In my last listicle, I discussed the 5 horror movie staples you should be watching and now I’ve returned from the dead to give you the top 5 movies you should avoid like Hell.
As previously stated, this is MY list and it may not necessarily be yours. That’s fine and okay. If you feel like I’ve missed something, be sure to blurb it in the comments below. And now, ON TO THE LIST!
5) Anything Rob Zombie Has Made
I was going to write in his versions of Halloween, both of them. But then I realized that all of his movies suck. How did a rock star who’s insatiable love for the dead make such horrible movies?!?
House of 1000 Corpses came out during the height of Gore Porn and besides launching the career of Sid Haid, the film didn’t really wow me for Zombie’s directorial debut. I love slasher flicks as much as any horror geek but for me, this was way over the top. At points, it was cartoonish and laughable how little effort was in crafting the scene. What he did with Halloween was humanize a serial killer and honestly, that’s not what the original Halloween was about. He might as well have remade Friday the 13th with the way his take on Myers goes.
Granted, is there a cult following for these movies? Sure, but it’s not for everyone. I do appreciate his love for physical effects and throwback of campy slasher flicks but just stick to music Rob.
4) The Exorcist
Whoa now. Did I just list the 9th highest grossing movie of all-time (with inflation) as a horror movie to avoid like hell?! Hell yeah I did!
My reasoning is simple and it’s because of hype. I mean narratively it’s a bit on the weak side as well but for this movie to have the impact it did, was also a sign of the times. The 70’s were a tumultuous time of war, drugs, and fear. Then this movie came out of nowhere and scared the hell out of people like the avian flu.
To my knowledge, it was also the first American movie to showcase demonic possession and exorcism, which is still to this day very hush hush. While that may be a milestone back in the 70s, it doesn’t hold true now. The film is very dated and since that time, there have been way scarier exorcism movies that do it better.
Saying that this film is “one of the greatest horror films of all time” is a hyperbole that frankly I’m sick of hearing. It’s not one of the greatest and it should stop being billed as that.
I don’t walk out of movies. It’s rare. I can probably count on one hand how many times I’ve up and left a movie while it’s playing.
Luckily, this movie started rolling credits by the time I got out the door which justified my assumption.
This movie falls in line with my number one problem with horror movies, not knowing how to end the third act. If I may put on my nerd glasses real quick…
You see, films are broken down in a 3 act structure… alright alright before I get too full of myself, the point is that Hereditary had a strong first and second act, then it got F’N weird. And not the good Pee-Wee’s Playhouse weird, but like your uncle coming over during Thanksgiving dinner and caressing your inner thigh weird. Yeah. YEAH.
I mean if you’re into that, seek help first of all. But I was just so infuriated with how off the wall it got in the end that I flipped a table and said out loud in the theater
What in the high hell was the point of the movie? I’ll never know because I don’t plan on ever sitting through it again. And neither should you.
2) The Grudge
American remakes are such a perplexing thing to me. Why does something foreign need to be adapted to American audiences? In that homogenization, you lose a lot of what makes the original so great. Granted, there are cases where language and cultural barriers don’t necessarily translate well, but I generally just don’t “get” them.
This was a very weird hybrid of the original and an “American” spin on it. If you haven’t seen Ju-On, do yourself a favor and watch that instead of this. I mention that because The Grudge was a carbon copy of the Japanese film with some white people thrown in and watered down scares. Instead of funding or producing its own lore, Sony Pictures decided to hire the same director of Ju-On to direct the American version, therefore making almost the same film twice.
I say almost because it just doesn’t have the charm and atmosphere of the original. It’s like if you made a silly putty copy of something, it kinda looks like the original but it’s not.
So why was this movie ever made? Why hire the same director, using the same sets, the same foreign actors to make what was essentially the same film? I have a theory and it has to do with…
1) The Ring
Congratulations Gore Verbinski, you took what was one of Asia’s scariest movie in decades and threw it down the well (ah-thank you).
So what exactly is my beef with this movie to name it the number 1 movie to avoid yet the Japanese counterpart is my 1 movie to watch? It boils down to culture. What that means takes a bit of a cultural lesson.
As an Asian-American, the lore and stories you grow up with are ingrained into your subconscious. Asian culture doesn’t really have that many monsters or creatures that lurk in the night to haunt us. The only thing that IS scary, are
witches women with long hair and white overalls with a curse. Like it’s a thing. Google it.
Another thing Asians are crazy into is spiritualism. While that idea kinda died out in Western culture in the early 20th century, Eastern culture still very much embraces spiritualism. Therefore, psychics and mediums are still highly regarded for their views and services.
TL: DR, none of that spiritualism crap was discussed ever in The Ring. Its similarities were the cursed tape, Samara (or Sadako in Japanese), and the 7 days.
The schism that happens is where my problem lies and it centers around the curse. The original presents that the curse was made after powerful hatred and sadness. Having telekinesis abilities was also a plus.
In the remake, we get something about a horse farm, mental hospitals, and a murder/suicide. Great.
I would’ve liked if the remake gave less backstory as to where the tape came from instead of this whole exposition. And again, the third act started falling apart once things started to get going. What you get is two separate films connected by a weak transition. Kind of like what I’m about to do.
This has been my TEDtalks.