My previous list (check it out here) focused on newer movies - movies that had just come out the last couple of years and I had seen fairly recently. This time I’ve decided to go just a little further back in time. As a movie ages, does that mean it loses its need for some overdue love? I don't think so. In that spirit here are 5 more horror movies I feel need to be seen by a much bigger audience.
Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon (2006)
The world is running low on psycho horror maniacs. Freddy, Jason, Myers - they’re all legends but, let’s face it, are getting a little long in the tooth. Enter Leslie Vernon, horror’s “next big thing.” Leslie is determined to follow in the masters’ footsteps, and allows a documentary crew to film his training regimen as he prepares for his first legendary blood bath. In the amazing world of Behind the Mask, unstoppable creatures like Jason and Myers are very much real and a simple fact of life. Much of this movie is completely tongue-in-cheek, and could have so easily gone off the rails into a bad parody of horror movies, but it’s done so expertly that you willingly go along for the ride. The epitome of underrated, Behind the Mask is must viewing for any horror fan.
B-movie alien-monster invasion silliness done to perfection. Slither revels in its own slimy gore. It ruts in it like a pig in its pen. And it’s always winking at you. This was the first feature-length film from director James Gunn (Super, Guardians of the Galaxy) and it’s obvious he’s having a blast with the opportunity. Starring the gorgeous and talented Elizabeth Banks (The Hunger Games, The LEGO Movie) and a cranked to 11 Michael Rooker (Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer, The Walking Dead), Slither is a throwback classic that knows exactly what it is: a wild, thoroughly entertaining gore fest; with a totally self-aware, we-know-we’re-completely-nuts sense of humor.
Blood Car (2007)
Blood Car. Ah, Blood Car. This movie is completely ridiculous. It is utterly absurd. And I loved every second of it. Starring, maybe one person you’ve heard of, shot for what looks to be about $27 dollars, Blood Car is the story of a not-too-distant future where gasoline prices have soared so high only the most affluent people can still afford to drive cars. So our hero, Archie, has been quietly working on an alternative fuel source that is mainly a combination of wheat grass and not much else. One day while puttering on his prototype engine he cuts himself and bleeds into the formula. He decides "what the hell" and tests this new batch in his old relic automobile. Eureka! It works! But poor Archie quickly realizes it’s not the wheat grass that brought his car to life...but human blood! Blood Car is a fantastic example of people making a movie on next to zero resources except a crazy idea, and a blinding passion to make it work. And work it does.
The Signal (2007)
The Signal is a strange piece of work, and completely original. Told in three different parts, from three different perspectives, the movie is about a mysterious signal that suddenly begins transmitting from every television, cell phone, and radio, which inexplicably turns ordinary people into bloodthirsty killers. The Signal is an awesome example of atmosphere and tension used to startling and terrifying heights. The level of paranoia and just plain unease is almost unbearable at times. Who can you trust? Who’s been affected and who is safe? A terribly underrated movie when it was released, The Signal has gained a bit of a cult status; but still needs to be seen by far more people. This is one of those that needs to be sought out and viewed immediately. You won’t regret it.
Session 9 (2001)
To put it simply, Session 9 is creepy as hell. It is the story of a small asbestos removal crew hired to clean up an abandoned mental asylum. What should be a relatively easy job turns out to produce one complication after another, not to mention bubbling personal conflicts between the crew members themselves. And if that wasn’t bad enough, things don’t seem to be quite right inside the asylum walls. Built on an ever-rising and unstoppable tide of dread and eerie atmosphere, Session 9 is dark, man. Don’t expect any comedic relief in this one. The tension, the creepy sounds, the haunting visuals, this one might stay with you a little while after it’s over. And don’t let the fact that it stars David Caruso frighten you. He’s actually quite good.
Let me know what you think of this list. To me they are all great in their own right and deserve an extra helping of love from horror fans everywhere. Happy viewing!