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2016 Is One of the Best Years for Horror Ever

Jane Levy stars in Screen Gems' horror-thriller DON'T BREATHE.

Much like 1985, 1981 and 1979, 2016 will be remembered as one of the all-time great years for horror. Although the finest genre films often don’t make it to most multiplexes these days, that has not been the case this year, as in 2016, the average moviegoer has been treated to one original and scary release after another, films that they actually don’t have to feel bad about spending money on. And consumers have been taking note of this higher quality output. Fede Alvarez’s magnificent Don’t Breathe was recently #1 at the box office two weeks in a row, beating out major blockbusters like Suicide Squad and Sausage Party. At the time of this writing, 2016’s wide-release horror movies have collectively grossed about $860 million worldwide.

And the year isn’t even over yet. With four months left to go, we have already seen huge hits like The Witch, The Conjuring 2, The Shallows, Lights Out and Don’t Breathe, not to mention all the movies that did not get a wide release like Hush and Southbound. For comparison, by this time last year, our mainstream horror releases were The Woman in Black 2, The Lazarus Effect, Unfriended, Poltergeist, Insidious: Chapter 3, The Gallows and Sinister 2. Yikes.

So this certainly feels like a noticeably better year than usual, both financially and critically. But to further examine that feeling, let’s take a look at these past few years’ major releases, their reviews among critics (specifically focusing on the Rotten Tomatoes score), and their box office take. We’ll consider a major release to be anything that played on at least 2,000 screens, and which therefore was common enough that the vast majority of people could very easily see it.

As of early September, eight 2016 horror movies meet this criteria. And for the first time this decade, over half of them received a “fresh” score on Rotten Tomatoes; The Witch, The Conjuring 2, The Shallows, Lights Out and Don’t Breathe were all rated 76 percent or above. A horror movie being so well received among critics is generally a big deal, but in 2016, it has been the norm.

Only three out of this year’s eight releases were rated “rotten,” those being The Boy, The Forest and The Purge: Election Year (which was six points away from being “fresh”). The average Rotten Tomatoes score among the eight 2016 major horror releases is 62 percent.


This is as good a hit-to-miss ratio as we’ve seen in a long, long time. In 2015, of the year’s 10 major horror releases, only four of them received “fresh” scores, and only one of them, Unfriended, was out by early September. So although we’ve already had five critically-acclaimed mainstream horror films this year, at this point in 2015, we had just one. The average Rotten Tomatoes score of a major horror release in 2015 was 41.3 percent, over 20 points lower than 2016’s currently is.

2015 was a relatively decent year, too. Believe it or not, in the entirety of 2014, only a single wide-release horror movie received a “fresh” rating on Rotten Tomatoes, that being Mike Flanagan’s Oculus. The average score that year was an embarrassing 34.5 percent (though it was 39 percent in early September), and the typical moviegoer was assaulted month after month with truly awful pieces of work like Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones, Devil’s Due and Ouija. 

These are the films consumers use to judge the genre, so it’s no wonder its perception among the general public is so poor. The Babadook was the greatest that year had to offer, but it had an extremely limited theatrical run, and it was only when the movie hit Netflix years later that it earned any sort of recognition from people who don’t keep up with horror news.

2013 was an okay year in terms of major releases, with Evil Dead, The Conjuring, and You’re Next hitting screens within a few months of one another. Still, cinemas were also populated by movies like Texas Chainsaw 3D and Dark Skies, the result being an average Rotten Tomatoes score of 48.7 percent, or 50 percent in early September.


With 2012, exemplary movies like The Cabin in the Woods, The Woman in Black and Sinister might make one forget how dismal the rest of the year was. In fact, 2012 brought us the two worst-reviewed wide-release horror films of this decade: The Devil Inside and Silent Hill: Revelation 3D, which received scores of six percent and five percent respectively. The average score of the year was 36.2 percent (44 percent in early September).

2011 was the last time we had anything close to as consistent a year as 2016 thanks to films like Scream 4, Insidious, Final Destination 5 and Fright Night. Yet even so, The Rite, Shark Night 3D and The Thing soured the waters and brought the average Rotten Tomatoes rating down to a 50.8 percent (50.7 percent in early September).

