What is the scariest movie on netflix right now

What is the scariest movie on netflix right now

Assessing the quality of Netflix’s available offerings in 2022, it quickly becomes clear that its horror library is a mixed bag. As competing services, and especially genre-specific ones like Shudder, continue to expand their horror movie collections, it’s getting harder and harder for Netflix to project a sense of completeness, and its library becomes more static and reliant on netflix originals monthly. at various points in the past year, for example, netflix was able to show off the shine, scream, jaws, the silence of the lambs or young frankenstein, along with recent indie greats like the witch, the descent or the babadook i> . All of those movies are gone, usually replaced by low-budget, direct-to-vod movies with suspiciously similar one-word titles, like demonic, desolate, and incarnate. .

still, there are quality movies to be found here, typically of the modern variety, from comedies like the babysitter to darker (and disturbing) titles like creep , raw or newer movies like his house and the fear street trilogy. don’t expect to find many franchise staples in the halloween mold, but don’t fall asleep at the haunting of hill house or midnight mass , or . They’re not technically movies, but it’s impossible to leave them off this list.

We invite you to use this list as a guide. the lowest-rated movies are of the “funny-bad” variety: flawed, but easily enjoyable for one reason or another. top rated movies are obviously essential.

You can also check out the following horror-focused lists:

the 100 best horror movies of all time. The 100 best vampire movies of all time. The 50 best zombie movies of all time. top 40 horror movies on hulu top 80 horror movies on amazon prime top 50 horror movies streaming on shudder top 50 serial killer movies top 50 slasher movies of all time top 50 ghost movies of all time

1. raw

year: 2016 director: julia ducournou stars: garance marillier, ella rumpf, laurent lucas rating: r execution time: 99 minutes

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if you’re the proud possessor of a twisted sense of humor, you might tell your friends that julia ducournau’s raw is a “coming-of-age movie” in an attempt to trick them into reading it. see. Yes, the film’s protagonist, naive incoming college student Justine (Garance Marillier), comes of age over the course of her runtime; she parties, comes out of her shell and learns who she really is as a person on the verge of adulthood. but most kids who come of age in the movies don’t realize that they’ve spent their lives inadvertently suppressing an innate and nearly insatiable urge to consume raw meat. “hey”, you’re thinking, “that’s the name of the movie!” are you okay! it is! Leave her cheekiness to Ducournau. More than a wink and nod at the image’s visceral details, raw is an open concession to the harrowing quality of justine’s somber bloom. As unsavory as the film gets, and as it does get unsavory, the hardest feelings Ducournau articulates here tend to be ones we can’t detect just by looking: fear of female sexuality, family legacies, popularity politics, and the like. uncertainty of self-government raw as much as exposed and bloodied flesh. it’s an unapologetic gorefest and a lot more to chew on than its effects. :andy crump

2. your house

year: 2020 director: remi weekes stars: wunmi mosaku, sope dirisu, matt smith rating: nr execution time: 93 minutes

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Nothing takes the energy out of horror more than movies that hold the horror in. movies can scare audiences in a variety of ways, of course, but the least a horror movie can be is scary rather than fucking. remi weekes her house doesn’t fuck. the movie opens with a tragedy, and within 10 minutes of that opening it easily overcomes the grudge by leaving ghosts scattered on the floor and on the stairs where its protagonists can trip over them. ultimately, this is a film about the inescapable innate pain of immigrant stories, a companion piece to contemporary independent cinema like jonas carpignano’s mediterranea, which captures the dangers immigrants face along the way and in their destinies with brutal neorealism clarity. weekes is deeply committed to the bol and the rial as people, where they came from, what drove them to leave, and most of all, what they did to leave. but he also spends weeks making his viewers jump out of their skin. —andy crump

3. the curse of the house on the hill

year: 2018 director: mike flanagan stars: henry thomas, michiel huisman, carla gugino, elizabeth reaser, oliver jackson-cohen, kate siegel, victoria pedretti duration: 10 episodes

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the aesthetic of the haunting of hill house makes it work not only as a horror television series, but also as a deft adaptation of shirley jackson’s classic novel. monsters, ghosts, and wall-banging things are off-screen, barely shown, or obscured by shadow. the series even goes back to some of the decisions of the first film adaptation, in terms of camera movement and shot design, to develop restlessness and inconsistency. well, maybe “inconsistency” is the wrong word. the only thing that feels really inconsistent while watching it is your mind: you always worry about being fooled, but the construction of its scenes often grabs you anyway. By embracing squirming, and the time it takes for us to squirm rather than jump, House on Haunted Hill is great for creating haunting scenarios, and even better for letting us marinate in them. —jacob oller

4. midnight mass

year: 2021 director: mike flanagan stars: zach gilford, kate siegel, kristin lehman, samantha sloyan, henry thomas, hamish linklater rating: n/a

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on the crockett island of the midnight mass, each islander feels plagued with misfortune. the recent oil spill nearly wiped out the fish supply, sinking the island’s local fishing economy. their homes are chipped and peeled from carelessness by the elements of the ocean. most residents have fled the island for lack of opportunities, leaving a few behind. only two ferries can take them to the mainland. hope is scarce and a great storm is brewing on the horizon.

anything beyond that for this seven-episode series is a real spoiler, but what can be said is that even with its forays into the supernatural, midnight mass (created by the haunting , in his most recent collaboration with netflix), is a show that goes inside rather than outside. With the physical claustrophobia of Crockett’s setting and the inner suffering of the characters placed center stage, Midnight Mass deals with inner horrors: addictive tendencies, secret histories, and questions about forgiveness and The belief. At a glance, it’s a series that mines gold for Catholic guilt. in another, it’s a measured but chilling look at group psychology, the need for faith in pain, and the ethics of leadership with such vulnerable followers, weighing whether these impulses represent human goodness, evil, or just nothing at all.

