I have had a great year with the podcast and my movie watching opportunities. New films are not always a priority for me, but I have been trying to squeeze more in since there are so much exciting work being done right now. I watched a bunch this year and have listed my ‘Best 10’ below with a few comments. Keep in mind that this list is either Genre film or Horror, however, any of my non-horror on the list will typically have a darker vibe to it, I guess you could call that psychological horror. Here are a few highlights along with my ten best (not in order).
The Mandy Screening: Seeing Nic Cage and Panos talk after the screening was stellar.
The Endless Screening and Podcast: Watching The Endless (with my wife, which is a rare treat) and listening to Justin and Aaron’s heartfelt discussion was a big highlight. After the screening they were nice enough to stop and talk, this led to having them on the show. The podcast we did with our friend S.A. Bradley was a real treat, and as a lover of genre films, a really great experience for me.
The discovery of what a great fucking filmmaker David Bruckner and having him on the podcast: I was a huge fan of Bruckner from the short he did in the 2016 movie ‘Southbound’. When I saw that he had solo directed the feature ‘The Ritual’ I was stoked and watched right away when it started streaming. I had high expectations going in, but had no idea how solid this fucking movie was going to be. I have since watched it several times and have brought it up on the show many times… capping that all off with the interview we did with David and our friend Dani from ‘Freaky Fandoms’ was quite memorable.
Calibre is a 2018 British film written and directed by Matt Palmer.
I immediately fell into a comfort zone with the characters, tone and setting, which helped immensely with this somewhat familiar story line. There is a genuine sense of danger that runs through the film from start to finish. This is Matt’s only film available, as far as I can tell. I cant wait to see what else this writer/director has in store.
The Ritual is directed by David Bruckner and written by Joe Barton.
I have rewatched this more than any other film on the list David Bruckner’s film ‘The Ritual’ is as tight a horror movie I have seen all year. With believable characters and a darkness that is genuinely felt, the film, especially on the first viewing is a harrowing experience.
Here is a post on the film along with the podcast where you can here me gush over how much I loved the film:
Mandy is directed by Panos Cosmatos and co-written by Cosmatos and Aaron Stewart-Ahn.
Mandy is all about mood and vibe with an incredibly engaging performance from Cage. It also has my favorite soundtrack of the year from Jóhann Gunnar Jóhannsson.
here is a post on the show we did with the wonderful host of Film Baby Film Jon Laubinger:
Lowlife is co-written and directed by Ryan Prows.
Not exactly a Horror Movie, but the film does has (at least) three extremely graphic full-on head obliterations. The film also has some very dark subject matter and pulls all of it off while being one of the funniest movies I have seen this year. A wonderful film and I cant wait to see what else Ryan Powers has up his sleeve.
‘The Endless’ is my most inspirational films of the year, as well as one of the most thought provoking. I love this movie, and I think there are a ton of people that would say the same.
here is a post I did on the film and Interview we did with the directors:
Hereditary is written and directed by Ari Aster.
A truly terrifying meditation on grief and emotional damnation. Ari Aster’s unblinking look at loss is unique in its power. As an added treat, the film takes supernatural turns that are fun and exciting and crank things up a couple notches. As with the other directors on this list, I cant wait to see whats next for Aster.
We discussed the film with Film Baby Film’s Jon Laubinger, heres the post and podcast.
Episode 18|19 a discussion on ‘Hereditary’, Fulci’s ‘The House by The Cemetery’ & ‘The Beyond’ with special Guest, Jon Laubinger of ‘Film Baby Film’
THE CLOVEHITCH KILLER
The Clovehitch Killer is directed by Duncan Skiles and written by Christopher Ford.
Seems like every year we are getting a coming of age film about a serial killer. ‘The Clovehitch Killer’ is this years ‘Super Dark Times’. The film carries a solid mood throughout, is believable and has one of the best scenes I have seen all year that pulls back a veil that we don’t always see in these kinds of films. As an added bonus, it has a wonderfully subtle performance by Dylan McDermott that is chilling and unforgettable.
‘November’ is not easily described… maybe a cross between ‘The Witch’ and Aleksie German’s ‘Hard to Be a God’ (in look and occasional grubbiness). I love movies that are able to bring you to unusual settings, which this film does. But what is especially admirable is a film that brings you to a psychic place, a pervasive state of mind that enables you to see the world, how it may have been perceived at the time and place within the story. Probably the best looking film on the list.
YOU WERE NEVER REALLY HERE
Just a really fucking good, dark and depressing revenge film (in this case revenge by proxy). The movie looks great, the performances are stellar and it’s a bummer of a film that almost has a happy ending. One of Pheonix’s career best.
LET THE CORPSES TAN
Let the Corpses Tan (French: Laissez bronzer les cadavres) is directed and written by Hélène Cattet and Bruno Forzani. The film is based on the novel Laissez bronzer les cadavres by Jean-Patrick Manchette and Jean-Pierre Bastid.
An unabashedly derivative film that works. A simple story with lots of gorgeous images and over-the-top performances. I saw this one on the big screen and it was fucking intense. It is also the funnest time I have had on this list.