Monday, December 7, 2009

The Top 25 Of The Decade: Post-Script

Over at Shock Till You Drop, we've just published our picks for the Top 25 Horror Films of the Decade. As the combined effort of four opinionated horror fans, this list took plenty of twists and turns along the way before we settled on our final choices. Contrary to those who claim that nothing worthwhile has happened in the genre over the past ten years, we found it extremely hard to narrow our choices and, in the end, several films that each of us individually argued for were left outside the Top 25. Now that the list is up, I wanted to give a shout-out to 25 films that were a part of the debate. Some were mentioned and then quickly shot down, others fell off only at the very last minute.

In alphabetical order, sans editorial comment:

1. Behind the Mask: The Rise and Fall of Leslie Vernon

2. Brotherhood of the Wolf

3. Bug

4. The Devil's Rejects

5. The Exorcism of Emily Rose

6. Feast

7. Final Destination

8. Hatchet

9. High Tension

10. Hostel Part II

11. Irreversible

12. The Mothman Prophecies

13. The Others

14. Paranormal Activity

15. Saw

16. Silent Hill

17. Slither

18. Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

19. The Strangers

20. The Texas Chainsaw Masscare

21. 30 Days of Night

22. Wolf Creek

23. Wrong Turn

24. Uzumaki

25. Zombieland

One title that I'm surprised never came up once in our discussions was Grindhouse. I would've been against it myself but I'm surprised that it didn't even get that far. It also would've been nice to get some quirkier titles like Bubba Ho-Tep or Shadow of the Vampire on there but 25 is a small number to work with when you're talking about ten years' worth of films. That's mostly why borderline genre titles like Mulholland Dr. (for my money, one of the scariest movies ever), Rambo (a true splatter classic, with heavy echoes of the 'mondo' cinema that was such a part of the early days of VHS) and The Passion of the Christ (the most successful splatter movie of all time and a key addition to the sub-genre of Catholic horror films) aren't on there. Four titles that I wish I had seen so I could have argued one way or another for them are Antichrist, Grace, The Host, and Martyrs. But at the end of the day, no list is ever perfect or quite complete. Of all the titles that didn't make the cut, the only one I was sorry to see not make it is The Others. But in looking over all the films that were a part of this discussion, it's nice to be able to say that the last ten years have delivered so many horror films worth talking about.


Anonymous said...

You need to see Martyrs, not only is it shocking and completely visceral, it will make you think for days. Great list, BTW.

Jeff Allard said...

Thanks, PoT! Glad you liked the list! As for Martyrs, I'll get around to it one of these days!

Matt-suzaka said...

Great list, Jeff!

That is a very different list and had some films I would certainly include on my own. Love Brotherhood of the Wolf, The Devils Rejects, and Silent Hill. I'm surprised to see Uzumaki on your list, I really like that film, but thought I was the only one!

You do need to check out Martyrs, but don't get played by the hype either...that could so ruin the movie for you.

Jeff Allard said...

Yeah, I really will make an effort to watch that. As for the films listed here, it's not really 'my' list per se - just a list of movies that were part of the STYD Top 25 discussion that, for whatever reasons, didn't make the cut. The titles I was pushing for the most were Brotherhood of the Wolf, The Exorcism of Emily Rose, Irreversible, The Others, Slither, Wrong Turn, and Uzumaki. I hope you'll be posting your own list before the end of the year, Matt!

Jeff Allard said...

...Oh, and in defense of the final list we came up with, except for The Others and maybe Slither, I don't think any of the other titles I just mentioned were definitive Top 25 candidates. For awhile we debated doing a Top 30 instead because we had so many titles we all liked and wanted to acknowledge but we thought it was better to make some hard choices and keep it to a shorter list.

the jaded viewer said...

Awesome list. I can nitpick that Strangers and Wrong Turn don't deserve to be there but you got me with your #1.

Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon was the best movie of 2007. With Hatchet coming in #2.

Instead of Martys, I would have picked Inside instead, a way splatterific French horror flick.

Good list.

Timmy Crabcakes said...

The top 25 list ain't bad... no major disagreements for me except Cloverfield.
I'd definitely swap some of those out to get Silent Hill, Bug and Mulholland Drive on the list.
Still, I'm happy that none of the Saw/Hostel crap made it.

Did anyone suggest Sheitan or Malefique, Ils or Cache?

Jeff Allard said...

Jaded, thanks - but I have to reiterate that this is just an alphabetical listing of movies that were voted on or discussed but didn't make STYD's top 25 so this is just a footnote to the main list, not my own 'best of.'

Knob, I hear you on Cloverfield! But concession and compromise is the name of the game and there's been enough people who's opinion I respect who love Cloverfield for me to get over my disdain for it in this one instance.

And regarding Ils, Sheitan, Malefique, and Cache, Ils was mentioned at one point but not seriously considered. I didn't think it was a half-bad movie but a little overrated in my opinion. As for Sheitan or Malefique, and Cache, I don't know how the rest of the group feels about those films (or if they've seen them) but of Malefique and Cache (I haven't seen Sheitan), those aren't films I would argue for as being best of the decade material - unless it was for a Top 50 or Top 100 list, then maybe.

Timmy Crabcakes said...

Not trying to be the fancy guy by bringing up all those French movies... that's just been where my radar has been set lately.
Sheitan would probably make my own list over Inside (which was gross but that's about it).

I Like Horror Movies said...

The fact that BEHIND THE MASK hit #1 is a credit to your guys taste, best film without a question. Also very happy to see proper appreciation for THE DESCENT and WOLF CREEK. Excellent list Jeff!

Jeff Allard said...

Knob, no problem - those titles definitely deserve a shout-out!

And Carl, thanks but I have to go back to what I said a few comments back - this is just an alphabetical listing of movies that were part of the Top 25 debate but didn't make the cut. Even though they fell outside the final list, I thought they deserved an honorable mention. A movie I forgot to include here but which actually got some early support in our voting process was the creepy 2002 UK film My Little Eye.

Before the end of the month maybe I'll run my own personal Best of the Decade - we'll see. It might depend on whether I get a chance to see Martyrs before then or not!

I Like Horror Movies said...

Boy am I red in the face lol, thats what I get for using this god damned laptop. My graphics card went out over a year ago, and the page doesnt refresh progressively, only when I finish a scroll, so after THE DESCENT picture, the next part of the page I landed on was BEHIND THE MASK. Well, for what its worth, I would rate BEHIND THE MASK easily within the top 25, but if these were the options that were dropped I cant wait to get over to STYD for the official list!

Jeff Allard said...

Hope you like the official list, Carl - although I always feel that the 'big' movies, the ones that everyone always celebrates, are sometimes less interesting to honor than the ones that have fallen off the radar a little bit.

I Like Horror Movies said...

Agreed, I see many selections on this supplementary list that I feel easily should have hit the official pin up. Incase I dont stop by sooner, enjoy the holidays Jeff!

Jeff Allard said...

Thanks Carl! Same to you!