The Best Horror Films Of The Year 1999 - 2010

Well, this only took forever to finally get posted. And to think there was a time in my silly little head where I thought that I actually had the time to write up individual reviews for all the films listed below. Well, this past year has been a serious lesson for me in terms of what my capabilities are as an over enthusiastic horror blogger who has a job and marriage to juggle not to mention a so called social life and a seriously debilitating medical condition to tend to. Where I once thought I was a one man army who was gonna arrive on the scene with a bloated sense of importance and pump out more material than you had the time to read, elevating this blog to a site on par with any of the dot coms as far as scope and content was concerned, I quickly learned from slight burnout, that it is near impossible to steer this ship like I had a crew of 10 behind me. It's just been me and only me thus far (though I'm still fervently knocking at the doors of those whom I think should come aboard as guest writers every now and then) so I've had to recently readjust my priorities and aspirations concerning what I want The October Country to achieve. Nothing drastic. Same content. Same awesomeness. Just on more of a relaxed schedule.

My good friend Pax Romano of Billy Loves Stu had to pull me aside last month amidst some very trying personal times, and remind me that my readership would still be here if I took a break (a break, that I truly needed, nervous breakdowns stemming from a returning anxiety / panic disorder are no joke). I protested that taking a break didn't feel right. In truth, I self impose impossible, stressful deadlines on myself for a website that so far is supposed to be purely a creative outlet. Something I do for fun because thus far nobody wants to cut me a paycheck to do it. I do it purely because I am passionate about the subject matter (I'm the type of guy that would happily be the office monkey boy for the likes of Horror Hound or Fright Rags or any number of other genre related businesses that I admire). But a time came recently (detailed at greater length in a few articles below) where I finally did have to take a step back and allow myself to breath (not just with The October Country, but in life in general). So it is with a slightly heavy heart and a heaping helping of regret that I am publishing this list sans reviews for all the film herein. In all honesty, it needs to be done. I've neglected reviewing anything from 2011 because I've been too busy playing catch up on the reviews for 2010 (I've said it once, I've said it twice and I'll say it again, "Don't start a horror website in November, a month before the expected 'Best of...' lists are published"). This article was initially going to have links to reviews attached to everything from 2010 at the least. But like I said, what are ya gonna do?

The time has come to just publish the damn thing and move on with 2011. Hopefully, you'll find below helpful guideposts that will point you in the direction of some unexpected treasures, some new, undeservedly obscure classics, some familiar friends and I'm sure more than a few movies that will inspire outbursts of "Is he kidding me?" (see, surely I need the space to defend the remake of The House on Sorority Row, the abbreviated Sorority Row, lest I be torn asunder from disbelieving fans). Anyway, let's get to it. These are the films that set your host's mind ablaze, whether it be with awe, admiration, disgust or that constantly sought after drug, pure fright. Also curious to me, is witnessing my own maturing of tastes from the more mainstream fair of the earlier days, to the arguably more artsy, independent or foreign titles of the here and now. At any rate (drum roll please) here they are. The October Country's best of the best.

The Best Horror Films of the Year: 2010

1. [REC] 2 (Review Here)
2. Frozen
3. The Killing Room (Review Here)
4. A Serbian Film (aka Српски филм) (Review Here)
5. Burning Bright (Review Here)
6. Black Death
7. The Loved Ones
8. The Reef (Review Here)
9. Black Swan
10. Dogtooth
11. Buried
12. Dream Home (aka Wai dor lei ah yut ho)
13. Triangle

Honorable Mention

Heartless (Review Here)
Cherry Tree Lane (Review Here)
The Hole 3-D (Reviewed Here)
Shutter Island (Review Here)
Rare Exports: A Christmas Tale (Review Here)
Altitude (Review Here)
Best Worst Movie (Review Here)
Devil (Review Here)
Monsters (Review Here)
The Possession of David O'Reilly (aka Tormented) (Review Here)
Paranormal Activity 2 (Review Here)
Splice (Review Here)
The Last Exorcism (aka Cotton)
Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy
(Review Here)
In Their Sleep (aka Dans ton sommeil) (Review Here)

