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

Zef

Find Your Reason
(He/Him)
This one's mine, and only now do I realize I left out a LOT of "suspense" or "creature feature" movies because... 🤷‍♂️

  1. The Ring (US, 2002)
  2. Pulse/Kairo (Japan 2001)
  3. Dark Water (US, 2005)
  4. The Changeling (US, 1980)
  5. A Tale of Two Sisters (South Korea, 2003)
  6. Ring (Japan, 1998)
  7. The Thing (US, 1982)
  8. Cabin in the Woods (US, 2012)
  9. The Others (Spain/US, 2001)
  10. KM31 (Mexico, 2006)
  11. Psycho (US, 1960)
  12. Event Horizon (US, 1997)
  13. Mama (Argentina/US, 2013)
  14. Dark Water (Japan, 2002)
  15. Poltergeist (US, 1982)
  16. Audition (Japan, 1999)
  17. In The Mouth Of Madness (US, 1994)
  18. The Exorcist III (US, 1990)
  19. The Mist (US, 2007)
  20. The Exorcist (US, 1973)
  21. Hellraiser (US, 1987)
  22. Wes Craven's New Nightmare (US, 1994)
  23. Marebito (Japan, 2004)

I think my only "creature feature" entry is The Thing, unless human-shaped ghosts and ghouls count?
 
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JBear

Internet's foremost Bertolli cosplayer
(He/Him)
I spent most of my life hating and actively avoiding horror movies, and it's only in the past 5 years or so I've started to develop an appreciation for them, thanks to easing my way in with horror video games. Thus, my list is pretty short, and has several things that barely qualify:

  1. Get Out - One of the rare horror movies that I would actually recommend to people.
  2. The Invitation - Johnny suggested that I go into this one blind, so I didn't even know what genre it was going to be, and it was all the better for it.
  3. 10 Cloverfield Lane - John Goodman sure is good at being a creepy prepper.
  4. The Ring (US) - Knowing the premise of this one going in, I was convinced I'd never sleep again if I saw it, but it turns out that it was fine? Probably a matter of expecations vs. experience. Still good and creepy, though!
  5. The Babadook - Someone on here recently pointed out that this title is an anagram for "a bad book". Clever!
  6. Us - Too violent by far for me, but I still thought it was good, even if I was having trouble paying attention to what it had to say while watching it through my hands.
  7. Duel - The real monster is trucks.
  8. The Sixth Sense - I see child actors with dead careers.
  9. Deep Blue Sea - This movie is dumb, but my mom loves it, I love the scene where Samuel L. gets et, and LL Cool J (who I only know from this movie) and his parrot are comedy gold.
  10. The Innkeepers - Watched this with Johnny and some other friends one night. It's a real long, slow, tense burn, which I like. A surprising delight, and pretty obscure, I think.
  11. Terminator 2: Judgement Day - I know that the first movie is the *actual* horror movie, while this is move of an action film, but I had nightmares about that lady getting stabbed through her milk for years.
  12. Cloverfield - I don't like found footage much as a rule, but it was still novel when this movie was a thing.
  13. The Terminator - I can think of nothing more terrifying than a naked Arnold Schwarzenegger.
  14. The Thing - 'Dat's a good Brimly. RIP.
  15. Tag (Japanese) - I remember this movie being kind of bad, but holy shit does the opening scene make a first impression that sticks with you. (Warning: very bloody)
  16. Pet Sematary 2 - I saw this as a kid and all I can remember is some guy having sex with his wife and her having a hilarious goofy-looking dog head while her bits are bouncing around, which is enough for me to slide it on at the bottom.

Check out the link on #15 for a cool/disturbing clip that you probably haven't seen.

Anyway, thanks to Drac for running a great list!
 

Patrick

Magic-User
(He/Him)
Here's mine:

1. The Thing
2. Evil Dead 2
3. Alien
4. Dawn of the Dead (1979)
5. Nosferatu (1922)
6. The Shining
7. Night of the Living Dead
8. Psycho
9. The Exorcist
10. 28 Days Later
11. Tremors
12. Dead Alive
13. The Witches (1990)
14. The Evil Dead (1981)
15. The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari
16. Drag Me to Hell
17. The Horror of Dracula
18. Donnie Darko
19. Get Out
20. The Babadook
21. The Blair Witch Project
22. Poltergeist
23. The Blob
24. The Silence of the Lambs
25. Scream

I had Alien at #3, so I'm pretty sure I was the mystery voter.

