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Special Post – Top 100 Horror Movies of the Decade(1-25)


Who says there are not good horror films anymore?  This decade(2000-2009) produced some of the best horror films of all time, and many other memorable ones sure to become classics someday.  The notion that there are no good horror films anymore lies in fault due to Hollywood passing over many of these films in favor of lesser quality flicks that only aim to make money and appease the moronic general public.  Be it as it may, these films are getting the recognition they deserve in this blog.  It’s the least I could do.  Now here I gave you numbers 25 through 1…

25. Frontier(s)

Frontier(s) is one of my most enjoyed horror films of all time, and surprised me with how great it is given it came out with the mediocre After Dark Horrorfest films.  This French masterpiece comes off as their version of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, but with elements of Hostel and positive usage of Nazis.  Director Xavier Gens has gone on to make a career off his success of this film, and rightfully so.  We get great gore, tension, and some of the best crafted horror scenes I’ve seen in a while.  Read my full review for this film here: Frontier(s)

24. Pan’s Labyrinth

– Guillermo del Toro followed The Devil’s Backbone by giving us another beautifully shot and well told story, Pan’s Labyrinth.  Showing his love for fantasy, del Toro’s story is more fantasy than horror in following a young girl transferring between her fantastical world and her normal life, but the horror in this film is superbly executed and displays his genius in creating engaging tension.  The “sister” film to The Devil’s Backbone, Pan’s Labyrinth is one of the best overall films on this list, only held back by its low level of horror compared to the higher entries on this list.

23. Versus

– Before Ryuhei Kitamura(Alive) gave us the Clive Barker adaptation, The Midnight Meat Train, he gave us one of the coolest flicks I have ever seen in Versus.  Taking place in a forest where the dead cannot stay dead, Versus gives us a blending of two elements/sub-genres that I have never seen blended before…zombies and samurais.  Fast-paced and consisting of non-stop action, Kiramura delivers awesome gore, zany antics, and positive zombie and samurai action resulting in a unique experience that I have yet to see matched by anyone else.  Read my full review for this film here: Versus

22. The Ring

– The one that started in all when it comes to remakes of Asian horror films, The Ring is another remake on this list(along with The Hills Have Eyes remake) that is just as good or surpasses the original film(Ringu).  With one of horror’s scariest opening sequences and a chilling plot about a video tape that kills those who view it exactly seven days later, The Ring is an engaging and creepy watch thanks to Gore Verbinsky’s direction and gloomy atmosphere sure to scare the hell out of you.  Read my full review for this film here: The Ring

21. The Devil’s Backbone

– Guillermo del Toro gave us his “baby”, The Devil’s Backbone, at the beginning of the decade, and although this doesn’t give much in term of scares, it’s a great story sure to keep even the most ADD-ridden viewers glued to the screen.  The “brother” film to Pan’s Labyrinth, del Toro delivers his ever-awesome direction resulting in a great film accomplished with very little.  If you like ghost stories, this well-written sad revenge tale is an epic one. Read my full review for this film here: The Devil’s Backbone

20. Hellboy

– Continuing his stranglehold of horror last decade, Guillermo del Toro finally delivered filmgoers a superhero with a horror influence in his adaptation of the wildly popular Hellboy comic series.  A superhero born from evil, Hellboy battles the remaining counterparts of Hitler’s SS cult half a century after their defeat in WWII, and with horrific and awesome results.  Del Toro brings us lots of action and striking visuals in this watch, and an iconic performance from Ron Perlman(Hellboy II: The Golden Army, I Sell The Dead) leaves Hellboy one of horror’s few “good guys”, with a heavy side of ass-kicking abilities.  Read my full review for this film here: Hellboy

19.

