can be a very disorienting feeling when at some points you want to root for Page’s character, but then she breaks the line of heroic starlet to being down right disturbing. She messes with his head in the most horrific ways. By the end of the film you truly do not know how to feel about the whole thing. Its a grey is a cold place that you do not want to casually enter. That is Hard Candy in a nut shell….You’ll get that joke after you watch it.
8. Jeepers Creepers
Where do I begin with Jeepers Creepers. Its a good old fashioned popcorn horror movie. It doesn’t take itself too seriously, but at moments it will scare you when your off guard. its keeps on wondering what exactly are you watching. It tells the story of a brother and sister traveling across country from college and there terrorized by a road warrior. then it becomes more and more disturbing. the antagonist keeps changing and changing until what your left with is nothing like that you started with.
The reason it makes this somewhat serious list is because it was nothing like anything that has previously made. Its a new branch on the tree of horror. It understands that horror and humor are hand in hand. Mixed those two together creatively can leave the viewer with a exceptional experience. I gotta say I was floored by the ending. Once again breaking walls of conventional story telling and leaving me wondering where I get those peepers.
7. The Exorcism of Emily Rose
This is one horror movie that really stuck with me. It didn’t need special effects or makeup effects at all. It was driven solely but the phenomenal performance of Jennifer Carpenter. This is about the titular character that is driven by a supernatural force, and the courts must decide her fate. One part the Exorcist and the other part Law and Order it really blurs the lines of church and state.
in this one its all about the possession scenes that are taken to the 9th degree. Julia Carpenter contorts and stretches her face to the point of wondering if it was animated. I have to tell you its all her performance that just gets to you. You feel the pain in her torment, and sympathize with her all the way till her end. I have to say this is one I frequently show people who want to see a legitimate modern horror classic.
6. The Grudge
I’m going to start by saying that I really hate this movie. Not because its a bad movie on any level. Simply because it scares me so much I can stand it. After the boom of the Japanese horror craze, this was the only movie besides the ring that really got it right. It starts with an American learning to live in Japan and moves into a new home. What she doesn’t know is that by merely entering the home brings upon a horrible curse. From this point on the horror just builds and builds until you cant look at the screen.
Being a horror enthusiast i’m rarely affected and more rare frightened by a movie, but this one hits that spot. From the subtle noise the ghosts makes when it alarms you its near to some of the best shock moments in recent horror. It comes to you in a very subtle way with the random cat noises and plays on light and shadow. I have to say that this is one that I cannot watch by myself to this day. I recommend watching it definitely,but make sure the lights are on in the middle of the day.
5. Session 9
I absolutely loved Session 9. Its more psychological then any other film on this list, and it stands in a league of its own. Its very subtle in its approach, almost to the point where you your wondering when the horror is going to start. Its about a team of renovators that are hired to clean and clear a closed insane asylum. From this point secrets begin to unravel about the teams and the catalysis is the mysterious patient of session 9. this is silent hill without the monster or pause and saving ports. its atmosphere and sound that drives you up a wall.
Its the quiet that gets to you in this movie. I would compare it to drinking wine. you don’t feel the kick right off, but the next thing you realize your flat drunk. If you continue to watch the horror completely engulfs you until your totally sold into the vibe of the movie. It is definitely a must buy.
4. The Decent
This is a movie that took me by surprise. I did not expect it to have such a strong effect on me, but it was really confrontational. Its a layered cake of horror that keeps your terrified one way or another. It begins with a group of adventurous women on a trip to go cave diving. at first just the act of cave diving is horrifying. I’m claustrophobic, and some scenes were so unnerving that it induced panic attacks. On top of that their faced with cave dwelling super monsters that are creepy as hell.
The main reason this movie makes the cut so close to the top is that it never let up. There is never a time to breath once it starts. the nail biting moments are only compounded by the group’s incalculable odds. Some of the scenes of the movie aren’t just scare but heart braking. It really makes you question the company you keep, and if they would step up when chips our down. In this case things could not get worse when wall crawling death moles after you.
Before the over saturation of this movies, and its multiple sequels there was Saw. When this first was released it was written of as another gory horror movie, but we learned it was much more. This was a turning point for all horror and the new regime of filmmakers in the industry. It wasn’t just extremely unsettling and horrible, but it was smart. The film was so well written that it sparks conversation and debate for years to come.
The point was the movie was not to embrace death, but to embrace life. the main antagonist Jigsaw Gruesomely encouraged his victims to fight for their humanity. If the victim was not worthy of the right then they were taken out in the most gruesome ways. Partly a crime drama we do not see the horrors as they take place, but the crime scene and interviews that sent a chill down your spine. This is a movie that changes films not just for horror but for the entire industry.
2. The mist
The Mist was not widely advertised and my not be a popular choice for my runner up. I must tell you that this movie is one of the most terrifying, heart braking , controversial films of the last decade. Its all a horror geek can want in a horror film. we have monsters, people turning on people, and nail biting tension. Its about a father and his son surviving a unexplainable mist that has covered the land, and is bring horrible things with it.
It has some of the best creature effects that the industry has produced since the last Stan Winston. I have to say its not the monsters outside that are the most dangerous element but the human monsters are main characters are surrounded by. It questions what you would do in a situation that was outside of your control. What really makes this movie is its ending. It is one of the most gut wrenching, moments in movie history. I thank the filmmaker for being so brave to keep to this horrible, but also meaningful moment.
1. The Ring
What can I say about The Ring that hasn’t already been said. at a time when horror films once again were put on the back burner, it gave the film industry the jolt it needed. This is a movie that was so scary that people where in therapy on the seventh days. Friends were bunking with friends, and family members were warning you not to watch this movie. There wasn’t this much buzz about a horror movie sense the Exorcist.
This is the perfect example of a subtle horror films that builds up all the way till its end where your completely out of breath. It has been satirized multiple times, but this is only a testament to how much of a effect it had made on the popular culture. i have to say I did not watch a minute of television on my seventh day, also no mirrors for good measure. This is a film that will be remembered with Silence of the Lambs, Alien, and Jaws as one of the most important, influential, and down right terrifying films of all time.
I hope you enjoyed my list. Here are some honorable mentions that didn’t make the cut, but I do recommend to check out.
Ginger Snaps, Orphan, Cloverfield,Wolf Creek, Quarantine, High Tension,Paranormal Activity, Orphan, Cabin Fever,and Trick or treat.