Houston, TX dark metal band Venomous Maximus is currently riding high upon a wave of critical acclaim for their latest album Beg Upon The Light (order here), which hearkens back to the days when metal didn’t need to be blindingly fast or heavily effected to be dark, sinister, or kick ass. We premiered their track “Moonchild” as well as pictures from the video of the same name (which you can see below).
To show their love of the dark and macabre, the group has put together a list of their Top 5 horror movies as well as a few honorable mentions. While the majority of the list features classic titles, they’re very well explained. And if we’re being open and honest, these films are at the top of many people’s lists for a reason: they’re great. However, there are a few fun choices, one of which I haven’t seen and definitely plan on checking out now that I’ve read a bit about it! Head on below to check out this list!
The Shining – Aesthetically a perfect film. Kubrick is fucking God. Perfect cinematography, gorgeous use of symmetry and mirrors, awesome soundtrack and sound editing, perfect pace to convey the sense of isolation, flawless. And listening to Al Bowly’s “Midnight, the Stars and You” brings you back to the Overlook every time. There’s some interesting theories on the meaning of the film. And one thing you know is that Kubrick didn’t do anything on accident. Gorgeous film.
The Exorcist – Beautiful portrayal of evil. Killer acting, the film has that nice soft, grainy feeling to it, great dialogue (“…your cunting daughter”, “…the sow is mine”), the booze-and-cigarette addled voice of Mercedes McCambridge, the feeling of coldness in the possession room, the lack of music throughout (even though “Tubular Bells” is one of the most familiar soundtrack pieces in all horror, it’s only played in the one scene with Chris walking down the street in Georgetown and at the end; and I personally think awesome Henze’s “Fantasia for Strings” played at the closing credits conveys the mood of the film better), the overall feel to the whole film is just bad ass. However the beauty of “The Exorcist” is in its subtleties, the little shit you barely notice. The face of the woman on the funeral wagon, the blacksmith, Regan floating by the window when Kinderman looks up, that split second after Regan vomits on Karras when Regan isn’t Linda Blair but Eileen Dietz, the face of Captain Howdy. Beautiful.
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre – Awesome, grainy, dirty, classic. Tobe Hooper’s camera angles are incredible, the bad sound quality adds to it’s charm, perhaps the greatest closing scene in horror, awesome. And how fucked up is Leatherface in the Pretty Woman mask and suit and tie. Fucking beautiful. I got to have lunch with Gunnar Hanson (the actor who plated Leatherface) once. I was a little disappointed when he ordered a salad.
Suspiria – The style of 70’s Italian horror is so distinguishable and beautiful and Dario Aregento does it best in “Suspiria.”. Argento’s style in regards to sets, coloring, pace, sound editing is gorgeous. And the creepy soundtrack by Goblin is as crucial to the mood and feel of the film as anything. Once I was at a local book store’s outdoor showing of Argento’s “Inferno” and a plague of flying cockroaches fell upon us, flying in circles, dropping from the trees into people’s hair and drinks, flying into people’s faces, it was fucking amazing. People honestly ran screaming. The only people remaining were me, my wife, my brother, and the guy putting on the showing. It was fucking beautiful, the perfect marriage of real horror and the Argento horror on the screen.
Tourist Trap – A relatively unknown film starring Chuck Conners and hot as hell Tanya Roberts, “Tourist Trap” is about this guy that kills people via telekinetically controlled mannequins. It freaked the out fuck out of me when I was a little kid. It’s creepy as hell, awesome soundtrack by Pino Donaggio, and has a killer suffocation scene. Awesome film.
Honorable mentions: The Fog, Halloween 3: The Season of the Witch, Creepshow