By the way, the title does not refer to films you can actually date, although luring an unsuspecting member of the opposite sex to your lair to privately view one of these celluloid autopsies might help in your quest to sift the wheat from the Children of the Corn, as it were.
My Top 10 Horror Films Made to Date
- The Addiction
- Brain That Wouldn't Die
- Bram Stoker's Dracula
- Devil's Nightmare
- House on Haunted Hill
- Plague of the Zombies
I do realise that I skipped on a few stalwarts of the genre like the great Alfred Hitchcock and the bitterly satirical George A Romano, but you can find those on just about any horror list. Here follows a short description of my reasons for choosing each film:
Artsy fartsy director Abel Ferrara brings this black and white masterpiece to life. Whether you put stock in its allegorical references to drug addiction or not, this is a pleasure to watch. It's much deeper than an ingrown toenail, yet about twice as gruesome. One of my favourite films, of any genre.
Brain That Wouldn't Die
One of those classics that just gets better every time I watch it. Picture a movie about giving head. No, not in that way, I mean really giving head. Exit bowel movements and sensation of your lower limbs. Enter existential crisis. Mayhem ensues.
A patchwork of Lovecraft tales strung together with the sinews of a race of uncanny fish people. Lofty literary pretensions aside, it features a few gratuitous boob shots and buckets of blood.
Bram Stoker's Dracula
For a change, they did it by the book. With by the book I mean they did in fact base it on Bram Stoker's Dracula. This is not Bram Stoker's Dracula cut from the same cloth as Stephen King's Children of the Corn. Nay, nay, this is Dracula more or less as envisaged by Bram Stoker, complete with Hungarian expletives and the whores of Satan.
This delightful film tells the tale of a group of tourists who get stuck in a castle. A succubus visits the castle and manages to seduce all of them. Each tourist represents one of the seven deadly sins. Fucking tourists. They have no moral fibre.
House on Haunted Hill
No horror list would be complete without at least one Vincent Price film. I chose this one, but Shock or The Last Man on Earth would also suffice.
I have a morbid fascination with this film. It must be the shocking pastels of the synthetic materials they wore in the eighties. I also enjoy the fact that the film focuses on the eerie Tooth Fairy instead of on the eerie Hannibal Lecter.
Plague of the Zombies
No horror list would be complete without at least one Hammer film. Of course, the same goes for at least one Dracula film and at least one wolf man film. This is Hammer's only Zombie film, and one of the most influential Zombie films from the Voodoo inspired side of the genre. Still some of the hottest corpses I've seen. I can scarce believe that the actresses are English.
David Cronenberg cut his teeth on low budget happy accidents like this one. Featuring the delectable Marilyn Chambers, this film is gorno with suitable metaphor before there even was gorno devoid of metaphor.
Marilyn Chambers is a topless and bottomless (depending on the weather, I guess) waitress who turned into an adult film star. After that, she nearly broke into the mainstream by landing roles such as this one. Unfortunately, her past as an adult film star made film producers nervous and she was kept out of big mainstream films. It is unfortunate, because she's a fine scream queen and she does an amazing job in this film.
A brilliant addition to the giallo genre long after it had been declared dead and buried. You simply can't touch Dario Argento when it comes to stylish, sterile and meticulously planned murder scenes. While I am a huge fan of both Susperia and Deep Red, this film has all the trademarks of a resurrection. Unfortunately, the resurrection didn't go anywhere and giallo has been declared dead more times than Rasputin.
That's my current top 10 list. Of course I neglected to add a wolf man. If I did, I would've included Curse of the Devil. I also haven't included any of the excellent Korean horrors of recent years because I haven't delved into them yet. Comments, queries, black mail, lacy thongs and beer money are all welcome!