Thursday, October 31, 2013

15 Horror Movies You Should Definitely Watch (Guest post from Emma - Listen To The Ocean)

Halloween is here! How exciting is that? I love everything about it: the candy, the decorations, the colors... but my favorite part are the horror movies. Because I know that Emma from Listen To The Ocean is also a huge fan of those, I asked her if she'd like to guest post about horror movies. And she happily accepted! Here's a list for you of 15 horror movies you should definitely watch.

Enjoy, and happy Halloween!


Halloween is here and if you haven't made any plans for tonight, you might want to grab a blanket and a bowl of fresh popcorn and watch a scary movie. When Laura asked me to write this guest post, I got extremely excited to share some of my favorite horror movies with you.

Those are 15 of my favorite horror movies (and believe me, I've watched A LOT of them), I hope you'll find something along the list that you might want to try. Also, you will not find in this list all those classical horror movies like The shining or The exorcist because first I don't think you need me to find such a list, plus I think that a lot of them are overrated (the exorcist being one of them in my opinion) while there is a LOT of good horror movies out there that way less people have heard of. If you're not into scary movies, you might wanna switch directly to the two last movies in the list, they might still be something you'd enjoy.

El orphanato - In the mouth of madness - El espinazo del diablo

El Orfanato aka The Orphanage (J.A. Bayonna - 2007 - Spain) The movie follows Laura as she moves in the orphanage where she grew up along with her husband and their adoptive son Simon. She's planning to transform the disaffected building into a home for disabled children.Things goes down the drain when Simon, who believes he has an imaginary friend, disappears. The movie is one of my favorite horror movie ever, it's really well directed and acted and is really worth checking. I know a US remake is in making, but PLEASE check the original instead.

 In the Mouth of Madness (John Carpenter - 1994 - USA) If you're a fan of H.P. Lovecraft or Stephen King, you absolutely need to see that movie. If you're not, you should still give it a try. The movie follows John Trent, an insurance investigator, hired by a publisher to investigate the disappearance of their popular horror author Sutter Cane. Trent is soon to discover that reality isn't what it used to be anymore...

El Espinazo Del Diablo aka The Devil's Backbone (Guillermo Del Toro - 2001 - Spain) Another great spanish horror movie. The movie takes place in an orphanage in a remote part of Spain during the last year of the Civil War (1939). It follows Carlos, a 12 years old newly arrived at the orphanage. Soon after his arrival, Carlos starts seeing things and discovers the school has a dark secret.

Silent hill - Janghwa hongryeon - Teeth

Silent Hill (Christophe Gans - 2006 - Canada/France) Adapted from the survival horror video game series of the same name, Silent hill is probably the best adaptation of a game into a movie, probably because the director was a huge fan of the series. The movie follows a woman searching for her adoptive daughter in a creepy desolate town called Silent Hill. She soon discovers the town hides many grim secrets.

Janghwa, Hongryeon aka A Tale of Two Sisters (Kim Jee-Woon - 2003 - South Korea) A modern adaptation of an old korean folktale, the movie follows two sisters who recently came back to the home of their father and stepmother after staying in a psychiatric institution for a while. Soon after their return, disturbing events start to occur involving them, their stepmother and a mysterious ghost.

 Teeth (Mitchell Lichtenstein - 2007 - USA) An innocent high school student, active member of the local chastity group, discovers her body has developed an unusual defense mechanism. Based on the tale of the vagina dentata, this movie's premise might sound weird and maybe gross to some people, but contrary to what it can seems, this is not a porn movie but actually a good horror one (In case you doubt me, the movie won a prize at the Sundance Film Festival in 2007).

28 days later - Saw - Dawn of the Dead

28 Days Later (Danny Boyle - 2002 - United Kingdom) The movie starts as a virus breaks free after some activists break into a laboratory to liberate chimpanzees used for medical research. 28 days later, Jim, a courier, awakes from a coma in an empty London hospital to discover a devastated and mostly empty city. A struggle for survival begins as he tries to make his way to an hypothetical safe heaven.

 Saw (James Wan - 2004 - USA) Two men wake up chained in an underground bathroom, each of them with tape recorders containing instructions on how to escape and the consequences if they don't. It turns out that they've been captured by the Jigsaw killer, who submit his "victims" to what he calls "tests" or "games" to test their survival instincts. This is the first one in a serie of seven movies, and even though I'm usually not a fan of sequels, I must admit most of them (I haven't seen the 7th one, Saw 3D though) are pretty descent horror movies. If you entend to watch them all, in my opinion they're better watched in order since the story unravels movie after movie.

 Dawn of the Dead (George A. Romero - 1978 - USA) Not the first but probably the most classic zombie movie, Dawn of the Dead focuses on a group of survivors trapped in a mall trying to survive the zombie apocalypse. References to this movie are everywhere when it comes to zombie stuff, so you might want to check it out. Just keep in mind that it's a medium budget film from the 70s, hence, some of the make-up and special effects may make you laugh more than scare you (especially if you're watching a show like the walking dead where the effects are pretty realistic). I still think it's a great movie but if it's something that kills if for you, you might wanna check the remake from 2004 instead. The remake is pretty descent but the story is different. The similarities are reduced to the context and the setting. Actually if you're in the zombie mood, I'd say watch both.

gwoemul - the descent - orphan

Gwoemul aka The Host (Joon-ho Bong - 2006 - South Korea) I'm usually not a fan of those giant monsters movies, such as Godzilla, Cloverfield or King Kong, but that one was really good. After a monster emerges from a river in Seoul and starts killing and snatching people, the movie follows a family trying to get back their daughter from the creature.

