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Just Keep Telling Yourself It's Only a Thread: Talking Time's Top 50 Horror Movies!

Dracula

Video Nasty
(He/His)
One other fun detail is that the film's setting is deliberately vague and confusing in terms of when it's supposed to take place: no one has a cell phone and the cars and televisions suggest the past, but one of the characters has this weird futuristic clamshell e-reader she's always pulling out. By making it impossible to pin down when the film is set it becomes sort of timeless, and it's one more element that keeps the viewer from getting too comfortable.

I had actually written basically this same thing in my original writeup before I edited it out - it's such a cool way to create a subtly unsettling atmosphere. Along the same lines, even the time of year is confusing - it looks like winter and sometimes people are wearing heavy jackets, but then there are scenes with people in swimming pools outside.
 
Watched Friday the 13th in 3D today. Great experience. Unfortunately I just had the shitty PSVR earbuds but what an incredible film. I feel like 3D films are under pressure to be restrained and "earn" their 3D shots but there's just something to be said for triggering blink reflexes for absolutely no reason every two minutes.

Also the final girl is alone with Jason for like 25 minutes and I wondered if it'd be a drag but it wasn't; she just kept railing on him. (the wood block!) Satisfying.
 

ShakeWell

Slam Master
(he, etc.)
Watched Friday the 13th in 3D today. Great experience. Unfortunately I just had the shitty PSVR earbuds but what an incredible film. I feel like 3D films are under pressure to be restrained and "earn" their 3D shots but there's just something to be said for triggering blink reflexes for absolutely no reason every two minutes.

Also the final girl is alone with Jason for like 25 minutes and I wondered if it'd be a drag but it wasn't; she just kept railing on him. (the wood block!) Satisfying.

Hahaha, did you spring for the Scream Factory set or find another way?
 

Purple

(She/Her)
I thought the consensus was that the titular "it" was STDs and/or other unwanted consequences to unprotected sex?

Nah, the movie's general attitude about sex is less repressive than that, and the monster stops bothering the person once they have sex again, which, I mean, you don't stop having herpes once you have sex with someone else.

Yeah, I have had a whole lot of very long and detailed conversations with a lot of people about what the monster in It Follows represents, and I don't want to get into my personal pet theory here and now, I am going to say if you're trying to puzzle out any sort of metaphor, and I don't really know why we're spoilering this,
if you're reading the passed-along-by-having-sex thing as literally having something to say about having sex or sexually-transmitted-anything, that reading is fundamentally at odds with the text, which lays out a very specific set of operational rules that just plain do not map to sex in any way (beyond the actual trigger in the film, but like, that's not metaphor). There's a better case to be argued that it's a metaphor for like, stack-based logical operations. Or, you know, being linked to people in a more general-intimacy/public perception sorta way.
Anyway it's a great movie.

OK, I'm not done talking about Gremlins.

OK, so once again I'm going to post this.


And its a funny internet song but I do know this is something Dante didn't want to happen. No more Gremlins movies. And I get it.
I mean, Gremlins 2 is the perfect movie, so there's simply no point in continuing to make movies after nailing it. Not even just Gremlins movies. Hollywood could have just packed the whole thing up when that came out and said Mission Accomplished
 

Dracula

Video Nasty
(He/His)


No. 10 The Fly (1986)
Points: 171 | Lists: YangusKhan (#11); Teg (#20); Torzelbaum (#17); Beta Metroid (#16); Johnny Unusual (#3); Adrenaline (#15); Dr. Nerd (#6)
“Have you ever heard of insect politics? Neither have I. Insects... don't have politics. They're very... brutal. No compassion, no compromise. We can't trust the insect. I'd like to become the first... insect politician.”


The Fly is a 1986 American science-fiction psychological body horror film directed and co-written by David Cronenberg. It tells of an eccentric scientist who, after one of his experiments goes wrong, slowly turns into a fly-hybrid creature.

