last updated: 29 Aug 2012
I was thinking and well… I do a lot of looking up new movies and all that kind of thing and I thought, why not write about it? I reckoned the easiest way to organise it was by genre and the genre I probably watch the most is Horror. So… that seemed as good a place as any to start.
I’m probably going to be quite strict on what I mean by horror, I’m pretty much sticking to… ghosts, the Devil, slasher stuff, zombies (maybe), vampires, serial killers… that kind of thing. I might throw in a psychological thriller is there’s any that look particularly horrifying… but then Black Swan was pretty horrifying and I wouldn’t put that in. It’s probably best if I bring up a few at the start that you might expect to see that I won’t be putting in.
World War Z – Borderline. I may be wrong on this one but it doesn’t sound like it’s a traditional Zombies! Run Away! type horror film. It sounds more like a drama thriller with zombies. I wouldn’t call Contagion a horror film so this isn’t a horror film.
Prometheus – Again another borderline one. I’m going to err on the side of sci-fi thriller for it. I’ve put together a clips and trailers post for it so head on over and have a look – clips and trailers: Prometheus (2012).
Dark Shadows – I had thought this would be horror and I had it in the guide below. But now that the trailer’s come out, it’s apparent that they’re going a different direction with it. I’ll be doing a separate post in it shortly.
Now that we’ve got the ground rules down, here we go…
NICOLA-T’s HORROR FILMS TO WATCH OUT FOR IN 2012
release date: 16 March 2012 (UK / IRL), 06 January 2012 (US)
director: William Brent Bell
writers: William Brent Bell, Matthew Peterman
cast: Fernanda Andrade, Suzan Crowley, Simon Quarterman, Evan Helmuth
What’s this about?: It’s an exorcism film, ’nuff said? No? Ok, if you really want to know, it’s about an Italian woman searching to find out more about her mother, who was alleged to have killed 3 people during her own exorcism. As she gets further into her search she finds herself getting involved in the world of unauthorised exorcism.
The trailer for this looked pretty decent but critics and audience alike, from the US release in January, have been saying it’s awful – approach with caution.
release date: 13 April 2012 (UK / IRL / US)
director: Drew Goddard
writer: Joss Whedon, Drew Goddard
cast: Chris Hemsworth, Kristen Connolly, Jesse Williams, Amy Acker, Richard Jenkins, Bradley Whitford
what’s this about?: I’m not sure entirely, I watched the trailer and it seemed to be giving too much away so I stopped. If you’re curious then have a look but I don’t recommend it. For what it’s worth, it definitely starts off as your usual good-looking-young-people-find-themselves-in-a-scary-place type horror, but I’m sure Joss Whedon hasn’t left it at that.
My biggest worry about this is that it’s been hanging around a long long time. It was shot back in 2009 but found itself delayed by a post shooting conversion to 3D and the MGM bankrupty saga. I’ve always though of Whedon as a writer who makes his character very “current”, so this delay could potentially have made the film a little dated. Plus, I’m always worried about post conversion 3D. Who isn’t?
what’s this about? Sounds like a fairly standard high school slasher flick, in the self-referential vein of Scary Movie and Scream rather than say, Prom Night. What makes it (possibly) interesting is that it’s by director of some of Britney Spears’s better videos and it got quite a positive review over on Bloody Disgusting. Expect fast paced, MTV-style horror overload.
I suspect this may not release in the UK and Ireland though but you’d never know, it might appear later in the year in some of the bigger, more horror friendly multiplexes. As in, you might see it pop up in Cineworld Dublin.
release date: 04 May 2012 (UK / IRL), 09 March 2012 (US)
director: Chris Kentis, Laura Lau
writers: Gustavo Hernandez (based on the story by), Laura Lau (screenplay)
cast: Elizabeth Olsen, Adam Trese, Eric Sheffer Stevens
What’s this about?: Silent House is a remake of a Uraguayan film, called The Silent House. This US version presents Elizabeth Olsen as the central character in this “real-time” horror film. Over the course of the 88 minutes, Olsen find herself trapped in her family’s summer home with persons unknown.
release date: 11 May 2012 (UK / IRL), 01 June 2012 (US)
director: John Gulager
writers: Marcus Dunston, Patrick Melton
cast: Danielle Panabaker, Christopher Lloyd, Allison Mack, Gary Busey, Ving Rhames, David Hasselhoff
What’s this about?: Piranhas silly!
Ah ok, not so much about the piranhas and their lives… more about how they like to eat their dinner.
I really enjoyed the first iteration of this series, Piranha 3D (review). It really encapsulated the zeitgeist of comedy horror in 2010. A lot and I mean A LOT of good looking scantily clad men and women died at the hands of those fish, mostly in very funny ways. I look forward to seeing what the sequel brings. Well, kind of.
