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10.  A Nightmare On Elm Street 1984 – Warner Bros Pictures – One of the most famous film production companies 

A Nightmare On Elm Street is a horror franchise that was created by Wes Craven. Scream and A Nightmare On Elm Street are his most famous movies. This film was inspired by an article that he read in a Los Angeles newspaper. A family had fled Cambodia in the hope they could escape a terrifying situation. A young boy was subjected to the most horrific nightmares in which something scary was chasing him in his dreams. The child was so scared that he stayed awake for days on end to avoid the dreams that seem so real. Eventually, he had no choice but to sleep. When the young boy fell asleep, he would never wake up again because he died in the terrible nightmare. “Here was a youngster having a vision of a horror that everyone older was denying. That became the central line of Nightmare on Elm Street” – Wes Craven.

This movie portrays nightmare disorder. A disorder that enables individuals to have recurring dreams that often presents a threat to their life. As a child, I would watch the horror series with my older cousins. I started watching these films from the young age of seven. I was frightened at first but having people around you and pillow in your arms really helps. As I got older the realisation of the nature of the film soon became clear. In terms of visual and special effects, film production companies such as Warner Bros Pictures didn’t have mind blowing effects like we do now. I appreciate that in 1984 film production comapnies didn’t have the technology we do in 2021. Nevertheless I am a huge fan of the Freddy Kruger movies so the film franchise is very much welcome here.

9.  Rings 2017 – Paramount Pictures – one of the most famous film production companies 

Rings is the third in the horror movie series. This series was inspired by Spiral, a Japanese novel. This novel was also brought out as a film in Japan in 2000 called Uzumaki, meaning whirlpool. Unfortunately, Spiral wasn’t a success in Japan. The Ring was heavily inspired by the original and was brought out in 2002 as an American remake, which was a roaring success. A little girl called Samara was killed by her mother and thrown down a well. A video tape that depicts dark and sinister images is what takes the life of several people. The phone rings and you hear voice say the words “seven days”. The Ring Two was brought out three years later in 2005 as a sequel that gives us more backstory of why her mother murdered her. Samaras ghost desperately tries to possess the body of young boy Aidan.

Rings is a great addition to the series. This film follows a girl who slowly begins to become possessed by Samara after her boyfriend tells her about the sinister tape. Watching the tape has very bad consequences for the young girl as life starts going downhill rapidly. There is a key element to the horror series. You must show the tape to someone else before your body and soul are claimed by Samara.  

The Ring series is just brilliant. Naomi Watts will always be the star of the show for me because of her amazing performances in the first two. The amazing effects in the film really bring that sinister element to life. The video tape is definitely a highlight because it is shown in all three movies which connect them very well. I think film production companies such as Paramount Pictures have excellent production teams to create scary horror movies like this one.

Click here to watch a clip from The Ring

Click here to watch a clip from The Ring Two 

8.  Orphan 2009 – Warner Bros Pictures – one of the most famous film production companies 

Orphan is a must-see movie! The plot twist is just genius which was based on a true story. A Christian family from Indiana, Kristine and Michael Bennet, adopted a six-year-old Ukrainian girl in 2010. They had three sons together, one of the boys have autism. Kristine is a motivational speaker and parenting author. She specialises in special needs. Their adopted daughter Natalia Grace had already been in the US for two years prior to being accepted into the family. Natalia Grace has a form of dwarfism which means she has difficulty walking and is only three-foot tall. The previous family who had adopted her returned her for reasons they did not wish to say.

Kristine Bennet stated in an interview that “she began to terrorise the family. She told them she wanted to kill them. She would stand over them when they were sleeping. She started jumping out of moving cars and smearing blood on mirrors”. The Bennet’s claimed that Natalia had adult teeth and wasn’t a child at all. They were convinced that she was in fact a 22-year-old girl who was a psychopath.

Orphan is psychological horror about a nine-year-old girl Russian girl who is adopted by an American family. Prior to Esther joining their family, Kate and John Coleman had mourned over the death of their unborn child Jessica. Esther start behaving very strangely and doing shocking things – especially to her new siblings. The reasonings behind Esther’s behaviour soon become apparent after the hospitalisation of their eldest child Daniel.  

I think that film production companies such as Warner Bros have an eye for impactful storytelling. This film’s plot twist certainly shocked me. I think the actress Vera Farmiga was absolutely superb in this film.

* Fun fact – Leonardo DiCaprio is one of the producers for this film.

 

7. The Prodigy 2019 – Orion Pictures

The Prodigy is similar to Orphan in terms of the main protagonist being an “evil child”. Although this film is very different from films such as Orphan and The Omen. This film is about a young boy who harbours the presence of a soul that is psychopathic and has demonic behaviour. This presence turns out to be a dangerous serial killer who is reincarnated into baby Miles when he is born, just as murderous Edward Scarka is shot dead by police. Parents Sarah and John Blume are over the moon as they welcome their baby boy into the world.

