Mildly improving on the previous year, 2011 was still a letdown from the “golden” years of 2007-2009, with few future classics and even fewer box office hits that would keep the studios interested in producing movies for us horror fans. Unsurprisingly, all but two of the films on my list were barely released in theaters (if at all), even though some were crowd-pleasers that could have packed a multiplex theater had their distributors had any faith in them. Yet Creature gets 1500 screens. I don’t get it. On a more positive note, however, all but one of the films on this list are original properties – not remakes/sequels or based on comics/books. Hell, even a number of my “Worst” list are technically original – a good sign that we’re moving away from the dependence on “known property” movies and back into original territory.
Anyway, here’s my top 10 of 2011. As always, this is my opinion – you might have loved The Thing and I’m glad you did – I found it too plot hole ridden and populated with vague characters to ever get truly engaged by it (looked nice, though). You probably won’t agree with every choice, but just remember that my liking a movie you hated or not choosing one that you loved doesn’t necessarily mean I enjoy having sex with members of my family and/or animals – let’s keep those comments respectful. Also, unlike some of the other B-D writers, I only include films that were commercially released in the US in 2011. Festival films, movies that just hit DVD this year after theatrical release in 2010, and films that have been released overseas but not here (insert annual Mandy Lane joke here) are not eligible.
Of course, the first ten comments will be “FUCK YOU!” or “Where is (movie that came out in 2009)?” anyway, so why I bother making that disclaimer is beyond me.
Happy new year! READ MORE
As I mentioned in my “Best of” list, this wasn’t exactly a banner year for horror, and thus it was a lot easier finding 10 stinkers than 10 flicks that will continue to find audiences for years to come. Indeed, many of the films below are disposable, worthless efforts (to use the term loosely) that were cynically produced in order to cash in on a craze, fill in a gap on a studio’s slate, or (in at least one case) merely extend a property’s lease on life. Others… I have no idea why they exist, unless “Giving BC a headache” is something that folks actually set out to do. If so: mission accomplished, and out of nearly 400 horror movies, these 10 were the ones that made me wish I had absolutely no interest in the genre in the first place. READ MORE
High stakes gambling takes on a sinister new meaning in this third chapter of the terrifying HOSTEL series. While attending a bachelor party in Las Vegas, four friends are enticed by two sexy escorts to join them at a private party way off the Strip. Once there, they are horrified to find themselves the subjects of a perverse game of torture, where members of the Elite Hunting Club are hosting the most sadistic show in town.
Chop centers on a seemingly innocent young couple, forced by a psychotic stranger to
confront their duplicitous past. It’s a revenge thriller with a comedic edge in the tradition of Fargo and Oldboy.
This was a great year for horror movies. But really, how is this different from any other year? Other than a brief period in the early 90s, every year has been a great year for horror cinema. Journalists have been predicting the “death of horror” since I was an 11-year-old reading Charles L. Grant anthologies, and the cynicism continues to this day. According to writers and bloggers, any year now, at any moment, horror is going to suddenly disappear in a huff of black smoke, the end of the genre, gone forever.
Except the readers of this Bloody-Disgusting know that will never happen. Horror is perpetual, it always has an audience, and unlike Meg Ryan or TGIF sitcoms or leg warmers, horror will never, ever go away. Of my five years writing for Bloody-disgusting, this the easiest Top 10 list I’ve ever compiled. There were just so many good movies to choose from. Whether or not you agree with the following list, let’s raise our glasses to one agreed upon fact: 2011 was a great year for horror. READ MORE
If I were to compile an honest list of the truly awful films I watched in 2011, it would be dominated by the homemade screeners we critics receive on a weekly basis. But it’s no fun ripping on bad movies nobody is ever going to see, so I’ve chosen to focus on bigger releases, giving a pass to the shittier efforts that have crossed my path this year.
In short, I’ve definitely seen worst DVDs in 2011 than the five listed below. But trust me, you don’t want to hear about those. READ MORE
28 Days-like thriller that follows five young people who find themselves stranded in Moscow, fighting to survive in the wake of a devastating alien attack.
It is with great honour and pleasure that I announce the first annual Ghastly Awards for outstanding achievements in the horror comics industry. The Ghastly Awards have been created as a means for horror comic creators to nominate their peers for industry wide recognition. The organizing team of judges is currently seeking nominations for the various categories. Though this is only the year of inception, we could not be more excited to bring this to both the fans and the creators. Check out the official press release, more details on nominations, and links after the jump. Read on for the skinny…
Official: A horror film that depicts St. Nicholas as a murderous bishop who kidnaps and murders children when there is a full moon on December 5.
Alternate: Sint takes place during Sinterklaas (Saint Nicolas), a typical Dutch children’s fest in December. Only this festival will be ruined by a slasher Santa.
Saint Nicholas is not the good-hearted children’s friend as people think he is. In reality he is a cruel bloodthirsty bishop who, whenever there’s a full moon on December 5, will try to slaughter as many children as possible.
A documentary on DIY producer/director Roger Corman and his alternative approach to making movies in Hollywood.