“Blessed are those who did not see and believed”. Midnight Mass offers an opportunity for anyone to doubt Thomas or be a true believer. What is the difference between a miracle and a supernatural event? —katherine smith

5. follow

year: 2015 director: david robert mitchell stars: maika monroe, keir gilchrist, daniel zovatto, jake weary, olivia luccardi, lili sepe rating: r duration: 100 minutes

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the specter of old detroit looms on. in a dilapidated ice cream stand in 12 miles, in the 1960s ranch style houses of ferndale or berkley, in a game of parcheesi played by pale teenagers with nasal accents, nothing, if you’ve never been, you’d never recognize stale nostalgia and gray that sneaks into every corner of david robert mitchell’s terrifying film. but he is there, and it feels like michigan. The music, the muted but strangely sumptuous color palette, the incessant anachronism: in style alone, Mitchell is an author seemingly sprung entirely from the sickly womb of the Detroit metro. cycles and circles concentrically complete goes, from the particularly insular rules of the film’s horror plot, to the fleshy, youthful roundness of the faces and bodies of this small group of main characters, who never leave that the audience forgets that, in many ways, these people are still children. In other words, Mitchell has his story clear: This has happened before and it will happen again. All of which wouldn’t work if Mitchell were less concerned with creating a genuinely unnerving film, but every aesthetic flourish, every full-circular pan is a slave to breathing morbid life into a single image: someone, anyone, slowly separating from the background, from oneself. . nightmares, and walking towards you, as if death itself were to appear unannounced next to you in public, ready to steal your breath away with little or no poise. Initially, all of Mitchell’s swagger, conveying a disturbing sexual intercourse, seems to bury conservative sexual politics under typical horror movie tropes, proclaiming itself to be a progressive genre film when it functionally does nothing to further our ideas of slasher fare. . fornicates, you find punishment for your blatant and loveless sin, right? (The movie has more in common with a Judd Apatow joint than you might expect.) Instead, Mitchell never judges his characters for doing what pretty much all teenagers want to do; he simply lays bare, through complex allegory, the realities of teen sex. There is no principled implication behind Mitchell’s intent; the cold takeaway from intercourse is that you are somehow sharing a certain degree of your physique with everyone with whom your partner has shared the same. accompanying this admission with genuine respect and empathy for the kind of characters who, in any other horror film, would be little more than visceral fodder for a sadistic spirit, elevates follow from the realm of the disguised game morality in a sick and scary coming of age tale. Similarly, Mitchell inherently understands that there’s virtually nothing creepier than the slightly out of place ordinary, entrusting the film’s true horror to the tricks our minds play when we forget to check our periphery. goes on is a film that thrives on borders, not so much about the horror that jumps out at you, but about the deeper anxiety that waits at the edge of consciousness, until, one day not too distant , is there, reminding you that your time is limited and that you will never be safe. forget the risks of teenage sex, follows is a penetrating metaphor for growing up. —dom sinacola

6. creep

year: 2014 director: patrick brice stars: mark duplass, patrick brice rating: r duration: 77 minutes

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creep is a somewhat predictable but gleefully insane little indie horror film, the directorial debut from brice, who also released this year’s the night. Starring the ever-prolific Mark Duplass, it’s a character study of two men: a naïve videographer and a not-so-secret psychotic recluse, the latter of whom hires the former to document his life in a cabin in the woods. he relies entirely on his performances, which are excellent. Duplass, who can be charming and wacko in something like security not guaranteed, shines here as the deranged lunatic who barges into the protagonist’s life and stalks him every waking moment. . the first moments of back and forth between the pair crackle with a kind of awkward intensity. any genre geek will no doubt see where it’s going, but it’s a well-crafted ride that succeeds thanks to the chemistry between its two main leads in a way that reminds me of the scenes between domhnall gleeson and oscar isaac in ex machina . —jim vorel

7. I’m thinking of ending things

year: 2020 director: charlie kaufman stars: jessie buckley, jesse plemons, toni collette, david thewlis rating: r execution time: 134 minutes

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many viewers will think of ending I’m thinking of ending things soon after it’s started. a cascade of rough shots dissolving into a cross detailing the interior of a country house or apartment, or the interior of an interior. a woman we haven’t seen yet is practically in the middle of the narrative, telling us something for which we have no context. she feels bad, unpleasant. something is not right. That’s not how movies are supposed to work. we finally see the woman, played brilliantly by jessie buckley. she is standing in the street as puffy snowflakes begin to fall, as if we are inside a three-dimensional snow globe with her. she looks out a window a couple of floors above. we see an old man looking down through a window. we see jesse plemons looking down through a window. we see jesse plemmons in the next shot picking up jessie buckley in her worn out car. the music from the film sparkles and swirls. lucy or lucia or amy from jessie buckley is thinking about breaking up with jake from jesse. things are not going to go well, seems to be the reasoning. Jake drives the car and sometimes talks; his behaviors seem fairly consistent until they cease to be, until some gesture boils over like a foreign object from another self. Louisa or Lucy is forthcoming, a source of personality and knowledge and interests. but she sometimes slows down, or goes quiet, and suddenly she’s another person who is the same person but maybe with different memories, different interests. sometimes she is a painter, sometimes a physicist, sometimes neither. jessie and jesse are great. their performances and their characters are hard to describe. the best movie of 2020 is terrible for a “movie”. it does not subscribe to common patterns, rhythms or tropes. it’s not even trying to be a great movie, really, it’s just trying to dissect life from each other’s minds, and do it by whatever cinematic means possible. the film’s self-awareness might have been unbearable, except that awareness (and our fragmentary experience of it) is completely the point of everything that the film is wrapped in and that is wrapped within it. To say that the film accepts both the beauty and the ugliness of life would be a commonplace that the film itself rejects. say that “love conquers all”, even more so. but these false truths flit in and around the film’s peripheral vision: illusions or ghosts, but welcome. —chad betz

8. let me in

year: 2010 director: matt reeves stars: kodi smit-mcphee, chloe grace moretz, elias koteas, richard jenkins rating: r duration: 116 minutes

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an almost more supernatural creature than its monster protagonist, Let Me In is not only an Americanized adaptation of a foreign film that isn’t a waste of everyone’s time, but arguably it’s superior to the movie it’s based on. Like the original Swedish film, let the right one in, the matt reeves update causes a remarkable amount of tension and intrigue to through a meticulous plot and dazzling visuals. Though set in Los Alamos, New Mexico, rather than Stockholm, the choice of location for the relocation initially seems strange, but it turns out that it’s not the frigid Swedish darkness that harbors the sense of unease. it is the isolation of a 12 year old, neglected by parents and any real parental figures. Owen’s (Kodi Smit-McPhee) bond with eternally young vampire Abby (Chloë Grace Moretz) is just as effective and chilling here as it is in the original, thanks in no small part to her two phenomenal young leads. there’s no doubt that here is a modern horror classic, from the most unlikely of origins. —scott wold

9. crimson beak

year: 2015 director: guillermo del toro stars: tom hiddleston, jessica chastain, mia wasikowska rating: r execution time: 119 minutes