Drac’s Notes: I didn’t vote for this film, but it’s nevertheless a favorite of mine. Nearly all of Cronenberg’s films explore the concept of and the horror inflicted by having a body. On a surface level, this is a very simple movie: a scientist is slowly being transformed into a fly. But on other levels it’s about relatable things that many of us will experience in our lives. Our bodies change when we suffer disease, when we get old. The real horror here isn’t just that Jeff Goldblum’s ear falls off or he has to vomit on his food. That stuff is memorable, sure. But it’s really that we see all of this happen through the eyes of his girlfriend, Ronnie (Gina Davis), and she sees the kind man she fell in love with slowly transform into something totally unrecognizable.

It’s a hard ask to recommend this film to anyone with a queasy stomach, because it gets real dang gross. But I highly recommend it nevertheless.

All these Cronenburg movies just make me so glad that I don't have any flesh.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
As I wrote...
I love the films of David Cronenberg but he's definitely someone I'd considered a cold director. His movies aren't conventionally "human". But the Fly is definitely an exception because while it has the cool look and tone of his other films, it is rooted in a human tragedy. The film might be about a man becoming something beyond human but it is really about the terror of the human body failing us and those who have to watch. Whether it be by disease or old age, there's a good chance this will happen to us or has in small ways as the body and mind begin to go. This is probably Jeff Goldblum's finest performance as he turns from sweet goof to someone watching his body turn against him. As Guillermo del Toro noted while talking about this movie: "Cronenberg knows we are not at peace with our bodies."
 

Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
This is one of those movies I’ve seen referenced a lot, and feel like I really should have seen before now, but have not
 

Adrenaline

Post Reader
(He/Him)
I really like your assessment that it's the most human of Cronenberg's films. It also has peak Goldblum and amazing gross effects.
 

ShakeWell

Slam Master
(he, etc.)
One of the holy trinity of '80s remakes of '50s sci-fi/horror movies that is not only good, but arguably surpasses the original.
 

Torzelbaum

????? LV 13 HP 292/ 292
(he, him, his)
One of the holy trinity of '80s remakes of '50s sci-fi/horror movies that is not only good, but arguably surpasses the original.
I know there was an 80s remake of The Blob but I am struggling to think of what is the third movie.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
I'm going to add (since it 100% isn't making it on the list) the first 20 minutes of Tobe Hooper's Invaders from Mars, but its been a while since I've seen it.
 

Dracula

Video Nasty
(He/His)


No. 9 The Shining (1980)
Points: 172 | Lists: YangusKhan (#4); Patrick (#6); Issun (#25); Vaeran (#23); Beta Metroid (#21); Octopus Prime (#4); Johnny Unusual (#4)
“Here’s Johnny!”


The Shining is a 1980 psychological horror film produced and directed by Stanley Kubrick and co-written with novelist Diane Johnson. The film follows Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson), an aspiring writer and recovering alcoholic who accepts a position as the off-season caretaker of the isolated, historic, and haunted Overlook Hotel in the Colorado Rockies.

Drac’s Notes: The Shining is one of those crossover horror movies. Like The Silence of the Lambs, it has a pedigree -- in this case, arthouse darling director Stanley Kubrick, who created what is inarguably one of the greatest horror movies of all time. The movie has been subject to much discussion over the decades, exploring such things as Stephen King’s dislike for the adaptation of his book, the disorienting nature of the Overlook’s interior, and possible messages hidden by Kubrick in the movie’s subtext.

If you’ve never seen the movie, you might be fooled into thinking that its visuals have been so often referenced in popular culture that whatever scares it might offer would fall flat. I think this is not so. The film’s potential to terrify holds up even 41 years later, and I think it absolutely deserves its place on this list.

Wait why was there a guy in a dog suit?

It's for atmosphere. He was a ghost or something. Don't question it.

But I wanna know! What's that dude's story!?

You'll just have to read the book to find out.