Actual found footage that documents the horrifying experiences of a family that moved into the infamous haunted house.
Four years after the sudden death of his wife, forty-year-old bestselling novelist Mike Noonan is unable to write and plagued by vivid nightmares set at the Maine summerhouse he calls Sara Laughs. Mike reluctantly returns to the lakeside getaway and finds his beloved Yankee town held in the grip of a vindictive millionaire, Max Devore, who is trying to take his three-year-old granddaughter away from her widowed young mother, Mattie. as Mike is drawn into Mattie’s struggle–and begins to fall in love with her–he is also drawn into the mystery of Sara Laughs, now the site of ghostly visitations and escalating terrors. What do the forces that have been unleashed here want of Mike Noonan?
Pulled in one direction by her intense passion for Edward Cullen, and in another by her profound connection to Jacob Black, Bella Swan has endured a tumultuous year of temptation, loss, and strife to reach the ultimate turning point. Now that Bella has made her decision, a startling chain of unprecedented events is about to unfold with potentially devastating and unfathomable consequences.
On VOD October 7: A so-called apocalypse will be caused by Earth colliding with another planet. Melancholia is described as a beautiful movie about the end of the world, and the story hinges on a large object from outer space approaching Earth that affects the planet’s inhabitants.
Dunst and Gainsbourg play sisters whose lives are drifting apart as the universe spectacularly unravels in what Von Trier describes as a beautiful movie about the end of the world.
A group of five mountaineers are hiking and climbing in the Scottish Highlands when they discover a young Serbian girl buried in a small chamber in the wilderness. They become caught up in a terrifying game of cat and mouse with the kidnappers as they try to get the girl to safety.
Scratch beneath their smooth yuppie surface and a wealth of secrets emerges after husband and wife Clark (Ian Duncan) and Summer (Tess Panzer) encounter car trouble and find themselves injured and stranded in the Nevada desert. Salvation — they think — comes in the form of a ghost town named Blood River and the gospel-spewing itinerant they encounter there. But soon they realize that the helpful stranger might not be so helpful after all.
The story centers on a woman who barely survives an attack by a serial killer and wakes up in hospital with a head injury that leaves her “face-blind.” No longer able to recognize faces, she must navigate a world in which facial features change each time she loses sight of them. All the while the killer is closing in, determined to eliminate the potential witness.
It’s the eve of Christmas in northern Finland and an “archeological” dig has just unearthed the real Santa Claus. But this particular Santa isn’t the one you want coming to town. When all the local children begin mysteriously disappearing, young Pietari and his father Rauno, a reindeer hunter by trade, capture the mythological being and attempt to sell Santa to the misguided leader of the multinational corporation sponsoring the dig. Santa’s elves, however, will stop at nothing to free their fearless leader from captivity. What ensues is a wildly humorous nightmare – a fantastically bizarre polemic on modern day morality. RARE EXPORTS: A CHRISTMAS TALE is a re-imagining of the most classic of all childhood fantasies, and is a darkly comic gem soon to be required perennial holiday viewing.
At an isolated hospital deep in the West Virginia wilderness, three hideously deformed mutants go on a merciless killing spree. Now, decades later, this family of blood-thirsty cannibals is stalking new prey: a group of young skiers trapped by a blizzard. The abandoned medical wards soon become killing fields as the panicked victims come face to face with a chilling choice — fight back or die. With bonus footage too graphic for theaters, WRONG TURN 4 takes you to the most terrifying place of all…the beginning.
In 1988, young sisters Katie and Kristi befriend an invisible entity who resides in their home.
Haunted by painful memories and increasing paranoia, a damaged woman struggles to re-assimilate with her family after fleeing an abusive cult.
RED STATE is a horror film in which a group of misfits encounter fundamentalism gone to the extreme in Middle America.
A group of kids encounter a crazed preacher (based on Fred Phelps, founder of the Westboro Baptist Church) who gives a whole new meaning to the term “extreme fundamentalism.
Red State unfolds in a small town dominated by a fundamentalist preacher, Abin Cooper. It tells the story of three high school boys who, on their way to an internet arranged meeting with a woman, end up crossing paths with Cooper. The encounter sets into motion a series of events that causes all hell to break loose.
When the lights go down … The Moon will rise … And a Legend will be REBORN
On the eve of his high school graduation, Will Kidman (Liboiron) finally looks up from his books to catch the eye of the girl he’s longed for the last four years –the mysterious Eliana Wynter (Shaw). He’s always been the shy kid, flying under the radar, but when he discovers a dark secret from his past— that he is heir to a powerful line of werewolves — he finds he has a choice to make between succumbing to his primal nature, or turning against his own, and maintaining his humanity. In order to fight the destiny of his legacy, and save Eliana – as well as himself – he must battle not only his growing blood lust but an army of fearsome beasts bent on killing him, Eliana…and then, us all.
On DVD October 18: Two friends in Mexico discover the Lament Configuration and unleash Pinhead, but one decides to try to survive by swapping himself with someone else. Once they go missing, family members go in search of them, but find Pinhead instead.