It’s hard to discover new movies for Halloween, when the net is full of top 10 lists packed with the same usual suspects: Rosemary’s Baby, The Exorcist, and The Shining. They’re safe bets if you haven’t seen them, but if you want fresh scares they’re roadblocks on the information super highway. If you’re looking for a detour, let me welcome you into the realm of the obscure.
Some of my suggestions are recent straight to streaming releases, while others had limited theatrical runs. These films aren’t cult classics, they’re still looking for their audience.
Over the next three weeks, I’ll share my recommendations, everything from pitch black horror to paranormal romance, blood soaked cinema for some and mind bending motion pictures for others.
Today is Part 1: Real World / Supernatural Horror
Later I’ll post:
Part 2: Reality Warping Reels / Romance from the Twilight Zone
Part 3: Found Footage / Mocumentary
If you have any recommendations, please share them in the comments.
Real World Horror
What if a group of masked home invaders found themselves pitted against a girl raised by a doomsday prepper?
Who will love this: People who enjoy watching horror tropes get spun on their head. People who thought the characters in The Strangers deserved a fighting chance.
Who will loathe this: People who can’t handle fleeting violence.
A contract killer finds himself the unwitting tool of a cult.
Who will love this: People who like slow burn mysteries with dark payoffs. Fans of the original Wicker Man.
Who will loathe this: People who require at least one likable character in their movies. People who need subtitles to understand thick British accents.
Asylum Blackout aka The Incident
When the power goes out in an asylum for the criminally insane, the inmates killing the guards, leaving only the slacker cooks to figure out how to survive the night.
Who will love this: Fans of 70s horror movies and video games with similar themes, like Outlast.
Who will loathe this: People who can’t stand brutal violence, trust me, this isn’t your cup of tea.
A couple, lost on their way to a concert, find themselves at the mercy of a masked stranger. In their panic they hit a man walking on the side of the road. The man claims he too is being hunted, but the couple isn’t so sure.
Who will love this: People who like character driven horror stories with rising tension.
Who will loathe this: People who hate slow burn horror stories, this one will try your patience. The setup stretches, but those who stick with it are in for something fiendish.
Country boys, Tucker and Dale are fixing their run down vacation home when they’re attacked by privileged college kids. A film that dares to ask the question: What if the hillbillies from Deliverance were the good guys?
Who will love this: People who like movies, like The Cabin in the Woods, that play with horror tropes without being spoofs. Horror aficionados who will catch all the references.
Who will loathe this: People who have trouble laughing at death will be put off. Must of the deaths aren’t the result of malice, but misunderstanding. They’re mostly accidents setup as slapstick gags.
After her sister’s husband goes missing, a recovering addict investigates a tunnel linked to the disappearance. From the writer/director of Oculus.
Who will love this: People looking for a fresh monster to picture lurking under their bed.
Who will loathe this: People who’d prefer their supernatural horror came with an FX budget and known talent.
What if you watched a movie and saw your exact double on screen? Would you seek them out? Enemy isn’t a horror movie, but damn is scary. A lot of nail-biting tension builds to one hell of an ending.
Who will love this: David Lynch fans. People seeking tension over terror should enjoy this foreboding mystery.
Who will loathe this: Considering the fact that the cast signed a confidentiality agreement not to explain the meaning of the spiders in the movie, people who hate symbolism might want to avoid this one.
An romantic interpretation of Invasion of the Body Snatchers that begs the question: how well do you know the person you’re in love with?
Who will love this: Fans of intimate character dramas with small casts. People with trust issues.
Who will loathe this: People who hate ambiguous mysteries where details are left unexplained.
A caregiver is convinced by her boyfriend to rob a coma patient in an dilapidated mansion. Neither the patient nor the mansion are what they seem.
Who will love this: People who love the fashion sense and aesthetic of the Silent Hill video games. Fans of atmospheric dread and vampire ballerinas.
Who will loathe this: People who hate subtitles and surreal endings. This is a case where the form (the visuals) is more interesting than the function (the plot).
A gang of hoodlums are the only ones who can save their block from an alien invasion.
Who will love this: This is required viewing for fans of Edgar Wright’s Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and The World’s End trilogy.
Who will loathe this: People who need their protagonists to be immediately likeable and sympathetic from frame one.
NEXT UP: Reality Warping Reels / Romance from the Twilight Zone
5 thoughts on “Obscure Horror Movie Suggestions: Part 1”
I LOVE Tucker and Dale. I heard a while back they were looking for a screenwriter for a possible part 2. I dearly hope I wasn’t just daydreaming that. 😉
I’d love to see a sequel to Tucker and Dale, but they’d have to take the story (and the confusion) someplace new.
Thanks for this and part two, I’ll be checking out the ones I haven’t seen. This is definitely a great list though because as you say, most centre on films like The Exorcist (which is still my all time favourite) without giving recognition to the many great, more recent horror titles out.
Just in case this film doesn’t make part three, The Borderlands is worth checking out https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wZ4mSBE3ip8
The Borderlands will definitely be in my found footage category. Thanks for the recommendation.