Monday, December 31, 2012

The Best of 2012

I didn't think I would be making a "Best of" list this year because of the Mayan apocalypse (just kidding, did anyone actually believe that?). I've complied a list of my favourite horror movies, books and T.V. shows from 2012 and I'm looking forward to more horror in 2013.

MOVIE: Sinister

I thought of Sinister as 2012's version of Insidious - both films are about families who move into a new house where creepy paranormal things happen and both films terrified me. I liked Sinister a bit more though. I watched Sinister in the theatre on Halloween. I jumped so many times during the film I lost count. Then I had to wait alone in the dark for the bus and I couldn't stop thinking about the movie. If a horror film can scare me that much, it's definitely a good one.

Honourable Mention: Lovely Molly

Netflix Canada only got Lovely Molly about a week ago so I just watched it and found it to be extremely creepy. Molly and her new husband, Tim, move into her deceased parents' house after their wedding and strange things start to happen. It sounds like your typical ghost story, but it's so much more than that. I don't want to give anything else away, so check it out for yourself. 

A few thoughts on other horror films I saw this year:

I found The Cabin in the Woods to be entertaining, but a bit overrated after hearing everyone rave about it. But it was definitely original and unpredictable.

I don't understand the love for V/H/S. It had a good concept but most of the segments were predictable and dull (with the exception of "The Sick Thing That Happened to Emily When She Was Younger"). 

After hearing a lot of people comparing Excision to May (which is one of my favourite films), I was excited to see it, but I didn't find it to be nearly as good as May. It was still a pretty good flick about a weird young woman. 

I noticed The Pact was on Netflix a while ago, but wasn't sure if it would be any good and didn't watch it until a few days ago when it appeared on a few Best of 2012 lists. I thought it would be a predictable ghost story, but it was original and I never came close to guessing the ending.

BOOK: Die, You Bastard! Die! by Jan Kozlowski

This year a new line of horror novels, Ravenous Shadows, was created with John Skipp as the editor-in-chief. Ravenous Shadows aims for "smart, gripping, kickass pop literature with all the boring shit left out. Books you can read in roughly the time it takes to watch a feature film... and probably more entertaining than the movie you could have been watching instead." After reading Die, You Bastard! Die! I must say that Skipp's statement is true. It only took me a few hours to read this book because I couldn't put it down. It was so suspenseful and entertaining. The book is about a woman who was sexually abused by her father and is convinced by a friend to get revenge. It sounds like it's just a book version of I Spit on Your Grave, which it sort of is, but there's more to it than that. Read it to find out.

I also read another Ravenous Shadows book this year, Tribesman by Adam Cesare and thought it was awesome as well. I have yet to read the others: The Devoted by Eric Shapiro, House of Quiet Madness by Mikita Brottman and The Dark by Scott Bradley and Peter Giglio.

Honourable Mention: The Castle of Los Angeles by Lisa Morton

Okay, this wasn't released in 2012, but it came out for Kindle this year. The Castle of Los Angeles won the Bram Stoker Award for Best First Novel in 2010 and Lisa Morton definitely deserved the award. The book is about a woman who moves into a building called "The Castle" and comes to believe that it is haunted. It sounds like another predictable ghost story, but there's a twist and a completely unique and surprising ending.

T.V. SHOW: American Horror Story

I finally started watching this show when FX came to Canada and it quickly became my #1 show. I think everyone should watch it and have recommended it to friends who aren't horror fans and they always say that it's too scary for them. They're probably right because I've been watching horror movies as long as I can remember and nothing has frightened me as much as this show. After watching an episode of American Horror Story late at night, I would have to run and jump in my bed after turning all the lights out. I used to close the bathroom door and then turn the light on so I wouldn't disturb my boyfriend (the light shines directly into the bedroom), but now I can't because it reminds me of the Piggy Man.

The show is now in its second season and it's just as creepy as the first - maybe even more disturbing and shocking. This season takes place in 1964 at Briarcliff Mental Institution. The nuns who run the asylum are sadistic and Briarcliff's doctor performs bizarre experiments on patients. A serial killer dubbed "Bloody Face" has been brought to Briarcliff but swears he didn't kill anyone and blames aliens. Jessica Lange and Evan Peters return, but in new roles. If you haven't seen American Horror Story yet, make it your New Year's resolution to do so.

I hope you all have a safe and happy New Year!