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crimson peak follows the traditions of gothic romance by design: “i made this film to introduce and reverse some of the normal tropes, as i follow them, of gothic romance,” says del toro on the track of arrow blu-ray audio commentary, a note made during the performance between its leading lady, edith cushing (mia wasikowska), and the first of her two love interests, sir thomas sharpe (tom hiddleston), a baronet come to the United States. to win over his father, tycoon Carter Cushing (Jim Beaver), and get financial backing for his own clay-mining contraption. the exchange between thomas and edith in this scene is crucial to what the film is trying to accomplish: “sorry,” he tells her, the manuscript on his desk has caught his eye. “I don’t mean to pry, but this is a piece of fiction, isn’t it?”

it is. it is his fiction, in fact a piece he has written for publication in the pages of the atlantic month. with a look, history has caught him. “Ghosts,” he comments, an inscrutable smile on his lips. edith defends herself, stammering, “well, ghosts are just a metaphor, really”, but thomas isn’t finished: “they’ve always fascinated me. You see, where I come from, ghosts are not to be taken lightly. thomas means it as a compliment and not as an admonition, and flattered is the way edith reacts, emotion spreading across his face at meeting a kindred spirit to accompany the real spirits that he has not yet met. Thomas understands. When she talks to him, Edith doesn’t need to compromise his fondness for ghost stories, as she must with his peers. she can openly appreciate them on her own terms. and also crimson beak. del toro loves the production components of gothic romance; he is in love with pomp, circumstance, disguises. they give it a veil of decorum, because crimson beak doesn’t beat around the bush. Audiences learn what kind of film it is from the close-up of Edith’s face, decorated with open wounds, and from the follow-up sequence, in which young Edith (Sofia Wells) is visited in the dead of night by the face blackened from his late mother. bone spectrum. crimson peak is not concerned with satisfying taste or achieving universality. he worries about scaring the viewers of him. After all, if “horror” as a genre acts like a huge umbrella that shelters all kinds of aesthetics and approaches, the exercise should always be to drive away the audience with a powerful need to sleep with the lights on. —andy crump

10. creep 2

year: 2017 director: patrick brice stars: mark duplass, wishe akhavan, karan soni rating: n/a execution time: 80 minutes

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creep was not a movie that called for a sequel. About one of cinema’s most unique serial killers, a man who apparently needs to form close personal bonds with his prey before sending them out as testimonials to his “art of him,” the 2014 original was self-sufficient enough. but creep 2 is that rare follow-up where the goal seems to be not “let’s do it again”, but rather “go deeper”, and by deeper we mean much more deep, as this film probes the psyche of central (now passing) psychopath aaron (mark duplass) in totally unexpected and surprisingly candid ways, as we witness (and somehow sympathize with) a killer who has lost his passion for murder. , and thus his zest for life. In truth, the film almost gives up the idea of ​​being a “horror movie”, remaining such only because we know of the atrocities Aaron has committed in the past, while becoming much more of an interpersonal drama about two people exploring boundaries. of trust and vulnerability. Desiree Akhavan is stunning as Sara, the film’s only other main lead, creating a character who is able to connect in a humanistic way with Aaron unlike anything a fan of the first film might think possible. two performers show it all, both literally and figuratively: creep 2 is one of the most surprising and emotionally resonant horror films of recent times. —jim vorel

11. the mist

year: 2007 director: frank darabont stars: thomas jane, marcia gay harden, laurie holden rating: r execution time: 126 minutes

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many of the monsters and ghosts that terrorize a large and diverse group of protagonists in king’s work are excuses for clever sociological studies of the ease with which members of a “civilized” society can shed their polite pretensions and sit back and let their reptilian brains, infused with fear and paranoia, take over to do horrible things in the name of individual survival. from the booth to sub-par stuff like trucks, there are many examples of this approach, but none are executed as efficiently and satisfactorily as frank darabont’s version from the mist, the king’s story about a group of normal townspeople who gradually turn into a death cult when they become trapped inside a grocery store after a mysterious mist harboring a group of not so friendly monsters covers his city. . The leader of the cult is the bible-banging maniac played by Marcia Gay Harden, who is mocked by others as she spits out a bunch of apocalyptic bible verses but becomes an increasingly believable voice, much to the chagrin of the more logical. based intellectual minority, as the creatures creep closer and closer to annihilating them all. thus, it intricately reflects a microcosm of our contemporary world, with a majority of weak minds ruled by fear, and a minority of sensible individuals powerless to stop the madness. even if we removed the social symbolism from the story, the mist would still function as a fabulous 50’s-style monster movie that would have made william castle drool. the shocking ending is a huge plus or minus, depending on how much you like being traumatized by a work of fiction. —oktay ege kozak

12. it: chapter one

year: 2017 director: andy muschietti stars: bill skarsgard, jaeden martell, sophia lillis, finn wolfhard, jack dylan grazer, chosen jacobs, jeremy ray taylor, wyatt oleff rating: r duration: 135 minutes

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even if director andy muschetti’s solid take on it, one of king’s most beloved and resonant novels, didn’t involve a terrifying incarnation of pennywise, the dancing clown/ancient demon of devouring fear of kids (bill skarsgard) and the many creepy and chilling set pieces that come with it, you’d be perfectly content watching losers club: the seven wacky kids who find the strength in each other to fight the literal and figurative monsters that surround them. Consume Their Souls: Shoot the shit out while biking around the seemingly serene piece of America known as Derry, Maine. The combination of King’s honest portrayal of R-rated dialogue between early teens, the natural performances of the young actors, and the palpable chemistry between them creates one of the most instinctively endearing gangs of King-branded kids since stand by me. focusing on the children’s section of the novel works both to give the characters more depth than the 1990 miniseries, and to hone in on the story’s inherent theme that fear is a self-destructive force. Skarsgard’s performance is different enough from Curry’s iconic version of Pennywise that the comparison becomes moot. while curry created a playful evil clown who obviously enjoyed tormenting his victims, skarsgard creates a kind of wild animal that will starve if it doesn’t feed on the children’s fear, resulting in a desperate and nervous performance. —oktay ege kozak

13. the street of fear part 1: 1994

year: 2021 director: leigh janiak stars: kiana madeira, olivia scott welch, benjamin flores jr., julia rehwald, fred hechinger , maya hawke rating: r duration: 107 minutes

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the first film of the netflix trilogy of r.l. stine’s fear street adaptations are quickly heralded as a far more vicious and bloody beast than any of the familiar goosebumps installments of recent years, carving it out with success its own place in the modern world. canon meta-slasher while hinting at a thrilling conclusion to come. 1994 dresses itself in slasher history, being particularly referential to scream while also including numerous allusions to much darker ’80s slashers such as intruder, but simultaneously (and cleverly) distracts the audience from some of its deeper mysteries, to be further explored in fear street: 1978 and fear street: 1666 . what we’re left with is a film that lays out its mythology very well, buoyed by both compelling supporting characters and cinematic violence that’s significantly creepier than audiences are likely expecting. suffice it to say that fear street kills aren’t playing around, and once the bread cutter shows up, your jaw is bound to drop. sequels 1978 and 1666, meanwhile, maintain enough momentum to complete the ambitious trilogy. —jim vorel

