The Foywonder's Ten Worst Horror Films of the Decade


Number 9


The Foywonder's Ten Worst Horror Films of the DecadeA harmonic convergence of everything wrong with the horror remake mentality that swept Hollywood the past decade; everything creepy and moody and atmospheric that made the original work was scuttled in favor of a PG-13 rating, lame digital ghosts that primarily kill by throwing victims through windows, the addition of an unrequited love story between a female cast member and one of the ghosts, and a cast comprised almost entirely of good-looking uncharismatic actors under the age of 30 that talk like uncharismatic actors over the age of 40. Where was this youth-dominated island anyway - off the coast of Logan's Run?

All you can do is watch and shake your head in disgust. Is there anyone that watches John Carpenter's original and says to themself, "If only this movie had a wisecracking black guy?" Has anyone ever watched John Carpenter's original and thought, "Forget the ghost pirates; I want to watch a woman fall in the water and fight for her life to break free from the seaweed that entangles her?" Do you think if Debra Hill had lived to see this remake she would have leaned over to Carpenter and told him how that ghost hand coming out of the sink was so much cooler than anything he did in his version? Sadly, the producers of this remake seemed to think so.

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This may be my all time favorite list. I have recommended it to anyone who says the words Van Helsing in my presence...which is way more often than I'd like to admit. kudos on that epic last line. Way to drive that final nail in the coffin. No one will EVER be a better Dracula than Gary Oldman.

Submitted by DaveBauchery on Sun, 07/24/2011 - 12:49am.
dwesthatesyou's picture


I had to immediately put your 4 honorary mentions/hilarious pieces of cinematic shit in my Netflix queque and move them to the top.

Submitted by dwesthatesyou on Thu, 01/14/2010 - 6:04pm.

Happy to not see the Texas remake on the list. Take away the original, and watched with an open mind, it wasn't terrible.

However, the unborn was fucking AWFUL. Honestly, never in my life did I watch anything that was taking itself seriously that was that terrible. Van helsing was definitely crap, but I'm not sure it was taking itself 100% seriously. I completely agree with everything you've said in your lists, but would have added the unborn...probably at #1. it doesn't even suck by virtue of being a bad remake. At least we are predisposed to dislike remakes.

Also...where's the first twilight? I had to sit through opening night in a college town theater...talk about horror. The only movie I ever fell asleep to in a theater.

Submitted by Axeslinger0u812 on Sat, 01/02/2010 - 3:31am.
jesstro's picture

I think your list is right on... however, Van Helsing... #1? Its more of a comedic action movie, the only "horror" themes that exist in the movie, is its vagrant use of classic horror monsters. To compare it to movies that actually had the intention of being scary (in which they failed miserably) is not really fair. Sure it sucked, but it did have its moments as an action movie, which it should be seen as.

Submitted by jesstro on Mon, 12/28/2009 - 3:05pm.
TheVictorian's picture

There's no way in hell AVPR was worse than AVP.

Death Race should be in there as well. And that slasher film Uwe Boll made, seed, the only film where i was envious of the victims fate as they'd got off easy.

All the world will be you enemy

Submitted by TheVictorian on Sun, 12/27/2009 - 8:02pm.
Didn't See It Coming's picture

Black Xmas and Van Helsing are not only the 2 worst horror movies of the decade but are the worst I have ever seen in theatres.

Halloween Resurrection is awful but so was Zombie's Halloween. I'll never watch either again to give a fair comparison but either way, bad is bad.

Submitted by Didn't See It Coming on Sun, 12/27/2009 - 1:27pm.

The Wicker Man highlight video is fuckin' great! I never get tired of watching it

Submitted by Blue Eyed Demon on Sat, 12/26/2009 - 11:42am.
Count Zartro's picture

I can't argue with too much on that list. I'm in the camp that would have had Zombie's Halloween II on there, but I don't know what I would have taken off to get it on there.

As far as Rob Zombie hate, as a horror director he is debatably 1 for 4 as far as good movies go and lives off the reputation of his music. I think he is capable of making horror films I would want to see, but he needs to be working with properties that fit his style. Stuff like Motel Hell, Eaten Alive, Blood Salvage, Hunters Blood.

And you know what RZ's Halloween II had that John Carpenter's didn't? A white horse. I didn't care for Zombie's take on the first Halloween, but I know horror fans who did, so I get that, but Zombie's Halloween II was pure shit.

Submitted by Count Zartro on Sat, 12/26/2009 - 12:23am.

its just sad seeing all these remakes. NONE of these damn films need to be remade. The 70's was the RULING period for QUALITY horror with great STORY LINES!

Submitted by jayspray on Wed, 12/30/2009 - 5:23pm.
Sirand's picture

Having re-watched about 15 minutes of Halloween Resurrection on a recent TV airing, I have to say Foy is 100% correct: It's worse than Zombie's two films.

Zombie's Halloweens were misguided self-indulgent shit but at least the man cared about the misguided self-indulgent shit he was making...even if he was the only one who liked it. Resurrection is just a disgrace on all levels. It's nothing more than an MTV-special manufactured for the dumbest fucking teens on the planet.

