Okay, so bear with me. This might seem like a bit of a curveball but I have been thinking about my relationship with films recently and how much I love finding new movies to watch, sinking into them and then analysing everything from the aesthetic and cinematography to the cast and the story afterwards. A great film sticks with you long after the end credits.
Movies help me to relax… even if it comes in the form of a creepy, twisty-turny, gore-filled horror movie. For some, the horror genre might sound like… well, a bit of a nightmare. But, for me, it’s a great distraction. There’s nothing like diving headfirst into an extreme, bizarre and unimaginable world and getting lost for an hour or two. It’s like taking a holiday in the macabre.
So, I thought, to pay homage to my undying (I know, I know) love of the genre, I would share six of my favourite horror films for those who are fellow fans or ready to dip their toe into the darkness!
On a side note, you might consider some of these more thriller than strictly horror but they fall into the category for me so we’ll roll with that.
You’re Next (2011)
You’re Next is up there as one of my all time favourite films. It’s a good old home invasion, slasher film that smashes the trope of the helpless woman as the lead female proves to be calm, collected and skilled in the face of a nightmare situation.
The story begins with a wealthy family coming under attack from men dressed in animal masks. However, you soon realise that it’s not just your average home invasion story – and they’re not facing the average ‘horror movie girlfriend’.
A Nightmare on Elm Street (2010)
I know it’s a remake but the 2010 version of A Nightmare on Elm Street is in the list for a bloody good reason.
It follows the well-known story of school friends who begin having the same nightmare of a disfigured man sporting the iconic striped sweater and bladed gloves. What makes this version stand out to me is how beautifully it’s filmed, alongside the vivid, immersive and dream-like quality of the scenes when Freddy Krueger tears down the wall between sleep and reality.
The Ritual (2017)
This is a new one on my list having only watched it for the first time a few weeks ago. It’s creepy, funny and if you can suspend your disbelief towards the end then you’ll enjoy!
The British supernatural horror film follows a group of friends setting out to hike through the Scandinavian wilderness following the traumatic death of their friend. Of course, the decision to take a ‘short cut’ doesn’t pan out well and they stumble into a mysterious forest full of ancient evil and Norse legends.
The Cabin in The Woods (2012)
Part horror, part comedy – Cabin in The Woods is perfect for someone just getting started out with the genre. It’s a fun take on typical horror themes but there’s still some pretty gruesome scenes and nightmarish foes!
The story starts with 5 college friends heading out to stay in… you guessed it, a cabin in the woods. You might be expecting it to be your typical teen slasher – but there’s a lot more at play here than a remote cabin and 5 stereotypical characters…
As Above, So Below (2014)
I don’t tend to enjoy ‘found footage’ styles of films but the mystery and layers of thought that went into this movie can’t help but make this one stick with me.
We follow archaeologist Scarlett Marlowe and her crew on a journey into the Catacombs of Paris in search of one of history’s greatest treasures: Flamel’s Philosopher’s Stone. As they begin their descent, they come face-to-face with their demons.
Eden Lake (2008)
There’s something disturbingly realistic about this movie that had me holding my breath the whole way through.
Eden Lake is a British slasher/thriller movie that sees a young couple head out on a romantic weekend break to a lakehouse. As you can probably guess, the weekend doesn’t quite go to plan when their peaceful stay is thrown into chaos by a gang of violent teens.
I could name so many more horror films that I love but these are just a few of my favourites that I return to again and again. Have you seed and enjoyed any of these? What other films would you recommend? Comment below!