Entries 16 Through 20
20. Plan Nine From Outer Space (1959)
Hilarious cheesefest from Ed Wood about inept aliens who look human and wear funny clothes. They implement “Plan 9″ which is to resurrect the dead to terrorize earth people (“You know, it’s interesting – the earth people who can think are so frightened of those who cannot!”) The dialogue is the most atrocious – and amusing – in film history. With a small appearance by Bela Lugosi (he actually died before filming so most of the time we’re looking at Bela’s chiropractor in a cape), a part for Tor Johnson where he actually attempts to act, an appearance by Vampira (whose thin waist breaks all known laws of physics), and the typical wacky predictions from The Amazing Criswell. Not really horrifying at all (except unintentionally) but Plan 9 From Outer Space is still lots of fun to watch on Halloween.
19. Trick ‘r Treat (2007)
Recent Halloween-themed anthology horror featuring three main stories – a serial killer happens to be the local school principal, teens pull a prank surrounding a historical school bus massacre only to be visited by the victims of said massacre, girls throw a party for a virgin (Anna Paquin) who is attacked by a vampire (but she’s not all that she appears to be); the final story is a showdown between a Halloween-hating curmudgeon and Sam, a bizarre demon-child wearing orange PJs and a burlap sack over his head. Trick ‘r Treat has nice atmosphere and is visually striking. Read our review of Trick r Treat here.
18. A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors (1987)
Freddy’s back in this entertaining blend of horror and fantasy. This time, he’s up against the troubled teens of the local Springwood psychiatric hospital, including a wheelchair-bound kid who dreams he’s Harry Potter, a kid with super strength, a mute, and the perky Kristen (Patricia Arquette in her first role) who has the ability to bring people into her dreams. Along for the ride is Heather Langenkamp, returning from the original (and bringing John Saxon back too), Laurence Fishburne as an orderly, and Craig Wasson as the helpful Dr. Neil Gordon. Hands down, the best of the sequels, and it has a song by Dokken on the soundtrack that isn’t “good” but has that certain nostalgic charm. A Nightmare on Elm Street 3 – Dream Warriors offers up very clever effects and witty one-liners by Englund. Read our review of Dream Warriors here.
17. Prince of Darkness (1987)
Not John Carpenter’s best movie, but it’s still kinda awesome. The reason is because the plot is completely outrageous. The bizarre storyline goes like this: Satan is really a greenish fluid that was trapped in a cylinder 7 million years ago. A group of grad students from different scientific disciplines attempt to solve the mystery of the mysterious cylinder when the green stuff gets loose and starts possessing people, turning them into deadly zombie types (including Alice Cooper, who plays a possessed street bum). It gets better – turns out that Jesus was an extra-terrestrial sent to warn mankind about Satan, who attempts to break out his dad – the Anti-God – from the other side. It gets better! Strange messages are sent from the future using tachyon emissions trying to warn people in their dreams about what is going to go down if they don’t put a stop to the Prince of Darkness. Really bizarre, gross, funny, and cool, featuring Donald Pleasance as a priest and Victor Wong as a professor.
16. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)
There are numerous “body snatcher” movies but this is the best – a huge slice of paranoia involving a health inspector (Donald Sutherland) who, along with his girlfriend (Brooke Adams) discover that alien spores have landed on earth and are growing into perfect copies of people, who are replaced. The duplicates are devoid of any human emotion, and are attempting to create a tightly organized, conformist society. Very creepy and disturbing, especially for a PG-rated film. The ending of Invasion of the Body Snatchers is quite jarring (but perfect). Watch for Leonard Nimoy!
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