Top 10 Graphic Horror Films
Top 10 Graphic Horror Films
Once completing my mini-goals watching movies for this site, I often like to end with a nice list featuring some of the best in that category. Now that we’re at the end of October, almost to Halloween I’ve completed watching every horror movie that I can find based on a comic book. If you haven’t been following along, graphic horror is my term for these movies based on horror comics. Graphic violence, graphic novel, it works for me. And for this list, I’m excluding thrillers and sticking with movies that have a notable horror aspect to them. They can be action horror, horror comedy, or straight up horror just so long as there’s plenty of horror in it. Enough chit chat, let’s get on with the list!
This is a brand new independent release from Alterna Comics based on the comic of the same name by founder Peter Simeti. It follows the story of an inmate trying to survive life in a prison with sadistic guards and a crazed warden. It’s dark and disturbing, guaranteed to make you feel uncomfortable and showcases some modern practical gore effects. It’s worth it especially for the performance by the late Roddy Piper as one of the guards.
I’m going all the way back to 1972’s Amicus Productions release of Tales From the Crypt for the next item on this list. This is actually the only one that’s a true adaptation of the comics, as the later HBO movies were all original stories with a similar feel to the series. This is also an anthology movie with several different shorts. They vary in quality, but at least three are quite good and feature the likes of Peter Cushing and Joan Collins. This is also overall quite a bit better than the follow up film Vault of Horror which was released a year later.
This is the first HBO produced Tales From the Crypt film and one that I recently re-watched for an episode of Filmwhys. It’s interesting as my tastes have varied on different viewings of this film, the last time I watched it just a couple years ago I wasn’t very thrilled with it, but on this recent watch I really enjoyed what it brought to the table. Like many films on this list, it’s rather on the cheesy side of things, but it has a brilliant performance by Billy Zane as a seducing demon after a key with the blood of Jesus in it.
While I was never familiar with the comic book version of Constantine, it’s apparently quite a bit of a stretch to call this film based on the comic series of the same name. Instead, it’s more apt to call it inspired by the comic. But since I don’t have any real knowledge of the source material, I quite enjoyed this demon hunting Keanu Reeves movie as a supernatural action flick with some impressive visuals and great performances from Peter Stormare and Tilda Swinton.
This is another recent watch for me that I really quite enjoyed. It’s a horror comedy that’s a mix of a reality show and a suspense thriller with quite a bit of gore and situational comedy thrown in the mix. Elliot gets sucked into this secret, high stakes game show where he must complete 13 tasks which range from swatting and swallowing a fly, to playing Weekend at Bernies with a corpse in a coffee shop next to a group of cops, to amputating the arm of an old school bully with zero anesthesia. It’s funny, it’s tense, and there’s a bit of family dynamic at play too.
Also known as 13: Beloved, this is the original Thai version of 13 Sins. There are quite a few differences between the two films so they feel like very different creatures, though they are still quite similar which is why they are so close together on this list. While the English version does several things better in terms of the game itself, this has a much tighter focus on the main character without getting into any other distractions until it comes to the end. There’s slightly less gore, but that doesn’t diminish the emotional impact on some of the challenges that he has to accomplish.
I’m a big fan of the Blade franchise, at least the first two films, and I constantly go back and forth between which of the two films is better. This time around the sequel loses out a tad but is still a fantastic watch with some amazing creature effects on the super vampire Reapers. It also feels a bit more along the lines of an action thriller, though there are still plenty of gore moments with some of the kills.
I had almost forgotten about Hellboy which feels much more like a superhero movie than most of the other films on this list. But there’s enough Lovecraftian horror elements for me to include it alongside the likes of Blade and Constantine. And while I’m a bigger fan of the second film, that one feels much more like a dark fantasy than horror, while this hits more of the grotesque notes like a talking corpse and a giant tentacled creature from another dimension. Plus, it has a great performance from Ron Perlman who embodies the role of the blue collar demon just trying to do his job.
I think this one gets a lot of bonus points for style. This is one of the most stylish vampire movies out there. It also goes for a unique twist on the vampire lore when it comes to the more alien-esque vampires with their own language and culture. These are vampires in a situation where they don’t have to hide and so they relish in their bloody freedom. The concept as a whole is also an intriguing one even if it’s not entirely accurate, but when it’s always night there’s no respite from vampires.
Once again, if I made this list on a different day, much of the top five might be in a different order. I like many of these movies for many different reasons and it’s difficult for me to decide which one is better and which one is worse. I think the original Blade movie works very well by setting up the world of the daywalker. There’s a lot of mythology that they have to cover and they do it in a lot of smart ways. There is the common audience surrogate, but she is handled in a much better way than, say Hellboy. Also it’s the first movie in this series, but it doesn’t feel like an origin story. There’s a brief origin flashback, but Blade is 100% Blade and I wouldn’t have it any other way.
What do you think? Are there any that I missed, or do I have them in the wrong order? What’s your favorite horror movie based on a comic? I think unless you’re a fan of Dr. Giggles, there’s honestly not much out there that I didn’t cover on this list, but I’d love to hear from you anyway. Until next time, this has been Bubbawheat for Flights, Tights, and Movie Nights.