14. 1br

year: 2019 director: david marmor stars: nicole brydon bloom, giles matthey, alan blumenfeld, celeste sully rating: nr execution time: 90 minutes

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In the midst of a horrific housing crisis, 1br holds up a mirror of the isolation and desperation crushing the vast population of Los Angeles. Hollywood and surrounding areas may be seen globally as a home for the affluent, but the majority of Los Angeles County lives closer to the poverty line than to the coast. These extreme levels of impoverishment come with about two dozen cults masquerading as subcultures, a mortifying image of codependency, a forced dismissal of personal entitlements, and loneliness. Sarah (Nicole Brydon Bloom), newly transplanted to Los Angeles, needs to find a place to live. she also needs to get into college. oh, and sarah needs to figure out how to handle her uptight boss. she is the model for every late mature mid-twenties. apartment hunting has been a nightmare with limited funds, but then you find the perfect apartment. the space is close to work, affordable and has an extremely nice neighbor. unfortunately, the property is owned by a cult, obsessed with making a perfect community. Prone to extreme measures, the group, known only as CDE Properties, watches over the small colony 24 hours a day. his tried and true method of converting new tenants includes sleep deprivation, solitary confinement, and threats of extreme pain. Sarah does her best to resist these tactics while convincing her captors that she is becoming one of them. In his feature film debut, writer-director David Marmor crafts a chilling tale of survival in the sun-bleached desert and fluorescent light of dull offices. a visceral expression of fear and longing, 1br could be a new cult classic. With incredible performances, a solid twist, and the possibility of a continuation of the franchise, 1br is aiming high. the good news is that the film achieves most of its goals. —joelle monique

15. gerald’s game

year: 2017 director: mike flanagan stars: carla gugino, bruce greenwood rating: n/a execution time: 103 minutes

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director mike flanagan’s game of gerald trims fat, condenses and slims down, stripping away some of the weirder quirks of stephen king’s novel to get to the heart of the underlying themes. The result is a tense and effective thriller that strives to spotlight two strong actors (Bruce Greenwood and Carla Gugino) in a no-holds-barred celebration of their craft. This is nothing new for Flanagan, whose recent output in the horror genre has been commendable. it’s hard to miss some of the recurring themes in his work, starting with 2011’s absentia and running through the wildly imaginative oculus, hush and ouija: origin of evil. Each of these films focuses on a strong-willed female lead, much like gerald’s game. is this coincidence? Or is the director drawn to stories that reflect women’s struggle to claim independence in their lives by shedding old scars or ghosts, whether literal or figurative? Either way, it made Flanagan a perfect fit for gerald’s game, an unassuming, high-achieving little thriller that’s blessed by two artists capable of handling most of the dramatic challenges it presents. —jim vorel

16. oat study – vol. 1

year: 2017 director: neill blomkamp stars: sigourney weaver, carly pope, dakota fanning, steve boyle rating: nr execution time: 72 minutes

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Originally released on youtube throughout 2017, this is a collection of experimental (but well-budgeted) sci-fi horror short films from district 9 director neill blomkamp, ​​all which look like seeds of potential. feature film projects. oats studio was a project conceived by blomkamp to do hands-on visual effects testing while also developing some of his craziest ideas, and each of the major projects within it is very impressive in his own way. the sci-fi feature film rakka imagines an earth invaded by telepathic reptilian aliens, as the human survivors stage a desperate and seemingly futile resistance, while the firebase confronts a soldier against a distorted reality. river god” in a military conflict in Southeast Asia. The real star of the show, however, is perhaps the sheer horror of Zygote, in which Dakota Fanning plays a researcher on the run from a truly hideous creature that has taken over her facility, with strong vibes from the thing and last year’s pc game carrion. zygote‘s creature, with its dozens of borrowed human limbs, is perhaps one of the most insane monsters we’ve seen in the horror world in recent memory, which means this short really deserves to be viewed. for a larger audience. —jim vorel

17. apostle

year: 2018 director: gareth evans stars: dan stevens, lucy boynton, mark lewis jones, bill milner, michael sheen rating: nr duration: 129 minutes

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after the first two entries of the raid made him a monolithic figure among action movie addicts, apostle functions as the introduction to the world in overview of the Welsh director’s visceral film styles. gareth evans where his early films almost come to life with the aesthetics of a video game, they are the closest thing to a big screen adaptation of streets of rage that you will ever find: apostle It could also represent Evans’ desire to be taken seriously as a visual director and author. To do so, he has explored well-trodden ground in the form of the rural “cult infiltration film,” drawing comparisons to characters like the wicker man (or even the sacrament ) unavoidable. however, apostle weaves its way into the year-end conversation of the best horror movies of 2018 through sheer style and enthusiasm. Every frame is beautifully composed, from the foreboding arrival of Dan Stevens’ fiery character at the island’s cult compound, to the fantastically gross third act wink, in which the viscera flow with hedonistic abandon. Evans knows exactly how long to prod the audience with a slow mystery before letting the dams of blood burst; his conclusion encompasses both supernatural madness and uncomfortably realistic human violence. Gone is the combat precision of the raid, replaced by a more clumsy brand of unbridled savagery that is empowered not by honor but by desperate faith. Evans correctly concludes that this form of violence is far more terrifying. —jim vorel

18. the platform

year: 2019 direction: galder gaztelu-urrutia stars: iván massagué, zorion eguileor, antonia san juan, emilio buale coka, alexandra masangkay rating: nr runtime: 94 minutes

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The platform benefits greatly from the strength of its simple, high-concept premise and all the superfluous information that is hidden from the viewer. it doesn’t matter that we don’t know why exactly people are placed in this diabolical vertical prison structure, where the only sustenance comes once a day in the form of a steady and ever-increasing descent. nasty. stone slab stacked with perishables. nor do we really need to know how this apparent social experiment works, though the repeated glimpses we get of chefs slaving away on perfect dishes to send to convicted convicts are certainly designed to pique our curiosity. what matters is that we look at the differences in human reaction to this plight: the ways different personalities react to adversity with an “us or them” mentality, or a predatory hunger, or a spontaneous drive toward altruism selfless. The fact that the prisoners’ position is constantly changing is key: it gives them a tangible reason to be the change they want to see in their world, and an almost impossible temptation to do the exact same thing. contrary due to mistrust of their neighbors. one expects a nihilistic streak here, and you won’t be disappointed, but there are also some glimmers of hope shining through the cracks. enough, perhaps, to twist the knife much deeper. —jim vorel