Finally, 2010 was home to only three wide-release horror movies that were relatively well received: The Crazies, Piranha 3D, and The Last Exorcism. Even in all three of those cases, the positive reaction was hardly rapturous, and with the rest of the year’s dreck like the Nightmare on Elm Street remake, the average score was 41.6 percent (53 percent in early September).

Looking at these past six years, there are a few key takeaways. First, even the “bad” horror films of 2016 have not been nearly as toxic as in previous years. The Forest was debatably the only truly rubbish one, with The Boy and The Purge: Election Year being uninteresting misfires at worst. In all of the other years we’ve looked at, several releases were so universally condemned as to later receive dedicated episodes on podcasts about bad movies.


Secondly, after examining the 2010s so far, it’s clear that 2016 has given us the highest number of horror movies that are enthusiastically recommended as opposed to half-heartedly recommended or given the faint praise that they don’t suck as hard expected. The Witch, The Conjuring 2, and Don’t Breathe were all celebrated as genuinely fantastic filmmaking even by those who tend not to like horror, with Lights Out and The Shallows receiving a less universal but still generally quite positive reaction. With a score of 91 percent, The Witch is the best reviewed “pure horror” release of the 2010s, only being beaten out by the horror-comedy The Cabin in the Woods.

Perhaps most importantly, of 2016’s eight major releases, at least three of them are bold and original concepts that audiences have not seen before. Lights Out and Don’t Breathe caught the attention of millions with instantly intriguing premises, and The Witch dazzled by putting an artistic spin on a subgenre that has not been all that popular in recent years. Compare that to 2015; of the 10 mainstream releases, three were sequels, four were found-footage movies, and one was a remake.

The cynics among us might expect those sequels and remakes to have performed better than 2016’s original properties, but that is actually not true. While this year’s box office take has not been historic or unprecedented, it has certainly been rather impressive, suggesting that for studios, financing an audacious and unique film can be just as lucrative, if not more so, than financing another found-footage sequel or franchise reboot.

Keeping in mind that Don’t Breathe is continuing to rake in cash, as of early September, 2016’s major horror releases have grossed $861 million collectively. The entirety of 2015’s major horror releases grossed just $684 million, and if we discount movies that opened beyond this point in September, that number shrinks to $451 million. In 2014, the horror box office take was about the same as 2015, with the year’s movies bringing in $685 million, and just $326 million by early September.

The year to beat is 2013, when The Conjuring’s massive success brought the year’s total up to about $1 billion. But with Blair Witch and Rings on the way in time for the 2016 Halloween season, it is realistic to imagine that 2016 will wind up being this decade’s best year for horror, both for the studios and for fans.


Those fans have become painfully used to having to justify their passion for the genre to friends, exposing loved ones to movies that did not make it to theaters like Trick ‘r Treat and explaining that it’s these films, not the latest remake from Platinum Dunes, that represents the genre we know and love.

That defensiveness is not required in 2016, one of the only years in recent memory in which multiplexes have been populated by quality pieces of horror storytelling that, in many cases, qualify as some of the year’s best films of any genre. It has been a year for making artistic horror pictures like The Witch that shock the world by earning more money than a found-footage film might. It’s been a year for exploring new ground with the strikingly original Don’t Breathe and Lights Out, and a year where even familiar subgenres, i.e. the shark attack movie, are given interesting spins.

Maybe 2016 is an outlier. But if this trend can continue into 2017 and beyond, perhaps we will look back at this time as the dawn of a new era, when the genre stopped being viewed as the cinematic equivalent of fast food, when it started earning back its respect among audiences and critics, and when mainstream horror was made great again.



  • CaseX

    Really? I must have slept through most of the year, then. Just seemed like another year full of mediocre stuff again to me.

  • MadCows

    I agree. This year has rocked.

  • ScabieBaby

    Jesus F., how much do you guys get paid every time you say Lights Out was ‘strikingly original’? It was shit. The short was scarier in 1/20th of the run time. Hell, what I just did in the toilet was scarier.