Guilty Pleasures

Necromentia (Review Here)
High Lane (aka Vertige) (Review Here)
The Collector (Review Here)
Someone Is Knocking At The Door (Review Here)
Damned By Dawn (Review Here)
Piranha 3-D (Remake) (Review Here)

Biggest Disappointments

The Walking Dead (Television Series)
The Wolfman (Remake)

atchet II
Book O
f Blood

The Worst

A Nightmare On Elm Street (Remake) (Review Here)
Legion (Review Here)
Parasomnia (Review Here)
Skyline (Review Here)

The Best Horror Films of the Year: 2009

2. Antichrist
3. Drag Me To Hell
4. The House of the Devil
5. Dead Set (Miniseries)
6. Lake Mungo
7. Paranormal Activity
8. District 9
9. Trick R' Treat
10. Carriers
11. Grace
12. Zombie Girl: The Movie
13. Orphan

Honorable Mention

Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever
The Box

The Hil
ls Run Red
he Last House On The Left (Remake)
Coming Soon (aka Program na winyan akat)
Dead Snow (aka
Død snø)
The Hills Run Red
Sorority Row (Remake)

Harper's Island (Television Series)
A Perfect Ge

The Best Horror Films of the Year: 2008

1. Martyrs
2. Splinter
3. Let The Right One In (aka Låt den rätte komma in)
4. The Midnight Meat Train
5. Cloverfield
6. The Children
7. Pontypool
8. Deadgirl
9. Teeth
10. The Strangers
11. Mum and Dad
12. The Ruins
13. The Cottage

Honorable Mention

Baby Blues
Otto; Or Up With Dead People

Trailer Park Of Terror
The Burrowers


The Best Horror Films of the Year: 2007

1. Inside (aka À l'intérieur")
2. The Poughkeepsie Tapes
3. Funny Games (Remake)
4. The Orphanage (aka El orfanato)
5. [REC]
6. 28 Weeks Later
7. The Signal
8. Pop Skull
9. 30 Days of Night
10. Black Water
11. Flick
12. Imprint
13. Muoi: The Legend of a Portrait

Honorable Mention

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street
Hostel II


The Best Horror Films of the Year: 2006

1. Dorm (aka Dek hor)
2. Grimm Love (aka Rohtenberg)
3. Mulberry St.
4. All the Boys Love Mandy Lane
5. Bug
6. Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon
7. The Abandoned
8. Severance
9. Slither
10. The Host (aka Gwoemul)
11. Sheitan
12. The Living and the Dead
13. To Let

Honorable Mention

Bloody Reunion (aka Seuseung-ui eunhye)
he Woods
Right At Your Door

The Last Winter 

The Best Horror Films of the Year: 2005

1. The Descent
2. The Devil's Rejects
3. Haze
4. Feast
5. Wolf Creek
6. The Red Shoes (aka Bunhongsin)
7. The Call of Cthulhu
8. Isolation
9. The Dark Hours
10. The Exorcism of Emily Rose
11. House of Wax (Remake)
12. Hide and Seek
13. Fragile

The Best Horror Films of the Year: 2004

1. Shaun of the Dead
2. Saw
3. The Grudge (Remake)
4. The Machinist
5. Calvaire (aka The Ordeal)
6. Three...Extremes
7. Lightning Bug
8. Dead Birds
9. Ginger Snaps: Unleashed
10. Escarnio

The Best Horror Films of the Year: 2003

1. High Tension (aka Haute tension)
2. Gozu
3. Identity
4. A Tale of Two Sisters (aka Janghwa, Hongryeon)
5. Love Object
6. Open Water
7. Final Destination 2
8. Willard (Remake)
9. Jeepers Creepers 2
10. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (Remake)

The Best Horror Films of the Year: 2002

1. May
2. 28 Days Later
3. The Ring (Remake)
4. The Mothman Prophecies
5. Maléfique
6. Dog Soldiers
7. Bubba Ho-tep
8. Blade II
9. In My Skin
10. Darkness