REC 2 took off right where its incredible predecessor left off, and continued the insane horror delivered in the first entry but at a much faster pace.  Running at a smooth 80 minutes, REC 2 blasts off quick and never relents as we are bombarded with constant infected action as well as new eerie developments leaning towards the supernatural realm, an idea that made this one of the more unique infected films out there.  The film is simple in nature, but the horror hits hard, and is a complimenting predecessor to the incredible RECRead my full review for this film here: REC 2

18. Hatchet

– Adam Green(Hatchet II, Frozen, Spiral)’s homeage to old school American horror delivered to us one of the decade’s greatest horror films…and one of the greatest killers the genre has ever seen in Victor Crowley(Kane Hodder; Friday the 13th VII, VIII, IV, X).  Filled with copious amounts of live-action gore and the zaniest kills possible, Hatchet delivers that campy 80s horror feel with modern day technology and the charm of an auteur respectful to the films he grew up adoring.  Good laughs, amazing kills, and Victory Crowley make Hatchet not only one of the best, but one of the most fun and enjoyable horror films of the decade.  Read my full review for this film here: Hatchet

17. Planet Terror

– It is obvious that Texan director Robert Rodriguez has a love for the splatterfest horror flicks he grew up watching, and I applaud him for keeping such films alive by giving us his own cheezy horror films.  From Dusk Till Dawn was excellent, The Faculty was a cool watch, and Rob Rod turned up the splatter meter with his most recent horror effort, Planet Terror.  In Rob Rod’s take on the zombie sub-genre we are given an awesome story that comes with high levels of “pulp” and a successful “grindhouse” feel thanks to his fantastic direction.  This fun and gory no-brainer was an excellent shout-out to horror fans, and along with kickass performances from Bruce Willis, Freddy Rodriguez, and Quentin Tarantino, gave us amazing zombie action as well.   Read my full review for this film here: Planet Terror

16. Them(Ils)

– Not nearly as well known as other French horror films such as Inside, Martyrs, High Tension, and Frontier(s), Them is an amazingly well-executed horror masterpiece that does much with very little.  Relying heavily on atmosphere instead of cheap gimmicks, this breakout film from directors David Moreau and Xavier Palud gives the viewer a taste of true horror that will leave you debating whether you and your significant other can ever be safe at night.  Why?  Because in this simple yet well-written/executed story ripped off two years later by The Strangers, home-sweet-home is the last place you want to be. Read my full review of this film here: Them(Ils)

15. Trick ‘r Treat

Trick ‘r Treat came out of nowhere after sitting on the shelf for way too long(two years), and despite it’s non-theater release it proved to be one of the best horror experiences of 2009.  Written and directed by Michael Dougherty(writer; X2, Superman Returns) and produced by Brian Singer(X-Men, X2, Superman Returns) this film was an outright shout-out to horror fans with its numerous references to the genres most popular sub-genres.  The storied anthology was beautifully crafted and meshed together perfectly, blending different forms of horror into one cohesive story.  Werewolves, vengeful spirits, monsters, and a serial killer adorn the screen in this superb debut directing effort from Michael Doherty.  Read my full review for this film here: Trick ‘r Treat

14. The Orphanage

– This Guillermo del Toro(The Devil’s Backbone, Pan’s Labyrinth) produced Spanish horror flick is in my opinion the best supernatural horror film of this decade.  The Orphanage is a well told story of the never-ending love for a child, and despite being a beautiful film it manages to throw in some creepy moments as well, coming perfectly executed by first-time feature film director Juan Antonio Bayona. The story takes its time, and a well crafted screenplay from first-time feature film writer Sergio G. Sanchez proves that you do not need a strong resume to deliver a fantastic horror film, just creativity and maybe a little bit of del Toro’s influence.  Read my full review on this film here: The Orphanage

13. 28 Weeks Later

– In the horror scene we usually denounce sequels of great films normally because the sequel ruins the franchise, but not in this case.  28 Weeks Later takes off at amazing speed and never relents as we get massive infected carnage and are introduced to more elements than 28 Days Later gave us.  Juan Carlos Fresnadillo delivers a well-shot experience that comes with numerous engaging elements that thanks to great atmosphere and execution keep the viewer engaged from the get-go.  Read my full review for this film here: 28 Weeks Later

12. Inside

– The French have a stranglehold on making shocking horror films, and Inside is one of their most shocking and awesome films to date.  Coming off as a French FEMALE Halloween, this insane slasher film gives us something we don’t get too often in the horror genre, woman vs. woman.  Female antagonists are rare, so it makes this film all the more memorable watching a woman exhibit crazy acts of violence in her attempt to forcefully take the unborn child of another woman.  Finally, a horror film that women can delve into, with the utmost amount of gore to please us men as well.  Read my full review for this film here: Inside