    • Grimphantom

      Finally! Someone agrees! Not the toilet since i don’t know that lol

    • Cheshire TrollCat

      I don’t think it was either one. It was just good.

  • Grimphantom


  • Cheshire TrollCat

    I was just thinking that last week. We got The Forrest, The Boy, The Conjuring 2 (my fav), shark Week, Lights Out, and Don’t Breath. Plus were getting Morgan, Rings, and Blair Witch. I just can’t deal.

  • Creepshow

    The Neon Demon is the one I enjoyed most this year. And ‘Don’t Breathe’ was my biggest disappointment (way too much nonsense).

    • jackstark211

      Neon Demon was great, but so was Don’t Breathe.

    • zombie84_41

      Yeah don’t breathe was over hyped

      • Creepshow


        • zombie84_41


  • A2VL

    I absolutely agree that this year has been a great one for mainstream horror. Years from now people will realize how strong this year was as a whole.

    • Saturn

      It’s been a good 2 or 3 years. Which is nice.

  • Right off the bat they ruin the article by limiting the movies to nationwide releases with 2000+ openings (when many publications list nationwide as 600+). Moderately deceptive article title. But for what they list, it’s somewhat interesting to see mainstream horror have an up year.

    But would have prefered expanding the field to include more movies with lower theater counts or simply forwent theater count and looked at the 10 horror movies with the best RT score.

  • zombie84_41

    2016 was another shit year for horror Don’t Breathe and The Witch were so over hyped its not even funny. Don’t Breathe would have been amazing if it ended with everyone dying and not that lame ending. The Witch was just all around boring and not scary at all either. And i love slow burn movies, The Conjuring 2 was good and creepy, The Shallows was all around tense, Lights Out I haven’t seen but I liked the short, Morgan was by far my fav film of the year but I don’t think it counts as horror though maybe a dark Action movie. and 31 was Zombie’s weakest movie since Lords Of Salem, I think thats to blame for the MPAA IDK if it would of been more tense and messed up but what i saw was rather tame and lousy. IDK horror isn’t what it used to be. Or maybe I’m so used to horror movies that I want something so different, so scary.

    • Rick-Taylor

      In Don’t Breathe, the opening of the movie is the ending of the movie.

      • zombie84_41

        So she really does get taken back ? so the end was what like a dream ?

    • disqus_uPh3WDxbQy

      Everyone dying in a horror movie is the new cliche. I was happy with the unconventional ending for Don’t Breathe.

      • zombie84_41

        I haven’t seen a movie yet in theaters when everyone died. If you are talkin about indie horror then yes. But hollywood horror I can’t recall the last one I saw.

  • Wes Draven

    10 Cloverfield Lane!

    • Creepshow

      First 80 minutes – Yay!
      Last 20 minutes – Boo!

  • Texas Horror

    I’m looking forward to seeing Don’t Breathe (haven’t had time due to work travel). My favorite movie of the year so far is The Green Room. The Green Room was an intense, realistic horror film that hit all the right notes. I think Don’t Breathe will have to be pretty damn good to top it, but the premise looks very promising!

    • Chad Langen

      Yes, The Green Room was amazing and I watched it just a few days before Anton died =( Really enjoyed Don’t Breathe as well.

      • Texas Horror

        Thanks…glad to hear some positive reviews from folks on this site. I trust the reviews of horror fans more so than the critics. I didn’t realize that Anton had died until a few weeks ago. I was shocked! He was a great young actor with a bright future ahead of him. Fright Night wasn’t the best remake, and I tend to be overly critical of remakes by nature, but his performance in both Fright Night and Green Room was excellent. I wonder who will play Chekov now, assuming there’s a fourth Star Trek movie?

        • Saturn

          I liked him as an actor too, and really enjoyed his turn as Odd Thomas (I dug the movie, and absolutely loved the book) and would have liked to see him reprise the role. Sadly that won’t happen now.

    • fannypack aficionado

      Don’t Breathe is good, but not quite as good as Green Room IMO. Anything with Sir Patrick gets extra points automatically, in all fairness.

