9. House II (1987)
What’s so enjoyable about House II is that it feels like a fantasy film, more family oriented. While the first couldn’t determine whether it was serious or not, the second is a lot lighter, with a lot of comedy in it.
The additional “The Second Story” at the title is quite fitting: It feels like a Goosebumps or Amazing Stories episode, more than a movie. It’s fun, lighthearted, and even kind of cute at times.
10. ABCs of Death 2 & V/H/S 2 (2014/2013)
These two are included together for being new anthology sequels better than their first. Both are experiments, and in both the directors felt more secure about what they should do.
The first V/H/S didn’t even respect its own concept: VHS tapes containing horror found footage, but it has an entire segment on Skype. The second movie is a lot better, the two last stories in particular.
ABCs of Death had only one good segment, exactly the one by an outside director that had to win a competition to be in it. The second has more variety, with arty surreal segments, straight horror, claymation, fantasy and humour. It got its bad segments, but for people who hated the first, this might be a good surprise.
11. Ju-On: The Grudge (2002)
Now talking about the Japanese version, the original Ju-On franchise. First there was Ju-On: The Curse, its sequel, and this, one of the scariest movies of all time. Ju-On has all those things that made J-Horror famous, the pale-faced woman with long hair, those primal fears and images that will hardly leave your mind when you’re home alone at night.
It’s been said that one of horror’s key factors was the menacing subject slowly walking towards the camera (and the audience), and Ju-On has plenty of that. It’s not only one of the best sequels, but one of the best horror films ever.
12. Mother of Tears – La Terza Madre (2007)
There’s very little chance you’ll see this Dario Argento flick, the conclusion of his “Mothers Trilogy” in any horror sequels list. It’s more likely to see “Inferno”, the second part, his classic “Suspiria” being the first.
It’s subjective, naturally, and most people would probably hate this if this was their first Argento, a director so immersed in his own universe of whodunit, black gloved killers, massive plot holes, bad acting, bright colors, beautiful visuals and gore (here even more present than in the others), that the only way to fully enjoy it is to let yourself immerse with him.
And once you get there it’s such an enjoyable ride: it’s one of his goriest films, it shoots to all directions (it has Casper-like ghosts, possessions, cults, magic, little troll-creatures, and have I mentioned gore?), but if you just let youself enjoy it, you’ll see it’s a great film. It’s time to give this some love.
13. Esta Noite Encarnarei No Teu Cadaver (1967)
Zé do Caixão (or Coffin Joe), José Mojica Marins’ character made his feature film debut in 1964, with “À Meia Noite Levarei Sua Alma”. It was a landmark not only in Brazil, but in the world as well. Mojica’s character is a monster, he’s violent, hateful, mysoginist. People who go see it thinking they’ll see the adventures of a silly character in a cape killing people in a funny kind of way may be shocked of the extremity of that film.
The follow-up, 1967’s “Esta Noite Encarnarei no Teu Cadáver”, makes the character even worse, in his despise of humanity and search for a woman that’ll give him the perfect heir, the perfect human. It’s really ahead of its time, considering that it was made in the 60s, where horror was either too stylized (Classic Hollywood Horror; early giallos) or made by few outsiders such as Herschell Gordon Lewis. Back then, there was nothing like Coffin Joe, and his first movies are impressive to this day.
Everything is so planned to make you feel uncomfortable, the constant fog, the darkness that keeps characters in the shadows, all the gloomy atmosphere. It’s the masterpiece from a director that should be a lot more recognized. Filmed in B&W, it has one beautiful moment where it goes full color to show probably the most creative version of hell ever.
The story had a third part, the 2008 “Encarnação do Diabo”, with Mojica as an old Joe Coffin being released of jail after the events of this second film.
It’s a great movie, just like so many people were impressed to see how George Miller, in his 70s was able to come up with this new “Mad Max”, it’s impressive to see Mojica, now much older, still has the right hand to make such movie, especially since he, like so many directors of the time, suffered with the decadence of Brazilian cinema in the late 80s/early 90s and had to go on directing porn movies, so it’s good to see him back.
14. Guinea Pig 6: Devil Doctor Woman (1986)
Those somewhat familiar to the Guinea Pig series might think they were all torture porns. Not exactly, although some of them are, others have plots and, in here, it’s just a bunch of gory comedy sketches, all connected by the drag queen from the title, and really good ones.
Also, it’s not even a hour long, so it’s never tiring. Situations are often creative and keep going to the extremes, like the one showing four men who keep presenting their bizarre diseases. There was another good Guinea Pig sequel: “He Never Dies”, but Devil Woman Doctor is the funniest, and deserves to be better known.
15. The Entire Nightmare on Elm Street Franchise (Freddie vs. Jason included, the remake not included) (1985-2003)
Although Part 3 and Wes Craven’s New Nightmare are indeed the best of the Nightmare on Elm Street sequels, and normally the ones included in every sequels list, it would be unfair not to mention the others, since all of them have something good to see. Even the weaker ones (Part 2, Part 6) have something.
Freddie Krueger is one hell of a character, and although he stopped being scary and silliness kicked in, there were always creative kills, and creative ideas (in Part 4 a character runs from Freddie in a Escher-inspired scenario, how can you not love that?). It’s probably the most coherent franchise of all time, along maybe with Scream (directed by, who else, Wes Craven!). But, please, ignore the remake.
16. Halloween III (1982)
Look, there’s no way out of this. Halloween III is amazing, and easily the best one after the John Carpenter’s masterpiece.
The funny thing about this is that, while everyone who complains about it say it’s because Michael Myers is not in it (does people still do that? or is it just something that happened when the movie came out?), nobody even watched the ones after this, cause there’s really nothing to see. Just the same guy who doesn’t die and keeps coming back… the one who burned to death in the second movie.
It’s curious that originally, the idea was that each new Halloween movie would be a new story, something like a Tales of the Crypt, Amazing Stories, or the Masters of Horror series. Sure the Master of Horror didn’t work too well, and probably the Halloween-themed movies wouldn’t either… but maybe it would be better than finding dumb ways to bring Michael Myers back, who, unlike Jason or Freddie Krueger, is a living person. But then again, he probably has more audience.
Author Bio: Mauricio Hornek is an artist, musician and cinephile. In the early 00s he had a movie reviews site called The Hornek Movies. He’s also a screenwriter in his spare time.