11. Martyrs

– I do not think any film freaked me out the last few years more than Martyrs did.  This French sophomore film from writer/director Pascal Laugier comes with an interesting storyline because in a sense…it has TWO plots.  The first half of the film plays much like a gruesome horror film, and the second half comes out of nowhere and adds some very interesting elements to the plot, while upping the gore and brutality.  The second half not only threw me for a satisfying loop but was hard to watch as well due to what it consisted of, but when the climax hits realize it was all necessary, which says a lot given most films with lots of shock-value do it simply to shock, not with an underlying reason like Martyrs did.  Read my full review for this film here: Martyrs

10. The Mist

– After his very successful bouts with Stephen King adaptations The Green Mile and The Shawshank Redemption, director Frank Darabont upped the horror and gave us another Stephen King adaptation…The Mist.  This story brings the “afraid of what’s in the dark” mentality to us by making it so that what is in the mist is what is scary, and the fact that the mist is lethal in the daytime as well as the nighttime kicks the “afraid of what’s in the dark” notion in the ass.  The horror is expanded when we watch the social breakdown of the townsfolk stuck in the local market store.  Sides are picked, and thanks to an amazing performance by Marcia Gay Harden, it is easy to pick what side you are on(none of that Team Edward/Jacob nonsense).  But wait, there is more.  As if The Mist could not get anymore awesome, we are given one of horror’s most horrific endings ever.  Read my full review for this film here: The Mist

9. Shaun of the Dead

Shaun of the Dead came out of nowhere in 2004 and shocked the horror scene with its numerous hilarious shout-outs to the zombie sub-genre.  Simon Pegg and Edgar Wright solidified themselves as horror geniuses with their witty humor and use of the all too important zombie elements: slow moving zombies, gore, and plenty of head-shots.  It is awesome to see great genre films make it and have good success in the public realm, showing the mass audience how good horror films are done.  Read my full review for this film here: Shaun of the Dead

8. Drag Me To Hell

– The biggest news in the horror realm last decade was not Jackie Earl Haley as the new “Freddy”, or even Robert Rodriguez being attached to the Predators remake/sequel, it was horror legend Sam Raimi(Evil Dead trilogy) finally returning to the genre after the success of his billion dollar Spiderman trilogy.  “The King of Demons” did what he does best and gave us a demon-filled ride full of just the right amount of slapstick and gross-out humor centering on a young woman suffering a gypsy curse in which she will be dragged to hell in three days.  Relying heavily on his trademark “what you DON’T see” scare tactics, true horror returned to the genre this year, from a true horror legend.  Read my full review for this film here: Drag Me To Hell

7. Feast

– Boy oh boy oh boy, if you know me then  you know I absolutely LOVE this film.  Feast gives us everything the great horror flicks of the 70s and 80s gave us, but with a modern look and unique direction from first-timer John Gulager.  This gory thrill ride is filled with awesome scares, great creatures, humorous dialogue, and lots and lots of that all-too-important element of horror…gore!  The only success of Damon/Affleck’s “Project Greenlight’, Feast takes off fast and it moves fast without letting up for more than a few minutes at a time.  Writers Marcus Dunstan and Patrick Melton toy with the viewers in that just when you think you have a hero to root for, THINK AGAIN.  The character play in this simple but well-written story about about bar patrons trying to survive a slew of bloodthirsty creatures outside their walls is amazing and speaking of characters, we get none other than Henry f*ckin Rollins in this one.  Feast is nearly flawless and should be a template and/or litmus test for future horror films.  Read my full review for this film here: Feast

6. Saw

– No since David Fincher’s 1995 masterpiece, Seven, had we seen a film horrifically employ a moral message into its story until Saw debuted.  Written by Leigh Whannell(a “nobody” at the time) and directed by James Wan(also a “nobody” at the time), Saw showed us that can make a highly effective horror film with a low budget as long as you execute it properly, and these guys did just that.  Throwing the moral complex into a film in ways Seven did not, the Jigsaws killer did not kill his victims himself, but allowed them to decide the cost of their life and whether or not it is worth living.  This film makes this No. 6 entry because of it’s sheer impact on the horror genre, and a new blend of horror we had yet to see.  Six sequels later and always potential for more in the works, it seems Mr. Whannell and Mr. Wan have created a monster.  Read my full review for this film here: Saw