      • Texas Horror

        Completely agree about the extra points for Sir Patrick. Full disclosure, I used to know Macon Blair in college (he and my brother were good friends), so there may be some bias on my part for anything he and Saulnier do together. However, with Green Room, I see significant maturity in Saulnier’s writing and directing compared to Murder Party. Murder Party was a fun ride, but Green Room is serious, brutal, and intense. I didn’t quite understand Blair’s character being allowed to just walk away at the end, but aside from that, I thought it was pretty solid throughout. I haven’t seen Blue Ruin yet, as that one slipped by my radar. But I heard it received 7 awards and 15 nominations among various independent film festivals, so I need to check it out as well. I’m hoping to see Don’t Breathe this weekend, so we’ll see how it compares to me. Glad to hear that it was good. No Patrick Stewart is certainly a handicap going in. I had no idea that he could play that evil of a character so damn well! His talent speaks for itself, but I just never thought of him playing that role.

        • AlbinoRhino

          See Blue Ruin ASAP. It’s fantastic. If you have Amazon Prime, it was just added so you can see it there.

    • Evi

      Shit the Green Room is so good. People should label it a horror just for the hell of it. Also, because of ALL the movies mentioned here, Green Room is actually the most horrific.

      • Texas Horror

        Definitely checking out Blue Ruin, which I’ve heard is not horror, but just a great movie! I would call Green Room horror. It’s theme is similar to the backwoods killers chasing the hikers/campers. Although that theme that’s been done to death, this felt like a fresh take on it. It was truly horrific, and kind of felt a little like I Spit on Your Grave or Last House on the Left, at least in it’s pacing. I’m sure that it will be labeled a thriller or suspense movie by Netflix, and whatever box store is selling it, though. It seems like whenever there’s a critically acclaimed horror film, or even just one with a big budget and actors in it, it ends up in the thriller or suspense aisle.

    • AlbinoRhino

      If you liked The Green Room, check out Blue Ruin, it was the movie Jeremy Saulnier directed before Green Room. It’s a fantastic movie.

  • Richter Belmont

    So many jaded horror fans here. The fact that these films are making money and doing well critically is a good thing for the future of horror, unless you want things to go back to Platinum Dunes and WWE Studios level of horror.

    FYI, you forgot to include 10 Cloverfield Lane in your summary, Brenda.

    • Yes,it is indeed true that there are so many jaded fans both in the Internet and the horror community since 9/11 happened,for Brendan’s article is pointing out how modern horror cinema is as successful now as it has been for years. And he also forgot to list 10 CLOVERFIELD LANE since there’s so many titles to fill onto his list. And let’s remember that Mike Flanagan’s OCULUS was also co-produced by WWE Studios(and became one of their successful films).

      • Creepshow

        What the heck does 9/11 have to do with anything?

        • Crow

          9/11 brought a shift to the genre where we began to see the torture porn era. Films like the Saw and Hostel franchise are a example.

          • Creepshow

            Same question:

            What the heck does 9/11 have to do with anything?

          • Crow
          • Saturn

            It’s because it changed the world, and made us more mistrusting of those with Arabic sounding surnames, and made use realise that, after the high hopes of a new millenium, the world was a dark place and we didn’t know what was in the minds of people who we would see every day.

            Kinda like LHOTL and TCM were in response to the horrors of the Vietnam war.

          • Creepshow

            I’m not drinking the Kool-Aid that it changed horror movies. There has always been bad people in the world, nothing new there.

          • Saturn

            What I meant is that there was so much excitement and hope for the future after the turn of the millenium – and that all hope was lost when the attacks in the US (which then became regular globally) happened and people became cynical about “strangers”.


          • Creepshow

            “Stranger Danger”…..was not established on 9/11/2001.
            Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go snort a line of Purplesaurus Rex. OH YEAH!

          • Saturn

            Well don’t strip naked and run down the street attacking people in zombie mode.
            Legal Highs are bad, m’kay?

          • Creepshow

            I can’t promise anything.

          • Saturn

            I’ll stick CNN on in the background then, just in case……

          • AlanMorlock

            I’ve never seen much evidence for a cause effect relationship there, especially because Saw borrows so heavily from Se7en which is from 1995.