READING? UGGGHGH
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
What I wrote for this
A few years ago I listened to the Shining audio book and I finally got why King didn't like the movie so much. Its not just it being different. I changes a lot of what makes the original story powerful. Jack Torrance in the movie is sketchy from the get while in the book he's a sweet sensitive family man and spirits in two senses of the word destroy him and turn him into a monster. In the book Wendy Torrance is a full character while in the movie, despite Shelly Duvall's good acting, she's mostly a clueless victim lacking as much agency. But that doesn't change that the movie is absolutely spellbinding from beginning to end. Its no wonder the people are obsessed with it, its hard to turn away.
 

YangusKhan

does the Underpants Dance
(He/Him/His)
One of my favorite parts of this movie is the opening credits. Watching it in a theater especially was spellbinding.
 

Beta Metroid

At peace
(he/him and such)
I first saw this last October! It's really good! As hinted, I'd seen a lot of the most memorable bits through parody and references over the years, but I had no idea of the context of
"All work and no play." I kind of assumed it was something Jack yelled while on his murder-hunt, a la "here's Johnny." Its actual appearance was so much more effective than I was prepared for.
 

Dracula

Video Nasty
(He/His)
One of my favorite parts of this movie is the opening credits. Watching it in a theater especially was spellbinding.

Yes!!! I was able to see the film in theaters a number of years back and this made a big impression. I had seen the film once or twice previously but that was the viewing that made it really stick with me.
 

Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
This is one of the few movies to genuinely scare the jeepers out of me, and I watched it as a grown adult rather than a fraidy-cat baby.

It's the kind of movie where Jack as a violent, abusive alcoholic that everyone is trapped with makes for such a frightening figure that when the ghosts show up it's a relief.
 

Falselogic

Techno-Threadcromancer
(they/them)
I really disliked the film. As Johnny alludes to above Jack and Wendy never seem real in the movie to me. More vehicles for where Kubrick wants to go than characters I can believe have a relationship or an interior. The visuals are still pretty good.
 

Patrick

Magic-User
(He/Him)
We just watched The Shining in October, and man is it ever effective. Something I hadn't noted before is how intense the score is. The whole thing puts me on edge.
 

Beta Metroid

At peace
(he/him and such)
I really disliked the film. As Johnny alludes to above Jack and Wendy never seem real in the movie to me. More vehicles for where Kubrick wants to go than characters I can believe have a relationship or an interior. The visuals are still pretty good.

I will say that Jack being an asshole from the jump kinda watered down the experience.

Everyone's kind of covered what's intriguing about The Fly. I will say I'm kind of amazed that "Be afraid...be very afraid" comes from this movie. It feels like such a broad phrase that I'm sure it had been said before, but it seems like The Fly made it famous.
 

Zef

Find Your Reason
(He/Him)
You'll just have to read the book to find out.

Wait, the dog-man fella HAS a backstory in the book? o_O

The opening DOES rule even if you can see the helicopter's shadow at some point

That's just the spirits hovering over the family as they come into their territory.

That said, not much to say about this film other than it's pretty great, and, divergences from the book aside, it's also amusing that the title is just an artifact from the book that led to just a sudden, needless death. Especially since the titular "shining" isn't really necessary to explain why Jack and Danny are so sensitive to the hauntings--that kind of thing is already expected in a horror movie :p Kubrick could've cut Halloran out altogether and nothing would've changed in his version of the narrative.

Dr. Sleep was also enjoyable, I guess! Not as much as its predecessor, no, but I also wonder how different the film sequel was from the book sequel.
 

Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
Wait, the dog-man fella HAS a backstory in the book? o_O
Not a complicated one, but yeah.

The biggest difference between the book and the movie is that in the novel, Jack becomes a monster because of ghosts, and in the movie, he's a monster and furthermore, there are also ghosts.
 

Issun

TT's Resident Ace of Base Superfan
The Shining squeaked on to my list because I was searching for something to fill it out with and figured I'd give this the nod even though I wasn't reallya fan. The book was an absolute masterpiece, and I found the film to be underwhelming by comparison.

Plus it's really icky that the only black character who in the book saves Danny and Wendy just ends up dying ineffectively in the movie.
 
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