The Best Horror Films of the Year: 2001

1. Session 9
2. The Devil's Backbone
3. Series 7
4. Joy Ride
5. Wendigo
6. Frailty
7. Dagon
8. Cookers
9. Pulse (aka Kairo)
10. Visitor Q

The Best Horror Films of the Year: 2000

1. Shadow of the Vampire
2. The Cell
3. Final Destination
4. Ginger Snaps
5. Psycho Beach Party
6. Ricky 6
7. The Irrefutable Truth About Demons
8. Chasing Sleep
9. What Lies Beneath
10. The Convent

The Best Horror Films of the Year: 1999

1. The Blair Witch Project
2. Audition
3. The Ninth Gate
4. Stir Of Echoes
5. Subconscious Cruelty
6. Idle Hands
7. Ravenous
8. Desecration
9. The Nameless
10. Lighthouse

Editor's Note: I reserve the right to revise this list at any time. There are a whole host of films that are likely deserving of inclusion yet I have not had the opportunity to view them at the time of this posting (The Killer Inside Me and My Son, My Son What Have Ye Done? come to mind). If that day comes, and they are judged worthy, the list shall be reworked. Anyway, there you have it. So what do you say dear readers, do you agree? Disagree? Are you standing for an applause or are you manically searching for a way to have my "critic's license" revoked? Sound off in the comments.


  1. Fabulously incisive and thorough list. Major points for Grimm Love, In My Skin and Session 9. I found some I have never even heard of and am about to check out.

  2. Thanks Cody. Yeah, I think Grimm Love is a criminally underrated, obscure gem. Beautifully dark. I wouldn't say that it romanticizes it's subject matter, but it definitely brings a poetic touch to it. I think it's a gorgeous, achingly sad love story. Session 9 = one of the scariest movies ever as far as I am concerned. I'm curious though as to what some of the titles are that you haven't seen that the list has led, or is going to lead you to. Call it an ego stroke ("I introduced you to that movie? Awesome!" lol) I still wish that I had had the time to write everything up and explain some of my choices. Sorority Row for instance was almost unanimously hated whereas I found it to be a good, bitchy, moderately suspenseful time. I was taken aback that I was enjoying the rather unlikable characters but then I realized something. Unlike the remake of Black Christmas where all the girls where just bitches and awful, period, the women in Sorority Row were bitches and awful bu the script was aware of this and gave them shadings of just how sad and hollow they felt on the inside. I thought that was a nice touch, acknowledging that the women KNEW they were awful and vapid and didn't feel to great about themselves. Anyway, I'll stop rambling and thanks for dropping in bud!

  3. I am kind of shocked Grimm Love doesn't get more more love - I am fascinated by the case it is based upon and I do like Keri Russell a whole lot. My only complaint was that I read somewhere her character had a bit more of an arc in the original script which got cut out... and I would love to know what happens to her character now - after having watched the tape. I usually hate voice-over in films but I thought her character's monologues were so haunting and poetic - I could listen to them over and over again. Oh, I actually enjoyed Sorority Row. The Black Christmas remake was a joke, but I thought Sorority Row was fun and surprisingly well made. I was really expecting to dislike it and I found myself very entertained. I am surprised it received such awful reviews honestly - I mean, yeah, it wasn't a masterpiece, but it was fun! The ones I had not heard of that you turned me onto were Necromentia(which I've already watched), Escarnio, Ricky 6 (which looks utterly amazing and I cannot wait to track down), Haze, Dorm and Flick. There were probably a few others, too, but those are the ones I wrote down.

  4. I agree 100% with what you said about Russell's voice-over work. I dunno if it was the delivery of her lines, or the dialogue or both but yes, they were very haunting. I too was expecting to completely hate Sorority Row (I even hate the original) but it came completely out of left field. I loved it in a trashy slasher movie kind of way. Haze is an utterly frightening short film (I think about 45 minutes, not sure if it's gotten released in the States though, all these years later). It's bizarre, surreal and very, VERY claustrophobic. Dorm is beautiful and Flick is just a really fun time with a lot of admirable style. Flick is definitely going on the yearly Halloween movie pile come October.


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