2016 was a fantastic year for horror. We've been lucky enough to have a lot of films that defied genre expectations and gave the world some amazing new villains (Don't Breathe) and stories (Train to Busan). The following movies are all incredibly different and offer something awesome for horror lovers.
10. The Neon Demon
Do you like Nicolas Winding Refn films that aren't Drive? If you answered "yes," then you will really appreciate The Neon Demon. It is empty, dirty, violent and beautiful to look at. It won't leave you feeling fulfilled, but it is gloriously original and features insane moments that will make you squirm.
9. Don't Breathe
Don't Breathe is a blue-collar film that features realistic scares and an iconic villain. The camerawork is top-notch and whenever violence breaks out you feel the pain. I love that it pulled in huge box office numbers because this is a film that deserves to be watched. It gives the audience what they want and features likable characters and almost too much suspense (I'm a wimp).
8. The Witch
The Witch is the rare horror film that is beloved by critics and horror lovers. It is crazy tense and filled with imagery you will never forget. I loved how memorable and original The Witch was and I think the fresh setting and insane shots will eventually become iconic.
7. 10 Cloverfield Lane
10 Cloverfield Lane is a terrifying chamber thriller that features career best performances from Mary Elizabeth Winstead and John Goodman. It manages to do a lot with little and proves horror films don't need masked killers or insane violence to be tense. I really hope that John Goodman is nominated for an Academy Award because he is perfect in this movie.
6. Green Room
Green Room proves that director Jeremy Saulnier (Blue Ruin) is an amazing director. I was on the edge of my seat the entire time and I love how Saulnier makes violence look so ugly and realistic. Nothing is glorified and you will find yourself incredibly nervous for the trapped punk band. Also, Patrick Stewart is awesome as the Neo-Nazi leader because he looks like your nice uncle but he would kill you without a thought. Please watch Green Room.
5. The Invitation
The Invitation tells the story of a dinner party gone awry. It is patient, chilling and features the best horror ending of 2016. Director Karyn Kusama does a great job building to an unforgettable climax that will make your head explode (not really). You need to watch The Invitation because it is unexpected, tense and chilling.
4. The Conjuring 2
Director James Wan is the king of mainstream horror and he has found a way to appeal to both critics and audiences. What I like about The Conjuring 2 is how it features heroes instead of victims. The Warrens (Patrick Wilson, Vera Farmiga) are awesome ghostbusters who put themselves in danger to save others. I love the Warren's unselfishness and willingness to dive headlong into danger. Movies don't get anymore stressful than The Conjuring 2.
You need to watch Hush. It is a fantastic cat-and-mouse thriller that features great performances from John Gallagher Jr. and Kate Siegel. What I love about Hush is how it creates a terrifying new killer that isn't explained away via expository dialogue. An added bonus is Stephen King loves it!
2. Train to Busan
Train to Busan is a beautifully audacious horror movie. I love how it doesn't spare your feelings and features a new spin on the zombie genre. It feels like Snowpiercer met 28 Days Later and spawned a neat World War Z type film. If you are wanting to watch an original zombie film I totally recommend you check out Train to Busan.
1. The Wailing
The Wailing is horror perfected. It is an immersive experience that hurts the soul and proves that horror movies can be great films. Director Na Hong-jin has made an absolute classic that will be a staple of the genre for years to come. You need to watch The Wailing because it is the best horror film of 2016.
What is your favorite horror film of 2016? Let me know in the comments!