Ranking CANNON FILMS Horror Movies From Worst to Best
Yesterday we passed along word that the definitive Cannon Films documentary The Go-Go Boys: The Inside Story of Cannon Films was coming to Blu-ray and DVD via MVD’s Rewind Collection on July 20th. And that got us thinking about their horror movies. So join us as we go through the ton ten scary movies in the Cannon catalog.
Check them out below.
10. Hard Rock Zombies
Hitler cultists kill everyone in a heavy-metal band but the lead singer (E.J. Curcio). He then brings them back as zombies. Hard Rock Zombies has been described as “atrocious, but in an enjoyable way” to “boring schlock” and everything in between. But at least it’s got a bad title. The horror-comedy was directed and co-written by Krishna Shah. E.J. Curse stars with Geno Andrews, Sam Mann, Mick McMains, Lisa Toothman, and Jack Bliesener. Cannon released it back in September 1985.
09. New Year’s Evil
New Year’s Evil follows a Los Angeles punk rock and new wave show host who receives a series of phone calls during a televised New Year’s Eve bash. Turns out a killer is warning of impending murders that he plans to exact as the New Year dawns on each time zone. The slasher film was written and directed by Emmett Alston. Leonard Neubauer co-wrote. Kip Niven stars with Roz Kelly and Chris Wallace.
David Paulsen wrote and directed this 1980 slasher flick Schizoid (also known as Murder by Mail). It stars Klaus Kinski as a group therapist whose patients keep getting scissored by someone. His group includes an advice columnist played by Mariana Hill.
07. Hospital Massacre (aka X-Ray)
Boaz Davidson (The Last American Virgin) directed the 1982 slasher film Hospital Massacre. Barbi Benton stars as a woman who becomes trapped on an empty floor of a hospital, where a murderer posing as a surgeon attempts to kill her. It was also released under the alternate titles X-Ray, Be My Valentine, Or Else, and Ward 13.
06. Invaders from Mars
Invaders from Mars is a 1986 remake of the 1953 film of the same name. It centers on a boy who sees his parents and neighbors act like zombies after a flying saucer lands in his backyard. Tobe Hooper (Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Poltergeist) directed the science fiction horror film. Dan O’Bannon and Don Jakoby penned the script from a reworking of the original screenplay by Richard Blake from a story by John Tucker Battle. Stan Winston and John Dykstra supplied the elaborate creature and visual FX.
05. 10 to Midnight
10 to Midnight is a crime-horror-thriller directed by J. Lee Thompson from a screenplay originally written by William Roberts. The film stars Charles Bronson as an outraged police detective skirting the law with his rookie partner (Andrew Stevens) to catch a killer of women. The supporting cast includes Lisa Eilbacher, Andrew Stevens, Gene Davis, Geoffrey Lewis, and Wilford Brimley. City Films, a subsidiary of Cannon Films, released 10 to Midnight into American cinemas on March 11, 1983.
RELATED: Cannon Films Making a Comeback!
04. House of the Long Shadows
House of the Long Shadows is notable for starring four iconic horror stars – Vincent Price, Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, and John Carradine – together in one feature. Pete Walker directed the horror-comedy. Michael Armstrong penned the screenplay based on Earl Derr Biggers’ 1913 novel Seven Keys to Baldpate. An American author finds a dilapidated Welsh manor perfect for writing until the residents host a bizarre family reunion. Richard Harvey composed the original music score
Lifeforce is a 1985 British science fiction horror film directed by Tobe Hooper (Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Invaders from Mars). The flick begins when a space mission involving American and British astronauts encounters an alien craft. They bring the humanoids aboard the shuttle. Back on Earth, one of the extraterrestrials appears to be a gorgeous woman. She proceeds to suck the life force out of various Londoners. She eventually, turns the town into a city of roaming half-dead people. When a surviving astronaut realizes what’s happening, he sets out to stop the ruthless alien presence. Dan O’Bannon (Alien) penned the script with Don Jakoby based on Colin Wilson’s 1976 novel The Space Vampires. Steve Railsbac and Mathilda May star along with (yes) Patrick Stewart. The box office failure has since become a cult film.
02. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 is a 1986 black comedy slasher directed by Tobe Hooper. It serves as a parody sequel to Hooper’s original classic. The follow-up centers on Leatherface (Bill Johnson) and Chop-Top (Bill Moseley) setting their sights on a local disc jockey (Caroline Williams). But here comes Dennis Hopper to battle the cannibal clan within their lair, a macabre kickass abandoned amusement park. L. M. Kit Carson penned the script which he also produced with Hooper, Yoram, and Menahem. The received a mixed reception due to its black comedy and gore. But Hooper always said the first film was funny too, but no one seemed to notice. Despite the initial reception, the film since gained a righteous cult following.
01. The Company of Wolves
What could beat The Texas Chainsaw Massacre 2 on this list? Enter director Neil Jordan’s (Interview With The Vampire) eerie masterpiece The Company of Wolves. The 1984 British gothic horror fantasy sports a killer prestige cast including Angela Lansbury (Murder, She Wrote), Stephen Rea (The Crying Game), and David Warner (Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze). The film takes place within the dreams of a young girl (Sarah Patterson) where she encounters serval werewolf = dangerous men analogies. It’s great. It’s like Tim Burton meets François Truffaut. But with gore. Jordan penned the script with Angela Carter based on her 1979 short story. Carter published her first draft in the 1996 anthology The Curious Room.
Directed by Hilla Medalia, The Go-Go Boys is the definitive documentary about Cannon Films. The up-close and personal documentary features interviews with Jean-Claude Van Damme, Eli Roth, and Golan/Globus themselves. As well as archive footage of Sylvester Stallone, Charles Bronson, and Chuck Norris. MVD’s Rewind Collection will release the doc on Blu-ray and DVD on July 20th. Pre-order HERE
Will you also snag a copy on Blu-ray and/or DVD?