Chiller has been running a special called “Chiller 13: The Decade’s Scariest Movie Moments”
It was as ho-hum as these lists usually are. A bunch of doofi that you don’t know talk about clips from the top thirteen “scariest movie moments”.
The moments are not so much scary as…well, I don’t really know. Noteworthy maybe? Or startling? Like when you walk in on someone in the bathroom. OOOOPS! That kind of startling.
Basically, it was an excuse to air some of those clips. I would have created a different list. And I will, but not quite the same.
They chose moments from these thirteen films:
13. Drag Me to Hell (Seriously? This movie blew, despite what people claim. Even the scene in the garage is just hokey, which goes well with the rest of the film. By the numbers stuff)
12. The Strangers (OK, not a bad film. The unknown assailants in your home shtick. Tense, maybe. Scary, not so much)
11. Final Destination (I love this film, but it’s not great and the thrills aren’t what you would call scary. Definite tension waiting for the rube goldbergian death scenes to play out. I will also admit that I have a fondness for Idle Hands, so…)
10. Orphan (I liked this one as well. Nice little take on the evil child. I’m not sure what part of it was scary though)
9. The Descent (I can agree that the first glimpse of the underground whatsits packs a little jolt. Plus, it’s all about the womens turning agro. Good stuff)
8. Hostel (What? Shock value, sure. Scary….negligible. Not my favorite type of film)
7. 30 Days of Night (Good vamp story here. Delivered marginally, but watchable. Scary? Not in the slightest)
6. Cloverfield (Godzilla victim POV. No scares. Thrills, yes. The giant fleas are badass, but the whole thing was a classic monster mash. No scares, just fun)
5. 28 Days Later (Had some moments. The frenetic cam work and the music set a nice tone for moments. Lord of the flies gets zombified)
4. The Mist (I liked this. Strange, I know, given my take on all things King, but I loved the bible thumping assholes and the creatures. The big twist at the end? Not scary)
3. Saw (What in the mother fuck? Scary? NO. Stupid, yes. Granted I am colored by all the craptastic sequels, but this is just formula gore. You know it. There isn’t anything grand happening up in here. Just like it, if you like it, but leave the rest of us alone)
2. Paranormal Activity (Good handy cam version of the ghost/demon story. Actually had some good moments using tension rather than gore and shock. Congrats to them for that)
1. The Ring (More of a mystery story than anything. Nobody really was scared about watching fuzz on TV after this, despite what the dip’s anecdote on this special tells you. And really, The Ring? Ugh, credit for opening up the Japanese can of worms for the US, but still)
I’m not going to list anything. I’m just going to highlight a movie (or so) from each year.
Jeepers Creepers – sure this one is no great shakes, but I mention it for the a new, badass looking monster thing and a nice, wholesome hopeless ending.
Kairo (Pulse) – if I’m going to mention a Japanese film, this is the one for me. The use of the color red throughout, the mythology of the dead, a take on modern influences and society in general.
Cabin Fever – not a stunner, but it gets right to it and it is a great example of the virus gone wild. Also, Cerina Vincent. Rawr.
Ghost Ship – awful, awful film….but the wire death scene? Awesome.
May – this is the shit, though some might find it a bit slow. Weird, mousey girl gets a bit edgy. Has affair with Anna Faris. Has a strange relationship with a strange doll. What more do you need? (The director is also responsible for “Roman” a similar movie, but with a lonely dood at the center. I will probably give it a full review later. I have some notes about it somewhere)
Resident Evil – video game finally succeeds in entertaining as a movie. Mostly due to zombies, Milla Jovovich and Michelle Rodriguez.
Underworld – Very nice look to this one. Matrix goes vampire. Nicely worked story. Not the same old vampire hooty hoo. Advanced weaponry, sewers, pleather. Kate Beckinsale, Sophia Myles and a wicked Bill Nighy.
Wrong Turn – Hillbillies. Hot chicks. The victims are not meek. Starts out nicely, then goes all action.
Night Watch – Moscow, mystery and mayhem. There is a battle going on right under your nose. Atmosphere abounds.
Shaun of the Dead – have we finally learned to laugh again? Yes.
The Descent – it happens underground. Great setting. They don’t feed you the answer. The underground whosits are wicked. Darkness and light. This thing works.
Bug – Paranoia, the destroyer. Oh, how fun it is to watch the spiral.
Fido – zombies, but wait…? Nice idea. Even if it doesn’t pull it all off, it has to get a nod for trying.
Frostbitten – good, solid vampire romp. They know it’s a romp and they know you are dying to watch this with pals and laugh your ass off. Sweden, vamps, teens, drugs, hospital, Nazi secrets….yeah, that’ll work.
The Host – Korea hits this one hard. Monster movie, absurd hero. Let’s do it.
Snakes on a Plane – I don’t know. I just thought I would mention it for the sheer number of references it gets.
Turistas – more hot people. Abductions while on vacay in Brazil. You know you thank the good lords every time you wake up foggy in Cancun and realize nobody drugged you and enslaved you in a meth lab in Juarez. This could have been your story.
30 Days of Night – great use of the sunlight situation in Alaska. Different style vamps. Whole hog destruction. Doesn’t go anywhere to speak of, but it was worth the effort.
The Hitcher – they did the original proud. Sean Bean is a mean motherfucker and Sophia Bush is a lot to handle.
Paranormal Activity – it earns mention just for getting itself put in theaters. Cheap and fun. Don’t overthink it.
Teeth – seriously wicked tale of a vagina on a rampage. Do I really need to say any more than that?
Cloverfield – reimagining the Japanese monster movie from the ground up. Pretty cast. Cleverly avoids letting you see the whole big bad. Awesome use of viral marketing.
Let the Right One In – truly nice work on adding a little more to a vampire story (almost like some literature type stuff). It’s not a monster movie, it’s a story about people and the things they do. That’s scary in its own right. Do we really need to remake all these movies in English? Can’t you stiffs just watch a good movie as it is?
Quarantine – ummmm….OK, forget that shit about you guys being stiffs. People trapped in a building. Locked up….ah….quarantined, I guess. More in the “found footage” realm as a TV reporter gets to do the story from the inside. See the madness unfold. Remake of the Spanish film REC, which I could never get hold of until this was already available.
Friday the 13th – it’s a redo! It worked for me. Exactly what you expect from a F13 movie. At least, one that was made before Jason went to NY and space and was frozen in time and had a fight with a dream warrior and….whatever the fuck else he got his ass into that made no sense and even less fun.
Jennifer’s Body – I would like to slam this. I hate the writer and her shitty, inane dialogue. However, I won’t. It was fun. Who doesn’t want to see that chick with her mouth agape, dripping viscous fluids?
A Perfect Getaway – this isn’t really a horror film, but the story was fun and even if you know what is going to happen from the start, it’s fun to watch it unravel. Steve Zahn and Milla Jovovich vs Timothy Olyphant and Kiele Sanchez.
Trick r’ Treat – not really a favorite of mine by any stretch, but I applaud the reemergence of horror vignettes.
The Crazies – crazy people. I had to pick one for 2010. This is it. I don’t have anything else to say about it.
The Wolfman – only because I love the classic wolfman. The movie was a disappointment given the cast and the budget. Still, I find that I keep trying to watch it.
I just went down a list of movies by year. I’m sure I forgot some. I’m sure you disagree with everything. That’s A OK, pal.
Have a new year.