The most bizarre thing happens when Miles says his first word ‘mama’ as a new-born. Doctors assure the shocked parents the he is a genius. As he grows, his intelligence for his age starts to become something of mystery. Doctors soon become concerned and run multiple tests. After Miles turns eight years old, his behaviour takes a devastating turn when his babysitter is seriously injured after a game of hide and seek. The young child starts the suffer from night terrors and alarmingly starts to speak Hungarian in his sleep. An expert in rebirth and reincarnation gets in touch with Sarah and John and offers to assess their troubled son. The findings are sinister.

I found this film very disturbing and creepy. Any movie with a weird child is very intriguing. The behaviour this boy depicts kept me interested throughout. I was so desperate to know what was wrong with him. I knew whatever it was would be a very good plot twist because the child was ahead of his years.  

 

6. Don’t Breathe 2016 – Ghost House and Sony Pictures

Don’t Breathe is a horror/thriller and was originally called ‘A Man in the Dark’. Fede Álvarez writer, director and Producer said “I was pushy; I said, ‘This is my movie; I’ll write it, produce it, direct it. And I’ll own it.’ They believed in the story, but I think nobody, not even me, imagined the potential of what would end up happening at the box office. We created a precedent”. Don’t Breathe was an indie film until it was brought by Sony Pictures and has so far grossed $157 million.

The film is about three offenders who plan to break into the house of an Army veteran. A job that seemed very attractive because one of the offenders finds out that this man has $300,000 in cash somewhere in the house. The youngsters soon find out that Norman Nordstrom (their target) is blind. That doesn’t stop them from wanting that huge amount of cash though. As they break into the man’s house, they aren’t exactly discreet about their force of entry when they start breaking windows and shooting a lock off the basement door. Norman soon appears and it becomes a battle to get out of the house alive as he has elevated senses. Breathing is the last thing they want to do in this situation.  

I was pleasantly surprised by this film. I love that fact the story is primarily about a blind man who can defend himself in dangerous situations. Is it realistic? I don’t think it is but for a film it’s pretty great. I think film production companies focus more on the imagination and possibilities rather than a logical approach for storylines. The ending was quite a shock, didn’t expect that to happen. One of my favourite scenes is when the dog attacks the man in the car after Norman gets injured. I think it’s important to the narrative that the offenders get a taste of their own medicine. I can’t wait for Don’t Breathe 2 to be released on 13th August 2021.   

Click here to watch the trailer for Don’t Breathe 2

5. The Invisble Man 2020 – Universal Pictures

The Invisible Man is a horror/thriller that’s about a terrified woman who escapes the abusive relationship of her boyfriend. Adrian Griffin is an optical scientist and has a high spec luxury house on a cliff. Cecelia is an architect. Their toxic and rather creepy relationship gets more intense throughout after Cecelia finds out Adrian has committed suicide – or so she thought. Only she knows the real truth and what this man is capable of. There is no doubt in her mind that this violent man is still around, the question is where?

I found this film incredibly intense. There are several moments that make your heart jump into your throat. The sound effects were amazing as it created an immersive experience when played through a surround sound system. I think that the level of technology depicted through this film was great. The camerawork was very cleverly executed in which Cecelia’s mental state and isolation was focused on very well. I felt so helpless for this character to the point where I got so frustrated. The character was constantly framed for any wrong doing. As far as film production companies go, Universal Pictures definitely gets a 10 out of 10 for this film.  

 

4. Dead Silence 2007 – Twisted Pictures 

Dead silence is a supernatural horror film. This film is quite grotesque and not for the faint hearted. A young woman is murdered in a gruesome way and her husband Jamie, becomes the main suspect. The couple received a strange package from Raven’s Fair. This town has many points of interest including: Raven’s Fair cemetery, Moss Lake and Ravin’s Fair Motel; Walker Funeral Home. The Ashen family are believed to have sparked the evil spirit of Mary Shaw. The tale is about a woman who was a ventriloquist named Mary Shaw who had no children, only dolls. The Ventriloquist had over 100 dolls but Billy was her favourite.

One day Mary headlined her act in the theatre on Moss Lake. In the audience were young boys Henry Walker and Michael Ashen. Henry was impressed with her talent however Michael was quick to judge the woman and called her a fraud saying “I can see your lips moving”. Mary suppressed her embarrassment and anger and continued with the show. After the show, Mary plotted her revenge against the young boy and kidnaped him. In the theatre there was a private room where she killed him. The news of the missing boy soon spread through the town and townsfolk pointed blame at Mary. With no proof yet and strong hunch, the Ashen family and the townsfolk captured her, cutting her throat open and leaving her to bleed to death. Mary Shaw’s vicious acts are all for a reason and the truth is very sinister.  