5. The Descent

– UK director Neil Marshall(Dog Soldiers) defied “creature survival” odds with this film by casting nothing but women as the main protagonists forced to fight off against a slew of bloodthirsty creatures after finding themselves trapped in an unmapped cave system.  Without the macho strength of a male to save the day, these women were forced to toughen up and carry out unspeakably gory acts usually reserved for the men in horror films.  Just when you thought the “creature feature” horror sub-genre was dead, The Descent showed that the right director, writer, and producer can still put out great horror.  Read my full review for this film here: The Descent

4. Battle Royale

– Now I understand Battle Royale is not an outright horror film, but its plot is so utterly horrific it gets an inclusion into the horror genre.  Now…are you ready for this?  This Japanese film based on a popular graphic novel centers on an era in Japan where the youth have become so corrupt that every year an 8th grade class is sent to a secluded island in which only one student shall return.  How does that work?  Simple, the children must kill each other off and until only one is left standing.  Leave it to the Japanese to have the cojones to make a film like this, and execute it so perfectly.  To make matters even more awesome, the story covers its bases in that if a student decides he/she will just hide and wait till everyone else is dead….they are shit out of luck.  Each student wears an explosive collar around their neck, a collar that will detonate if they stay in a single area for too long.  With superb execution from director Kinji Fukasaku, Battle Royale is an experience you will never forget, whether you like it or not.

3. 28 Days Later

– Before he was accepting Oscar awards for Best Director and Best Picture, Danny Boyle revamped the infected scene and single-handedly brought the famous 70s/80s horror sub-genre back to life.  While not the first to do so, he brilliantly incorporated advanced motor skills(aka “fast running”) to the infected and gave us a film not only horrific but his amazing direction made it beautiful to watch as well.  Imagine this: You wake up in a defunct hospital, with no recollection of why or how long you have been there.  You walk the disheveled hallways and see no sign of human life.  You make your way outside to the typically booming city of London and find it completely deserted, with “missing” posters everywhere.  Scared yet?  Thank screenwriter Alex Garland(Sunshine), for one of the scariest scenarios imaginable.  Read my full review for this film here: 28 Days Later

2. Let The Right One In

– As far as technical aspects go, THIS is the best horror film of the decade.  So why is this Swedish gem No. 2 and not No. 1?  Simply because it is the 2nd best “horror” film of the decade.  Make sense?  Based on the novel by John Ajvide Lindqvist and written for the screen by Lindqvist himself, Let The Right One In embodies the true horrors of real love and lets two young pre-teens teach us lessons beyond our adult capacity.  Beautiful cinematography and amazing character performances leave the viewer mesmerized at the amazing film experience they just endured, with an ending so beautiful, yet so direly horrific it will persist in your mind for weeks to come.  The only thing maybe scarier than zombies, werewolves, the “infected”, monsters, serial killers, and vampires is…love.   Read my full review for this film here: Let The Right One In

1. REC

– Yes, this is the greatest horror film of the decade.  This Spanish “infected” film came out of nowhere in 2007 and showed the world that the outlasted POV filming style can be used with effective consequences if it comes with great execution, and writers/directors Jaume Balaguero and Paco Plaza made sure of that.  The “nowhere to run” atmosphere provides the perfect setting to erect(haha…”erect”…) true horror and supreme scares in an era where Hollywood scare gimmicks have soiled the horror realm.  REC moves remarkably well thanks to its story following a TV journalist tailing firefighters to an apartment building in which horrific events take place as a result of an infection is full of thrills, great scares, and an element we have yet to see in the “infected” horror sub-genre…demon possession.  The aspect of demon possession only makes this experience all the more interesting, and its truly frightening conclusion is one of the best horror final sequences I have EVER seen.  Read my full review for this film here: REC

Before January 15th 2011 this series of posts contained the Top 50 Horror Movies of the Decade, it is now the Top 100 Horror Movies of the Decade.

Thanks for reading.