BOO!

Haha, gotcha.
 

Octopus Prime

Mysterious Contraption
(He/Him)
  1. The Thing
  2. Gremlins
  3. Prince of Darkness
  4. The Shining
  5. Nightmare on Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors
  6. Jason X
  7. Kiss of the Vampire
  8. Chopping Mall
  9. Fright Night
  10. Monster Squad
  11. The Babadook
  12. Evil Dead 2
  13. Army of Darkness
  14. Annihilation
  15. Halloween 3: The Season of the Witch
  16. Freddy Versus Jason
  17. Birdemic
  18. Goosebumps
  19. Frankenstein (original Karloff style)
  20. 1408
  21. The Mist
  22. Nightmare on Elm Street
  23. Alien
  24. Event Horizon
  25. Slumber Party Massacre 2
 

Falselogic

Techno-Threadcromancer
(they/them)
Can't believe I was the only person who voted for The Black Hole. Y'all don't know what horror is:

 

Zef

Find Your Reason
(He/Him)
Can't believe I was the only person who voted for The Black Hole. Y'all don't know what horror is:

The Good Bad Flicks exploration of this film is bursting with interesting data about its production.


I love that even the filmmakers didn't agree on how to end the movie, so they don't agree on what the actual ending is. My personal interpretation is that it's a prequel to Event Horizon.
 

Issun

TT's Resident Ace of Base Superfan
Not surprising, but deserved. Alien is so atmospheric and well paced. Lets talk about rain on a spaceship again.

  1. The Birds
  2. Gremlins
  3. Alien
  4. Frankenweenie
  5. Young Frankenstein
  6. Scream
  7. Get Out
  8. The Silence of the Lambs
  9. Army of Darkness
  10. Aliens
  11. Super 8
  12. Shaun of the Dead
  13. Dracula (1931)
  14. Ghostbusters
  15. The Ring
  16. Pan's Labyrinth
  17. Gremlins 2: The New Batch
  18. The Nightmare Before Christmas
  19. The Thing
  20. Psycho(1960)
  21. 28 Days Later
  22. The Blair Witch Project
  23. The Sixth Sense
  24. Beetlejuice
  25. The Shining
 

WildcatJF

Red After Image
(he / his / him)
Here's my teeny tiny list:
1) Alien
2) 28 Days Later
3) Aliens (less horror-themed than the original but still has some spooks)
4) Scooby Doo on Zombie Island (like the only legit scary one in the franchise)

5) Sleepy Hallow (the Burton one)
6) House of Usher (Corman)
7) The Pit and the Pendulum (Corman)
8) Watership Down (the animated one from the 1970s...this features some absolute terror in it)
9) Young Frankenstein (not really spooky but sure playing off of the motifs)
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
My thoughts on Alien

In terms of set and monster design, Alien is astounding but the real strength of Alien is how sparse the film is. Not much music, the camera work is very matter of fact even in the face of an increasingly strange and terrifying monster. Its not "realistic" in terms of story but in the way the story is told it is immediate and knows how to use its quiet, a skill I feel would improve a lot of horror movies. We start in a future both fantastic and mundane with blue collar space men and it doesn't change its look but manages it be insanely tense throughout.