I remember watching this film with my step sister when I was thirteen. I had never seen a ghost as terrifying as Mary Shaw. I think that film production companies such as Twisted Pictures have created something truly horrifying. The plot is so disturbing that I had nightmares about this woman for months. I love the jump scares and nightmare flashbacks. It really builds up tension and pumps adrenaline. My advice for people who want to watch it, don’t watch the film alone and don’t watch it in the dark – unless you’re brave enough.

3. The Woman In Black 2012 – Alliance & Hammer Films

The Woman in Black is a gothic super-natural horror that’s set in 20th century England. This is a second adaptation of Susan Hills 1983 novel. An Edwardian lawyer is called to a house at the end of a shingle causeway, where the ghost of an old woman dressed in black torments the locals. The film starts with three little girls playing with their tea set. Suddenly something compels them to open the windows and jump to their death. In 1906 Arthur Kipps (the lawyer), loses his wife during the birth of their son Joseph. Four years later, Arthur is sent to Crythin Gifford to gather documents from the deceased owner of Eel Marsh House – Alice Drablow. Upon arriving in the village, Arthur gets the cold shoulder of the villagers however one man (Samuel Daily) invites him in for dinner. The following morning Sam drives him to Eel Marsh House and on their journey, Arthur hears strange noises. A noise of a screaming child catches his attention but there is nothing to be seen when he looks down the fogged, abandoned causeway. Arthur is the only one who is brave enough to find out the real truth.

The Woman in Black had to be in the top 5. I love that fact this film is set in the 20th century. I think the filmmakers done an amazing job on making the setting so creepy. There is something about this era that sends chills down my spine. One of my favourite scenes from this film has to be the opening clip. As the camera pulls back in the introduction, we see the old woman standing in the corner. A great job on editing I must say. The way the clips shift so sharply to the next. This mysterious woman is an evil spirit that will possess and torment anyone who dares to visit the village.

 

2. Insidous 2010 – Blumhouse Productions

Insidious is the first instalment of the supernatural horror film series. The Lambert family move into their new home and life seems to be good until strange things start to happen around the house. Books and boxes start to move on their own. A strange noise in the attic seems to catch the attention of their middle child Dalton. The young boy goes to investigate and the parents here a scream. When the boy’s dad looks around the attic, nothing seems to be out of the ordinary. Later on, Dalton mysteriously falls into a coma and after three months of tests, doctors give him a physical clean bill of health. Mum and dad (Renai and Josh) decide to take Dalton home and wait to see if their son will wake up again. Renai then starts to see strange things. Josh’s mother (Lorraine) decides to hire a medium. It soon becomes apparent that it’s not the house that’s haunted, it’s Dalton! This isn’t the first time the medium (Elise) has been contacted by Lorraine. Dalton’s mysterious symptoms are in fact a gift that allows him to travel among the dead in an astral dimension. A gift that his father has passed down to him. It is a race against time to bring young Dalton back before he is trapped there forever.

I love insidious! My favourite has to be Insidious: chapter 2 because it gives the audience more of a back story about the ability Josh had. Nevertheless, a great introduction into the film series. The reason Insidious sits proudly at number two, is because of the haunting presence that is maintained throughout. It always felt like something was in the room with the characters and indeed there was. I enjoyed connecting the puzzles and figuring out what’s going to happen.  

1. The Conjuring 2: The Enfield Case 2016 – Warner Bros Pictures 

The Conjuring 2: The Enfield Case is a supernatural horror set in 1977 England. Based on a true story. A young girl Janet claims that she is being haunted by the old man who used to live in her home. After her mother (Peggy) hears a loud bang upstairs, she is quick to storm upstairs to tell her children to stop messing around when a chest of draws moves across the room on its own. Peggy invites the media into their lives in the hope help will come. An interview is set up with a number of reporters including Maurice Grosse, who is a British paranormal investigator. Contact is made with the evil spirit and the conversation is recorded. A priest presents the recorded audio to Ed and Lorraine Warren. Ed was a demonologist and Lorraine a clairvoyant. The voice sounded like a confused old man to the Warrens. The priest proceeds to tell them that the voice is coming from an eleven-year-old girl. After flying out to England and witnessing these paranormal occurrences, The Warrens can’t find concrete evidence to suggest that there is an evil spirit controlling the family’s household.

Ed and Lorraine decide to go back home to America. As soon as they leave, the spirit takes full control of the young girl. Lorraine suddenly remembers that two tapes they recorded may habour a vital clue that could reveal the truth. The couple soon learn that the old man they have been communicating with isn’t evil. The man is in fact a pawn and the real evil behind this possession is far more terrifying and deadly than they could have imagined.

The conjuring 2: The Enfield case is the scariest horror I have seen to date. I have never been on the edge of my seat more than watching this film. I went to go and see this film in cinema with my family. It was such an immersive experience. It felt like the demon was going to jump out and grab us. The special and visual effects were absolutely on point. The demon is so terrifying. The Crooked Man and the dog scene were amazing! The graphics made the scene one of my highlights.