Call it horror, terror or whatever you wish to, but the movie that makes your heart pump faster and gives you goosebumps and definitely makes you switch lights on before moving in your perfectly secure house, you know it’s a good movie ! So I have just compiled a few names of such classic cult movies which are a must see ! Of course there are many more…which will come later.
1. The Omen – This 1976 movie, was one of my first movies, I saw on VHS 25 years back and what a shocker it was. If the movie is as good as this one, believe me it will stay with you unless of course our greying cells give it away. Apart from a fantastic screenplay, the casting was awesome and Gregory Peck’s casting definitely lifted the movie a few notches higher. His Robert Thorn, the ambassador’s role, is one of his best, very effortlessly portraying a troubled father, a husband and a non believer who believes enough to count his son as the antichrist. As for the kiddo, who acted in the film, though sweet, after watching the movie, he is one kid you do not want to take home. Haven’t seen it ? Don’t miss it. There are further 2 sequels, not bad at all. i had watched all 3, one after another!
2. The Entity – This movie created a hype unseen in India, back in the early 80s. I, remember it was released at Excelsior Theatre, known for screening latet hollywood releases. The movie created huge hype, as it was supposed to be based on a true story of a woman being raped by ghosts. This was later, as usually always is the case in Bollyood, was remade with Tabu playing the lead role. If I am not wrong, the film was banned after two weeks of runnin to packed houses in India. Of course, being kids, we were not allowed to see it. And as it always is, saw it on VHS. The movie was way ahead of it’s time, however I remember even back then, I was not very convinced by the climax but the fact that it was supposed to be a true story always haunted you.
3. Exorcist – Arguably, the mother of all horror movies ? When released in India, there were stories in the media of ambulances waiting outside theatres, a death in a Calcutta theatre due to heart attack etc. The movie’s perhaps greatest strength was in it’s story, narration and the script. The story just absorbed you, it made you feel sad for the possessed girl and at the same time scared of her. The potrayal was so strong, and the movie such a huge worldwide hit that Linda Blair never actually came out of it, a strong actress who perhaps scared anyone to look at her again. The cinematography, not much talked about though, was way ahead of it’s time and contributed tremendously to the brooding atomosphere.Don’t watch it alone ! The sequels are good too, however part 3 I feel was better than 2nd.
4. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre – Now widely recognised as the cult classic of it’s genre, this blood and gore film was terrible [audiences puked, fainted..]. This slasher film today, cannot be NOT part of any top horror movie list. Not many know that the movie was banned in UK till1999 and also in Australia till the mid 80s. There was no way that such a movie would be released in India, I got to see it courtesy a neighbour, who during his many trips as a sea cadet, got VHS of the same.
5. Evil Dead – Sam Raimi’s mother of all horror movies. More than exorcist, I feel that this was the movie and it’s success that attracted filmmaker’s of other genres towards the horror genre. Considered as a cult classic, I still remember a grown up, requesting us to accompany him till he reached his home ! Many of us acted brave, but later confessed that they could not sleep for many a days ! Today the movie may seem outdated in terms of special effects etc, but you just need to google to check the reviews it had from audiences. A must see!!
6. Halloween – From the highly talented John Carpenter, this movie needs no introduction. A festival more widely celebrated in America, this movie surely made everyone doubt the face behind the halloween mask !
7. The Shining – An adaptation of a Stephen King novel by the same name, this Stanley Kuberick classic succeeds in givng you the chills. Jack Nicholson [an immensely talented actor but stereotyped to the extent that he behaves as eccentric in the same manner off screen too] does a top notch job of a writer turned psychopath but if you watch closely it is the hotel that is the real star of the movie. The hotel adds to the eerie feeling and works on your nerves equally. I still, remember watching this movie on a VHS when I was a 8th grader, and my dad being upset with me for hiring such a VHS for weekend viewing. But having a moviebuff mom always helped 🙂