My hopes for the new films coming out this year are fewer found-footage and possession movies, and more gothic and genuinely creepy stories. Maybe I’m just difficult to please, after all, it seems avid horror movie fans aren’t easily scared. Here’s my roundup of what looks promising this year…
Game of Thrones star Natalie Dormer stars in this film about the suicide forest at the base of Mount Fuji. The creepiest part? The place actually exists. Aokigahara Forest has long been used as a place where people choose to go and die. The numbers of suicides to have taken place there runs well into the hundreds. I first read about this place in an article titled 6 Creepiest Places on Earth over at Cracked. Read here.
The Other Side of the Door
The premise of this film isn’t really that new. In fact, it reminds me of Stephen King’s Pet Sematary and the Hammer film Wake Wood, both about grieving parents trying to bring back their deceased child. Still, I like the mythology linked in this film with the ancient civilization and rituals.
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies
As a big Jane Austen fan, I’m always thrilled when a new adaptation comes out of one of her classic novels. However, this one’s a bit different (!), but could be a lot of fun. I’m not a big fan of zombies, but as long as they’re getting their rotting arses kicked, then tally ho!
So we’ve already had Annabelle, but there is something fundamentally creepy about dolls or anything that is meant to look human. Mannequins anyone? Wax dummies? Ventriloquist dummies? *Shudders. While these have all been subject to horror movies in the past, scary dolls are the most common out of the bunch. I understand why. Dolls are creepy as hell. I used to live near a shop that sold porcelain dolls, and everyone used to say the shop was haunted and that the dolls moved from their places overnight while the shop was closed. At least those dolls just wanted some exercise or a change of scenery though…
The first Conjuring movie was surprisingly effective, up until the whole possession part happened, and the hauntings were blamed on an evil witch who liked to kill kids. C’mon people, stop hating on witches (I happened to spend the summer writing my dissertation on the representation of witches in film – so don’t get me started). Playing hide and seek and hearing a clap coming from the wardrobe though? Yep, creepy stuff. On a side note, are there any horror films where someone goes to investigate a strange noise at night in a really well-lit home? Just wondering.
The sequel follows Ed and Lorraine Warren to North London to investigate a poltergeist haunting. This film is actually based on the Enfield Haunting, a famous case which made the British national papers in the 70s. There was a recent adaptation of this, called The Enfield Haunting, which aired last May on Sky Living. I for one still think the scariest (loose) adaptation of this is the mockumentary GhostWatch, which aired Halloween 1992. I remember watching it with my mum and I was convinced it was all real.
Yes, back to witches. Just as I was hoping that the tired old trope of evil witches living in the woods would go away, here comes another film to put the blame on magical ladies. So why include it? Because the trailer looks genuinely intriguing, and reminds me a little, unsurprisingly, of M. Night Shyamalan’s The Village, but minus the twist (which, despite what other people say, I found actually effective and original). Plus it has received rave reviews and the characters speak in ‘ye olde English’ which I’m curious to hear.
What are you looking forward to watching this year?