Monday, January 3, 2011

The Vault of Horror's Top 10 of 2010

The previous 12 months were interesting ones for the horror genre. I won't say outstanding, but I also won't say terrible. There certainly was a bunch of entertaining and engaging films released last year, but not as many as in some previous years. I can't say I'm totally thrilled with this top 10 list, but I can at least honestly say that the top 7 were films I genuinely found to be terrific. The rest may very well have been bumped if I had had the pleasure of seeing movies like The Crazies and Daybreakers, for example.

But alas, I was invited by the incomparable Scott Weinberg of Cinematical and FEARNet (by way of the delightful Britt Hayes of Brutal as Hell and CHUD) to take part in a vast Ultimate Horror Top 10 of 2010, and so here is the list I came up with, when pressed. My list, along with those of many others across the horror blogosphere, have been tabulated to create a soon-to-be-published master list of the best horror flicks of 2010. I'm thrilled to be a part of it, and here's the list I sent in!

10. Afterlife
The inclusion of this one is definitely proof that I needed to see more new horror films in 2010. Ah well, what can I say, life got pretty busy. Still, there are worse ways to kill a couple of hours.

9. A Nightmare on Elm Street
Sorry, people, I actually enjoyed it, OK? Sue me. No, not as good as the original, but I thought it was a decent little horror movie, and the "Dream, Dream, Dream" drugstore scene is pretty classic.

8. The Wolfman
A flawed film, but one I enjoyed nonetheless. I've long been waiting for a remake of this Universal classic, and I can't say I was disappointed.

7. [REC] 2
Alright, now we're getting into the really good ones. I am a huge fan of the original [REC], and though I found it far scarier than this, I will go on the record as saying this was the better film.

6. Piranha 3-D
Just a ton of fun, and when it comes to horror, that's really what I've been gravitating more and more toward in recent years. Great gore, and a balls-to-the-wall attitude you don't see too often anymore.

5. Shutter Island
Not really horror in the truest sense, but a very well-made psychological thriller from Martin Scorsese.

4. The Human Centipede
I enjoyed this far more than I ever imagined I would. I also was amazed that it really wasn't the gross-out flick I was expecting, but actually a very cerebral horror film. And Dieter Laser definitely plays the best villain of the year, not to mention having the coolest name ever.

3. Survival of the Dead
I championed this flick like nobody's business, and I stand by that. As a lifelong Romero fan, I found this to be the maestro's greatest zombie flick since Dawn of the Dead. And I fully realize I'm of the minority opinion.

2. I Spit on Your Grave
Another pleasant surprise, although nothing about this movie could really be described as pleasant. In the end, I found it much better than the original, even if it was surprisingly even more brutal.

1. Black Swan
Another psychological thriller, but one that has Oscar written all over it, especially in the case of the always-excellent (when she's not being directed by George Lucas) Natalie Portman. I just had the pleasure of seeing it, and can honestly say it was my favorite horror film of 2010. Expect a review of this amazing film a little later this week...

There you have it, Vault dwellers. So, what do you think of my choices? What would yours be? Let me know!