Here's my list with the ones that missed out in bold.
1. Psycho (1960)
2. The Thing (1984)
3. The Fly (1986)
4. The Shining
5. Alien
6. The Babadook
7. Videodrome
8. Us
9. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1973)
10. Get Out
11. Phantasm
12. Black Christmas (1974)
I love horror movies but I'm rarely scared by them. Black Christmas, a film I saw for the first time a few years ago, genuinely scared me. It was one of two films released in the same year with "the calls are coming from inside the house" but while the first twenty minutes of When a Stranger Calls is perfect (because it was made as a short film originally), the remaining film is a bit of a weird and flawed film. Black Christmas is the superior take on the tale. But both do what surprisingly few films seem to be good at: preying on my fear of being alone in a house. I'm not hard to scare but I feel like not enough films properly exploit this scaredy cat part of me.
13. Dawn of the Dead (1978)
14. Evil Dead II
15. The Wicker Man (1974)
Featuring Christopher Lee's finest performance, this is a folk horror story about the terror of faith and specifically those with faith using it to justify horrific things. The protagonist, Sgt. Howie, is actually pretty unlikable and spends much of the film being shitty about the pagans. Do they turn out to be plotting something evil? Yes. But Howie is being a jerk far before it turns out these dudes are planning something monstrous. Its really about two belief systems and they fall into similar traps, and different ones, such has Howie's intolerance and Summerisle being willing to do something terrible to justify things and the hint that things might turn on Lord Summerisle if things don't change next season.
16. Suspiria (1977)
17. It Follows
18. House (1977)
19. Cat People (1942)
The films of Val Lewton were supposed to be an answer to the Universal monster series but very much became its own thing, a sort of moody horror-adjacent series of thrillers, psycho-dramas and dark fantasies. Most of them are great but I'd only consider a small few to be real "horror" movies. Cat People is a wonderful psychological horror movie of fear of female sexuality by both men and women. I still haven't seen the "almost in name only sequel" which is supposed to be great and really a melancholy fantasy, but Cat People is a great horror noir that made psychological horror a cinematic genre.
20. The Others
21. An American Werewolf in London
22. The Haunting (1962)
One of the best haunted house movie that only needs good writing, directing and a few wraps on the door to be completely effective.
23. Deep Red
My favourite giallo movie. These films are so good with titles and over the top deaths. Also, that scene with the doll is perfect. Its moving in a way that is fast but not too fast. Like, it feels like reaching you will be inevitable (even though it turns out to be a harmless distraction).
24. The Orphanage
Nothing like a ghost story that is both truly scary but also truly touching. (If its ever on Netflix, I think JBear would like it)
25. Eyes Without a Face
A strange arthouse Frankenstein film. People remember it being as bloodier than a lot of contemporary films but its also strangely beautiful, with a soundtrack more appropriate for a gentle fairy tale.
 

Tegan

dirtbag lesbian
(She/Her)
We all saw it coming, but great list! OuO

Here's mine, with writeups for the ones that didn't make it courtesy of Sleepy Tegan, who upon proofreading wrote every one of these like she was Jack Black, Oh well.
  1. The Thing (1986)
  2. Alien
  3. House (1977)
  4. The Ring (2002)
  5. Shaun of the Dead
  6. Ringu (1998)
  7. Scooby-Doo on Zombie Island
  8. The Babadook
  9. The Bride of Frankenstein
  10. Little Shop of Horrors (1986)
  11. Halloween (1978)
  12. It (2017) - kinda surprised this one was absent given its recent release and near-universal acclaim outside of the follow-up. Every scene in this movie is like the most memorable scene of any other horror movie. Subtlety and psychological horror are all well and good but I'm a sucker for any movie that really gives its all to having a big evil monster to kill the shit out of.
  13. Gekijōban Zero aka Fatal Frame - did y'all know there was a Fatal Frame movie? and that it fuckin' rules? And that it's super gay? It would have gone higher on the list if it weren't for the last few moments, but it's really terrific whether you like the games or not. Also it's jumpscare-free if that's a concern.
  14. Poltergeist (1982)
  15. Jaws - It's easy to say that Jaws isn't a horror movie for the same reason Jurassic Park isn't: they're about fuckin' cool animals killing people and that's more of a "hell yeah" thing than a scary thing. But it's easy to forget that while Jurassic Park affords a lot of dignity to its monsters, Jaws was so scary and so othering that people took out their phobias on actual sharks for decades afterwards.
  16. Shin Godzilla - as the sort of stuck-up snob who thinks Godzilla is at his best when he's being a metaphor for whatever terror is in the zeitgeist at the moment, this is the best Godzilla film in my book. And as the sort of uncultured swine who thinks Godzilla is at his best when he's beating the shit out of rubber monsters, the Atomic Breath scene in this one is aaaaawesoooooooome.
  17. The Curse of Kazuo Umezu - fuckin' nobody's seen this one, but it rules: it's a 1990 OVA from the creator of The Drifting Classroom, Cat Eyed Boy, and other stories. Horror and animation go together perfectly, but they only very rarely cross paths. This is one of the best ones, and in only 45 minutes you get stories about both a vampire and a haunted house! It's all fansubbed on Youtube!
  18. Creepshow
  19. The Haunting - this one was overshadowed by its truly excellent television namesake from 2018, but it's still the best damn haunted house movie ever made. Like, nothing happens in this movie but you still end up on edge the whole time. The scene with the banging on the walls is unnerving as hell even half a century later.
  20. The Fly (1986)
  21. Creature From the Black Lagoon - I think the most general rule of thumb with the non-sequel Universal Monsters movies is that the least-popular ones are usually the best, and Creature is one of the most impressive and inventive of the lot. The titular monster in particular is breathtakingly designed and shot.
  22. Frankenstein - now, by my own rule, this should be one of the worst of the Universal Monsters, but it turns out even a kinda bad one is still pretty good, and the way this one's wormed its way into the public subconscious deserves accolades. And always respect Mary Shelley.
  23. Child's Play 2 - I have a real soft spot for Chucky and his shitty movies; I respect how they never get too comfortable with the status quo and I love that they're not too precious with Chucky himself: he gets constant disrespect, because he deserves it. Anyway, this is one of the few legitimately really good ones, and remains my favourite despite the existence of the otherwise-superior Curse of Chucky due to one thing: the absolutely spectacular fashion in which Chucky is killed. I've mentioned this before, but most of the slasher classics exist in a binary state of being either at maximum asskicking capacity or completely dead: Chucky is the only one who, although difficult to kill, is extremely easy to injure. The entire last big setpiece of this movie is dedicated to watching Chucky get maimed in every possible way they could think of. No stone is left unturned. If you can think of a way to harm a plastic doll with human blood and organs and stuff in it, they thought of it and put it in there. As cathartic for the audience as it is for the characters.
  24. 10 Cloverfield Lane
  25. Night of the Creeps
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
Child's Play 2
The scene where Chucky takes a second to think of another doll name VERY OBVIOUSLY is legit funny. I put these movies in the same camp as Friday the 13th: even the best ones are kind of low art but they are also surprisingly fun. #3 is weak but it actually has a moment I've never seen in a slasher movie where after an elaborate set up Chucky's would be victim dies of a heart attack, leaving Chucky with murder blueballs. I must admit in practice the scene doesn't quite work, but I love it in conception.
Night of the Creeps

