[EDITOR’S NOTE: Since you’ve been enjoying the staff’s picks for the best genre movies of 2015, we decided to invite our top contributing writers to pick their five favorite flicks as well. Look for more Top Fives between now and the end of the year!]
One of the few Christmas horror movies that feels both Christmasy and horrifying, Michael Dougherty’s follow-up to TRICK ‘R TREAT punishes a typical American family for losing their holiday spirit — brutally, creatively, stylishly — but in the end, it feels more like tough love than an act of “War on Christmas.”
4. WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS
It’s an idea that’s been done before, and often, but never this well: a mockumentary about modern day vampires, struggling to get by in a culture that has long since moved beyond them, playfully lampooning the many myths and rules of the nosferatu genre. Sweet performances, funny jokes, clever ideas, and of course… werewolves (not “swear” wolves).
3. IT FOLLOWS
The best horror films can tap into a primal fear that affects every single one of us. IT FOLLOWS taps into two of them at once, pitting its confused teen protagonists against a demonic terror that’s transmitted sexually (because who doesn’t fear the day when look down at your genitals in guilt and terror?), and one that trails behind you, always behind you, so keep one eye over your shoulder at all times. At all times!
2. TALES OF HALLOWEEN
That rare horror anthology in which (almost) every installment feels like a classic, TALES OF HALLOWEEN is a mad dash through every demonic piece of Halloween iconography. You don’t just feel frightened, you feel the sudden rush of inspiration that must have pumped through all of the filmmakers’ brains.
1. THE VOICES
Marjane Satrapi’s funny, romantic, utterly horrifying joyride through the mind of a serial killer feels like a John Waters film gone horribly wrong. Our sympathy for Ryan Reynolds’ madman gets more acute and more perverse with every passing scene, and by the end of THE VOICES we now feel like we understand something truly important… something that we never could have understood before.
Honorable Mentions: GOOSEBUMPS, HELLIONS, ROAR