The Rest of the Top 100 Horror Movies of the Decade

Top 100 Horror Movies of the Decade(26-50)

Top 100 Horror Movies of the Decade(51-75)

Top 100 Horror Movies of the Decade(76-100)

Top 100 Horror Movies of the Decade(Honorable Mentions)

 

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  1. January 6, 2010 at 11:38 pm

    I agree with your #1. I was very surprised at how good it was, loved it. 🙂 Great list of films, sir. 🙂

    • January 7, 2010 at 3:16 am

      thanks.
      let’s see what this new decade has in store for us. heh.

  2. October 3, 2010 at 8:50 pm

    http://frighteningicons.com/ Honorable Mention i am going to look that movie up right now

  3. September 14, 2011 at 1:53 pm

    I know this is a little bit aged, and I’m sure you’ve seen this movie by now, but I’m just wondering… My very favorite horror movie wasn’t on the list, and I don’t think I saw it anywhere in your reviews either! Stay Alive, 2006? It was given pretty terrible ratings by.. well, everyone but me, I guess. It’s not terribly scary, nor is the acting fantastic, but I’m curious to see your thoughts!

    • September 14, 2011 at 11:22 pm

      You know, I have come across Stay Alive a few times this year but keep passing it up for other films. I did see it in theaters when it debuted, but I have yet to see it since I began seriously reviewing (2009) so that is why I have yet to review the film. You are right about it receiving terrible ratings from most people, and while I do not remember it being overly scary I will definitely make more effort into giving it a review now. When I first came across Amusement I was iffy due to the numerous negative reviews I had read, but I absolutely loved/love the film, so you can’t always rely on what others say. Thanks for reading and giving your feedback, I’ll try and get Stay Alive up soon.

  4. February 13, 2012 at 5:08 am

    I’m glad to see Inside, Martyrs, and Frontiers on here. These are some of my favorite horror movies, i like how much blood was used in the movie Inside, it was a mess! Rec was a good film, I liked the religious take on the movie, different from Quarantine. Where is Takashi Miike and the movie “Imprint”? Its a very good horror film with a good torture scene in it, that is the best horror movie to me.

    • February 13, 2012 at 9:41 pm

      I did like Imprint and the only reason I did not list it was because it was more of a TV entry than a movie entry, but I have debated maybe allowing for such films to be in the list.

      • February 15, 2012 at 8:45 am

        That’s true, it was a TV production! Too bad Human centipede part 2 was not good!

  5. rockhopper
    December 27, 2012 at 7:56 am

    Very disappointed to see that the Thing by John Carpenter is not even in top 25. I strongly feel that it is one of the best horror movie ever made. Shaun of the dead and planet terror cannot be classified as horror movie.

    • rockhopper
      December 27, 2012 at 8:03 am

      May I recommend to you some more horror movies that I kind of liked. I found them to be good. Try Dead Man’s Shoes, Dog Soldiers, Suspiria,

    • December 29, 2012 at 4:11 pm

      The Thing by John Carpenter (which is a remake, technically0 is one of the greatest horror movies ever made but it did not meet the criteria for this film because this is the top 100 horror movies OF THE DECADE, which occurred between (2000 and 2009). I liked Dog Soldiers and it may make my list when I revise it, however Suspiria also did not fall within this decade and I have yet to see Dead Man’s Shoes so I will give that a watch. Shaun of the Dead and Planet Terror may not quality as horror films in your own opinion but the consensus is that they are horror films in the end so they warrant being on the list. Thanks for reading and I hope you understand now that this is not a list of the best horror films of all time, just from 2000 to 2009.

      • rockhopper
        January 2, 2013 at 5:17 pm

        I got damn excited to see such exhaustive list and forgot to see the decade tag in your post. By the way nice website which I have been using lately for my Masters of Horror episode viewing. Do you have a all time horror movie list?

        Happy 2013!

      • January 2, 2013 at 9:45 pm

        Thanks, I’m glad you are taking advantage of the Masters of Horror reviews. No, at the moment I don’t have an all time horror movie list. I really don’t know if I ever will, there are so many good horror films my list would probably be several hundred films long. Someday I may do a list of my personal favorites though. I just need to take some time to lay it all out.

  1. August 6, 2010 at 9:44 pm
  2. September 18, 2010 at 3:46 pm

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