My Ten Favorite Movies by Genre (Volume 6): Horror
Charles Rayburn
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Cleveland
Tennessee
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Way back last year, I began a composing lists of my favorite films according to genre. I started out at a fairly rapid clip, and then unfortunately, my inspiration left me. I did not even make a GeekList for over three months. Well, after several other lists on a variety of topics, I have decided to continue this labor of love. I will now tackle the dubious horror genre. The horror movie has always been the genre that film snobs love to hate, and admittedly, many horror films are terrible. But if you're a horror fan, you understand that there are many gems out there waiting to be discovered.

So I present for your entertainment and scrutiny my ten favorite horror films of all time.

Feel free to add your top ten.


You can check out the previous volumes at the links below:


Westerns

Crime/Gangster

Mystery/Film Noir

Science Fiction

Comedy
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1. Board Game: Field of Honor [Average Rating:5.60 Unranked]
Charles Rayburn
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Honorable Mention: Here are a few of the movies that almost made the list, and on any other day, they may well have made the cut.

Jaws (1976)
Deep Red (1975)
Suspiria (1977)
Witchfinder General/ The Conqueror Worm (1968)
An American Werewolf in London (1981)
Cemetary Man (1994)
[i]Evil Dead (1981)
Evil Dead 2 (1987)
Dead Alive (1992)
The Wolf Man (1941)
[i]Dracula (1931)
Nosferatu (1922)
Horror Hotel (1960)
Horror Express(1973)
Halloween (1978)
Freaks (1932)
Psycho (1960)









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2. Board Game: Dawn of the Dead [Average Rating:5.97 Overall Rank:7057]
Charles Rayburn
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#10. Dawn of the Dead (1978)

I have always had a soft spot for the zombie genre, and for many this is the ultimate zombie film. While it's not my favorite zombie movie, I really enjoy the 70's feel of this one and the commentary (though a tad bit obvious) about consumerism. I did enjoy the remake, but it's hard to replicate the feel of this slice of gory nostalgia.
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3. Board Game: The Totally Insane Card Game [Average Rating:5.87 Overall Rank:11127]
Charles Rayburn
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#9. Tenebre. (1982)

I am a big fan of the work of Dario Argento. Suspiria, Deep Red, Phenomena, or Opera could have made this list. However, it is the little known Tenebre that has always fascinated me. Orignially released in the US under the title Unsane, it has plenty of Argento's trademark gore and crazy set pieces. If you haven't seen it, rent it from Netflix and check it out.
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4. Board Game: Demonworld [Average Rating:6.61 Overall Rank:8230]
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#8. Curse of the Demon/ Night of the Demon
(1957)

Jacques Tourneur directed this excellent piece of subtle horror. Needless to say there is a curse and a demon involved, but the film is so classy that you almost forget you're watching a horror film. The final scenes where the demon finally rears its ugly head are nicely done. There was some controversy over whether or not to actually show the demon in the film, but in the end, he is there in all his demonic glory.


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5. Board Game: Baby Boomer [Average Rating:0.00 Unranked]
Charles Rayburn
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#7. Rosemary's Baby

I absolutely love the ambiguity and feeling of unease that this movie creates. You spend a great deal of the film trying to decide whether Rosemary is really carrying the spawn of Satan or is she just crazy. A great film from a great director (Polanski). Also one of the great endings in horror. Never underestimate a mother's love!
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6. Board Game: Bodycheck [Average Rating:4.50 Unranked]
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#6. The Body Snatcher (1945)

This seldom seen quiet horror film from director Robert Wise and producer Val Lewton stars Boris Karloff as a very sinister grave robber. Val Lewton produced several of these atmospheric horror films in the 1940's. Among the most famous are The Cat People and I Walked with a Zombie. If you haven't seen any of them, you should.
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7. Board Game: The Shining [Average Rating:6.89 Unranked]
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#5. The Shining (1980)

As a huge Kubrick fan, it should come as no surprise that this one makes the list. Not the scariest movie ever, but this is another movie that builds up unease and subtle dread throughout. That seems to be a common theme for several of my favorites. I love Nicholson's performance, and the final chase in the maze is horrifying. I was never one to be put off by Kubrick's changes to the novel, and this is coming from someone who used to be a huge Stephen King fan. Who am I to question Kubrick?
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8. Board Game: Audition [Average Rating:5.75 Unranked]
Charles Rayburn
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#4. Audition (1999)

This Japanese film is the most famous of Takashi Miike's strange oeuvre Ichi the Killer, Visitor Q. Here again, the dread and suspense build relentlessly, and then the film culminates in a nightmarish scene that you will never forget.

*As a side note, Visitor Q is probably the most disturbing film I've ever seen, but it's not a horror film. It's one of those that makes you wish you could scrub the bad mental images from your brain. Keep in mind, this is coming from someone who has seen Salo: The 120 Days of Sodom.
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9. Board Game: It's Alive! [Average Rating:6.29 Overall Rank:2612]
Charles Rayburn
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#3. Re-Animator (1985)

Though many horror films blend humor and terror, none are quite as successful as this one. Scenes of dark humor interspersed with heavy gore make this a very unique film. This one gave hope to disembodied heads looking for romance. I have always loved this one.
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10. Board Game: Wickie [Average Rating:4.00 Unranked]
Charles Rayburn
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#2. The Wicker Man (1973)

Of all the movies that I have talked about that build up a sense of something not quite right, this is the king. The atmosphere is just stifling and the longer the film goes, the more you're just convinced that something terrible is about to happen. Of course it does. I haven't watched the remake, and don't really plan to after hearing several negative things about it.
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11. Board Game: Last Night on Earth: The Zombie Game [Average Rating:7.00 Overall Rank:533] [Average Rating:7.00 Unranked]
Charles Rayburn
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#1. Night of the Living Dead (1968)

I know that the budget is low and the acting is questionable in parts, but this one just scares the hell out of me. It's the slow sense of suffocation and despair that creeps me out, and you have to love that ending. I know there are many that will disagree, but in the world of zombies, this is the granddaddy of them all. And who wouldn't want to live in the land of zombies?
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