Road To Halloween: Top 5 Introductory Horror Movies

Written by Spencer Sterritt October 17, 2012

I’m not one for horror movies. I find slasher films stupid, and gore doesn’t really shock me, and jump scares are a cheap way to get a reaction. But there are some films I really enjoy, and it is Halloween so at least some scary movies have to be watched. Here’s my list of the top 5 movies that will give you a nice introduction to the horror genre.

5. “Shaun of the Dead” (Edgar Wright, 2004)

Here’s probably the best place to start. As a delightful parody of horror movies it has all of the humor you could want, in both broad and geeky flavours (everything from specific “Dawn of the Dead” musical cues to a hilarious fight sequence set to Queen’s “Don’t Stop Me Now”), and all of the zombie gore and fun you could want. People get beheaded, bashed in with a cricket bat, ripped apart, and get a pole through their stomach, all in the name of fun. It’s a perfect parody of zombie and horror movies, with equal amounts winking reverence and original ideas. As a plus, everyone loves “Shaun of the Dead,” so you can always get a jolly group together to watch it.

“There’s a girl in the garden”

4. “Planet Terror” (Robert Rodriguez, 2007)

Though “Planet Terror” doesn’t have the same jaunty tone as “Shaun of the Dead” it still has all the gore and a grittier tone as a direct homage to all of the absolutely nasty b-movies of the 1970’s. It’s still not serious at all, and works as a primer because it gives you all of the gross out moments straight, with the jokes coming later. It will certainly get you prepped for the gore that the best horror movies have to offer, including, but not limited to, beheadings, nasty warts that explode, dripping oozing testicles, and a machine gun leg.

For some reason the machine gun seems to have a knife on it. I’m not really sure why.


3. “Evil Dead 2” (Sam Raimi, 1987)

I have never seen a better horror movie than “Evil Dead 2.” Essentially a remake of the first “Evil Dead” with better production values and the benefit of several script re-writes, “Evil Dead 2” takes the straight up horror of the first one and adds a healthy dose of “splatstick.” It functions a lot like “Shaun of the Dead” by mixing gore and humor, but where as “Shaun of the Dead” is more a parody and giggle worthy, “Evil Dead 2’s” humor is as jet black as it can get. It’ll also show you where “Planet Terror” got the idea for a machine gun leg in Ash’s chainsaw hand.

2. “28 Weeks Later” (Juan Carlos Fresnadillo, 2007)

I was originally going to put “28 Days Later” on this list, but it’s much more of an action movie, where as it’s sequel “28 Weeks Later” has much more gore and scares (and is my favorite of the two). It’s the most mainstream film on this list and it shows with the high production values and the top-notch script. It’ll captivate you with some surprisingly good family drama as they deal with returning to London after a zombie apocalypse, and then freak you out when all Hell goes loose and (spoiler) zombies attack again.

There’s a lot of zombies and a lot of running.

1. “The Descent” (Neil Marshall, 2005)

Screaming in at number one we have “The Descent” a terrifying story of six spelunkers who find themselves trapped in a cave system crawling with weird creepy things. It’s a simple, gory horror movie with several really good character moments, which totally threw me for a loop the first time I watched it. “The Descent” is a culmination of all the other horror movies on this list, and it’s the one which is actually really really scary. The cave’s make for a great setting, and every frame practically shivers with tension and suspense. It’s so damn good you won’t be able to stop yourself from finding more frightening films.

Just look at all that blood

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About Spencer Sterritt

Spencer Sterritt

Spencer Sterritt: former Editor-In-Chief for We Eat Films, future President of the Men With Beards Club, and hopefully candidate for ruler of the world.

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