10. Truth or Dare

This film is more sinister than scary, with all manners of death and destruction. I believe that the most chilling aspect about this horror is that there is no supernatural aspect, in theory if you managed to cause a guy with homoerotic tendencies to have a try at suicide, made sure he fails so that he was left as a quadriplegic. Made sure this boy has an extremely homophobic elder brother that will shortly be discharged from the army that would want to punish the people who tormented his brother in the first place, without knowing his brother was gay, I am sure that this film is completely possible. Trust me it is better than it sounds.

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9. Silent Hill

It was obviously low budget, the story itself is a bit of a mind fuck the first time you watch it, but once you watch it again it looks more like the a gothic video game remake of ‘Sixth Sense’. The movie is based on the original video game and it looks like some of the animated scenes were taken from the commercials to decrease the animation costs. The film surrounds a girl who sleep walks and screams about ‘Silent Hill’, i fictional village her parents have never heard of before. Her mother takes her daughter to Silent hill, pisses of a cop who thinks that the mother is a paedophile with chronic road rage and manages to cross over into an alternative universe on the way. Over the course of the film the actors had to duck under all manner of bloody beetles, giant pieces of cutlery and on occasion roll after roll of possessed barbed wire, all to find out that…

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8. VHS

The VHS franchise is a more graphic version of the ‘paranormal activity’ franchise this makes the film better and worse at the same time, the acting is better, there is more sex, more gore and more things that go bump in the middle of the day and start eating people. It also means that the story is terrible, I had mixed feelings which means that there will be a great divide in who would enjoy this film, as a note there are lots of boobs, a lot, which means almost half the population with have some excuser to like it. Either way, each film is comprised of three smaller films which are played by people who ‘don’t know they are being watched’ as a small story plays out around them. Either way it isn’t a terrible film, the second one is better because of an increased budget, either way, something to watch during the holidays.

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7. Carrie (1999)

The bad version, not terrible, but not as good as the original. The acting is quite terrible and the amount of abuse in the film is limited, overall not a good horror; but not a bad film; like I said the first film was incredible, so for any remake to compete. However for it’s adaptation of the book, it was good, only number seven for a reason.

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6. Hostel

The first in the franchise is usually the best; the original Hostel is no exception to this rule. The film is more based around the original features of a cult film, less than five million dollars in the making, an unknown cast, sex and most of all gore. A clever film where you know something bad is going to happen, but you can’t quite work out what the hell it is, death, yes, but “how?” is a better question. It is like an X rated version of ’50 Shades of Grey’ except it is less: shit, glamorous, sexist and misogynistic. In other words, this is a real film and not something that was written by a lonely fan of twilight in their 50s.

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5. The Uninvited

The film with a massive psychological plot twist. I admit it is another film based on the same premise of ‘Sixth Sense’ but this one is a lot more sinister. This film stood out to me for its general lack of sexually explicit scenes, given that this is a film about teenagers and money, the stereotype would suggest that they are going at it like badgers, however there are no sex scenes or illusions of them taking place (involving the teenage cast). Instead it is a pure horror story about the delusional and probably why some people are genuinely not fit for criminal courts.


4. Dracula: Dead and Loving it

This is a tribute to the more black comedies, for those that can’t stand ‘Hammer House’. Dracula: Dead and Loving it a brilliant rewrite of the original Bram Stoker masterpiece and is in no way as sinister as the Original film Nosferatu (1922). Mel Brooks directed the hell out of it and Peter MacNicol is by far my favourite Renfield, running after a butterfly screaming, along the lines of: I won’t hurt you little bug I just want your life, or referring  to Count Dracula as the nineties equivalent of “A happy snow man”. This film is in no way creepy, scary, jumpy, eerie, terrifying or unpleasant, it is a simple black comedy that requires a strange sense of comedy, but I am sure that anyone would find this a more delightful watch as opposed to the horrifying images of ‘Silent Hill’.

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3. The Fall of the House of Usher

The bronze award was a wild card, but I thought I should put one of the more very budget films in the list as this was one of the best I have ever found. The fall of the house of Usher is in no way a budget film, but I believe it has not received the critical acclaim I believe it deserves. The somewhat uncomfortable take on Poe’s gothic tale left me squirming on the sofa with discomfort. I will not tell you what the film is about as it will give away too much, all I will say is that it was thoroughly enjoyable, excluding the ehem… well WATCH IT, IT IS NOT A WAST OF TIME!!!


2. House On Haunted Hill (1999)

The year all remakes of classic films were apparently made. I believe this one deserves second place as it was one of the best remakes I have ever seen. The original was a fantastic watch but the lack of technological advances before 1959 were more focused on the cold war and Japan, this film deserved an update with modern-ish CGI and it really makes a ghost story a horror story. The story is introduced by an eccentric billionaire that owns and designs some of the worlds more terrifying rollercoaster’s. He attempts to create the most ego-manic game possible while getting back at the wife he despises by putting a select group of individuals into his haunted house (an ex-asylum) on her birthday, promising them $1,000,000.00 for every individual who is still alive at dawn. Let’s just say that he won’t be emptying he wallet anytime soon.

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1. Shutter

No not Shutter Island, this horror is virtually unheard of and yet it is fantastic, more based on psychological ideologies of what a horror should be, the film follows newlyweds and strange happenings in their new life together. With a few suicides slash murders thrown in the way, it makes for a fantastic watch. I am referring to the English version not the Japanese version, they are completely different films and should be reviewed as such, the western influence forces the story to take on more traits of western culture as opposed to an eastern. By this I mean that the film is more based around the relationships as opposed to the story, if you want watch both and see the difference it is impressive. Masayuki Ochiai is a fantastic director that used the original film and tailored it to a slightly different audience, with a slightly weaker stomach. Either way this is an incredible film, made for only eight million dollars. Either way this is the best underrated horror film of the last fifty years in my opinion..

slant magazine

0. Nosferatu

There is one film I believe meets the needs of every cynosure is one that a few people might have heard of, but not enough to satisfy me. Nosferatu was one of the twentith centuries crowning film achievments, being one of the first featur length silent films and one of the world’s first horror films. You can find this movie for free on youtube, yes it has subtitles but it is well worth it. The acting is incredible and has not been matched by any actor to date. To make the tale even more chilling it is roumoured that the lead actor Max Schreck drank real blood during filming to try and settle into the roll more comfortably. This year it was announced (by Rotten tomatoes) as one of the best reviewed horror films of all time. It will delight to no end.

Thank you for hearing my beliefs on underrated/ budget horror movies. If you dissagree please tell me which ones you would preffer to be mentioned. Also please watch at least one of these, it will either make you laugh for how terrible it is or shake with genuine fear of being mauled in your sleep by your husbands-ex-girlfriend’s-ghost-entity thing. Thank you and goodnight… sleep well.

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Charly Spirling