Every year, we’re met instantly with a shock of Christmas music strewn through the local shopping center, green and red decorations quickly filling the shelves, and people begin running around like little elves checking off their Christmas shopping lists… all mere moments after the Halloween festivities come to an end.
This year, I have a special treat for all of my Halloween and horror loving friends and family:
The 101 Best Horror Films of the Decade: 2010s – Top 101 – brought to you exclusively on My Life My Migraine.
This one of a kind collection has been curated by an incredibly talented ghost-writer (G.C.) with an admirable attention to detail. He has sifted through hundreds of movies from the previous decade and created immaculate descriptions that leave you ready to watch all 101 films the moment you read the review, all adorned with his deep rooted knowledge of the rules of horror, guidelines of filming and development of various directors throughout their careers.
Over the next six weeks the countdown to number one will take place every Friday night, ending with the celebration of Friday the 13th in December – a true Nightmare Before Christmas.
To kick off the blog takeover, we have a few BONUS lists before the official countdown starts on Friday, November 8th!
Scariest Horror Movie Experiences – An Unfiltered Look Into The Ghostwriter’s Personal List
As promised, here is a list of the movies I was most scared by. This is not in any way an objective calculation of what makes a movie scary, nor is it a list that required any deep thought other than the thought of the memory of watching the film and how it made me feel. This list is not based on cumulative viewing experiences or which films remain scary over time, but rather based on how I felt during a single viewing experience. From memory, these are the scariest viewing experiences I had with 2010’s horror. I could be forgetting some, but those at the top of this list are experiences of terror that remain vivid. For me, that terror usually involves unbearable tension, often coupled with visceral, emotional or psychological scares.
50. The Blackcoat’s Daughter (2015) or Mama (2013) or A Dark Song (2017)
49. Paranormal Activity 2 (2010
48. Pod (2015)
47. The House that Jack Built (2018)
46. Annabelle (2014)
45. Evil Dead (2013)
44. Hounds of Love (2017)
43. Rec 2 (2010)
42. Baskin (2016)
41. As Above/So Below (2014)
40. You’re Next (2013)
39. V/H/S (2012)
38. The Visit (2015)
37. The Invitation (2016)
36. Coherence (2014)
35. Burning Bright (2010)
34. Us (2019)
33. Incident in a Ghostland (2018)
32. Insidious 3 (2015)
31. A Serbian Film (2010)
30. Hangman (2016)
29. Green Room (2016)
28. The Strangers: Prey at Night (2018)
27. Oculus (2014)
26. I Saw the Devil (2011)
25. The Last Exorcism (2010)
24. We Are Still Here (2015)
23. Citadel (2012)
22. The Witch (2016)
21. Blair Witch (2016)
20. Lights Out (2016)
19. Unfriended: Dark Web (2018)
18. In Fear (2014)
17. The Innkeepers (2012)
16. The Conjuring (2013)
15. Hush (2016)
14. Kill List (2012)
13. It Follows (2015)
12. The Den (2014)
11. The Autopsy of Jane Doe (2016)
10. Silent House (2012)
9. Don’t Breathe (2016)
8. The Houses October Built (2014)
7. Last Shift (2015)
6. Insidious (2011)
5. Sinister (2012)
4. The Pact (2012)
3. Hereditary (2018)
2. Paranormal Activity 3 (2011)
1. The Babadook (2014)
13 Runners Up Plus Two Documentaries
13 Runners Up:
13. The Battery (2014)
At this point I have to say that I’m enamored with this film not because it truly grips me, but because of the ingeniousness of its attempt to create a totally unique and humanistic zombie epic on the barest of budgets. This is evident throughout but nowhere more so than in its final 20 minutes, finally resulting in bare bones suspense and one of the decade’s most exhilarating and bittersweet endings.
12. Dream Home (2011)
Hong Kong slasher with some gleefully inventive murder set-pieces in between nonlinear depictions of economic malaise.
11. I Am Not a Serial Killer (2016)
The grainy aesthetic somehow conjures uncanny feelings of 90s indie rock in this fascinating investigation into the potential development of a psychopath. It’s much more unique than that plot summation makes it seem.
10. They Look Like People (2016)
Independent, creepy psychological thriller about two old friends that puts you both next to and inside a deranged mind.
9. The Untamed (2017)
Surreal psychosexual supernaturalism mashes up against gritty realism.
8. The Woman (2011)
A truly provocative and discomfiting film from Lucky McKee, one of the unsung heroes of modern horror.
7. Willow Creek (2014)
The first horror film from Bobcat Goldthwait is one of the best of its found footage genre, and one of the most underrated of the decade. The protagonists are incredibly likeable, thanks in large part to the naturalness of both the writing and performances, which enables the film to take its time and feel more realistic than almost any in its genre. I’ve said this before, but I defy Academy voters to find two performances that are more natural while running a gamut of subtly shifting emotions than these two. The centerpiece of both the film and their performances is a 15-minute take set inside a tent providing thin protection from the dark noise of the night, arguably the only sequence in found footage that lives up to the endlessly influential Blair Witch Project scene that inspired it.
6. Southbound (2016)
Cleverly titled, Southbound is the best and most seamless anthology film of the decade thanks in no small part to an unforced/nonexistent framing device that unites all tales into one continuous whole. Seemingly influenced by the moebius strip of Lost Highway, the film is marred only by a climax that emphasizes an unreality that was better left subliminal.
5. Baskin (2016)
The buildup of Baskin is increasingly moody, surreal and disorienting. Oddly, my minor issue is with the climax, as I feel it runs slightly too long and winds up being the least compelling part of the film, despite its full-on descent from nightmarish hellscape to something resembling actual hell.
4. Stoker (2013)
Demented but a little too clean, Park Chan-wook’s film is gorgeous, highlighted by its perfectly instinctual sense of composition and editing.
3. The Bay (2012)
A highly relevant eco-horror found footage film from Barry Levinson that enforces realism by keeping the focus on disease, a la Soderbergh’s Contagion, albeit with a high level of gore, and just as importantly by utilizing a wide range of cameras (surveillance, police dashboards, vacationers, news footage, webcams, etc.) that never allows the viewer to ponder why the characters are still filming. More than anything, its strength is that it plays like a documentary assembled from multiple sources rather than a found footage film.
2. 1922 (2017)
One of the best Stephen King adaptations, pitch black, lean and remorseless.
1. Witching and Bitching (2014)
High octane energy in one of the zaniest genre-busting romps of Alex de la Iglesia’s career.
Considered by many to be one of the most bone-chilling documentaries ever made, but the reason it doesn’t make the list is because its most typically scary moments are knowingly manufactured for effect. For example, the documentarians making a big to do about venturing into the woods and into an abandoned sanitarium at night.
The Nightmare (2015)
This documentary about sleep paralysis from Room 237 director Rodney Ascher received mixed-positive reviews, but not a single person argued that its fictional reenactments didn’t work as a terrifying horror movie. It’s roundly considered the scariest documentary ever made.
Next up: Top 101
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The material within this post is not owned by My Life My Migraine and the views and opinions present are those of the anonymous ghostwriter. I have had the honor to publish this list and I hope you all will enjoy sifting through it each week as much as I have.