What better way for a sick girl to celebrate New Year’s Day by reflecting on all the horror movies she’s watched this year, as well as think about all of the ones that the new year will bring us? A couple weeks ago, on The Horror Syndicate Live we discussed our favorite films of 2016 (which you can watch here ),and although I haven’t watched all of the new releases that I want to, I have watched a few more since then, and wanted to talk about some of the movies that have been released, but I watched for the first time this year.
Top five favorite releases of 2016
Honorable Mentions go to The Purge: Election Year (which I wrote a review on, here)because it gave us a terrifying,more in depth look of everything that goes on during a purge, and the people’s fight to stop it, and 10 Cloverfield Lane because Mary Elizabeth Winstead is Queen, John Gallagher Jr is fabulous, and I would have never imagined being frightened of John Goodman until this movie came into the picture.
5) All Through The House
We at The Horror Syndicate were lucky enough to all have the opportunity to watch All Through The House and briefly discuss it on THS Live. This was the first Christmas horror movie, well straight up horror, so not counting The Gremlins, that I have ever seen, and I really enjoyed it! This was also the first film that I have seen Jessica Cameron in, so I now know why everybody seems to love her. Obviously there’s the fact that she’s a “hot scream queen”, but I also found that her acting was amazing. Although her appearance in the film was a short one, it was very impactful, and one of things I really took away from the movie. Being that this is a Christmas horror film, each scene was filled with bright and beautiful Christmas decorations which made the movie very visually appealing to me. Another thing I really loved about the movie was the plot twist. All Through The House is a colorful Christmas horror film that is full of mystery and suspense, that everyone should add to their annual Christmas horror marathon, but you definitely shouldn’t wait until next year to watch it, just because this Christmas has come, and gone! You can read Bryan’s review of it here!
Really not sure what to say about Hush here, because I’ve already said it all before. Hush is one of the films I mentioned when we talked about our favorite films of the year on our podcast, and I also mentioned it in my one of my first articles on the site, Horror Musts on Netflix . To recap, the main reason I love Hush so much is that the main character of the film is Deaf, and the film does not showcase that as a disadvantage. Katie Siegal, and John Gallagher Jr are phenomenal in their roles! Hush is yet another great horror film from writer, and director Mike Flanagan. You can read Mike’s review of it here!
3) The Conjuring 2
Another film I mentioned in the podcast, and have previously written about on the site was The Conjuring 2. As a fan of the first film, and Vera Farmiga, and Patrick Wilson I was beyond excited for The Conjuring 2 to be released, and it didn’t disappoint, as you can tell by reading my review of it here. The acting, and story were great, and this was a film that truly scared me, and had me thinking about it all night long. I love seeing stories from Ed and Lorraine Warren’s case files come to life, and can’t wait for the next one.
When the trailer for Green Room came out I was very excited to see it, but by the time Anton Yelchin passed due to the freak accident with his car, I still hadn’t seen it, and now was dreading watching it because I knew it was going to be fantastic, and make me that much sadder about his death. Awhile ago Green Room became available on Amazon Prime, and it kept calling my name every time I went to the site, so I finally watched it, and W O W. Green Room isn’t so much scary as it is anxiety inducing. It’ll have you on the edge of your seat with your heart pounding the whole way through. I really loved each member of the cast, and thought they all did a spectacular job in their roles, from Patrick Stewart as the leader of the terrifying neo-Nazi group, to Joe Cole as one of Anton Yelchin’s bandmates who was a very good asset to their group while he was with them.
Much like Green Room, Don’t Breathe had me feeling extremely anxious throughout the entirety of the film. I was struggling to decide which of the two would be my number one, but ultimately decided upon Don’t Breathe because I felt that it was more unique. As if being a film centers around a kick ass, scary blind guy wasn’t enough, it also has some tricks up it’s sleeve that make the film take a surprising twist. Another cool thing about Don’t Breathe is that you’re never sure who to root for. I mean, these kids are breaking into this guy’s house, but as one of the characters says in the film, “ Just because he’s blind, doesn’t mean he’s a saint.”. It might be a far stretch to call what the kids are doing a Les Mis stealing bread situation, but could the man’s actions be seen as the same? Stephen Lang, Dylan Minnette, and Jane Levy probably deserve the most praise out of any of the actors mentioned on this list because this movie would definitely not have worked if they weren’t so good in their roles, making the audience feel sympathy for every character, thus leaving us not sure who the bad guy of the film really is.
Top five Favorite past releases, that I watched for the first time in 2016
Honorable mention goes to The Taking of Deborah Logan (2014), because paranormal things are creepy, and (sadly) old people losing their mind are creepy, and when you combine the two things get even creepier.
5) The Shining (1980)
I watched The Shining towards the beginning of the year, and really enjoyed it. It was very fun, and creepy. One of the questions that Ray posed towards the rest of us during his Rayzor’s Burn segment on THS Live was what movie do we think deserves a remake, and I said The Shining due to the dislike Stephen King, and his hardcore fans have for the film, due to its differences from the book. I also thought answered with The Shining because as soon as I was finished watching it I thought that the story could work well as a tv show, then discovered it had been made into one to better represent what Stephen King would have liked the movie to have been like, but I think yet another one could be made that would fall in the middle of the miniseries, and movie, seeing as both have their fair share of fans and haters. Although, I haven’t yet read the book, or seen the miniseries, I want to so I can compare, and contrast them all for myself. You can read Jared’s post introducing The Shining into The Horror Syndicate’s Horror Hall of Fame here!