19. silence

year: 2016 director: mike flanagan stars: john gallagher jr., michael trucco, kate siegel rating: r execution time: 81 minutes

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hush is a simple and intimate film at heart, and one that takes more than a few cues from bryan bertino’s the strangers, among other home invasion thrillers . director mike flanagan, whose oculus is one of the best and most underrated horror films of the decade, remains an up-and-coming voice in the horror genre, though hsh plays things considerably safer than that ambitious haunted mirror. story did. here, the trick is that the only woman who is threatened by a masked intruder outside her house in the woods is, in fact, deaf and mute, that is, she cannot hear him coming or call for help. At first, the film seems like it will really echo the strangers and keep the killer’s identity and motivations a secret, but those expectations are subverted surprisingly quickly. it comes down to more or less exactly the kind of cat-and-mouse game you’d expect, but the movie manages to rise above it in a couple of ways. The first is actress Kate Siegel’s performance as leading lady Maddie, showing just the right level of vulnerability and determination, without making too many stupid slasher movie character choices that encourage you to stand up and yell at the screen. the second is the tangible sense of physicality that the film manages in its scenes of violence, which are satisfyingly visceral. Ultimately, it’s the villain who can leave something to be desired at times, but Hush is at least a satisfying way to spend a night on Netflix. —jim vorel

20. load

year: 2018 directors: yolanda ramke, ben howling stars: martin freeman, simone landers, anthony hayes, david gulpili, susie porter , caren pistorius rating: nr duration: 105 minutes

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We’ve had enough zombie apocalypse shots around the world to keep undead enthusiasts long for, well, a worldwide zombie apocalypse. Of those shots, few are inspired, a few more are watchable though professional, and most are trash either in TV or movie form. A collaborative directing effort between Yolanda Ramke and Ben Howling, Cargo falls somewhere between “inspired” and “employee,” which means it’s worth looking up on Netflix if you’re in dire need. To see how writhing, walking corpses threaten a family trying to survive while isolated in the Australian outback. Martin Freeman stars as Andy, stubborn husband to his wife, Kay (Susie Porter), and loving father to his daughter, Rosie; he is piloting a houseboat to safer shores, or so the hope is. Then Kay takes a bite out of a zombie, forcing a change of plans and setting them on a path to ruin and tragedy. for a certain kind of horror purist, cargo denies the expectations of the genre. It’s not a particularly scary movie. it is, however, a melancholy and atmospheric film, replacing scares with an almost overwhelming sense of sadness. if that’s not enough for you, at least be satisfied with the excellent fx work. here, the zombies are portrayed as victims of a debilitating disease: a waxy, decayed fluid seeps from their eyes and mouth, which is conveniently nauseating rather than the splatter of everyday life. however, the charge is never half as stomach-churning as it is simply devastating. :andy crump

21. under the shade

year: 2016 director: babak anvari stars: narges rashidi, avin manshadi, bobby naderi, ray haratian, arash marandi rating: pg-13 duration: 84 minutes

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For most of the film, Babak Anvari is creating a suffocating period drama, a horror film of a different kind that tangibly conveys the claustrophobia of Iran during its tumultuous post-revolution period. anvari, himself from a family that eventually fled the ayatollah’s rule, has made under the shadows as a declaration of rebellion and tribute to his own mother. It’s a distinctly feminist film: Shideh (Narges Rashidi) plays the tough heroine battling larger hostile forces, a horror movie archetype made even more potent in this setting. Watching Shideh defy the Khomeini regime by watching a state-banned Jane Fonda workout video is almost as moving as watching her overcome her own personal demons by protecting her son from a more literal one. —brogan morris

22. camera

year: 2018 director: daniel goldhaber stars: madeline brewer, patch darragh, melora walters, devin druid, imani hakim, michael dempsey rating: nr duration: 95 minutes

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As so many movies in 2018 have shown us, the identities we create online, digitally design, nurture and mature, often to the detriment of whatever else is going on, will inevitably overtake us. the horror of daniel goldhaber’s cam, based on the script by isa mazzei (in turn, based on her real experiences as a sex worker), is in this loss: that no one is in control real of these fabricated identities; that the more real they become, the less they belong to the person most affected. Welcome to Alice (Madeline Brewer), an ambitious camgirl who compensates for the grueling rigors of online popularity (and thus economic viability) with gruesome stunts and a rigorous set of principles that dictate what she will and won’t do. will do in his capacity. as female fantasy. she’s successful, throwing funds at her mother (melora walters) and brother (devin druid) without being totally honest about her work, but she could be more successful, doing her best (within reason ) to scale the rating system imposed by the site you use to stream your shows. Deftly, Mazzei’s script presents the demands of a camgirl’s life without ever stooping to judge Alice’s choice of employment, contextualizing an inevitable revelation for her family not as embarrassment, but as an impenetrable swamp of shame through which every sex worker must fight. be taken seriously. So much so that when someone who looks exactly like Alice, operating under her screen name but willing to do the things Alice once shunned, strides up the camgirl charts, Goldhaber and Mazzei get less tension from explaining and uncovering what’s really going on rather than the hard truth of how vulnerable Alice is, and we all are, to the cold, brutal, uncaring violence of this online world we’ve built for ourselves. —dom sinacola

23. the rite

year: 2017 director: david bruckner stars: rafe spall, arsher ali, robert james-collier, sam troughton rating : nr execution time: 94 minutes

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An excellent example of what might be called the “bro horror” subgenre, the characters in the ritual are a band of lifelong companions united in mourning a friend who was recently murdered. in a brutal liquor store robbery. Luke (Rafe Spall) is the member of the group who bears the greatest burden of guilt, being the only one in the store at the time, paralyzed by indecision and cowardice as he watched his friend die. the other members clearly blame luke for this to varying degrees, and one feels that his decision to travel to sweden for a hiking trip deep in the desert is less about honoring the memory of his dead friend, and more about determining if his link can ever be repaired. , or if the recrimination arising from the death is insurmountable. where the ritual excels is technically, both in its image and sound design. cinematographer andrew shulkind’s sharp visuals and deep focus are a welcome respite from the all-too-dark and muddy look of so many modern horror movies with similar settings (like bryan bertino’s the monster) and the shots of wooded locations, regardless of where they were filmed, are uniformly impressive. numerous shots of clumps of trees evoke images akin to Celtic knots, these dense puzzles of foliage clearly hide terrible secrets, and we’re shown enough through the first two-thirds of the film to keep the mystery palpable and engaging. director david bruckner, best known for directing renowned segments of horror anthologies such as v/h/s, the signal and southbound , demonstrates here a talent for suggestion and subtlety, aided by excellent sound design that emphasizes every rustling leaf and rustling tree branch. unfortunately, the characters are a bit sparse for what is intended to be a character-driven movie, and the big payoff can’t keep up with the atmosphere of the film’s first two acts. still, the ritual is a great looking movie, and one that features one of the most memorable “wtf’s”. monster designs in recent memory. it’s worth a look just for that. —jim vorel