    • J Jett

      Richter, his name is Brendan. 🙂

      • Richter Belmont

        Meh, whatever. Brenda, Brendan, Brandon, Branson. It’s all the same to me. ; )

        • Creepshow

          Does anyone even know a Brenda? I never have. I know that name solely from TV and movies. And every Brenda is always a Cunty McBitchalot.

          • Saturn

            I have an aunt called Brenda – she’s alright.

  • lostboy408


  • Jack Thompson

    Generic contrarian comment.

  • Coty Reynolds

    This year has been more of the same, mediocre, jump scare, paranormal garbage. I’ve basically given up on seeing horror films in theaters, until this PG-13 fad of pleasing the young kids goes away. Horror should not be about box office returns and shrinking the budget to see another watered down product, it should be about shocking people and pushing the envelope.

    • Shawn Simpson

      Whats hilarious is The Witch, Don’t Breathe and 10 Cloverfield Lane don’t pander to any of the stuff you listed as more of the same. The Conjuring 2 and Lights Out both use jump scares but in original ways that help the story and not hinder it. Truthfully if you want to talk about shocking people then go see Don’t Breathe….if you leave the theater less than shocked then you might deserve a cookie.

      • Coty Reynolds

        I plan to see Don’t Breathe but it’ll be a rental most likely. The Witch does nothing for me, not a fan of slow burn films where nothing happens for the first hour. I think The Conjuring is one of the most overrated horror films in recent memory, so obviously I don’t care about the sequel. Finally Lights Out bears a lot of resemblance to Darkness Falls, which also was horrible. I tend to steer clear of all Blumhouse related films, or as I like to call them the cancer on horror.

        • AlanMorlock

          So basically you’re complaining about films that you havent even seen.

  • I agree with you but I need to see The Shallows, Lights Out and Don’t Breathe. However I loved The Boy, Conjuring 2, The Purge 3, and Hush. I saw The Other Side of the Door too and for me was a bad surprise, The Forest is weak and The Witch is SO OVERRATED, I hated.

    • Btw, I don’t consider 10 Cloverfield Lane a horror movie, but I loved! It’s one of the best movies of this year.

      • Satanzilla

        It is absolutely a horror movie, with a little sci fi tacked on the end.

      • Eddie Dutra

        Completely disagree, 10 Cloverfield Lane is the worst thing I have seen this year. The most entertaining thing about it was watching several people get up and leave and never coming back. The creature designs were uninspired. They reminded me of the guardians from the PS3/PS4 game Journey?. That movie was pure GARBAGE!

    • diapers

      The Boy is highly underrated.

      • Yeah! The atmosphere and the plot twist are amazing, it’s not a movie made only to get some million of dolars but to satisfy the audiences too.

      • Meisha’s Taint

        The Boy was so shitty I rented it, couldn’t get through it and then forgot I saw it and rented it again realized I had rented it before and then did the same thing again a third time. That’s how forgettable The Boy was!

        • diapers

          While I liked The Boy, the double rental amnesia you describe happened to me verbatim with Midnight Game. I nearly slit my own throat the second viewing.

  • fannypack aficionado

    Hello, 2016…. you’ll never be 1985.

  • Rohan Sorensen

    I don’t quite get why everyone praises the witch. I thought it was mind-numbingly boring. Green Room is probably my favorite of the year so far.

  • Firedog909

    Agree, a good year. Now I think important for BD to give harsher reviews to movies that do not cut the mustard. Let’s keep the horror standards high!

  • DarkBree

    The Conjuring 2, Lights Out, 10 Cloverfield Lane, Don’t Breathe are awesome!!!

  • diapers

    EVERY year is a great year for horror. Haven’t been disappointed in horror since becoming cognizant in the early 80’s.

  • Trisha Tachanawa

    Eh I guess im looking forward to when slasher films can make a mainstream comeback. I enjoyed the films released this year, but Im ready the next game changer. I almost thought I was wrong but Scream 4 is possibly the last “slasher” Ive seen in theaters. Next year could be interesting though if Halloween, Friday 13th, and Leatherface pull through.

