The Best and Worst of 2007
What a fucking year! It's hard to make lists and even harder to put said lists in a top to bottom fashion. So, to avoid confusion my picks will also be in no particular order!
Hatchet - This year I have sat through plenty of "films" that came close to making me question why I love this genre. Then Adam Green's slasher opus, Hatchet, splashed itself by the gallon of grue across my screen. In that instant any doubt was erased. It all came back to me. The excitement! The adrenaline! The pure joy associated with watching a swamp monster tear someone's head in fucking half! Starring Kane Hodder as a veritable freight train of terror, this little flick had almost everything I was looking for, except – genuine scares.
For those, my next pick more than fit the bill …
Paranormal Activity - Holy jaw-dropping, please-turn-on-a-fucking-light shit! Rarely do I ever watch a movie twice in a row. But after seeing Paranormal Activity for the first time, I needed to see if it really was as scary as I thought it was. So I invited over friends. This is now a ritual. Every time someone comes over I subject them to this. Watching people watch this film is almost as fun as watching it yourself! Every time someone covers their eyes or literally turns white as a ghost as their mouths hang agape, I get that giddy feeling inside. I like to think that when it comes to horror I'm pretty damned jaded. Parts of this film scared the hell out of me. I'm willing to bet it will have the same effect on you!
Grindhouse - Wanna talk about kickass? It doesn't get much better than this. If you didn't catch this in theatres (and shame on you if you didn't), brother, you missed out on one hell of a good time. Seeing the double bill with the mock trailers and all the other bells and whistles added up to what could only be described as one of the best times I've ever had in a movie theatre. Being a New Yorker and having seen some of the films this "experiment" emulated in their natural environments, I was stunned at the authenticity of it all. If only the theatre had stunk of dried urine, my viewing experience would have been complete!
28 Weeks Later - Here's the shocker of the year for me! My initial reaction to the film's announcement was lukewarm at best. It just seemed needless and truth be told wreaked of cash-in. I've never been happier to be wrong. Scene for scene, scare for scare, 28 Weeks Later is every bit as solid as its predecessor. That is if you can ignore that one little golden moment of plot-line stupidity in which the zombie dad chases his kids around like the shark in Jaws: The Revenge!
The Mist - I sat there in the theatre with my jaw dropped to the floor for almost the entire runtime of Darabont's latest King adaptation and can honestly say that The Mist may just be one of the ballsiest horror films we've been treated to in years! While most have an issue with the film's ending, I loved it and thought it added the perfect exclamation point to this monster-filled thrill ride. This is a film that will leave you talking about it for quite some time after seeing it. Honestly, is there a bigger compliment than that? Job well done!
Honorable Mentions - Wrong Turn 2, Fido, [REC], Sweeney Todd, Flight of the Living Dead and 1408.
Captivity - The only real torture porn going on here was happening to the audience that paid their cold hard cash to sit through this boring abomination. Considering the folks involved with this shit (minus the Dungeons and Dragons guy), it's amazing that Captivity turned out as bad as it did. To this day I hide this DVD when I see it on store shelves. I'm doing my part for the kids, ya know?
Blood and Chocolate - Hey, moron! How about you do that wacky "jump off the wall" shit from atop the highest building you can find! And please, for the love of sweet baby Jesus lying sleeping in the manger, take the entire cast and crew with you as you plummet arms flailing to your doom. My eyes still burn from watching people explode from rainbows into wolves.
The Invisible - How I wish the reels of film were invisible in the theatre that day I sat down to watch this whiny teenage drivel. At least then the projectionist wouldn't have been able to spool the reels and run this shit. "My family doesn't understand me. Wah!" Fuck you.
I Know Who Killed Me - This flick transcends the term "bad". The simple truth is if you wanted to you couldn't set out to make a film turn out as bad as this. It has to happen from a combination of honest effort and complete accident. Still, it had some great gore and was so ridiculous that it provided me with some of the best laughs I've had in forever. Again I ask … Art fucking Bell?!
The Hitcher - This is it, folks! I know I said these were in no particular order, but this is the stinker of the year if not the decade thus far! Platinum Dune's faux-gritty sub-genre really scrapes along the bottom of the barrel here. It's not so bad it's good; it's just a joyless piece of total shit with not a single redeeming quality to be found anywhere. Abysmal. Repugnant. Needless. It's raining cars. Hallelujah. *throws punches in the air while saying "Fuckity, fuck, fuck, fuck!"*
Dishonorable Mentions - The entire month of February, The Hills Have Eyes 2, The Reaping, Skinwalkers, and I'd like to include Creepshow III but honestly I don't even consider that a film.
See you in 2008, for better or for worse.
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