Musings From Jason’s Fevered Mind… 10/29/09

I love lists. Call me OCD if you like, but I am that guy with a list for everything. Music, books, comics, toys, movies — basically every one of my interests has “want” lists or “own” lists attached to them. This particular mania is somewhat born out of necessity in order to keep my collections straight (ask Matt about the ridiculous collections throughout my abode) but also, as those who share my disease know, because there is no finer feeling than crossing an object of desire off of a list as “conquered” or “obtained.” So I made a list for you fine folks in computer-land to peruse for reasons manifold, but especially so that you can get to know how my fevered mind works. Hopefully, henceforth you’ll be better able to put my reviews into perspective or, at the worst, dismiss them entirely as “quackery.” Whatever your conclusion, sit back, savor, and enjoy the fruits of my lunacy!

This is my top 101 “classic” horror films, in chronological order. “Classic,” to me, is 1895, the inception of motion pictures, through 1968, when three films forever changed the genre – “Rosemary’s Baby”, “Targets” and “Night of the Living Dead.” It was gut-wrenching to shorten this list to 101 but “Top 234 classic horrors” just sounds superfluous, so here they are. This list should in no way be regarded as my document of the most important or “essential” classics, simply the ones I would most like to sit and watch on a rainy afternoon. May they inspire debate and add to your list of must-sees.

(Note that years of production are listed and titles are US versions)
The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari 1919; Dr. Jekkyl and Mr. Hyde (Barrymore version) 1920; The Golem 1920; The Phantom Chariot (Korkarlen, The Phantom Carriage) 1921; Haxan (Witchcraft Through the Ages) 1922; Nosferatu 1922; The Hands of Orlac 1924; The Phantom of the Opera 1925; The Bat 1926; The Magician 1926; The Student of Prague 1926; The Cat and the Canary 1927; The Fall of the House of Usher (Jean Epstein) 1928; Frankenstein 1931; Freaks 1932; The Mummy 1932; The Old Dark House 1932; White Zombie 1932; Vampyr 1932; The Invisible Man 1933; King Kong 1933; The Black Cat 1934; Bride of Frankenstein 1935; Mad Love 1935; Mark of the Vampire (minus the final 5 minutes) 1935; The Invisible Ray 1936; Son of Frankenstein 1939; The Wolfman 1941; Cat People 1943; Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman 1943; The Body Snatcher 1945; Dead of Night 1945; Hangover Square 1945; Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein 1948; The Thing From Another World 1951; War of the Worlds 1952; House of Wax 1953; Tales of Ugetsu (Ugetsu Monogatari) 1953; The Creature From the Black Lagoon; Gojira 1954; Invasion of the Body Snatchers 1955; Night of the Hunter 1955; Tarantula 1955; Forbidden Planet 1956; The Crawling Eye 1958; The Fly 1958; Horror of Dracula 1958; The House on Haunted Hill 1958; It: The Terror From Beyond Space; The Man and the Monster 1958; The Ghost of Yotsuya 1959; The Mummy 1959; The Tingler 1959; Angry Red Planet 1960; Black Sunday 1960; City of the Living Dead (Horror Hotel) 1960; House of Usher (Fall of the House of Usher) 1960; Jigoku 1960; Little Shop of Horrors 1960; Peeping Tom 1960; Psycho 1960; Village of the Damned 1960; The Brainiac 1961; Gorgo 1961; Pit and the Pendulum 1961; Carnival of Souls 1962; Day of the Triffids 1962; Kiss of the Vampire 1962; The Premature Burial 1962; Tales of Terror 1962; At Midnight I’ll Take Your Soul 1963; The Birds 1963; Dementia 13 1963; The Haunted Palace 1963; The Haunting 1963; The Sadist 1963; The Whip and the Body (What) 1963; The Awful Dr. Orloff 1964; Black Sabbath 1964; Castle of Blood 1964; The Last Man on Earth 1964; Masque of the Red Death 1964; Seance On a Wet Afternoon 1964; Spider Baby 1964; Cave of the Living Dead 1965; Dracula: Prince of Darkness 1965; Kwaidan 1965; Planet of the Vampires 1965; Tomb of Ligeia 1965; Carry On Screaming 1966; Dance of the Vampires (Fearless Vampire Killers) 1966; Illusion of Blood 1966; Kill, Baby, Kill 1966; Plague of the Zombies 1966; Queen of Blood 1966; This Night I’ll Possess Your Corpse 1966; The Cremator 1968; Dracula Has Risen From the Grave 1968; Frankenstein’s Bloody Terror 1968; Goke: Body Snatcher From Hell 1968; Night of the Living Dead 1968; Rosemary’s Baby 1968.

There are some other flicks I would like to mention which are not overtly considered “horror” films but have enough spook factor to merit a postscript inclusion.

Metropolis 1927; The Unknown 1927; M 1931; The Most Dangerous Game 1932; J’Accuse 1938; Shadow of a Doubt 1942; Arsenic and Old Lace 1944; The Picture of Dorian Gray 1945; The Day the Earth Stood Still 1951; Cat-Women of the Moon 1953; Diabolique 1954; Rear Window 1954; The Hound of the Baskervilles 1959; The Time Machine 1961; Onibaba 1964; Wait Until Dark 1968

That’s it, folks! Let the repartee begin!


4 comments so far

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  1. I would argue that your list should have included some films from the 70’s and 80s. Halloween, The Thing, Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Dawn of the Dead, Suspiria, The Beyond, A Nightmare on Elm St….

  2. That list is coming as part two. I explained a bit in the article that I cut off the “classic” period in 1968 because of three films that forever changed horror audiences expectations of the genre. Part two will be 1969 through 2009, the “modern” era if you will, and shall include all of the films you mention above and 94 more. Check back in a week or less for that one.

  3. Ahhh..

    Anyways, I’m really digging the list so far. Night of the Hunter and Angry Red Planet were two really good choices, imo.

  4. It should be mentioned that I forgot one of the very best of my favorites from this list. The film is “Seconds” from 1966 starring Rock Hudson and should not be missed. Sorry for the oversight terror-fiends!

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