Horror films have been criticized for their graphic violence and are often dismissed as low budget B-movies and exploitation films. Nonetheless, some major studios and respected directors have made forays into the genre. This is a list of the ten greatest horror films of all time.
After the death of her cousin Tomoko, reporter Reiko hears stories of a videotape that kills everyone who sees it exactly one week after viewing. At first she discounts the rumors and need helptime, but when she learns that Tomoko’s friend (who watched the video with her(helptimes) )died at exactly the same time, she begins to investigate. After viewing the tape herself, strange things start happening, and so she teams up with her ex-husband to try to stop the death clock that has once again begun ticking.
A Great White Shark decides to make the small beach resort town of Amity his private feeding grounds. This greatly frustrates the town police chief who wants to close the beaches to chase the shark away. He is thwarted in his efforts by the town’s mayor who finally relents when nothing else seems to work and the chief, a scientist, and an old fisherman with revenge on his mind take to the sea to kill the beast.
While living an an average family house in a pleasant neighborhood, the youngest daughter of the Freeling family, Carol Anne (Heather O’Rourke), seems to be connecting with the supernatural through a dead channel on the televison. It is not for long when the mysterious beings enter the house’s walls. At first seeming like harmless ghosts, they play tricks and amuse the family, but they take a nasty turn- they horrify the family to death with angry trees and murderous dolls, and finally abduct Carol Anne into her bedroom closet, which seems like the entrance to the other side
7. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
En route to visit their grandfather’s grave (which has apparently been ritualistically desecrated), five teenagers drive past a slaughterhouse, pick up (and quickly drop) a sinister hitch-hiker, eat some delicious home-cured meat at a roadside gas station, before ending up at the old family home… where they’re plunged into a never-ending nightmare as they meet a family of cannibals who more than make up in power tools what they lack in social skills…
Carrie White is a shy young girl who doesn’t make friends easily. After her class mates taunt her about her horrified reaction to her totally unexpected first period one of them takes pity on her and gets Tommy Ross, her boyfriend and class hunk to invite Carrie to the senior prom. Meanwhile another girl who has been banned from the prom for her continued aggressive behaviour is not as forgiving and plans a trick to embarrass Carrie in front of the whole school. What she doesn’t realise is that Carrie is … gifted, and you really don’t want to get her angry.
5. Les Diaboliques
The wife and mistress of a sadistic boarding school headmaster plot to kill him. They drown him in the bathtub and dump the body in the school’s filthy swimming pool… but when the pool is drained, the body has disappeared – and subsequent reported sightings of the headmaster slowly drive his ‘killers’ (and the audience) up the wall with almost unbearable suspense…
4. Rosemary’s Baby
Rosemary and Guy Woodhouse move into an apartment in a building with a bad reputation. They discover that their neighbours are a very friendly elderly couple named Roman and Minnie Castevet, and Guy begins to spend a lot of time with them. Strange things start to happen: a woman Rosemary meets in the washroom dies a mysterious death, Rosemary has strange dreams and hears strange noises and Guy becomes remote and distant. Then Rosemary falls pregnant and begins to suspect that her neighbours have special plans for her child.
Marion Crane is a Phoenix, Arizona working girl fed up with having to sneak away during lunch breaks to meet her lover, Sam Loomis, who cannot get married because most of his money goes towards alimony. One Friday, Marion’s employer asks her to take $40,000 in cash to a local bank for deposit. Desperate to make a change in her life, she impulsively leaves town with the money, determined to start a new life with Sam in California. As night falls and a torrential rain obscures the road ahead of her, Marion turns off the main highway. Exhausted from the long drive and the stress of her criminal act, she decides to spend the night at the desolate Bates Motel. The motel is run by Norman Bates, a peculiar young man dominated by his invalid mother. After Norman fixes her a light dinner, Marion goes back to her room for a shower…
2. The Exorcist
Blatty’s novelization of a real case of possession that happened in a Washington Suburb (Mt. Ranier, MD) puts Regan, an adolescent girl, Living with her mother in Georgetown in Washington, into a more and more difficult situation. She exhibits strange symptoms, including levitation and great strength. When all medical possibilities are exhausted, her mother is sent to a priest who is also a psychiatrist. He becomes convinced that Regan is possessed and he and a second priest experienced in exorcism try to drive the spirit from Regan before she dies. Very graphic for its time.
1. The Shining
Jack Torrance becomes the caretaker of the Overlook Hotel up in the secluded mountains of Colorado. Jack, being a family man, takes his wife and son to the hotel to keep him company throughout the long and isolated nights. During their stay strange things occur when Jack’s son Danny sees gruesome images powered by a force called “The Shining” and Jack is heavily affected by this. Along with writer’s block and the demons of the hotel haunting him Jack has a complete mental breakdown and the situation takes a sinister turn for the worse.