24. street of fear part three: 1666

year: 2021 director: leigh janiak stars: kiana madeira, ashley zukerman, gillian jacobs, olivia scott welch, benjamin flores jr. , darrell britt-gibson rating: r duration: 114 minutes

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the first two entries in director leigh janiak’s netflix fear street trilogy have been widely described (and widely praised) within the confines of language often devoted to slasher films, as solid “popcorn entertainment” and “simple fun” that represents, in this case, a welcome divergence from the more serious streak of art horror we’ve been experiencing of late. And while it’s true that there’s nothing “lofty” or pretentious about any of these three fear street entries, thinking of them simply as slasher films isn’t quite right either, despite their gory style. they’re not even really meta-slashers in the mold of scream, whose name was ruthlessly reviewed by critics when they evaluated the first entry fear street: 1994 in particular. rather, the true heart of this trilogy is a metaphysical and supernatural mystery that spans lifetimes and centuries: it’s a story that uses the trappings of slasher cinema in two different eras, the ’90s and ’70s, to arrive at the ending themes. of scapegoats, privilege and corrupt history. this is the bigger message that the final entry fear street part three: 1666 tries to deliver, albeit in a more clumsy way than its previous time jump, in a setting harder to really capture. over three movies, the little absurdities of this series start to add up, but at least it manages to remain entertaining and quite gory. —jim vorel

25. insidious

year: 2010 director: james wan stars: patrick wilson, rose byrne, barbara hershey, lin shaye rating: pg-13 execution time: 103 minutes

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A couple of years before he essentially perfected the modern, big-budget haunted house movie through the conjuring, insidious was the movie where james wan proved once and for all that his success in the genre on the original saw was no fluke. is a film that benefits from low audience expectations for its complexity: the viewer assumes they’re watching the same basic haunting/possession/poltergeist-like story they’ve seen before, and then dazzles them with a myth that is considerably more detailed (and shit) of what they expected to receive. The film also benefits from a few key performances, whether it’s Patrick Wilson as the anxious father (and secret source of psychic energy) searching for his son, or the utterly essential Lin Shaye as the expert demonologist who is the only hope of the family. shaye’s almost starring role really is something worth acknowledging as the presence of older women as stars/protagonists in the horror genre is almost non-existent – the series insidious managed the odd task of taking a character who was in the supporting role of zelda rubinstein in poltergeist and somehow made her the legitimate heroine of the franchise. today the movie still holds up pretty well, undone a bit by its sequels’ insistence on constant canon reconfiguration, but it features scares (especially that red-faced demon) that are as effective as anything in its day. —jim vorel

26. the wretched ones

year: 2020 directors: brett pierce, drew t. Pierce Stars: John-Paul Howard, Piper Curda, Jamison Jones, Zarah Mahler, Azie Tesfai, Kevin Bigley, Blane Crockarell, Ja’layah Washington Rating: nr execution time: 96 minutes

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ben’s (john-paul howard) summer has gotten off to a rocky start: his parents are in the midst of a breakup that’s turning into a divorce, and he’s been sent to live with his father, liam (jamison). jones), for the season, working at the local marina in lakeside michigan and taking shit from hyper-privileged brats. he also gets the attention and affection of the cool girl mallory (piper curda), and the couple who rents the house next door to his dad leave the light on when they fuck, so it’s not all evil, except for the ancient carnivorous witch that lurks in the forest. except for minor details like smartphones and google image searches, brett and drew t. Pierce’s the wretched could be mistaken for an unseen 1990s movie unearthed as a lost relic of its time. the film shares DNA with classics like the university, in which the wolves hide among the pack and only the children have an open mind to notice, but the miserables do not . not fetishize its cultural touchstones, or function only as a nostalgic genre. Hands-on fx work and creature design help too, as essential to what distinguishes The Wretched from its influences as the Pierce Brothers’ writing. Build tension and avoid playing coy: Something sinister is in the woods, they inform their viewers in advance and have fun throwing clues and clues for Ben to decipher while Liam gets lost in a relationship with his new girlfriend, Sara (Azie Tesfai). the wretched‘s gore quotient will likely fall on the low side for splatter junkies, but the movie understands when guts are required and when it’s best to withhold. his best scares tend to involve a look into the dark, where nothing should be but where evil lurks, or through binoculars, which highlights the malevolent presence that lingers at the edges of les miserables. the movie can go to nasty places and brings appropriate sobriety to the sequences of little boys being consumed by the slimy beldam posing as their mother, but the piercing brothers’ prevailing tone is “ride on haunted house”: Even in its scariest form, the unfortunates stay light on their toes. —andy crump

27. the spell 2

year: 2016 director: james wan stars: vera farmiga, patrick wilson, frances o’connor, madison wolfe, simon mcburney, powerful franka rating: r duration: 134 minutes

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The film is great as a fun house-style genre exercise, but there’s very little holding it together. if the spell offended some with its historical revisionism, at least that film had cohesion. the conjuring 2, on the other hand, plays with themes that never fully develop. Once the Burrows come to the Hodgsons’ aid, Ed explains that evil spirits have a particular affinity for negative energy and tend to manifest when bad things happen to people in their lives. “They like to kick us when we’re down,” he tells Peggy, and the Hodgsons are really down by anyone’s definition. Your house is run down: the walls are chipping, the woodwork is cracking, and the cabinets are empty of cookies. but the questions of economy and class are window dressing. At the core of the film is Janet’s overwhelming sense of loneliness. As the main target of his family’s supernatural tormentor, he has totally isolated himself from his friends at school. though we don’t really see that. we just found out. Written by twin screenwriting duo Chad and Carey Hayes, plus Wan, plus David Leslie Johnson, the film’s screenplay puts more emphasis on Lorraine’s premonitions about Ed’s death in a case of too many. —andy crump

28. voracious

year: 2017 director: robin aubert stars: marc-andré grondin, monia chokri, brigitte poupart, luc proulx, charlotte st- martin rating: nr duration: 96 minutes

