So we all have our comfort foods, comfort tv shows, comfort movies, etc, right? I got this idea yesterday (12/9) and I wondered what my comfort or guilty pleasure films that I go to in the genre. So I thought about what movies I tend to go to more than once to just put on to watch or as background noise as I either work on a blog post or art. In my decent sized collection of vhs tapes, dvds, and movies I’ve seen through streaming or otherwise, I’ve narrowed the numbers to five because that’s all I came up with!
Feel free to comment and add what your favorite guilty pleasure/comfort horror movies (or tv shows) are!
5. Bram Stoker’s Dracula (1992) – You know what this comes down to? Special effects and costume design. I drool over Eiko Ishioka’s design work and clearly the budget was spent on creating “sets”, that’s how Coppola describes it. So basically costumes, special effects, actual sets, come first, which kinda makes sense for the script to be not exactly first. Granted spending attention and time on these “sets” make the movie come to life. Minor shoutout to the music for this movie.
4. Hellraiser (1987) – We have such sights to show you. I enjoy this movie, I really do. Ironically I don’t own it on vhs, I do have 2 and 3 in that form of media but Hellraiser is on dvd for me. What is it about Hellraiser that makes it so entertaining to watch? Cenobites? Doug Bradley is quite great as Lead Cenobite. Could it be the music? The costuming? Ashley Laurence? The overall performances? It’s all those things. Every time I see it, I see something new.
3. A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) – Can we talk about how great this movie is? How great Heather Langenkamp is as well as Robert Englund? The special effects, very practical, are still so effective to this day. Between this and New Nightmare, I like Freddy a bit more serious, mysterious, darker, perhaps sinister than what we get in the MTV Era Freddy. Great storytelling and a storyteller in the form of Wes Craven.
2. Night of the Demons (1988) – Seriously, I saw this movie ONE time and was immediately obsessed. It’s very 80s, the look of the demons are unique and fun, Angela’s dance sequence, the lipstick sequence and that ending… but also I remember seeing the cover for this movie as well as its sequels on vhs in Blockbuster and local video rental stores when I was younger and I was creeped out but also intrigued at the same time but never got the full courage to go ahead and pick the movie. Now that I own the first one on vhs, I can look at it all I want.
1. Phantasm (1979) – What is there to say about Phantasm and that entire franchise? It’s odd to see the later films just showcasing these characters (and actors) aging but I like the consistency (minus replacing Michael Baldwin in the second one, what was up with that). Phantasm is so weird, it’s a mind fuck, very dreamy in a way that ANOES is. You don’t know what exactly you’re watching and whether or not it is happening in real time. Angus Scrimm as The Tall Man is very ominous. His voice, his height, that presence and his obsession with Mike. I own this film on vhs with two very different box covers. I also watched a more remastered version on Shudder this year. Why? Cos I wanted to.
So those are my top 5 movies that I just like to watch over and over with no qualms. They are guilty pleasures to pull out when I just want to watch a movie. Maybe one day I’ll do a fully complete list, maybe a top 20 just to show what else I’m into it. But until then, let me know what are your go to horror movies? Leave them in a comment, I’m curious!