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Horror's Hopyard
October 12, 2011 10:47 AM   Subscribe

Horror movie blog Arbogast on Film is counting down the days of October with studies of 31 cinematic screams. Considered thus far: shrieks from The Tingler, The Pit and the Pendulum, Two on a Guillotine, Macchie Solari, The Black Cat, Monster House, The Silence of the Lambs, She Demons, The Thing, L'Amante del Vampiro, The Nesting, and Witchcraft.

31 Screams 2010
31 Scream 2009
31 Screams 2008
posted by Iridic (17 comments total) 17 users marked this as a favorite

 
They just don't make horror like they used to.
posted by Stagger Lee at 11:11 AM on October 12, 2011


They never did.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 11:17 AM on October 12, 2011 [1 favorite]


Yeah ever since Beowulf it's all seemed kind of downhill.
posted by everichon at 12:12 PM on October 12, 2011


They just don't make horror like they used to.

True. There's a whole new way of making and distributing horror films. It's now possible to shoot, edit and distribute films on YouTube on a near-zero budget.

(recent askMeFi thread: "What are some good creepy, disturbing, or scary short films on youtube?")

They just don't make horror like they used to.

Agreed. I can't imagine something as zanily campy as The Tingler getting onto screens nationwide today. Movies like Rubber are still getting made, but multiplex theatres have a depressing preference for torture porn pseudo-horror.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 12:25 PM on October 12, 2011


Actually, I'd say the 2000s was the best decade for horror since the 1970s.

And before someone brings up 80s slasher flicks - yes, i like some too - they're basically an updated, English language version of Italian giallo films from, that's right, the 1970s.
posted by stinkycheese at 12:50 PM on October 12, 2011


Actually, I'd say the 2000s was the best decade for horror since the 1970s.

There have been some good ones in the last 10 or so years, although I'll admit I'm a fan of the ghost-y ones like Blair Witch Project and Paranormal Activity 1 & 2 (which IMHO is better than the first), and I really enjoyed Ju-On and the Ring. Also I don't get why "The Grudge" was so maligned; it was a fairly faithful adaptation with some funny "gaijin in Japan" moments thrown in that I could relate to having just come back from Japan when I saw it. Recently I saw Insidious which was quite good up until the resolution, and I would still give it a passing grade despite not liking the ending. Saw a movie Session 9 as well that scared the bejeesus out of me at parts, and not just because it made me appreciate David Caruso's acting. On a different note we also had The Midnight Meat Train which I loved despite the corny computer effects, but I have a soft spot for Clive Barker and his weirdo mythology. Hellraiser 1 and 2 were pretty good, so shut up.

Anyways, those are just a few off the top of my head from around the year 2000 on. They do still make 'em pretty good, but I don't know if we've had any classics like "The Thing" in a while. Or maybe we do and I'm just not thinking of it.
posted by Hoopo at 2:00 PM on October 12, 2011 [1 favorite]




Actually, I'd say the 2000s was the best decade for horror since the 1970s.


It depends what you're looking for I guess.

It's Raining Florence Henderson
has a snarky point. I think that I have to turn to the past to find good ones because, well, I don't like very many horror films, and having a few decades worth of material helps.

There've been enough big eras that everybody is going to disagree.

And Hoopo, Session 9 was one of my favorites over the past decade or two for sure.
posted by Stagger Lee at 2:29 PM on October 12, 2011


Session 9 is indeed my favorite horror flick of the past decade (I think it came out in the late 90's but I didn't see it til about 10yrs ago). It was direted by Brad Anderson, who also did The Machinist and a few episodes of The Wire and Treme. It's a shame more quality directors don't give horror a try, we'd be enjoying a lot more The Shinings that way.
posted by mannequito at 3:18 PM on October 12, 2011


I love horror movies as a genre far more than I love actual horror movies, with a few wonderful exceptions. Meaning, there are lots of horror movies that I like for one reason or another (often not correlating with typical hallmarks of movie quality), and a few horror movies that I absolutely love. Without spending more time thinking about it, I don't have the feeling that my favorites are heavily weighted to one decade or another. Except that the 30s didn't do much for me, horror-movie-wise.
posted by It's Raining Florence Henderson at 3:30 PM on October 12, 2011


After watching an interview with someone who had to do a horror movie scream, my wife has been obsessed with learning the technique herself (apparently it's harder than you'd think), and the only problem is that she's rightfully worried that practicing would lead to no end of trouble with people complaining that I'm killing her.

Years ago, I was friends with a girl who was just naturally good at it, and would let one rip at the slightest provocation. It made jumping out and spooking her a bit of a hobby among her friends and family.
posted by quin at 3:37 PM on October 12, 2011


I think it came out in the late 90's but I didn't see it til about 10yrs ago

It's from 2001. Little known fact: originally Caruso was cast as the main character Gordon, and during the climax the audio tape interview was to loudly play "YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!"
posted by Hoopo at 3:53 PM on October 12, 2011


There've been enough big eras that everybody is going to disagree.

Please notice I didn't suggest there even was a best decade for horror, simply that the 2000s were the best decade since 1970s (pretty widely accepted as the last Great Decade, for Hollywood horror, at least).

The 1980s were the decade of Fangoria and the heyday of gore fx, the decade of Jason and Freddie. There were certainly a lot of fun horror flicks (and I think I saw almost everything that came out so it's probably the decade I'm most familiar with) but I don't know if I'd say these were great films, by and large.

Then come the 1990s and I feel confident in saying that no one is going to defend that decade as a great one for horror; the 90s sucked, plain and simple. Serial killer films ad infinitum, third-rate nature disaster flicks, stuff that should have been rated R but as edited down to a PG13. The big series was Scream, a toothless, clever-clever recasting of 80s slashers with an 'ironic twist' (puke). Horror fans were going bananas. This was also before DVD made all but the most obscure releases available, and the internet was allowing the masses to download at will.

There's some classics in every decade of course, but, more than most genres, horror does seem to lend itself to this sort of ten-year dissection. Thankfully, the Japanese explosion of creepy flicks in the 2000s upped the ante considerably, shaking viewers out of accepting Hollywood smug complacent 'horror' and reminding people how good it was to be genuinely scared again (or at least good and grossed out).
posted by stinkycheese at 5:05 PM on October 12, 2011


Quin, if you and your wife, who loves theatrical screams, have never seen the old movie Blowout, you absolutely must do so.

Really, I insist on this. She, especially, will appreciate it!

Then please come back here and report in after you've seen it.
posted by misha at 5:55 PM on October 12, 2011


They just don't make horror like they used to.

This season of Doctor Who has given us The Shining and A Good Man, so yeah
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 6:16 PM on October 12, 2011


This season of Doctor Who has given us The Shining and A Good Man, so yeah

er, not A Good Man. It's A Good Life
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 6:26 PM on October 12, 2011


Another "31 days of October" style horror movie countdown I'm following is Cinemassacre's Monster Madness, which has also being going on for several years (including an all Godzilla edition. (hosted by James Rolfe, who plays the Angry Video Game Nerd)
posted by ShutterBun at 9:23 PM on October 12, 2011


Outlaw Vern is doing slasher flicks
posted by Lovecraft In Brooklyn at 9:26 PM on October 12, 2011


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