Caught this one last Halloween. Its pretty fun AND less homophobic than Monster Squad.
 

Issun

TT's Resident Ace of Base Superfan
Now that you mention it, I am also surprised that 21st Century It didn't make it.

Also, I should have had Shin Godzilla on my list, considering the impression it made on me when I watched it for Sci-Fi/Fantasy. Somehow Kaiju didn't register for me.
 

Kirin

Summon for hire
(he/him)
Yeah, same. There are several moments in Shin G that are legit terrifying, and "awesome" in the old sense of the word. And several others that are just plain unsettling.
 

Dracula

Plastic Vampire
(He/His)
Can't believe I was the only person who voted for The Black Hole.

Hey now! I also have this bizarre masterpiece on my list. It terrified me as a kid, and I only recently rewatched it and I now have a tremendous amount of respect for it. The set design and visuals in this movie are all masterpieces.

And, my list, with some notes on movies that didn't make it in:

1. Silence of the Lambs
2. Fright Night
3. Return of the Living Dead - I discussed this one on a weekend entry, but it transcends the zombie genre for me.
4. Rocky Horror Picture Show - Still surprised this didn't make it on the big list.
5. Night of the Creeps
6. The WNUF Halloween Special
7. The Stuff - Enough is never enough!
8. Night of the Comet
9. It Follows
10. Trick 'r Treat
11. Get Out
12. Hereditary
13. Dracula (1931)
14. Chopping Mall
15. Elvira: Mistress of the Dark - It's more comedy than horror, but unquestionably Cassandra Peterson is a horror icon. I love her and I love this film. Since I first saw it a few years ago I've rewatched it numerous times.
16. The Monster Squad
17. Midsommar - I meant to discuss this one on a weekend entry. Like the director's other film, Hereditary, the most unsettling parts of this film, for me, involve the trauma of grief. There's lots of good discussion to be had about the themes and outcomes in this film, too. (Is the ending "happy?" Should we celebrate how Dani finds emotional support and release...with a death cult?) Plus, the lighting! So many horror movies rely on darkness and shadow - but this is one of the brightest movies ever.
18. Halloween III
19. The Ring (2004)
20. Jennifer's Body
21. Troll 2
22. The Cabin in the Woods
23. Nosferatu (1922) - I first saw FW Murnau's silent adaptation of Dracula in high school. My copy of the film had a soundtrack by the goth rock band Type O Negative. I adored it. I watched it over and over. I love Max Schrek's portrayal of the vampire, and I find it to be a far more effective horror film than the more popular Dracula (1931), even though both are favorites of mine. Maybe I should have ranked this one higher...
24. Gojira (Godzilla)
25. The Black Hole - Heck, it's even got Anthony "Norman Bates" Perkins in it!
 