The Descent (Neil Marshall - 2007 - United Kingdom) The movie follows a group of six friends who go spelunking in an unmapped cave system in the Appalachians. The expedition turns awfully wrong as tensions are growing between the friends and the group discover that the caves are not as empty as they believed.

Orphan (Jaume Collet-Serra - 2009 - USA) Not to confuse with the Orphanage, Orphan follows a couple with two children who decides to adopt a nine year-old girl. Shortly after arriving to her new home, the girl starts to have a very unusual behavior. While making this list, I realized movies with creepy children work really well on me apparently. In any case, this movie is definitely worth the watch.

It - Shaun of the dead - Psycho Beach Party

It (Tommy Lee Wallace - 1990 - USA) I'm a bit cheating here because it's not a movie per se but a mini-series, but it's truly my favorite Stephen King adaptation so it HAD to make the list, there was no way out of it. Plus you can totally watch the two episodes together as 3h10 movie, nowadays it's not that unusual for a movie to be that long. For those who have never heard of the book, it follows a group of kids trying to fight an entity that feeds on the fears of people and comes back cyclically to their town to snatch some kids. The entity appears to them on the form of a creepy clown called Pennywise, played in the movie by Tim Curry, who did an amazing job at it. If you don't understand why people are scared of clown, definitely check this out.

 To finish this selection, I wanted to add to the list two movies that I mostly consider comedies but are still categorized as horror movies. If horror movies are not really your cup of tea, they'd be what you wanna try first.

 Shaun of the Dead (Edgar Wright - 2004 - United Kingdom) The first horror comedy that I would definitely recommend to anyone is Shaun of the Dead. The plot is fairly simple, it just follows Shaun who tries to get his life back together by saving his ex-girlfriend as a zombie outbreak occurs, but it leads to some hilarious situations.

 Psycho Beach Party (Robert Lee King - 2000 - USA) The final movie, and second horror comedy I'd recommend to you today is based on an off-broadway play of the same name and is a parody of the 60s beach movies as well as the 80s slashers. It follows "Chicklet", a girl who decides to learn how to surf and joins a band of surfer guys in her beachside town. She's having some inexplicable blackouts and worries she might do bad things during those. In parallels, some murders are being investigated by a police captain who suspects some members of the group. That movie might sound weird at first but was pretty funny and a good discovery.

 If you made it that far, thanks for reading and happy Halloween!

You can find Emma on the following sites:


  1. Thanks for letting me post here Laura! It was nice to share my favorite horror movies :)

    1. Thanks to you for the post Emma, it's always a pleasure to have you here :) Also, I really like your list, I really share the love for some of those movies! And for the ones I haven't watched (like The Host or The Descent), I should definitely watch them! Happy Halloween!

  2. Oooh, that's a great list! I'm glad you shared it, because just yesterday I was telling my friend that I wanted to discover new horror movies that weren't the typical ones that everybody watches, and this list seems to have several of them. I never heard about In The Mouth Of Madness, for example,and sounds interesting enough! Orphan looks really creepy, I'll check it out for sure! And the same for the South Corea movie (A Tale Of Two Sisters). I never really watch Corean horror cinema, but I've heard a lot of good things about their way to do movies so I'm curious!

    Thanks for sharing this list, and happy Halloween to you both!

    1. Thanks so much for the comment Lisa, I'm so glad that this post helped you discover new movies! :) I hope you have a great (and creepy) Halloween as well! :)

    2. Thanks I'm glad if it helped you find new movies to check. I DEFINITELY recommend in the mouth of madness which is one of my favorite ever. And Koreans are really good in my opinion at horror movies, especially ghost ones, because they have that thing to show less and suggest more that works better on me. Hope you enjoy the ones you try. Happy halloween :)

  3. I'm not a big fan of scary movies. My stepfather and older brothers used to like them so I would have to watch them but I try to avoid them now. Last week I did watch The Ring for the first time. I actually didn't find it that scary even though I was told in the past it was the scariest movie EVER.

    1. The original japanese one was kinda scary actually but the american remake from 2002 with Naomi watts was pretty dull, i don't know which one you watched. Also, when people tends to repeat to you a movie is the scariest ever, it tends to annihilate the effect. For example, I've always find the blair witch project, the exorcist or paranormal activity highly overrated and more ridiculous than scary. I think it all depends on what works on you

  4. I love scary movies! It's very subjective, of course, but the scariest thing I ever saw was The Strangers. It's about a couple who are spending a weekend in a cabin, and some people in masks are trying to break in. It's not a groundbreaking synopsis, but the way they kept us in suspense was masterful.

    1. I don't think I've seen The Strangers, will definitely look for it! :)

  5. Great list! I'll definitely be checking out some of these and there are some that I have been meaning to watch for a while now, I'll get to those first now that you recommended them.