Even the worst trailer trash line in Zombie's films sounds Oscar-calibur compared to the shit Busta Rhymes spews in that movie.

Submitted by Sirand on Sat, 12/26/2009 - 12:25am.
Floydian Trip's picture

So the Rob Zombie haters aren't just satisfied with hating him but that also extends to people that like him too? Mental midgets.

Submitted by Floydian Trip on Sat, 12/26/2009 - 12:14am.
DavidFullam's picture

Yeah, it got old about 100 years ago.

Submitted by DavidFullam on Sat, 12/26/2009 - 12:38pm.
Foywonder's picture

I beg to differ. The mere fact that half the comments to this article has revolved around the merits or lack thereof Rob Zombie's Halloween flicks tells me it is and will continue to be a hotly debated subject matter a long time to come.

I don't look down on the people that like Zombie's remake - I'm genuinely baffled as to what it is they like. Yet they defend it vehemently even though it does so little to earn that loyalty. Rob Zombie's Halloween is like the Sarah Palin of horror cinema.

Submitted by Foywonder on Sat, 12/26/2009 - 6:21pm.
Terminal's picture

It's also funny that people will smash Platinum Dunes for being hacks remaking great horror in to bad horror for purely cash purposes yet people defend Zombie for doing the exact same thing. People act like he's some auteur or misunderstood genius who hasn't found his niche yet. The man had five fucking chances and failed four times. Wow.

Submitted by Terminal on Thu, 01/14/2010 - 6:14pm.
DavidFullam's picture

When did anyone in the Rz Halloween films claim to know all about Russia as it lies next door? :)

Submitted by DavidFullam on Sun, 12/27/2009 - 10:35pm.
Floydian Trip's picture

The Zombie hate is really fucking old and tired. Get over it. I can't wait until he makes another excellent horror film like House or Devil's and I better not see one of these people commenting about it.

Submitted by Floydian Trip on Fri, 12/25/2009 - 1:59pm.
Terminal's picture

Yeah! Then we can get more movies about psychotic hillbillies and a bearded Michael Meyers! Well, I had my say about people who defend Zombie.

Submitted by Terminal on Fri, 12/25/2009 - 4:42pm.

Granted the redneck subplots are repetitive, but you are saying that the Curse of the Thorn and occultists were much better? I mean, truthfully, Carpenter hasn't directed a decent picture since his Prince of Darkness trilogy. I mean, I am surprised "Ghost of Mars" isn't on the list. Just saying...

Submitted by robertmundy on Fri, 12/25/2009 - 9:08pm.
Terminal's picture

I'd eat that mark of thorn crap any day over Zombie's shitty redneck hillbilly bullsht.

Submitted by Terminal on Thu, 01/14/2010 - 6:25pm.
tedge1979's picture

Great list, Foy. I completely agree with your pick for VAN HELSING, but I've gotta admit... I kinda dig DOOM. Its what would have happened if Roger Corman directed ALIENS, but once he was done giving birth to it, dropped it on its head a few times. Its got a terrible charm that I can't quite ignore.

But, as always, you do a fine job of kickin' ass, Foy. Kudos, good sir.

Submitted by tedge1979 on Fri, 12/25/2009 - 1:25pm.
kiddcapone's picture

I don't agree about Resurrection being worse than Rob Zombie's bullshit. At least it still had MICHAEL MYERS, the Halloween theme music, and decent kills. Delete the kung-fu bullshit, and eliminate the hatred about rappers turned actors, and it's a different movie. Still, not good, but not nearly the worst of the decade.

I also don't consider a lot of films to be "horror". Yes, Scary Movie 2, Premonition, Ultraviolet, and Doom sucked balls, but I wouldn't put them on a horror list. There's still a bunch of films that fall into the "gray" area, but I'll continue..

My ten would include:

10 - House of 1000 Corpses
9 - Black Christmas
8 - Halloween
7 - Feardotcom
6 - The Fog
5 - Alone in the Dark
4 - Friday the 13th
3 - The Ring 2
2 - Funny Games
1 - Van Helsing

Dishonorable Mention: Jason X, White Noise, Dracula 2000, House of the Dead, The Wicker Man, and When a Stranger Calls.

Kiddcapone - "Breaking the 4th wall since 1974"

Submitted by kiddcapone on Fri, 12/25/2009 - 2:19pm.
kiddcapone's picture

Oh, and for the record, I never saw all of Halloween 2 yet. That's the only reason why it didn't make my list. I refuse to help it make one extra cent. I watched 20 minutes of a downloaded copy but it was way too dark. I'll rent it from Netflix and then shit all over it.

Submitted by kiddcapone on Sat, 12/26/2009 - 6:58pm.
Floydian Trip's picture

Well said Mundy. Couldn't agree more. Very thoughtful.

Submitted by Floydian Trip on Fri, 12/25/2009 - 10:25am.

