2013 - some new faces join a ton of remakes and sequels
We will start and end this top 10 list with a remake, in between you will find quite a few franchise starters. I'm missing a few popular films and some potential hidden gems, but this is still during my dark period. I did see #1 in the theater though, and it ... was ... awesome.
I really thought they did a great job paying tribute to the original while adding some new parts to give the Evil Dead remake its own flair. It's gory, funny, and super entertaining. Check it out on tubi.
Blurb - Five friends head to a remote cabin, where the discovery of a Book of the Dead leads them to unwittingly summon up demons living in the nearby woods.
I didn't see The Conjuring until the lockdown, but I thought it was a well-executed haunted house tale. Director James Wan takes over possession and haunting horror films in 2013 after successfully starting the Saw franchise. Check it out on HBOMax & Netflix.
Blurb - Paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren work to help a family terrorized by a dark presence in their farmhouse.
Adding to The Conjuring, director James Wan expands the Insidious franchise with Insidious Chapter 2. You'll also find Patrick Wilson in this movie as well as The Conjuring as he puts his stamp as the face of haunting movies. Find it on Netflix.
Blurb - The Lamberts believe that they have defeated the spirits that have haunted their family, but they soon discover that evil is not beaten so easily.
After 2 short films, Writer/Director Damien Leone put together All Hallows' Eve. It's a well done anthology film where Leone got to showcase his special effect talent. One of the stories introduces us to one of my favorite horror movie monsters, Art the Clown. This first time it's played by Mike Giannelli and he's just as creepy as David Thornton but David offers more physicality to the role. Stream it on tubi and VUDUfree.
Blurb - A babysitter finds a VHS tape which features various sinister murders performed by a psychotic clown.
The Purge has a special place in my heart as it is one of the last films my son and I sat down and watched. He's of this new generation who won't watch much unless it's a YouTube video of someone else watching something and reacting. But he wanted to see this film and best of all, I enjoyed it. I think the whole franchise is entertaining, and this one sets the stage for all the crazy stuff coming in future films. Stream it on HBO and Cinemax.
Blurb - A wealthy family is held hostage for harboring the target of a murderous syndicate during the Purge, a 12-hour period in which any and all crime is legal.
World War Z was Brad Pitt's highest-grossing film in his career up to this point. Who knew Zombies and Pitt were moneymakers. Of course, this version embraces the fast-moving zombie, which I find way more exciting to watch than the shuffle version. Stream on Prime, Paramount+, and Epix.
Blurb - Former United Nations employee Gerry Lane traverses the world in a race against time to stop a zombie pandemic that is toppling armies and governments and threatens to destroy humanity itself.
Speaking of shuffling zombies, I think Warm Bodies is one of the most fun and clever films of 2013. Nicholas Holt & Teresa Palmer have great chemistry. Check it out on HBOMax.
Blurb - After a highly unusual zombie saves a still-living girl from an attack, the two form a relationship that sets in motion events that might transform the entire lifeless world.
The director of the Nazi zombie film Dead Snow wrote and directed this fun and over-the-top gory action-horror movie, Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters. Jeremy Renner & Gemma Arterton have good chemistry as siblings who have dedicated their lives to hunting down and killing witches. Stream on Prime, Paramount+, and Epix.
Blurb - Brother/sister duo Hansel and Gretel are professional witch-hunters who help innocent villagers. One day they stumble upon a case that could hold the key to their past.
Written by Thunder Levin, SyFy gave us the what-if combination of tornados and sharks with Sharknado. I don't know what more I have to say. Find it on Prime.
Blurb - When a freak hurricane swamps Los Angeles, nature's deadliest killer rules sea, land, and air as thousands of sharks terrorize the waterlogged populace.
Ending the top 10, we find another look at Leatherface with Texas Chainsaw 3D. It follows the Leatherface format, 4-6 attractive 19-24 years old show up to a place where Leatherface is ready to kill everyone. It's a good format and works. Stream it on Netflix.
Blurb - A young woman travels to Texas to collect an inheritance; little does she know that an encounter with a chainsaw-wielding killer is part of the reward.