It is Halloween week and I thought it would be fun to kick off the week with Zach’s Best Horror Films of all time
My Top Ten Horror Films of All Time (and other honorable mentions for you to watch for Halloween)
By: Zach Alexander
10. The Omen (original)
When my dad showed me The Omen (the original, not the bullshit Liev Schriber remake) I was terrified silly. I wanted to watch it again immediately. How terrified out of your mind would you be if your child was the son of Satan, and people that found out or tried to stop it started dying in horrible accidents? Yeah, not a good feeling is it?
9. The Shining (original)
Say want you want about the movie versus the book, but Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining has a scary atmosphere to make you shit your pants. Yeah, the ending is different, and yeah, Stephen King doesn’t like this adaptation, but the film is scary beyond belief. Alone in a giant hotel where anything can get you? Your dad going psycho and trying to kill you and no one to help you because of a winter storm? Chills.
I’m including both of these films at number 8 in case you want a double feature creature feature. Not only that, but a lot of people consider these films to be the only two true canon films in the franchise. And while the first one is a true horror film and the second one is more of an action picture, both have an uneasy sense of dread. In space. Where no one can hear you scream. By the time you are done with the second film, you will be drained exhausted.
7. Evil Dead II
You cannot think of Halloween frightmare heroes without thinking of Ash, and Evil Dead II: Dead By Dawn is the best film in the franchise, easily. Combining insane thrills with a lot of good hearty laughs, Bruce Campbell steals every scene while trying to vanquish the evil he conjured from reading from the book of the dead. An insane funny scary classic.
6. Final Destination
Final Destination took the unseen force that kills you in freak accidents from The Omen, added a bunch of Rube Goldberg traps, added a couple of X-Files writers, and gave me one of the most memorable experiences in the theater I have ever had. It freaked me out, thinking that something could kill me on purpose and there is absolutely no way to stop it other than to look for the signs of fate. This movie made famous a phrase already in existence, “You can’t cheat Death.”
5. The Thing (original)
Wes Craven and John Carpenter are considered the masters of horror, so it isn’t a surprise that both of them have two films on this list. Let’s start with Carpenter’s The Thing. A horror movie out in the middle of nowhere Antarctica, with an alien parasite that can literally infect and become anything, and kill you in the most gruesome fashion. A very, very effective horror thriller with a who dun it, who is it, and who will it be way of storytelling. One of Kurt Russell’s best films as well.
4. Halloween (original)
Then let’s knock this other John Carpenter horror classic out of the way. This is the slasher of the slasher movies. The slasher movies that constantly made copycat slasher movies. A presence, a shape that literally won’t stop until you are dead. Michael Myers will always be one of the most classic horror villains of all time, and he doesn’t say one word. The original is really the only good film, and is a staple of required viewing every Halloween.
3. A Nightmare on Elm Street (original)
Here is Wes Craven’s first of two films on my list. Freddy Kruger, along with Michael Myers and Jason Voorhees (sorry but the Friday the 13th sequels are not really good and Jason is not the killer in the first once, hence why it isn’t on my list) are the top three staple horror villains. The thing that makes Freddy unique is that he can enter and kill you in your dreams. How scary is it that you can be killed in your dreams? *shivers*
2. Child’s Play
If there is a 4th black sheep to the three main horror goons, Chucky would be that problem child. The first, sixth, and seventh movies are really the only good ones, while the first remains a horror classic and some of the best uses of practical effects in any horror movie ever, besides Evil Dead 2. The thing that makes Chucky scary is not just that he is a creepy doll come to life to kill your ass but that his voice is played to perfection by Brad Dourif. I watch this every Halloween and I enjoy it every time, I get especially freaked out when Chucky first finally reveals himself. Classic.
Speaking of classic, here is my unconventional #1 pick for my favorite horror film of all time. Why? Because it perfectly combines scares while also making fun of all the rules of horror movies that came before it. These teens are self-aware, have seen horror movies, yet still make the same dumb mistakes that they think they have learned from them. Plus, the first 10 minutes with Drew Barrymore unsettles me every time I watch it. The most classic scene in a horror film other than the shower scene in Psycho. In any other hands this film would’ve been a disaster, but the late Wes Craven made the slasher movie scary again, and the slasher who dun it are my personal favorite kind of horror movies. Plus that iconic mask, am I right?
Honorable Mentions: Saw, Poltergiest, Friday the 13th, The Exorcist, The Conjuring 1 & 2, It (2017), The Fly, Rosemary’s Baby, Jaws, It Follows, Psycho, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (original), The Birds (original) and Get Out.
Thank you Zach for sharing, what is your favorite scary film?