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genre geeks didn’t seem to pay much attention to ravenous, beyond its award for best canadian film at the toronto international film festival, perhaps the result of a subgenre of ” indie zombie drama” that seems to have run its course through movies like battery, and perhaps because it’s performed in French instead of English. Regardless, this is a competently crafted suspenseful little drama for the zombie completist, filled with excellent performances from unnamed actors and an intriguing take on the results of zombification. The infected here sometimes look like your standard rosemary ghouls, but they’re also a bit more: lost souls who’ve clung to some kind of strange, rudimentary culture of their own. these aspects of the zombie plague are always hinted at, never extrapolated, but they enhance the deep feelings of loss and sadness present in ravenous. —jim vorel

29. ouija: origin of evil

year: 2016 director: mike flanagan stars: elizabeth reaser, lulu wilson, annalize basso, henry thomas rating: pg-13 execution time: 99 minutes

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While the first ouija was a handmade, paint-by-numbers cash grab without a single original touch, its prequel, directed by a tried-and-true horror fan and prolific filmmaker from genre (with three quality releases in 2016 alone) mike flanagan, has the 60s horror aesthetic. from the use of the era’s universal logo to a faded sepia-pastel look, origin of evil testifies to how flanagan has fun with the creative possibilities of the project. As intriguing as all of that is to genre purists and moviegoers alike, it would all fall apart if the overall tone and performances didn’t match Flanagan’s ambitions. Thankfully, it delivers a wholly satisfying pg-13 piece of horror that deftly mixes the genre’s modern sensibilities with tried-and-true stylistic approaches from its origins. —oktay ege kozak

30. no friend

year: 2015 director: levan gabriadze stars: shelley hennig, moses storm, renee olstead, will peltz, jacob wysocki rating: r duration: 83 minutes

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Playing in real time and framed as one continuous shot, unfriended‘s novel formal experiment quickly establishes the self-proclaimed limitations of its approach. But that’s actually one of the movie’s core strengths: The audience only sees Blaire’s (Shelly Hennig) computer. the camera focuses on your screen; we see what she sees. this includes her friends on her computers and also her on her own window. she switches tabs and apps, talks to someone, instant messages someone else, answers facebook messages, googles answers, checks her email. Open tabs at the top of the screen offer information about the character: she’s shopping, researching for school, or watching the video of Laura’s death (as well as the video that pushed Laura over the edge). In a bit of a meta-comment (or cross-marketing), she even opens a window to MTV’s Teen Wolf page, a show in which Hennig appears. All of this certainly sounds clunky, but director Levan Gabriadze makes it feel organic; There is a logic and flow to Blaire’s actions online. where unfriended works best is in construction, and as things get creepier and creepier, blaire and her friends online think there’s a glitch, then they think someone’s playing tricks on them. joke, then it becomes clear that something more sinister is at work. the narrative peels back layers until the story is legitimately unsettling and unsettling: something very familiar, but strange enough to seriously point out that all is not well with this world.—brent mcknight

31. the nanny

year: 2017 director: mcg stars: samara weaving, judah lewis, hana mae lee, robbie amell, bella thorne rating: nr duration: 85 minutes

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The Nanny is a bit naive in its overt desire to be lovingly described as an ’80s slasher homage, but at the same time effective enough to earn a good measure of the approval it yearns. with twists of fright night and night of the demons, she’s at her best not when she’s slavishly trying to recreate a bygone decade, but when she lets the her hypercharismatic teenage characters. wild. Stylish, bloody and profane to a fault, The Babysitter turns in a handful of explosive performances, including Judah Lewis as a late-blooming 12-year-old, Robbie Amell as a near-invincible soccer jock, and Samara Knitting. Like the main character, the girl of Lewis’s dreams, right up until she tries to sacrifice him to the devil. Fast-moving (just 85 minutes!) and frequently hilarious, it’s probably the best popcorn horror entertainment unit Netflix has managed to put out yet. —jim vorel

32. veronica

year: 2017 director: paco plaza stars: sandra escacena rating: nr duration: 105 minutes

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paco plaza, the spanish director of the 2007 landmark found footage horror film r.e.c., has largely made diminishing returns through the sequels to r.e.c. . veronica has therefore been received as a welcome adventure in a new concept for the director, even if the results are decidedly derivative. a demonic spirit/possession film in the vein of witchboard, the film follows a 15-year-old spanish student (sandra escacena) who unknowingly invites evil into her home while performing a session of Ouija board with his classmates. . Where the film shines best is largely on the presentation side: it looks great as long as its visuals aren’t too dark, capturing an interesting moment in history by setting the film in 1991 Spain. charismatic performances by multiple child actors serve to bolster a story that unfortunately feels frustratingly familiar, recycling elements from ouija, the last exorcism and virtually every possession movie ever written . this is well-trodden ground, but veronica is at least more than competent, if not quite the revelation we were hoping for from the director. —jim vorel

33. 1922

year: 2017 director: zak hilditch stars: thomas janes, neal mcdonough, molly parker rating: nr execution time: 101 minutes

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a chameleon performance by thomas jane presents this understated gothic tale set in depression-era america, told in the style of a confession by the husband (whom we can tell from the get-go that he’s obsessed with a crime horrible ). When his wife (Molly Parker) insists on selling the land she’s inherited instead of working it, Jane’s unsophisticated country hand harangues his son (Dylan Schmid) into becoming an accomplice to the creepy murder of him. However, as in all Grand Guignol tales, we already know that the worst part is not the act of killing, but the endless paranoia of living with it. in the case of the film’s guilty narrator, that means an unavoidable, vengeful ghost filled with every creepy, foreboding imagery you ever saw. Stephen King adaptations have their hits and misses, but this is a simple story that manages with the power of a scary plot and some convincing performances from fine actors that you’ll probably always be glad to see spend time on screen. —kenneth lowe

34. little evil

year: 2017 director: eli craig stars: adam scott, evangeline lilly rating: nr duration: 95 minutes

