Since we have completed yet another decade (which I must admit I am surprised we have survived with the current state of affairs) and I have been recently pondering this whole concept of Top Ten lists (thanks Gregg!), I thought it might be interesting challenge to look back over these last ten years and pick my favorite ten horror films… IF… I could narrow it down to just ten film. My initial picks were just under thirty titles. So after some seriously contemplations, I have it narrowed down to a final ten. The funny thing is that the final “ten” has changed twice since I started this process! If this exercise has done anything for me, it has made be bust out a few of these and re-watch them. Not really to remind myself of how much I liked them, but because it had been a while. And going down that journey again gave me almost the same thrills and feelings I had the first time.
I have to state that in making my choices, to help the ease of narrowing the list down, I choose to take off titles that some (meaning me) could consider more of a comedy than horror. Yes, they can be considered horror/comedies, but when I go back to my theory that to define a genre, it really comes down to what the intent of the filmmaker was. And if it is to make you laugh first and foremost, it I took it off the list, because I was trying to keep it strictly horror. That is why films like Tucker and Dale vs Evil and Dead Snow (both 2009) are not on here, because they would have otherwise. I know it’s getting picky, but I needed a way out to it narrow down!
So let’s get to my Top Ten from 2010 to 2019. These are in alphabetical order. I got it down to ten, I’m not even going to attempt to get them in from best to last from there! Okay… here we go!
Bone Tomahawk (2015) – Funny that the only reason I watched this was I had gotten the soundtrack and figured I’d give it a chance. I had no idea what it was about other than it had some cannibals in the old west or something. Boy was it a kick in the teeth! Not only was it an amazing story, going places I did not expect, but it was filled out with some great actors, being brought to life by some of the best character actors out there, namely Richard Jenkins, but of course Kurt Russell. Not a film for the whole family but an astounding piece of cinema.
Coherence (2013) – A friend mentioned this one to me that I found a copy from Netflix. When you watch as many movies over the years as I do, you are always looking for something original. I definitely found it with this one. Not only a great and original idea, but a very low budget, but a great cast that makes it all come together. Then just when you’re mind is blown away by the film, do a little research as to how the director actually filmed it and you’re mind will be amazed even more.
Color Out of Space (2019) – See my thoughts in our Best of 2019 for this one. But once again, I can’t recommend this one enough.
Dream Home (2010) – Watching a lot of horror movies over the years, it’s not too often honestly, that a movie can hit you, and hit you hard, when it comes to the level of violence. Back in the ’80s, we used to call the more interesting deaths as “quality kills”. Well, there are more quality kills in this movie than I’ve seen a very long time. Even now. In fact, I can safely say there are several death scenes that you’ve never seen before. This is a movie that has a very strong social message here, but does not beat you in the head over and over again, so you can still get the message, but still enjoy the movie.
Errementari: The Blacksmith and the Devil (2017) – I watched this the first time at the end of 2018 and am shocked that this wasn’t on my Best of List for that year. I must have missed it because it definitely should have been. To fix that mistake, it is in my Top Ten for the Decade. I just love this film. It’s like one of those old fashion fairy tales, a little far-fetched in some parts which just make it more entertaining. I love the story, of loss and regret, deals that we make
Evil Dead (2013) – This may surprise a few people, myself included. When the first news came about that there was finally going to be a remake of this, I couldn’t say I was excited. In fact, I just didn’t care, figuring it was going to be the usual big Hollywood drivel we get. I did go see it in the theater, so I could be fair in my criticism and was shocked to discover just how damn good the movie was. Over the top gore, scary, good performances, and while it had a few parts I didn’t care for, the movie was damn good. So much so, we’re talking about it here.
The Ritual (2017) – I stumbled upon this one on Netflix, once again, knowing nothing about it and was blown away. I think a running theme in a lot of these films is the originality of the stories that help set these apart from the rest of the films we watch. In the beginning, it seems like you’re going down the same old path you’d been a thousand times before, but then it just goes bat-shit crazy.
Shrew’s Nest aka Musarañas (2014) – I didn’t catch this until last year, which you can read more about it in my Best Viewing of 2019, but it an incredible film that needs to be seen.
The Taking of Deborah Logan (2014) – I hate almost all found-footage movies. From Blair Witch to Cloverfield to most all the rest, it is a format that just bothers me. I don’t think it is effective way of storytelling in a film format. That being said, I sat down a few years ago to watch this on a streaming service and for some reason I didn’t turn it off when I realized it was a found-footage format. I’m so glad I didn’t. The main character, Deborah Logan, is the subject of a documentary on Alzheimer’s. She is played by Jill Larson, who was robbed of an Academy Award this year because she should have had that honor with no question. Her performance is heart-wrenching, tragic, sad, as well as downright terrifying. She can chill you to the bone with just a stare. And that ending…? Let’s just say you need to see it.
The Void (2016) – This film immediately was getting attention when it first came out and for good reason. Very similar to some of the works of John Carpenter and even H.P. Lovecraft (though maybe not as graphic!), it is one ride that you have no idea where it is going. And unlike a Lovecraft story, you will see the unimaginable here. Lots of W-T-F moments and a truly terrifying journey.
Next Up… The Unforgettable of the Decade