4)Dawn of The Dead (1978)
I watched Dawn of The Dead for the first time this year in order to prepare for our THS Live podcast where we covered all of George Romero’s Dead movies. Dawn of The Dead ended up being my favorite of the bunch! I did find the beginning to be pointless, but once they got to the mall I started to really like it. I really enjoyed seeing how the group set up their own little home there, and how they survived with the available goods, and fought off the dead. The movie then picks up its pace when the group of bikers come and invade their home, which brings about some great fight scenes. You can read Rayzor’s review of it here!
3) Creep (2014)
Creep is another film I mentioned in my Horror Musts on Netflix list, that I enjoyed so much that I had to add it to this list, too! Creep is a found footage film unlike any other I’ve seen, I can’t even think of a film to compare it to, found footage, or not. Mark Duplass is so convincing in his role as the title character that it makes me a little concerned to be honest, ha. Not only is the film unique, but it was made in a unique way, where Duplass, and Patrick Brice didn’t have a script that was set in stone, and just did what they wanted when it felt right, and it really turned out well for them.
Like Dawn of The Dead, I first watched Suspiria this year in order to be prepared for a discussion about it on our podcast. Unlike Dawn of the Dead, I had never heard of Suspiria until this year. All that I knew about Suspiria prior to watching it was that Rayzor loved it, and it involved dancing and some type of cult or witches, or something of the sort, I wasn’t really sure. Being a fan of dance, that part of the movie alone was enough to get me interested in it. In Dallas on Halloween night the neo-classical ballet would be putting on a performance based on the movie, followed by a showing of the film at the historic Texas theatre, which I would have really liked to attend, but sadly wasn’t able to. So, weeks later I watched it before our podcast, for free on Fright Pix. I really have no complaints, besides very trivial ones, like I wish that there would have been more dancing, and we could have seen more of the witchy shenanigans going on, but then again, seeing more may have taken away from the film’s greatness seeing as a big part of why it is so fantastic is the mystery that surrounds it. Along with the mystery, the music and colors are some other things that help take it to the next level. I think that the Suspiria remake has a lot of potential, so I’m excited to see it, and hoping that it ends up being one of the good ones. You can read Rayzor’s review of Suspiria, and Dario Argento’s other Three Mothers trilogy movies here!
I had absolutely zero clue what Misery was about before I watched it. I only knew that Kathy Bates was in it, and that it was based on a Stephen King book, so I had to watch it, and as soon as I saw that it was available on Amazon Prime, I did. It has a great story, with multiple characters that I could identify with. Kathy Bates very deservedly won an oscar for her performance in the film as a murderous woman, who took a strong liking to an unlucky author. She seemed like a sweet, caring woman one second, and a total creep and maniac the next.
Now onto the good stuff, that will have you feeling hopeful for the new year…
Top five most anticipated releases of 2017
Honorable Mentions go to God Particle because it’s the next movie in the Cloverfield series, but there isn’t a trailer or much known about it yet,so….Also, Flatliners because it also doesn’t have a trailer yet, and although I haven’t seen the original, I just finished watching Netflix’s new series The OA which also involves near death experiences and experiments, so the plot seems really interesting to me, and my new love Diego Luna aka Cassian Andor in Rogue One, is in it. Lastly, I have to mention Party Night, because although I and the rest of The Horror Syndicate have already seen it, it is our friend Troy Escamilla’s directorial debut, and I can only hope that my first horror movie (or movie in general) is this. If you want to see a fun slasher flick that makes you feel nostalgic for older ones, mark your calendars for January 2nd, when the trailer for Party Night will officially be released! You can check out Jared’s review of Party Night here!
5) Before I Wake
The only reason that this is number five on my list, and not higher up, is because it was also one of my most anticipate releases for 2016, but then the release date kept getting pushed back, and it STILL hasn’t been released in the good ol US of A. I am absolutely DYING to see Before I Wake, which is another by the great Mike Flanagan, and seeing as how I love his other films I’ve seen, I’m sure I’ll love this. It stars the young Jacob Tremblay, who was highly praised for his role in the oscar nominated film Room and was actually shot prior to it. The film is about a family who adopts a child after losing their own, and soon finds that their new child’s dreams come to life, including the bad ones. I would probably sell my soul to see this film, because there’s still not any news as to when/if it will ever be released, and I think my head might explode if that doesn’t happen anytime soon.
4) Autopsy of Jane Doe
A team of father and son coroners investigate the death of a young Jane Doe, but it looks like this death may not be able to be explained with the terms that they’re used to using.
3) Get Out
Based on this trailer I would describe this movie as an African-american man visiting with his white girlfriend’s family in a really creepy, racist town where clearly some freaky things are going on, and the imdb page says that the girlfriend’s parents’ estate is cursed, so…yeah. I just think this looks really good, and really creepy. Get Out will be released February 24, 2017.
2) The Belko Experiment
The Belko experiment is about a group of employees that are held hostage in their place of work and forced to kill each other. The plot kind of reminds me of The Circle, and Would You Rather. There are a lot of familiar faces in the trailer, but the one that makes me most excited about this movie is John Gallagher Jr, who I’ve become a big fan of recently. The Belko Experiment will be released March 17, 2017.
I had passes to an early screening of Split this week, but wasn’t able to go, but I’m not too upset about missing it, since the release date is so soon. Split comes out in less than a month, on January 20, but I’m definitely more excited about it than I am any other upcoming horror films. For one, I love M.Night Shyamalan, two, I love James Mcavoy, three, this looks insanely good, and creepy. I would probably want to see this if it was about an average man kidnapping a group of girls, but the fact that it’s about a man with multiple personalities doing so makes me that much more intrigued.
Let us know what your favorite horror movies of 2016 were, and your most anticipated ones for 2017, on twitter or on facebook!