  • Baron Von Marlon

    Last year was one of the best years imo.
    Deathgasm, Dude Bro Party Massacre III, Bone Tomahawk, The Voices, Wyrmwood, Late Phases, Let Us Prey,…

    • Shawn Simpson

      The article was pointing out how horror has done in the theaters. I fucking love Deathgasm, The Voices and Bone Tomahawk(dear fucking christ that asshole rip scene.) If those would have made it for theatrical runs we might have an entirely different conversation on our hands.

      • Baron Von Marlon

        Oh, ok. Guess I should’ve payed more attention.

    • James

      Bone tomahawk was incredible

    • Travis_Bickle

      None of the movies you listed were made in 2016
      Deathgasm, Bone Tomahawk, Let Us Prey, Dude Bro Party Massacre = 2015
      The Voices, Wyrmwood and Late Phases = 2014

      • Baron Von Marlon

        Probably why I said last year.

        And the year a movie’s made isn’t always the same as the year a movie gets released.
        That’s why The Witch (2015) is listed in the article.

        • Travis_Bickle

          Simply because it took YOU two years to see a movie, doesn’t change when the film was made.

          • Baron Von Marlon

            Block user. Bye, troll.

          • Travis_Bickle

            Zero troll pee wee….if I watch a movie from 1969 and Ive never seen it, technically it’s new to me that doesn’t mean that’s when the movie came out…..tard

      • Meisha’s Taint

        Doesn’t really matter when it was made, it matters when we get to see it. Clown wasn’t made this year but I’m putting it on my best of 2016 list because that’s when everyone but folks in Europe got to see it.

        • Travis_Bickle

          Then the films that are out now can be on your Best Of 2018 list??

      • He said last year was one of the best years of movies. That means hes talking about 2015… Your attempt to correct him flopped

        • Travis_Bickle

          Snore……Down Vote!

        • Travis_Bickle

          Your face flopped….Down Vote!!

  • Davidaja

    I thought “The Shallows” was pretty good, but that shot with the shark bearing down on Lively while she’s riding on that wave is so bad-ass…

  • Ting Shie

    And you haven’t included Yeon Sang-ho’s “Train to Busan”!!
    As of September 5, 2016, the movie has grossed US$ 88,080,540 worldwide!!

    • Charles Cumella

      Looks good, thanks for that one!

      • Saturn

        Indeed, I’d never heard of it until now – and it looks pretty good.
        Expect Tom Cruise in the US remake……

        Shame they didn’t go down that route with a certain Spanish franchise : Train (REC).

    • LoveAnimation

      I hate that most people only care about American movies and TV shows when other countries makes great stuff all the time too.

      • AlanMorlock

        Those things getade but they often aren’t distributed here.

    • Richter Belmont

      Just watched it! From an initial gut reaction, this is easily my favourite film of the year so far, and has entered into my top three best zombie/viral outbreak films of all-time, and pretty close to being my favourite Korean film of all-time, too!

      Highly recommended film!

  • Creepshow

    Oh brother, a book that probably sold 3 copies. Thanks though

  • Adam Paquette

    The Witch sucked balls.

    • Meisha’s Taint

      Why you say this?

  • Lirabelle

    Silent Hill: Retribution 3D

    I guess that’s a forgivable error, as that’s what the movie felt like at times.

  • Meisha’s Taint

    Creep anyone?

  • 2013, 2014 & 2015 were so much fucking better.
    The Shallows was very mediocre. The Conjuring 2 was an over-the-top disappointment. The VVitch was much too over-hyped. The Boy was crap. The Neon Demon was stupid and too artsy fartsy. The Gir in the Photographs sucked. Darling sucked even more. Dark was a suckfest too. Southbound was the same piece of dreck as VHS Viral. Demonic was boring as hell. Cabin Fever remake… no comment.

    at least: Green Room was great. 10 Cloverfield Lane was amazing. and Holidays was fun.

  • C. A. Smith

    Experience the scariest film online — being called the best since Blair Witch Project — before its pulled for distribution. Rorschach: What will you see? It’s scary because it’s real. Watch at home, alone, with the lights off. We dare you.

  • CR

    It’s articles like these that start comment wars that really expose the entitled, childish brats that you are who will never be pleased with anything.

