Halloween 2016 Countdown: 31 Years of Horror — 2000

Halloween Countdown 2016 - Day 16. 2000.

31 days. 31 years. 5 movies per year!

That’s the challenge a good friend presented me with recently, and I NEVER back down from a challenge! (well, nearly never!)

Every day through October I will be pondering and revealing my 5 favorite horror and monster movies from 1985 right up to 2016. When I was told I get to pick FIVE movies per year I initially thought this would be a fairly comfortable task. I’m one of those people who likes lots of movies but I only truly LOVE a select few. That did NOT make things any easier. This has been incredibly difficult, and there have been so many years where I could have happily selected 10+ films.

Until you attempt something like this you simply don’t realize just how many horror movies you have a passion for in different ways!

I’ll keep my reasons for selecting each movie brief, simply because I have to produce this every day for a month. The challenge starts with 1985, when I was 9 years old, and that’s pretty much exactly when I moved on from cartoons and family movies and began exploring the good stuff! Going back 31 years turned out to be the PERFECT place for me to start a journey into my movie watching past, and that made taking on this challenge a fascinating and rewarding experience.

I WANT feedback, and I would love to read your choices if you feel like getting involved.

The 1990s are done. Would the new millennium bring us a horror revival? Talk to me 2000

Pitch Black.

If you asked me to name one movie that I wish people would talk about and appreciate more, it would be Pitch Black. I genuinely consider it one of the most impressive and intelligent sci-fi monster movies to come out in the last 30 years or so. The darkness loving Bio-raptors were beautifully designed killing machines, and Vin Diesel’s morally ambiguous performance as Riddick gave us a brand new action hero with a dark edge. I walked into the cinema expecting a mildly entertaining Aliens clone. I walked out buzzing with adrenaline and excitement. I LOVE this movie!

Hollow Man.

Watching someone become invisible isn’t exactly the most exciting movie concept. So how do you take this classic science fiction scenario and make it entertaining and horrifying? Easy … just give Paul Verhoeven a call! By making invisibility a painful, traumatic and mind-altering experience, Verhoeven was able to push the story down a dark path, which eventually leads to slasher territory. The pace is uneven at times, and the cast is noticeably bland apart from Kevin Bacon, but they are minor problems that never derail the fun. Hollow Man was a BLAST on the big screen, and it includes more horror than you might think.

Final Destination.

This movie, and all of the MANY sequels that followed, are uncomplicated, messy and fun. They never pretend to be anything more than that, and over the course of the franchise the writers somehow managed to keep coming up with those epic and creative set pieces we love so much. I THINK the original is my favorite, simply because it was such a surprisingly enjoyable experience the first time around, but I find it hard to tell them apart to be honest!

The Cell.

I often feel quite alone when it comes to admiring and seriously liking this movie. Most people admit the visuals are impressive, but it isn’t easy to find anyone who likes the complete package as much as I do. The pace is fast, the characters are likeable, and most importantly of all – the journey into Stargher’s mind is a uniquely disturbing experience. It’s not perfect, far from it, but a real effort was made by everyone involved to create something DIFFERENT, and along with the artistic elements it just totally won me over.

Ginger Snaps.

It was a long time before I found the motivation to sit down and watch Ginger Snaps, and by the time it finished I was angry I hadn’t given it a chance sooner. Like An American Werewolf in London, it’s a movie that can switch from amusing to heartbreaking without feeling forced, and an emotional connection to the extremely likeable main characters is almost inevitable. Emily Perkins and Katharine Isabelle are just flawlessly brilliant throughout, and their performances take what was already a great movie to the next level.

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