Except… the release date has been pushed a couple of times and at one stage it looked like it was going straight to DVD. Also, neither the writers nor the director of the first one is involved. Also, the new writers are the guys who wrote the second three Saw films (read: the crap ones)… Maybe I’m not looking forward to it that much…
what’s this about?: An old fashioned horror story in a modern setting, but done surprisingly well. When her troubled sister goes missing after their mother’s death, Annie revisits her childhood home to try and track her down… but before long, an unsettling presence makes itself known in the house.
what’s this about?: Another low budget horror film that may not release in the UK and Ireland but has had some good reviews so far. It got a small theatrical release in the US last year however it’s now getting a full release so perhaps if it does well it’ll get picked up for Europe.
Lovely Molly is a psychological horror from Eduardo Sánchez, co-director/writer of The Blair Witch Project. When the titular Molly, played by Gretchen Lodge, returns to her childhood home, her nightmarish memories of those times start to seep into her bright new life… Again, sounds a little standard but I’m always on the look out for well done versions of classic stories.
what’s this about?: Here’s the gist of it – “A couple are haunted by a supernatural presence that is unleashed during a college experiment“. I gather it’s a haunted house type horror.
The Apparition is from first time writer / director Todd Lincoln and, like some of the others on the list, it doesn’t have a UK / IRL date yet. That said, it’s being released in the US by Warner Bros and it stars Harry Potter’s Draco Malfoy and The Twilight Saga’s Alice Cullen… so out of all the smaller films I’m highlighting, this is probably the most likely to pop into the UK / IRL schedule all of a sudden.
release date: 31 August 2012 (US / UK / IRL)
director: Ole Bornedal
writers: Leslie Gornstein (article), Kevin Mannis (original story), Stephen Susco, Stiles White, Juliet Snowdon, E.L. Katz
cast: Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Kyra Sedgwick, Natasha Calis, Grant Show
what’s this about?: From Sam Raimi’s production company, Ghost House Pictures. The story centres on a young girl and her father. When a young girl buys a antique wooden box at a yard sale, it turns out that she’s actually got more than she bargained for.
This info could be a little spoilerish but anyway, the idea for this film was first bandied about in 2005 after the L.A. Times ran an article called “Jinx in a Box” about an eBay listing for a purported “Dibbuk Box“. The listing had an accompanying horror story about how the box had been brought to America by a Holocaust survivor etc… you read it here or see the original listing here. A Dybbuk is a malicious possessing spirit from Jewish folklore and Dibbuk Box was in fact the original title for the film.
In any case it’s been on the shelf for a while but after a title change, two missed release dates and a tussle with the MPAA, it’s finally coming out. The tussle with the MPAA resulted in it being cut down to a PG-13, so this does not fill me with joy, but I’m interested in seeing what we end up with… I mean, it’s a film based on a eBay listing. Madness.
what’s this about?: A mother and daughter move into a new town where they find themselves living next door to a house where a young girl murdered her parents. The daughter befriends the surviving son and finds that… things aren’t a simple as they sound. They never are, are they?
I presume Shue and Lawrence are the mother and daughter and Thieriot is the son. Story writer, Mostow, was the director of Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines and Surrogates, both of which… aren’t as bad as society would have you believe. However, the screenplay writer (Loucka) did write last year’s widely derided Dream House. So this may be one to skip but… we can always live in hope right?
release date: 05 October 2012 (US / UK / IRL)
director: Scott Derrickson
writers: Scott Derrickson (screenplay), C. Robert Cargill
cast: Ethan Hawke, Juliet Rylance, Clare Foley, Michael Hall D’Addario, Vincent D’Onofrio, Fred Dalton Thompson
what’s this about?: Ethan Hawke stars as a whistle-blowing true crime journalist who has uprooted his family in his latest pursuit of a story. When he finds a box of home video footage in the attic of his new home, he starts to realise that this find could lead him to the hows and whys of the family in their new home had been murder. This could be the greatest story he’s ever written, if only something wasn’t trying to stop him.
Spoilerish so maybe skip this paragraph? It’s another haunted house film. Not my favourite genre but then again, late at night, I can get a bit worried if they’re done well. Plus, I like to think Ethan Hawke is a good actor though so this could work out. The sticking point for me is that it’s from the writer and director of The Exorcism of Emily Rose, I did not like that film. Some did though so it’s not automatically a deal breaker.
what’s this about?: As usual, mystery shrouds the latest installment of the Paranormal Activity series. I was not a fan of the first two (review #1, review #2) but when Catfish directors Joost and Shulman came on board for PA3, things improved significantly. The two of them are back for PA4 so, for now, I’m looking forward to it.
what’s this about?: The third film in the popular Spanish horror franchise, following on from the action in 2007′s [●REC] and 2009′s [●REC] ². I missed the second one of these so I don’t know how they left things but I gather that this one is in an all new location. There are plans to follow [●REC]³ Génesis with the tentatively titled [●REC] Apocalypse.
So that’s all folks, I hope you’ve enjoyed this guide to horror movies in 2012. Undoubtedly release dates will change but I’ll try to keep it as up to date as possible. If there’s any others you think should be in there, let me know and I’ll tell you why they’re not…
… Or I’ll put them in, there probably are ones I’ve missed here and there. I’m particularly interested in any non-English language horrors you might know about.