Freaky Flicks

Continuing with the Halloween theme, I have some more excellent adventures for you to embark upon. It's movie time!

I LOVE thrillers a LOT. I love being scared in my own home. I specifically save the Walking Dead episodes to watch when theGuy isn't home so that I can reach maximum fear levels.  I consider psychological thrillers to be the highest caliber of film, ever. Manipulating your emotions, making the hair stand up on the back of your neck - what could be more fun than THAT? 

I have a very specific set of rules to determine what it takes to make an excellent thriller, and because I know you're dying to know, I'll break it down below. 

  • Sensationalized gore = stupid. If you have written a clever enough script and have a talented crew, you absolutely do not need to have needless gore in any scene – one’s imagination is far more terrifying than anything you could show on screen. It reduces the integrity of the movie, in my opinion.
  • .         Needless shock factor for ratings and publicity are also absolutely unnecessary and totally wreck the credibility of a producer as well as the talent hired to act it out. Case and point: Last house on the left. That assault scene was ridiculous. It was uncomfortable, way too long, and way too graphic to have a place in that film. The story alone was powerful. The addition of that scene was nothing but a gimmick, and I felt it was a disgraceful attempt to become newsworthy. I would never recommend this movie to someone because it would make me feel like a creepo!
  •        Campy can be cool. Very cool. Campy with a clever storyline can be brilliant. Shaun of the Dead is an excellent example. It was totally campy, but a little terrifying, too. One of the best of its genre.

And there you go. Since I consider myself a guru of all things thriller, I knew you’d want to know. And also, I thought you would also want to know a list of really great psychological thrillers. Some of which are on NetFlicks.

1.       The Strangers - (on Netflicks) excellent movie, featuring Liv Tyler. Don’t google it. Take my word for it and go into it knowing nothing (it would ruin everything!). Not to be watched when impending trip to a secluded cottage is scheduled. Take my word for it.
2.       Vacancy – there is some gratuitous gore in this movie, but it works with the theme. I’d watch it again, especially with theGuy because he can tell me when to turn away so I don't have to see gross parts.
3.       Identity – another good psychological thriller. I hate the ending, but the premise is good and it had me nervously on the edge of my seat. It can lead to great discussion afterwards, which means it ranks higher, in my opinion.
4.       127 Hours. This isn’t really a horror or a thriller. It’s a movie about a hiker who gets stuck while rock climbing in Yosemete park in the states. He has to cut his arm off. Yes, I told you he cut his arm off. This does not in ANY way ruin the movie. At all. It’s really carefully crafted – every. Single. Shot. was thought out and planned. Beautiful cinematography. There was one scene that I had to turn away from because, well, dude was cutting off his arm. But it was sooooo well done, I think it was amazingly executed AND it’s a true story!
5.       Fear. One of Marky Mark’s greatest. This is a great movie because it’s stupid and ridiculous. Sometimes it doesn't make sense. But it scared me silly (note - I was also 15 when I watched it, so that could have something to do with my fear level).
6.       Right at Your Door - oh wow. I loved this movie so, so, so much. It was absolutely fantastic. Super low budget, but the story was fantastic, and totally realistic-ish. This is a very apocalyptic film, which I happen to gobble up like crazy. Love at first sight.

7.  The Game - I took "screen ed" in high school, and my teacher was totally obsessed with this movie. And I was okay with this because it meant that we watched it about three times. And now I want to take Friday off work and stay home and watch this all day because the storyline of this film is incredible. So well done. Just messes with your brains like crazy!

8. Se7evn - If you haven't seen this movie, I feel sorry for you. The thing is, I saw it while very young, and with the popularity of shows like CSI, etc., I'm not that it would resonate the same way it did when I first watched it. That being said, it's a classic, and if you haven't seen it, you totally should (Silence of the Lambs is another one which used to be absolutely fabulous, but lost some of its luster with Criminal Minds and other shows like that on the air. Desensitation station, my friends).

9. Requiem for a Dream - I'm not sure whether this would be deigned as a thriller or not, but after watching it, you totally have the heebie jeebies, so I think it should fit on his list. Requiem is an amazingly clever story which weaves a tale of three lives and the effects of drug use in a resoundingly brilliant way. The montages are amazing, the imagery is intense. Fantastic.

10. One Hour Photo -  Come on. If Robin Williams as a bad guy doesn't make you pee your pants in fear, you may be inhuman. He does such, such a good job, and it's definitely an interesting concept. Watch it. You'll never see your dear Mrs. Doubtfire the same, again.
So there you are! A list of ten great psychological thrillers that you can hunker down with to get all freaked out in the true spirit of Halloween!

(I know the formatting of this post is all screwy, and I`m sorry about that. I`ve tried to fix it a bunch of times, but the internet has something against me today. Oh well. It`s kinda willy nilly, which could be considered creepy!)

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