It’s 3:53 pm
Halloween is fast approaching and the cheetah and I decided that we would list a 10 Day Movie Challenge and share 10 of our favorite horror/scary movies. The cheetah does enjoy a good jump scare as much as the next person because it gives him a chance to pounce BACK on top of the person doing the scare and let me assure you,that SCREAM can be quite loud!!!
The criteria for these 10 films is…..well,they have to have been spooky and been able to be viewed more then once. In other words,they have to be FUN on some level. Which is why certain films while scary,won’t make this list……
Of course I gotta lead off with “Phantasm”…..When a movie which has been edited and is playing with commercials on network TV has you turning on the lights….you know that film is quite special and thanks to Angus Scrimm as “The Tall Man” and a flying ball of death…Phantasm was that movie!!
2. “Dawn of the Dead” (1978)
Back in the day,my friend Xavier and I used to enjoy going to the midnight shows at the Montclair Cinemas,it was where I saw “Star Wars”,”Superman” and “The Swarm” (more on that coming up!!). But when they started having midnight shows,we start going to those as well.
The routine was simple,parents dropped us off,we watch the movie and call parents.The theater staff knew us pretty well…and we watched “R” movies with no sweat. But “Dawn” was different,the ads STRONGLY insisted that no one under 17 would be allowed in…and they weren’t kidding!! When we were dropped off,the ticket seller yelled out to my parent and asked her specifically if she was giving her okay for us to watch “Dawn” and she said “yes”. In my mother’s defense,she had ZERO idea just how violent this movie was until about a month later until she overheard us talking about the 4-5 people who ran out the theater throwing up,it remains the only film where I have seen this happen. Zombies are cool like that!
3. “Jaws” (1975)
I saw “Jaws” when I was 12 years old and it still remains the only film I have walked out of because I got scared. Looking back at it now,what really is the most terrifying part is Robert Shaw’s Quint retelling the story of the USS Indianapolis and just how terrible it must have been being in the water and not knowing that no help was coming.
4. “Jason X”(2001)
Jason X,while loathed by many Friday the 13th “purists”,happens to my favorite film in the entire franchise. It’s the perfect combination of humor,cheesy lines,not so special special effects,hot babes and some very unique kills. Blending sci-fi with horror is a tricky business but to also add a lot of intentional laughs is a rare trait but Jason X has this all covered. Kane Hodder makes the perfect Jason but he is stood up by Lisa Ryder’s Kay-em 14,an android who kicks Jason’s ass like no one before or since. Ryder and co-star Lexa Doig would later reunites on the cult favorite “Andromeda”.
Truly one of the most inventive and original horror stories ever made,”Re-Animator” made Jeffrey Combs an immortal fanboy favorite as Dr. Herbert West,a man who doesn’t believe that death is the final frontier and is willing to go to any and all lengths to prove it. This is one of my all time favorite films regardless of genre….
Jeepers Creepers…one of most intense horror films ever made with a ending that not only I did not see coming but has stayed with me ever since I have watched it. This film isn’t for the fainthearted. The second film while also quite good loses just a bit to keep it from this list as well.
I referred a movie called “SiREN” on my first Movie Challenge list solely on the strength of one short story that can be found here on “V/H/S . Called “Amateur Night”,it takes the word “No” to a whole new level…the other stories,while not quite as strong are still quite effective in their own right. Oh…..if a really cute girl tells you “I like YOU”,you might consider running!
Another rare blend of horror and sadness blend in Stephen King’s “Cujo”. I saw this when it came out at the theater and while the movie about a rabid St. Bernard who traps a mother and young son in a car is suspenseful and taut while several great scares,its still a sad movie about a gentle dog whose only crime was not having his owner getting him a simple rabies shot. There were a few people crying at the end of the film….crying for Cujo and yeah,I was one of them.
9 A Dark Song (2017)
Of course anyone who has read my reviews at any point in 2018 already knew “A Dark Song” was making this list. This has been my favorite horror film of the past 5-6 years and I relate to it on a very personal level. This is a must see for any serious horror lover who also has a soul.
10. “Piranha” (1980)
One of my all time favorite horror films but not because of how of scary it was but because I used to mimic the sound of the piranha attacking and make my little brother laugh so hard. Sometimes he would try and hide out from doing chores or maybe wasn’t feeling the best but once he heard that “piranha” noise,you could expect to hear him laugh.
The movie is a lot of fun as well as ol Doug McClure was on the job in trying to save a town threatened by thousands of these little buggers.
This is only a small sample of course and we have barely clawed the surface of 10 Day Movie Challenges. We’ll be back soon with another one…..but if you have a list to share,feel free to leave it in the comments below.