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seven years after he gave us tucker & give him vs. evil, one of the best horror comedies of recent times, director eli craig has finally returned with a netflix exclusive, little evil. An obvious parody of the omen and other “bad kid” movies, petit mal wears its influences and references on its sleeve in ways that, while not particularly clever, are at least affectionate. adam scott is the sad dad who’s somehow caught up in a whirlwind of romance and marriage, undeterred by the fact that his new stepson is the kind of kid who dresses like a pint-sized young angus and goes on. track the catastrophes behind him wherever he goes. Evangeline Lilly is the cunning mother of the boy, whose motives are always suspect. Does she know that her child is the spawn of satan, or like her mother, is she deliberately blind to the obvious evil growing under her nose? The film can boast a pretty impressive supporting cast, from Donald Faison and Chris D’elia as step-dads, to Clancy Brown as a fire-and-brimstone preacher, but it never fully commits to its jokes or attempts to scare. the last 30 minutes are the most interesting as they take the plot in an unexpected direction that redefines the audience’s perception of the demon child, but still results in a somewhat uneven execution. tucker & dale this isn’t, but it’s still a useful return for craig. —jim vorel

35. street of fear second part: 1978

year: 2021 director: leigh janiak stars: sadie sink, emily rudd, ryan simpkins, mccabe slye, ted sutherland, ashley zukerman , Jordana Spiro, Gillian Jacobs, Kiana Madeira, Benjamin Flores Jr. rating: r duration: 110 minutes

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that’s pretty much fear street part 2: 1978 in a nutshell. this second entry from the ambitious r.l. from director leigh janiak. stine’s adaptation trilogy for netflix kicks off in full swing, with plenty of momentum provided by the surprisingly visceral fear street: 1994, and while it continues with the animated visuals and gruesome deaths of that movie, it feels a little hurt by compelling characters and variety in what it can offer. Tied together by its retro summer camp theme and the obvious horror allusions the theme implies, 1978 is a lighter diversion that occasionally finds itself spinning its wheels, though it redeems itself with a surprising transition to the jump final entry point fear street: 1666. however, it seems that the middle child syndrome has probably come into play in this second chapter. —jim vorel

36. #alive

year: 2020 director: cho il-hyung stars: yoo ah-in, park shin-hye rating: nr execution time: 99 minutes

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Zombie movie fans were eagerly awaiting at least one South Korean zombie feature this year: peninsula, the sequel to the much-loved train to busan was highly hyped, but ultimately fell far short of the original. Fortunately, however, there was another Korean zombie flick waiting in the wings to take its place, in the form of the much more successful (albeit modest) #alive. Fans of the original world war z novel will no doubt find this story familiar, as it is eerily similar to one of the most beloved passages in that book, about a young gamer/hacker in japan who is so Deeply engrossed in the web, he is unaware as the world descends into a zombie apocalypse around him, before finally being forced to log off and run. Here, the same basic premise is simply transplanted to South Korea, where the introverted protagonist must rappel down the side of his apartment building to avoid the marauding dead, while searching for other survivors hiding among the carnage. it’s a much tighter and better executed story than the underwhelming excesses of peninsula, perfect for viewing in the age of the pandemic. —jim vorel

37. day shift

year: 2022 director: j.j. perry stars: jamie foxx, dave franco, karla souza, meagan good, natasha liu bordizzo, snoop dogg rating: r duration: 114 minutes

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day shift is a successful directorial debut for stunt coordinator j.j. perry. It’s not a revelation, but he’s light-hearted and violent and it feels like everyone involved is having fun doing it while taking their jobs seriously. streaming is essentially the contemporary version of direct-to-video, and for some movies (like prey) that feels like a huge miscalculation on the distribution side. day shift isn’t quite that level of franchise assertion, but I would have loved to have seen it in a theater. part of me wishes there was a grimier, grittier movie released on shudder, with the same cast and creative team that more directly evokes 1970s exploitation rather than 1990s action-horror comedy 1980 but, if you spent the early 2000s wishing for blade crossed with bad guys or lethal weapon, netflix has your ticket. —kevin fox jr.

38. the rent

year: 2020 director: dave franco stars: alison brie, dan stevens, sheila vand, jeremy allen white, toby huss rating: r duration: 88 minutes

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the rent has palm vibes with fincher’s coldness, but lacks the exploitative pleasures of the former and the cinematic experience of the latter. however, it is satisfactorily composed in terms of focus, giving the audience glimpses of the brutality to come or filming it from a distance, heightening the shock and lending a strong shocking power to the bloodshed. It is the inconsistency of the hook that trips Franco and imposes the effects of inertia on his story. his understanding of how thrillers work when the implicit becomes explicit is easy to see, but his hesitation about when to pull the trigger, whether it be on his narrative or characters or even the act of violence, conveys hesitation, as if Franco has little confidence. . in a refreshing way: the men walk behind the camera for the first time with swagger that belies his rarely unobtrusive inexperience. but the rental has enough advantages that it could use more confidence in the unifying elements of the plot. it is a case where less is actually just that. —andy crump

39. until death

year: 2021 director: s.k. give it stars: megan fox, eoin macken, callan mulvey, jack roth, aml ameen rating: r duration: 88 minutes

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until death initially doesn’t seem to play to megan fox’s strengths. For about 10 minutes, it’s a dour marital drama in which Emma (Fox) breaks free from an affair in an attempt to reconcile with Ella’s wealthy husband Mark Ella (Eoin Macken). It quickly becomes clear that Mark is controlling and abusive, but he is able to keep his worst tendencies in check enough to give Emma some hope, until she wakes up the morning after their apparent reconciliation handcuffed to her boyfriend… he quickly shoots himself. head. The burden of Emma’s terrible relationship is materialized and literalized as she has to drag the bastard down with her while he evades the criminals Mark has hired to hunt her down. This compact, polished film is primarily a thriller, but it has horror-adjacent elements: practical gore; Mark’s puzzle messages from beyond the grave; dark and gruesome flashes of humor, and that’s what ultimately makes it a great match for fox. From her red lipstick in the pre-chaos sections to the blood splatter that perfectly soaks half of her face, Fox looks like a femme fatale captured midway through her transformation into scream queen. after years of objectification, she feels in control of her explosive image. —Jesse Hassenger

40. there is someone inside your house

year: 2021 director: patrick brice stars: sydney park, théodore pellerin, asjha cooper, jesse latourette, diego josef, dale whibley rating: nr duration: 96 minutes

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netflix’s teen-focused horror machine has come to life lately, but ultimately, it must be said that leigh janiak’s ambitious fear street trilogy had a lot more creative zest than the much more familiar there is someone inside your house. Though the Sydney Park star is a likeable presence, she’s stuck in a movie with shallow characters defined by unique personality traits, in a script that feels guilty about some of the very offenses it ostensibly lampoons. The actual cuts are photographed with plenty of blood spray, but what the film really lacks is the emotional nuance that characterized director Patrick Brice’s previous horror films in the Creep series. If he could have brought that kind of characterization to a high school slasher, There’s Someone Inside Your House it might have been quite intriguing. instead, it’s light fun. —jim vorel

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