Horror is a genre that is well known for producing sequels. Lots and lots of sequels. Often, lots and lots of bad sequels. So today I'm going to list my ten favorite horror movie franchises, just to prove that not all horror movie sequels are awful (granted some of them are) but not all of em! A few months back I did a list on the highest rated horror franchises of all time, so you can check that out here.
Please note that to be on this list, there needs to be at least three installments in the franchise for it to even be considered. Again, this is an opinion list - so if you're looking for the highest grossing and highest ranking horror franchises of all time, you can see that right here!
#10 - Final Destination (5 Installments)
Now I've found that generally people have mixed feelings towards the Final Destination series, as I've yet to find someone who absolutely cringes at the name, but at the same time I still haven't met anyone who claims that they absolutely love the series. I'm really no different - the first one was pretty damn good, it was original, and it was clever. Then they started doing sequel after sequel, adding unnecessary copious gore, and the awful CGI started kicking in. Granted, part 2 was a decent enough follow up, and even part 3 was watchable, but I wouldn't suggest watching any future installments.
#9 Alien (6 Installments)
This is another instance where the original is a classic, the sequel was a great follow up, and then it sort of turned to custard from there on. The two spin offs (Alien vs Predator and Alien vs Predator requiem) were both very successful movies, which some people love, but others hate. I'm personally a big science fiction fan, so for me Sci-fi + horror = awesome.
#8 Friday the 13th (12 Installments)
Surprised to see this one so far down the list? Well, I've always classed the Friday the 13th franchise as a 'decent' franchise, and here's why - Okay, so I enjoyed parts 2,3,4,6,7,11 and 12. So that's just over half the films, so I guess I can't really say I LOVE the franchise as a whole can I? If someone was to ask me which order to watch these films in, I would say watch 1 - 4, skip 5, go straight to 6 and 7 - then straight to Freddy vs Jason and the reboot. The plot for the later films just got far too stupid, and dear god Jason Goes To Hell was the second worst film I have EVER seen. 90 minutes of my life I will never get back.
#7 Scream (4 Installments)
Another series that you either love or hate, the Scream series breathed new life into the dying slasher genre in the mid nineties. The first one is classic, the second one is a brilliant follow up, and I personally enjoyed the third one. The fourth one however was a HUGE let down for me, but I know a lot of people really enjoyed it - and even say it is the best installment in the series so far. Sure, it gets majorly cheesy at times, but it's a fun watch, and would serve as a good introduction into the horror genre!
#6 Hellraiser (9 Installments)
When I say that I like the Hellraiser series, what I really mean is I like the first four films (the ones that were originally made to actually be Hellraiser films) and not the four weird, off track sequels that followed. Why did I say four? Well simply because Hellraiser Revelations was never made and it doesn't exist, end of story. To be fair, I didn't mind 'Deader', and 'Hellseeker' was also almost watchable due to the return of Kirsty Cotton and the twist on the story. Nevertheless, the first four were great movies which I thoroughly enjoy watching.
#5 Child's Play (6 Installments)
Say what you will about Seed of Chucky, because all in all Child's Play is a great franchise, and I suppose it's just a bit of fun, light hearted entertainment. I've never been a fan of modern horror, so there's really no surprise that I absolutely hated Curse of Chucky, but the first 5 entries in the series are enjoyable enough to watch, even if they did get rather silly towards the end. I think horror and comedy can actually mix very well, which is why I wasn't at all devastated about the release of Bride of Chucky, and I wouldn't have been all too upset if they'd decided to keep the character on that kind of path.
#4 Halloween (10 Installments)
Out of 10 films, only two of them are bad (in my opinion) - so I think that's pretty good going! The original is totally CLASSIC, the sequel was the perfect follow up, the third one was absolutely shite (whether you look past the fact that Michael wasn't in it or not) the fourth, fifth and sixth installments all kept up the standard (even if the sixth one got a little weird), H20 was probably the best of the series, Resurrection I would not watch again - but I don't regret watching it like I did with half the Friday 13th series, and the remake was great too. Obviously the second remake wasn't so flash, but it always happens in these big franchises. Great slasher franchise, and it really isn't overrated!
#3 Phantasm (4 Installments)
I always put off watching the Phantasm movies, as I never really thought I'd be into them, but boooyyyyy was I wrong! (Pun intended). They're such unique movies, and so different - they may be dated, but I'll tell you over and over again that practical effects are always cooler than CGI! The 'Tall Man' is an awesome villain, and such a great change from the usual boring slasher bad guys. There's plot twists, and although it's a bit hard to keep up with at times, the story doesn't feel like it's been dragged on and on like in other franchises.
#2 Red Dragon (5 Installments + Tv Series)
Now whether or not this series is strictly classed as horror or not is up for debate, but it definitely hits the psychological thriller category so eh, what the heck? Adapted from Thomas Harris' classic novels, these movies were made incredibly well. I admit that I am still to see the original 'Manhunter', but I've been currently enjoying the tv series, so perhaps after! These are honestly some of the best movies I've ever seen, and they all have great casts. Highly recommend for fans of psychological horror movies, as these ones tend to play on your mind a bit!
#1 A Nightmare on Elm Street (9 Installments)
Last but not least - A Nightmare on Elm Street! One of the first horror movies I ever saw, Nightmare on Elm Street has always been a personal favourite. The 5th and 6th films were a little hard to watch, but heck, they were a good laugh. Wes Craven's New Nightmare was enjoyable too - it was very different to your typical slasher flick. Freddy vs Jason was definitely too cheesy, so I'm a bit upset that they didn't make more of an effort with that one, but overall it was a decent watch. The only movie in this franchise that I'm not a fan of is the remake, which I still wouldn't trash as it did have its merits.