Would You Rather (2012)

Iris needs money to help her sick brother. She is invited to a special dinner party by none other than genre favorite, Jeffery Combs. When money is on the table, she and the other guests must participate in a game of “would you rather”. At first the challenges are tame but as the evening progresses, things get increasingly more gruesome. Definitely a nasty, torturous kind of movie that make you question if you’d be up for the challenge?

Hush (1998)

This is an excellent Hitchcockian thriller. Helen, played by Gwyneth Paltrow, is engaged to Jackson, played by the hunky Johnathon Schaech. He brings her home to meet his mother, Martha, played by the stunning Jessica Lange. Helen struggles with trying to win over Martha. She soon discovers the possessive and jealous nature of her soon to be mother-in-law. Things get rather shocking when Jackson is called back to work leaving Helen and Mother alone together. Martha is devious and has done some terrible things. Man, no one turns on the charm and the crazy like Jessica Lange.

Hush (2016)

Maddie is a writer and she’s home alone for the night. She also happens to be deaf and mute and doesn’t notice the masked killer watching her through the window. He soon realizes her disabilities and decides to play a little cat and mouse with her. A great twist on the typical home invasion genre. Definitely had me jumpy!

Don’t Tell a Soul (2020)

A young boy and his delinquent brother steal money from a house and are chased down by security guard, Mr. Hamby, played by Rainn Wilson. He falls into a deep hole and rather than help him, they run home to their ill mother, Mena Suvari. The younger brother wrestles with his conscience and secretly returns to check on Hamby. Can he be trusted? I am a big fan of Rainn Wilson and enjoy seeing his range. Good but I expected more of a horror film like “Don’t Breathe”. You’d probably enjoy it more if you don’t watch the trailer. This would pair well with “Stuck” (2007 also with Mena Suvari) and the Spanish film “A Christmas Tale” (2005).

The House of the Devil (2009)

The cover art drew me in. This is a total throwback to the 80’s from the clothing to the music. A broke college student takes a random babysitting job. Her friend drops her off at a creepy house in the middle of nowhere and they are greeted by a very bizarre couple who admit there is no child but an elderly lady upstairs. Her friend tries to convince her to bail, but they offer her a lot of money just to stay in the house. Lots of tension and things take an evil turn. Much of this was filmed near me in CT, so I must go scout the locations.

Scare Me (2020)

This was a Shudder exclusive. I didn’t look it up before watching and I was pleasantly surprised. I love a simple story with characters in one location, like a play. We meet a horror writer staying at a cabin, struggling with writer’s block. He encounters a young woman, who coincidentally is also a horror writer. When the power goes out, they get together to tell scary stories. Lots of fun and full of atmosphere.

3 from Hell (2019)

I am a huge fan of Devil’s Rejects, so this was highly anticipated. It had a limited theatrical release, so I was fortunate to see it on the big screen and get a cool promo poster. It was bittersweet seeing Sid’s brief appearance as Captain Spaulding as I knew he was ill and sadly passed away shortly after this. There are the usual horror cameos and lots of violence as we follow the Firefly family to Mexico. Richard Brake is an awesome addition to the sleazy crew. He was amazing in “31”. I didn’t love this as much as I wanted to, but it was nice to see the gang back together again.

Lizzie (2018)

My mother worked at the Lizzie Borden house for nearly 2 decades, so we always have to check out anything Lizzie related. Chloë Sevigny was very interested in the case and visited the house many times, so this seemed promising. Once again, Hollywood skewed a perfectly horrific and mysterious true crime. The angle on this particular incarnation had Lizzie conspiring (and canoodling) with the Irish maid, played by Kristen Stewart. Not much in the way of facts, aside from the father and step mother being bludgeoned with a hatchet. I’d don’t recommend this and certainly avoid watching with your mother…AWKward! I’d like to see a telling of the story with an ambiguous ending since no one truly knows who the killer is. Do the research, let the facts speak for themselves, and visit Fall River and the house to get a better feel for the setting.

The Butterfly Effect 3: Revelations (2009)

Part of the After Dark Horrorfest III: 8 Films To Die For, The Butterfly Effect 3 holds up pretty well on its own. No need to see the first 2 to understand it- in fact, skip 2 altogether. Chris has the ability to “jump” back to specific points in time to witness crimes being committed. He works with the police in present to identifiy and bring criminals to justice. He breaks his own rules about interferring when he jumps back to save his murdered girlfriend. This unleashes and unstoppable chain of events, changing his own future. Rachel Miner, who was great in Bully and Penny Dreadful, is great here as his sister.

Rubber (2010)

Rubber is about a killer tire with the telepathic ability to blow things up. There is a built in audience “watching” the action through binoculars. As long as someone is watching the movie, the movie exists. There is no real plot. The tire doesn’t speak, it just rolls around wreaking havoc at a seedy motel in the desert. Sounds silly right? The point of the movie is that there is no point. It really is a different movie and I really liked it enough to give it another watch.