FINAL GIRL explores the slasher flicks of the '70s and '80s...and all the other horror movies I feel like talking about, too. This is life on the EDGE, so beware yon spoilers!

Nov 10, 2008

lawd love a list

Blogger B-Sol, proprietor of The Vault of Horror, recently posted a list of the Top 50 Horror Films, as named so according to votes by visitors to the website for media outlet HMV. As a whole, the list is a bit...unusual, and makes the horror snob in me want to curl up in a little fetal wad of self-righteous indignation. Then the prole in me beats up the snob in me and reminds me that, you, know, people like what they like and who am I to judge? Certainly my taste is questionable at times, perhaps more often than not. Then my horror snob self is like "Saw? Really? Of all time?" and then the prole punches the snob again and is, like, "The poll is about favorites, not bests, and isn't Jumpin' Jack Flash one of your favorite movies of all time? That movie sucks, so shut the eff up!". Then the snob is all "Ow! Quit fucking hitting me!" and I hope the prole listens, because frankly it's all giving me a headache.

Nothing fires up the flames of blogger indignation like a list, though, and nothing soothes that burning like the balm of the retaliatory list. As such, B-Sol called on the collective powers of the mighty League of Tana Tea Drinkers to get with The ListMakening: each member submits his, hers, or its 10 Best Horror Movies list, and B-Sol will get around to tallying them all to create a MASTER LIST.

Now, I'm never one to shy away from making a list, whether it's the best horror films, names I would give my dog if I got one, or stupid things you did today, so here goes. These films aren't necessarily my FAVORITES, although most of them would end up on that list as well- these are the horror films I consider to be the BEST. And dagnabbit, they're RANKED, which made the entire enterprise all the more difficult.
  1. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)
  2. Night of the Living Dead (1968)
  3. Psycho (1960)
  4. The Exorcist (1973)
  5. Nosferatu (1922)
  6. Halloween (1978)
  7. Alien (1979)
  8. The Haunting (1963)
  9. Suspiria (1977)
  10. The Ring (2002)
There. What's done is done. Now it's time for you all to curl up in your OWN little fetal wads of self-righteous indignation! BOOM.

In the interests of making this even longer, here are my almost-rans, unranked:

The Shining
Don't Look Now
The Brood
The Birds
The Thing
The Silence of the Lambs
The Blair Witch Project


Anonymous said...

... No Black Christmas? Really?

Stacie Ponder said...

Well, if this was a list of my favorites, Black Christmas would definitely be on it, probably near the top. Do I think it's a "better" film than those I listed? Not really. Maybe The Ring...maybe.

Anonymous said...

I would have to say "Black Christmas" is better than "The Ring". Therefore it should crack your top 10.

I was surprised that it didn't even make your almost-rans. And you call yourself a fan. ;)

Unknown said...

What is the difference between a list of "the best" and a list of favorites, though? Both are based on subjective judgments.

Stacie Ponder said...

I think, Nate, that in listing the "best" horror movies, I tried to be as objective as possible, despite the fact that when you come down to it, this list is based on my opinion.

It's the difference between, say, putting Pieces on the list: it may be one of my favorites, but it's certainly not a "GOOD" film and therefore I couldn't, in good conscience, name it one of the "best" horror movies of all time.

Well, now I can cross "mention Pieces off my daily to do list!

Anonymous said...

What about Poltergeist? "Go into the light!"....classic!!

Unknown said...

Okay, so it's like, you keep in mind your particular peccadilloes about films and try to eliminate the weirder ones and then take what's still awesome?

Anonymous said...

Wow, that HMV list has some serious problems. The remake of Shutter? Saw!?!?? Final Destination over its superior sequel? House on fucking Haunted Hill??? The Descent at #31!! The remake of Salem's Lot? No Psycho, but Friday the 13th, which just ain't scary.

Anonymous said...

Oh, this was the poll that was in the free train station newspaper on Halloween. Only the top ten were in it, and I got really annoyed that motherfucking Saw was the only one from this decade to crack it. Especially since, it being a UK poll, I would have figured at least 28 Days Later would make it, and quite possibly The Descent as well. Either would be a fine representation of the 00s, but instead one's at 31# and one didn't even make the full list, boo.

Stacie, if you don't mind, I'm just wondering whether you also consider your list to be the scariest of all time, or do you put that in a seperate category again like the best/favourite distinction?

Natazzz said...

I heart your entire list of almost-rans...

...I wish I still owned a VCR...

Anonymous said...

I agree...the original "Halloween" was way scarier than "Suspiria". (I actually liked "Suspiria", but I was really squeamish when that one girl...well, I don't want to ruin the movie, but it was painful. :( ) I had seen "Halloween" as a teenager, and the fact that you have a kid attacking someone with a knife, and years later, breaking into houses and killing people, it just makes you really afraid that the latter could really happen.

BTW, did you see the trailer for "The Unborn"? Although it has Gary Oldman in it (Which would make it a film on a 'must see' list for me), the scene in the beginning where the kid the girl's babysitting just WHACKS HER IN THE HEAD HARD WITH A BOTTLE OUT OF NOWHERE just convinced me I don't want to see this film alone in the dark...

Ross Horsley said...

Aw crap, I remember voting in that HMV poll because it qualified you to win something or other. The catch was that YOU HAD TO PICK 10 MOVIES FROM HMV'S LIST! And there were only 50 films on the list anyway, making it essentially a ranking exercise. (You'll notice it's made up entirely of films available on DVD in the UK.) So it's really more of a DVD promotion than a barometer of horror tastes in the UK, and doesn't deserve to be taken too seriously!

Stacie Ponder said...

Ross, I think that explains a lot. Thanks for the insight!!

Anonymous said...

Suspiria's rubbish. The Haunting's rubish anoll. Curse of the Demon should be in there. And Horror Express needs to be number 1. Apart from that, it's all good. Except Hostel should be Top 20.

Craig Blamer said...

Part of the problem with compiling a list by popular choice is that horror sits under a big tent, with different factions putting in their two cents.

I'd say two of the biggest would be Reality-based horror vs. Supernatural... a lot of folks I know who love horror also think that things like zombies or vampires are rubbish 'cause "they couldn't happen", so they skew towards stuff like Halloween or Hostel.

And vice versa. Say, Hostel or even Silence of the Lambs wouldn't even crack my Top Twenty.

Add to the fact that there's a big drop-off when it comes to horror history... some folks seem to think that horror didn't really come into it's own until 1978, and anything made before then was just foreplay.

rob! said...

NO Seventh Victim?? HELLO, Val Lewton!!