A Horror Challenge

August 27, 2009 at 12:41 am (Uncategorized)

Horror is one of my favorite genres, although I often torture myself by watching too much of it for my overactive imagination, and probably the type of film that inspires me the most. So it’s like a double-edged sword, making me feel creative and excited, but also depriving me of precious sleep. As a very unofficial challenge to myself, for the rest of the year, I will attempt to watch as many horror films as I can from a list of what intrigues me most. I may edit the list as recommendations come my way, and I will also try to post reviews here when I finish one. Please give me suggestions! I’m not very well-versed in classic or very recent films, and I try to avoid the extremely gory stuff. I’m interested in atmosphere and chills, not body count. Also, my definition of “horror” is pretty loose, and will include films that just skirt the edge of the genre. So, what I want to see:

  • Repulsion (Polanski, 1965)
  • The Faceless Monster (Caiano, 1965)
  • Eraserhead (Lynch, 1977)
  • Dawn of the Dead (Romero, 1978)
  • Faust (Murnau, 1926)
  • Haxan: Witchcraft Through the Ages (Christensen, 1922)
  • Eyes Without a Face (Franju, 1959)
  • The Devil’s Backbone (del Toro, 2001)
  • Antichrist (Von Trier, 2009)
  • Something Wicked This Way Comes (Clayton, 1983)
  • Re-Animator (Gordon, 1985)
  • Evil Dead II: Dead by Dawn (Raimi, 1987)
  • At Midnight I’ll Take Your Soul (Marins, 1963)
  • Epidemic (Von Trier, 1987)
  • The Bird with the Crystal Plumage (Argento, 1970)
  • Ravenous (Bird, 1999)
  • Don’t Torture a Duckling (Fulci, 1972)
  • Black Sabbath (Bava, 1963)
  • Shivers (Cronenberg, 1975)
  • The Pit and the Pendulum (Corman, 1961)
  • 28 Days Later (Boyle, 2002)
  • Hour of the Wolf (Bergman, 1968)
  • House of Usher (Corman, 1960)
  • Cat People (Tourneur, 1942)
  • Les Diaboliques (Clouzot, 1955)
  • Trouble Every Day (Denis, 2001)
  • Don’t Look Now (Roeg, 1973)
  • Possession (Zulawski, 1981)
  • Opera (Argento, 1987)
  • The  Last House on the Left (Iliadis, 2009)

It’ll probably take me forever to see all of these, especially since I’m going abroad soon and won’t have Netflix, but at least this will work as a nice guideline for what I want to see. I’m excited to get started, as I have Repulsion at home now and Eraserhead on deck. Out of all of these I’m most looking forward to Antichrist despite having most of its shocking moments spoiled for me. I’m a big fan of Von Trier and anticipating Epidemic a lot. I expect to love most of these, so this should be a creepily wonderful film journey!




  1. brightside2009 said,

    Surprised it’s not there, maybe you’ve seen it already, but I’d definitely recommend Zulawski’s Possession. I also rather love Argento’s Opera. I suppose I’m not really the go-to person for this as I’m no expert myself, but I rather like those two. I know PBF loves the latter as well, and Bear adores the former.

    • orpheline said,

      I want to see Possession, but it’s not on Netflix. I suppose I could get it from surreal but I rarely download. Opera is in my queue, so I’m not sure why I didn’t include it, except I have about 5 Argentos lined up so I just picked one. Thanks for the reminders 🙂

      • brightside2009 said,

        I could see you really liking Possession. Very intense stuff. Yeah, I was hesitant to include the Argento as I knew you were likely already feeling the heat to check him out. I’ve seen 4 of his films and Opera is definitely my favorite so far. I can’t imagine you not liking it.

  2. jedimoonshyne said,

    Hmm. I’m not particularly knowledgable on the horror genre, but I don’t think I’d classify “Antichrist” as such. It’s more of a psychological thriller than a horror movie.

    • orpheline said,

      Really? Obviously I haven’t seen it, but all advertising seems to point to horror, and it does have imagery that would qualify it, much like Hour of the Wolf. My idea of horror is pretty loose, mostly so I can get in everything I want to see, and also because what I find scary is not always classified as such.

  3. DJ Rkod said,

    I still like The Machinist in terms of recent horror. I don’t know if you’d care for that one, heh. It does have my favourite Christian Bale performance in it!

    You say you plan to watch the remake of Last House On The Left; have you seen the film its predecessor was based on, Bergman’s own Virgin Spring? It’s not “horror” any more than many of Cheery Ingmar’s darker films generally are, but I find it a brutally effective, utterly fearless stare at the human psyche, and I wouldn’t say it lacks the power to terrify.

    In contrast to the serious tone of The Virgin Spring, I also really enjoy the two Roger Corman features you’ve included. 😛 If you like those I’d seriously recommend his Masque Of The Red Death.

    Lastly, I think you will enjoy the living hell out of Re-Animator, grotesque imagery or not. Really glad to see that one on the list.

    • orpheline said,

      The Virgin Spring is one of my favorite films. It’s on the list but I never got around to posting an entry on it. It would qualify as horror by my standards I suppose.

      The Machinist is something I’ve never wanted to see, mostly because everything I have seen from it looks so unpleasant and not in a creepy-cool way. I could put it on the list, but honestly, it would be like last priority, and since I don’t think I’ll get to all these anyway, I don’t much see the use in that.

      Very few modern horrors appeal to me at all :/

  4. Reini Urban said,

    You missed the best horrorfilms, where this genre is constantly re-invented, and Antichrist is based on: Japan. Korea and the rest of east asia also follows.
    Never saw any Kurosawa Kiyoshi Film? Or Ringu? All of the J-Horror films are better than those you listed; besides Antichrist of course, which is almost a japanese film.

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