  • The Witch, Green Room, Don’t Breathe and 10 Cloverfield Lane are my standouts so far this year.

    I was completely engrossed by The Witch, especially the period dialogue and set design; the film wasn’t scary as much as it was unsettling, and the attention to detail was a big factor in achieving that.

  • richp_91

    Crazy how I stumble upon an article stating that 2016 is the best year for horror, because I was just thinking this a couple weeks ago. I mentioned it to my boyfriend after watching the Rings trailer. My watchlist just keeps growing.. October is slowly creeping up and I am binging horror movies all month long.

  • Horror Definitely delivered this year now that i think of it. Green Room, Don’t Breathe, 10 Cloverfield Lane, The Neon Demon, Hush, and The Conjuring 2 received great acclaim and I agree with the hype with every single one of these movies. The Shallows was even a great experience, just not my favorite. I just need a great slasher film before the year ends and ill be set

  • Koolz

    The Witch impressed me. Other then that I have been watching films from 1964 and the 70s, 80s.
    I still consider The Changeling to be King!

  • Brett Strohl

    This might be the best year in recent years, but how bad have the last 26 been in comparison to the 70’s and 80’s?

  • Brodequin

    The Witch and Luciferous were the only interesting so far. Other mentioned in article above arew not even worth of mentioning.
    10 Cloverfield Lane is very good thriller
    Btw: Could someone enlighten me where i can find horror in The Purge (any)? Pretty please.

    I was looking everywhere, no luck so far.

  • jurgmandr

    Shallows was good, the Witch was great, and I really liked Don’t Breathe. Hush was pretty entertaining as well.

  • AlanMorlock

    The word overrated is rathereanimgless. Ifany people are saying “watch this, I had a good time with it” then that is an accurate description of how they felt about it.

    • Satanzilla

      Overrated has a very precise meaning, as do all words. It means the thing has been praised as being greater than it is. Both Lights Out and Don’t Breathe are tidy little horror pictures but use tried and true genre methods to tell their stories — and Don’t Breathe in particular has a typically convoluted Hollywood ending.

      I think we have to admit that our beloved genre does not often attract the best and brightest moviemakers, and that usually painfully shows onscreen. So every time a horror movie is halfway decent it’s proclaimed as brilliant.

      • AlanMorlock

        What it typically means “I don’t like this thing as much as everyone else an I’m defensive about it.”

        There’s also a degree to which horror is measured by how well it garners it’ss intended effect. It is much the same with comedies. If aovie provides the scares and experience they are looking for, that is what they praise. In the case of Lights out I personally found the execution of its premise to be very satisfying. It set up the rules of its monster and then played out interesting twists and implications of how that works. (The muzzle flashes, etc)

        That said, just in terms of filmmaking in general, Don’t Breath and the Neon Demon have had the most interesting cinematography out of the dozens of movies that I’ve seen in theaters this year, The Witch the best production design.

  • AlanMorlock

    I wasn’t just referring to you. In general “overrated” is thrown around online like rice at a wedding. Much like “hipster” in years past, all I can do is roll my eyes when I come across it.

    And I’m just saying I don’t think you’re fully accounting for the specific scale that people are rating on.

    • Satanzilla

      I think our standards have become so low that people say a film, particularly a horror film, is great just because it isn’t terrible. Or even worse, because it’s not as terrible as other offerings. Which is a clear example of overrating.

  • Overton Green

    The Shallows was decent but not great. Don’t Breathe was good but the ending was lacking realism. Lights Out was ok but it just lack a pay off. The Conjuring 2 was grossly overrated IMO, and I didn’t care for The Witch at all.

    My favorite movie of the year was 10 Cloverfield Lane. I absolutely love that film.

    I feel strongly that we are so use to getting utter crap when it comes to horror movies that the minute we get something that isn’t pure garbage we heap tons of praise on it.

    With that said I did find Don’t Breathe, Lights Out, and The Shallows enjoyable they just weren’t close to game changers. They were decent films but nothing remotely special. Yet those three films have been praised like they were John Carpenter’s Halloween, or The Exorcist…

  • Jesse

    I don’t get it. The author talks about 2014 but doesn’t mention It Follows. Was that not a wide release?

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