Judging from the number of hits on the Stephen King post it would appear that horror movies are a very popular genre with CPL viewers-and I couldn't agree more-there's nothing like having your socks scared off!! I'm not talking slasher fliks (of which there is no shortage)---you know the type---mad as a hatter backwoodsmen who mame and torture their way through 90minutes. I'm talking well crafted, intense stories that build to a nail biting finale (okay, and maybe just a little bit of blood and guts). If you aren't normally a fan don't be too eager to dismiss horror movies as cheesy. These selections represent hundreds of nominatons from Oscar, BAFTA, Golden Globes etc and many, many wins . I've pulled these movies from several genres-ScFi, fantasy and horror but they all have one thing in commom-they are scary. Some are good old fashioned fun scary, while some fall under the truly terrifying. So lock the doors, pull down the blinds, grap someone to hang onto, or watch alone if you dare.
Pan's Labyrinth---2006. Perhaps this movie is best understood as a metaphor for facist Spain of 1944. It is dark and disturbing, yet also compelling and beautiful. It also has one of the more truly terrifying chase scenes I've ever seen.
Psycho---Hitchcock. Need I say more?
Alien Quadrilogy ---1 is great, and 2 is tremendous, 3's not bad and 4 starts out strong and ends an absolute mess. When first released Alien had the tagline "in space no one can hear you scream"---and I was hooked. A kick butt heroine, a truly malignant alien, and enough special effects to satisfy even the most jaded. If you like them and also liked the Predator series check out AVP (Alien versus Predator). It's actually surprisingly good. Avoid AVP 2.
Rosemary's Baby-the ultimate in horror movies---at the end of it all you'll be amazed at how scared you were and how little you really saw. A deft hand by director Roman Polanski and inspired casting including Mia Farrow as the fey Rosemary, make this among the best.
Invasion of the body snatchers- we just received the 1978 version starring Donald Sutherland and Leonard Nimoy and the 1956 Kevin McCarthy versionis on order. They are both well done, with the earlier one being a little more atmospheric (black and white) and the 78 being a little more graphic. Great endings in both, with the 78 being really freaky.
Sixth sense---one of those quiet little movies that came out of nowhere and grabbed everyone by the throat. By M Night Shaymalan who also brought us "Signs" (also worth a look).
I am Legend---this is the 2007 remake of a 1971 remake (Omega Man with Charlton Heston) of a 1964 remake (Last Man on Earth with Vincent Price) of an original 1954 story by master horror writer Richard Matheson. Phew! Matheson is considered very influential in developing the modern vampire/zombie genre and among his many fans are writer Stephen King and producer/director George Romero. This Will Smith version is good, creepy fun.The scene in which he is searching for his dog in an abandoned building is particularly well done. You'll never look at Rover in quite the same way again.
Movies we dont have but you should see if you like being scared. Not for the faint of heart!!
Blair Witch Project
And should you find yourself in a potentially horrifying situation, remember these two cardinal rules:
1) never dig anything up "just to make sure it's really dead''
2) never let anyone tell you "let's split up and check this out"-especially if you're a teenager