2012 is most definitely going to go down as quite the memorable year for me when it comes to the horror genre. Not only because there were far too many innovative, unique, gory, disturbing and even sometimes hilarious horror films than I could even begin to fit into a top 10 list. More so than that, in 2012, myself and the dedicated rag tag staff here, began to truly get this love letter to the horror genre named Following Your Fears off the ground. We want to thank each and every one of the gore obsessed fiends from the bottom of our black hearts for joining us each and every day. We look forward to bringing you more horror in 2013 and beyond.
With all that mushy stuff out of the way, Following Your Fears presents to you it’s Top 10 Horror and Genre films of 2012.
One has to wonder how a horror film as gripping as The Loved Ones took over three years to make it’s way from it’s native Australia to the shores of the good ole’ USA. I had the pleasure of seeing this one a couple years back for the first time and was absolutely floored. A very intelligent use of gore, and a truly brilliant performance by Robin McLeavy. The Loved Ones is up there with the best horror films that Australia has to offer.
When Brent turns down his classmate Lola’s invitation to the prom, she concocts a wildly violent plan for revenge.
Jennifer Lynch (daughter of God among directors David Lynch) manages to create an absolutely jolting horror film with Chained. The performance by Vincent D’ Onofrio as the demented cabbie Bob, is beyond chilling. He never takes things over the top, and instead gives the character a much needed balance and thus realism. Chained is a brilliant horror film that will leave you on the edge of your seat until even after the credits roll.
Bob, a cab-driving serial killer who stalks his prey on the city streets alongside his reluctant protégé Tim, who must make a life or death choice between following in Bob’s footsteps or breaking free from his captor.
Ti West proves once again why he is one of the brightest young directors in the horror world. Just like his previous film TheHouse of the Devil, West opts to take things slow, and builds atmosphere and characters, rather than hitting you over the head with jump scares and gore. The Innkeepers is just as beautifully shot as TheHouse of the Devil, and the dialogue is just as funny, if not funnier than Cabin Fever 2. The Innkeepers is another in the line of successes for Mr. West. I cannot wait to see what he has in store for us next.
During the final days at the Yankee Pedlar Inn, two employees determined to reveal the hotel’s haunted past begin to experience disturbing events as old guests check in for a stay.
The original Thankskilling for many was a “so bad it’s good” kind of film. While I personally wasn’t in the same boat (hell I truly dug the low budget affair), I can certainly see where those on that side of the fence were coming from. Thankskilling 3 on the the other hand is simply a damn good film. I would be hard pressed to think of a film from this year that I found more downright hilarious from front to back. Thankskilling 3 is in a whole new stratosphere than when we first came to know and love Turkie. Looks like I have myself a new Thanksgiving tradition.
Fowl-mouthed villain Turkie carves through the likes of a rapping grandma, a mindless puppet, a wig-wearing inventor, a bisexual space worm, and their equally ridiculous friends on his quest to recover the last copy of “ThanksKilling 2″.
As dedicated horror fans you have surely heard someone tell you a film is unlike anything you have ever seen. Trust me when I say Where the Dead Go to Die is truly unlike anything you have ever seen, and anything you are likely to see in the future for that matter. Directed by Jimmy Screamerclauz, the film tackles some of the most flat out fucked up subjects you can imagine, and does so in a completely unrelenting fashion. Did I mention that it is done in a seemingly acid-induced animated form? Where the Dead Go to Die will without a doubt have you picking your pretty little jaw off the floor for it’s duration.
A troubled group of children living on the same block are haunted by a talking dog named Labby who brings them on surreal hell-rides between different dimensions and time periods
Excision is the debut film of writer/director Richard Bates Jr. and what a stunning first outing it is. While the film is literally brimming with genre favorites such as Malcom McDowell, Ray Wise, John Waters and Traci Lords, the performance of the film without a doubt goes to Annalynne McCord. Her portrayal of the death obsessed high-schooler Pauline, is simply pitch perfect. Excision is not a one trick pony by any stretch. Not content to be simply a drama, or a black comedy, the film sprinkles in some of the more grotesque, yet beautifully imagined scenes of recent memory. Excision will have you wrapped up in it’s every move until it’s shocking conclusion.
A disturbed and delusional high school student with aspirations of a career in medicine goes to extremes to earn the approval of her controlling mother.
Lovely Molly is a film that really came out of nowhere and blindsided me. It arrived to little fanfare and from the director of one of my absolute most abhorred horror films of all-time, The Blair Witch Project. This film however is shares very little in common with Blair Witch. While both films are ghost stories of sort, Lovely Molly is almost an anti-ghost story. Utilizing many of the haunted house genre tropes it tells the story of a very troubled woman and the many struggles that befall a shattered childhood. Gretchen Lodge in her first starring role puts in an absolutely shivering portrayal as Molly. Lovely Molly succeeds where so many other films fail. An absolute must see horror film.
Newlywed Molly moves into her deceased father’s house in the countryside, where painful memories soon begin to haunt her.
The Snowtown Murders somehow manages to one up The Loved Ones as the best horror film to come from the Outback this year. The film is so effective in it’s objective of horror for a multitude of reasons. The performances are as raw, realistic and downright dirty as you are going to find in any film this side of Harmony Korine (Gummo, Ken Park). The genius of the film shines most brightly with the decision making of director Justin Kurzel and when he chooses to show you what is transpiring, and when he decides hold back. I was left gasping for air on many an occasion throughout the film. The Snowtown Murders is what I live for as a horror and genre film fan.
Based on true events, 16 year-old Jamie falls in with his mother’s new boyfriend and his crowd of self-appointed neighborhood watchmen, a relationship that leads to a spree of torture and murder.
Beyond the Black Rainbow is an enchanting film on so many levels. The film harkens back to the heyday of one David Cronenberg, but isn’t satisfied with mere imitation. Instead director Panos Cosmatos brings his own unique vision of 1980′s style science-fiction and horror, and mixes it with equal parts psychedelia, and dark humor. Beyond the Black Rainbow plays like the bad trip you never had, yet somehow can’t forget. I anxiously await the next nightmarish piece of cinema Cosmatos spews upon the waiting world.
Despite being under heavy sedation, Elena tries to make her way out of Arboria, a secluded, quasi-futuristic commune.
2012 will go down as the year I discovered Astron-6. Quite simply they are the most talented group of misfits to come from the great white north in well… ever. I have been a fan of Troma Studios for longer than I can remember. To say that their output is a mixed bag is really kind of putting it lightly. For every Toxic Avenger there is an equal and opposite Tales From the Crapper. That said, I tried to keep my hopes in check when I first saw the trailer for the Troma funded, Astron-6 written/directed/acted/pretty much every damn thing Father’s Day. All that went out the window when I finally got to view the film for the first time. Father’s Day exceeded every expectation I had, made new expectations, then crushed those as well. Everything that I ever loved about Troma when I first set my eyes on one of their twisted pieces of celluloid was back in spades. The passion that the guys from Astron-6 have for fringe cinema of all types literally bleeds off the screen during the hilarious and yet gore-filled Father’s Day. Astron-6 has reaffirmed why I became so enamored in this genre oh so many years ago. For that they get the crowning achievement, Following Your Fears best film of 2012.
Ahab, a man obsessed with exacting a brutal, violent revenge on the man who murdered his dad, joins John, an eager priest, and Twink, a hot-headed street hustler, on an epic quest to find and defeat this mythical monster known as Chris Fuchman AKA The Father’s Day Killer.