I agree with everything in the article and the majority of the comments. Except for the ones regarding the Halloween remakes. You see, as much as I agree with some of the criticisms of "H2", I don't believe that Carpenter's sequel, "Halloween II" is as good as everybody proclaims it to be. I think just because it was the original sequel, it automatically gets exempt from criticism. Truthfully, if one really examines Carpenter's sequel, they will discover that that the majority of the complaints for Zombie's sequel are also prevalent in Carpenter's film. Take for instance the acting, which seems to be a major issue. In Halloween II, Donald Pleasance's Loomis spends the majority of his time running around, yelling "He's evil" or the eternal, "I shot him six times in the heart!" Whatever arc of development the character went through did not continue. Or, Jamie Lee Curtis' performance: she spent the majority of the film in a drugged haze...which eliminates any development and is...not complex acting. Characters aside, let's talk about the violence. "Halloween II"'s violence is almost on the same level as Zombie's: two people--Dr. Mixter and the nurse, whose name eludes me-- have syringes jammed in their eyes; the security guard at the hospital has head split open, and is then hung; and do I need to mention what happened to Mrs. Alves?

My point in all of this is, yes, the Zombie sequel will never meet the expectations of the fans of the original series; as Bob Dylan once said, "the times are a-changin'". The studio system as well as the audiences have changed drastically...so, instead of original vision, we have remakes and prequels....if anything could be said positively of Zombie, it's that he created his own vision, for better or for worse (in fact, it has a better narrative weight--it's an allegory of how crime writers, such as Vincent Bugliosi, exploit murder and destroy lives, while they better their own.)

Before I leave, I want to mention something that has been ignored on the boards: "Halloween II" was not well-received during its time, either. Roger Ebert wrote a review focusing on the idiot plot that drives the film, and many reviewers found it to be primarily "violence-driven" with a flimsy narrative.

Sound familiar?

Submitted by robertmundy on Fri, 12/25/2009 - 10:02am.
Terminal's picture

Sounds like a lot of excuses, mundy. And if you're implying that Zombie's monstrosities are ahead of their time, then you sir are of questionable sanity.

Submitted by Terminal on Fri, 12/25/2009 - 4:53pm.

This is a bit ridiculous because we have no way of knowing if a film is a ahead of its time until said time passes. So Zombie's films could be ahead of their time. Most horror movies get trashed by critics of their era but go on to eventually receive the accolades they deserve. The Thing was received poorly by critics and audiences. Most critics hated the original TCM and NOTLD, as passed them off as akin to porn in the same way the so-called torture porn horror films (which Zombie gets lumped in with) get ignored. I'm not saying this will happen, but it could. And to claim it can't is ignorant because we have no way of knowing how these movies will influence the next generation of horror films.

Submitted by AngryChairr on Sat, 12/26/2009 - 1:24am.
LifeMi's picture

I agree that Pleasance and Curtis are shortchanged in the original H2, but you can't even remotely compare Rosenthal's H2 to Zombie's H2. Furthermore, you can't really take anything Ebert says about slasher films seriously. I can see why some people might not like the original H2 (I personally dig it); I can't understand how anyone in their right mind can like Zombie's film.

Submitted by LifeMi on Fri, 12/25/2009 - 8:53pm.
fceurich39's picture

agreed on all films well almost the black christmas remake was bad but i loved the awfulness factor kinda reminded me of silent night deadly night which is my favorite x-mas and black x-mas is so bad it's fun

also AVPR I liked a whole hell of alot better than AVP i mean come on how could we stand the PG-13 alien vs predator film and the unrated director's cut wasn't much better now granted the AVPR worse thing about it was the lighting but aside from that i thought it was miles above AVP.

now granted i have really bad things about Halloween H20 mainly for the cgi mask and the whole scream elements which i actually hate more than resurrection which too me was alright with the exception of busta rhymes kung fu'ing michael myers

Submitted by fceurich39 on Fri, 12/25/2009 - 12:28am.

I'll only defend Zombie's remake in as far as the first half of the movie, which would have made an okay origin story. Sure, it abandoned everything that made the original kid Myers scary -- the good, young, white, middle class suburban kid suddenly snapping and killing someone for no reason -- but it had some merit from at least the direction on Zombie's part. It showed he knew what he was doing behind the camera, if not on the page. Would I have preferred a better origin story? Sure. It could've been a great satire on the "people from the suburbs don't just kill people" notion that permeates this country, but it also could've been a lot worse. The only part of the movie I took real exception with was Zombie continuing his offensive stereotypes of "white trash." The rest either looked great, or was boring at worst. Nothing quite like the mindfuck insanity of Resurrection where you had them going off on tangents like Laurie's murder having no bearing on anything in the movie after it happened or Kung Fu Busta Rhymes. That was just awful.

Submitted by AngryChairr on Fri, 12/25/2009 - 12:05am.
i3ullseye's picture

Fantastic list! Sure, there are 2 or 3 I disagree with (loved 13 Ghosts myself), but the top 10 are spot on. And yes, Van helsing had me amped for potential greatness also, only to have my hopes and dreams dashed upon the harsh jagged rocks of all too real disappointment.

Shit like this is the reason I compulsively come back to this site.

Not sure how Jennifers Body wasn't in the top 10 however. To me, that is worse than half your top 10 listed.

Submitted by i3ullseye on Thu, 12/24/2009 - 6:50pm.

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