ShakeWell

Slam Master
(he, etc.)
Alien and The Thing topping the list makes sense, and as you can see below, doesn't diverge from my taste all that much.

Hey, Drac, any chance of posting the entire collaborative list in an easy-to-read single location?

Here was mine:

1) The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)
2) Evil Dead II: Dead by Dawn
3) Halloween (1978)
4) The Thing (1982)
5) A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
6) Alien (1979)
7) The Terminator
8) Predator (1987)
9) Night of the Living Dead (1968)
10) Friday the 13th Part 3D (When seen in its proper 3D presentation)
11) Hellraiser
12) Mandy
13) Reanimator
14) Hereditary
15) Get Out
16) It Follows
17) Creepshow
18) Suspiria (1977)
19) The Bride of Frankenstein
20) Dracula (1931)
21) Tales from the Crypt Presents Demon Knight
22) An American Werewolf in London
23) Midsommar
24) The Strangers
25) Suspiria (2018)

But if you asked tomorrow, the entire list might be different.
 

Daikaiju

Rated Ages 6+
(He, Him)
Here's mine

Oh hell, no!

I came for TS shenanigans and was not disappointed.
 

Peklo

Oh! Create!
(they/them, she/her)
Hi, I only hung around this thread occasionally chiming in because I wasn't in the mood to do the mental labour in compiling a list of my own when the voting went down. I did so now, for the fun of it. I won't particularly order them now that they can't influence the vote anymore, so just alphabetically it goes. Bolded picks not on the list.
  • The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971)
  • Alien (1979)
  • Begotten (1989)
  • Bride of Frankenstein (1935)
  • The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari (1920)
  • Carrie (1976)
  • The Craft (1996)
  • The Fly (1986)
  • The Fog (1980)
  • Fright Night (1985)
  • Halloween (1978)
  • The Haunting (1963)
  • House (1977)
  • House on Haunted Hill (1959)
  • Häxan (1922)
  • The Invisible Man (1933)
  • Night of the Living Dead (1968)
  • Nosferatu (1922)
  • The Old Dark House (1932)
  • The Return of the Living Dead (1985)
  • Shadow of the Vampire (2000)
  • The Terminator (1984)
  • The Thing (1982)
  • Vampire Hunter D: Bloodlust (2000)
  • Wild Zero (1999)
Thanks for running the thread!
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
  • Häxan (1922)
This is a really neat and impressive looking move. Plus, all the butter churning you can handle.


 

Peklo

Oh! Create!
(they/them, she/her)
It's, uhh. It's a lot. I would put some kind of content warning for it, but... I'm not exactly sure for what. That unease is integral to why I think it's valuable, though.
 

Johnny Unusual

(He/Him)
I remember seeing the trailer on a VHS for a movie (I don't know what one) but assuming its the same movie I'm thinking of, it seems very much art horror in the vein of Eraserhead but maybe less conventionally-narrative based (or maybe the preview was just keeping things sketchy because its so upsetting). I forgot it was a think until Peklo mentioned it.)
 

ShakeWell

Slam Master
(he, etc.)
It's, uhh. It's a lot. I would put some kind of content warning for it, but... I'm not exactly sure for what. That unease is integral to why I think it's valuable, though.

I'm usually pretty good without a cw. As long as it rests firmly on this side of, like, A Serbian Film (if you do not know about that film, I am begging you to NOT Google it, literally any and all cw's I can think of apply to A Serbian Film) or the Human Centipede movies, I'm sure I'll be fine. But I do appreciate it! (As do others here, I'm sure.)
 

Ixo

"This is not my beautiful forum!" - David Byrne
(Hi Guy)
I also did not submit a list because I am a biiiiiggg weenie and can't handle horror movies. But I don't want this thread to end without at least one mention of Incubus from 1966.


Black and white pre-Trek Shatner speaking Esperanto, some succubi sisters lookin' for a suitable boy-toy, and the worst goat demon I've seen in recent memory. It sure is a thing.
 
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