I have always liked a good scare. Growing up in the Bay Area I was really lucky to have a show called Creature Features on every weekend. It was the highlight of my weekend and I started watching at a young age. I think by the time I was ten I had seen almost all of the Hammer movies. My life long fasination with horror both written and film is a passion which won’t die soon.
I decided for Halloween I would make out a quick list of my all time favorite horror movies. Nothing fancy here. I picked up a pen and wrote down everything that came to me. I paired it down to thirteen favorites. These are the ones that stick with me and I love watching again and again. In no particular order.
1) Night of the Living Dead – This movie gave me my first real vivid nightmares. Probably shouldn’t have watched it when I was eight.
2) Shaun of the Dead – Not strictly a horror movie but hit the right balance of laughs and scares. One of my all time favorite movies.
3) 28 Days Later – This movie was creepy and for me was the first zombies’ (even though they were technically virus infected humans) movie where the zombies moved hell of fast. Brought a whole new nastiness to the genre.
4) Psycho – Doesn’t really scare me as an adult but when I was a kid this movie gave me chills.
5) The Birds – This was Hitchcock’s scariest movie for me. I don’t know why it freaked me out so bad but I didn’t look at birds the same for a long time.
6) The Exorcist – This movie benefitted from me being a kid when I saw it. I tend to giggle a little now but it was pee your pants frightening to a ten year old.
7) Invasion of the Body Snatchers – I am, of course, talking about the Kevin McCarthy version. The end of this movie spooked me out for a long time. I still suspect the pod people are everywhere.
8 ) An American Werewolf in London – The Shaun of the Dead of my childhood. I would go from laughing to swallowing my tongue in seconds flat.
9) Alien – The scariest science fiction movie of all time. Rewatched it recently and it still gave me shivers.
10) Poltergeist – Came out at the end of my teens. I can still see the scene where he begins to claw his face off.
11) Ringu – I liked the US version but the original is on a whole different level of scary.
12) Ju-On – Again the US version was good but I think the original may be the scariest movie I have ever seen. Even when I knew it was coming my stomach ended up in my throat. The scene on the bus gave me the chills.