Friday, December 25, 2015

MCBASTARD'S TOP 20 CULT & HORROR RELEASES OF 2015

Another year of movie watching is coming to a close, and as years go I think this past year was a damn fine year for horror, cult and exploitation movies at home. Many of these movies did not receive a wide release in the major cinemas, which is a shame. A few of these I can see becoming true genre classics - or maybe just cult classics -  but only time will tell. As so often happens last year's best have a tendency to fade away as the years go by, only to be re discovered decades later by a new crop of horror fans hungry for the treasures of decades past. 

These aren't in any particular order as I loathe having to choose just one movie and hold it above all others, declaring that it was the best of the year beyond any of the others. So just take this as twenty movies I loved, and in most cases, have re watched and enjoyed more than once. Hopefully you will agree with a few, and I would love it if this list turned you onto something that may have passed you by this past year.






































01. IT FOLLOWS (Anchor Bay) 

It Follows has style, atmosphere and a fantastic concept about a sexually transmitted monster with one of the year's best retro synth scores, a movie that borrows heavily from John Carpenter and sets the bar high for original horror in the year to come. 







































02. COOTIES (Lionsgate) 


A horror-comedy about snot-nosed school kids who have been infected by a bad batch of tainted chicken nuggets, a lot of gore-tastic fun ensues, loaded with blood and humor, highly recommended. 









































03. THE EDITOR (Scream Factory) 

Astron-6 tackle the Italian whodunit with The Editor,  a tone-perfect love letter to the Italian movies from the '70s and '80s loaded with nudity, gore and that strange Eurocult aesthetic filtered through the trademark Astron-6 ironic retro-horror awesomeness.










































04. DEATHGASM (Dark Sky Films)

Kiwi horror-comedy Deathgasm has the goods, a rocking metal soundtrack, horny and rebellious teens, and sweet gore that would make Peter Jackson proud, a fist-pumping devil horns salute to this one. 









































05. STARRY EYES (Dark Sky Films) 

A nice slice of slow burn Satanic cinema tempered with atmospheric nightmarish imagery, and strange occult elements with a satisfying payoff and an outstanding retro-synth score, this is a movie that will only grow on stature through the years,   









































06. HOUSEBOUND (Xlrator) 

Kiwi horror comedy Housebound is only further proof of the fertile cinema scene happening these past few years in New Zealand, a fun it of fun with some good scares throughout.
 








































07. WE ARE STILL HERE (Dark Sky Films) 

Director Geoghegan hasn't set out to reinvent the haunted house movie so much as he is paying homage to the seventies cinema of Lucio Fulci with a shot in the arm of adrenaline fueled gore at the end, and it completely worked for me, loaded with slow-build atmosphere and supernatural tension at every turn.









































08. SPRING (Drafthouse Films) 

A wonderful slow-burning Lovecraftian love story with some great mythical elements set on the coast of Italy, this surprised me, caight be with my guard down and won me over thoroughly. 









































09. LET US PREY (Dark Sky Films) 

Director Brian O'Malley's debut film is a savage and fun movie that erupts into a bloody dark comedy of sorts, this is a Hell of a fun watch, and Pollyanna McIntosh (The Woman) is fantastic as the bad ass moral-center of the movie over-flowing with corrupt and murderous bastards









































10. LATE PHASES: NIGHT OF THE LONE WOLF (Dark Sky Films) 

The only entry to feature some howling werewolf action is the English language debut from director Adrian Garcia Bogliano starring Nick Damici as a blind 'Nam vet left to rot at a home for senior living only to have to face-off against a lycanthropic threat.










































11. HORSEHEAD (Artsploitation) 

Horsehead is an artfully crafted movie with some stylistic nods to both Dario Argento and Mario Bava and an unnerving Lynchian nightmare weirdness. If you're open to something strange and out of the ordinary, if you crave nightmarish cinema dripping with dread, Horsehead comes highly recommended









































12. CUB (Artsploitation) 

The tone is fantastic, its eerie and creepy, it captures some of that youthful magic and dark fantasy of 80s movies with vintage slasher tendencies wrapped-up in a good camp tale. It's a sweet throwback enhanced in no small measure by the creepy synth score.








































13. WYRMWOOD: ROAD OF THE DEAD  (Scream Factory) 

Wyrmwood: Road of the Dead is a pretty fantastic slice of undead Ozploitation cinema, it comes at you fast and hard with a action-packed mix of horror, gore and comedy, by far my favorite zombie movie of the year. 





















14. HONEYMOON (Magnolia) 


This is one of a few movies I missed the first time around which I caught up with on Netflix. A creepy story of two newlyweds honeymooning at the family cabin in the woods, a simple set up that is well executed. 









































15. EXTRATERRESTRIAL (Scream Factory)

Loved this one from start to finish, a spunky sci-fi horror mash-up with some quality special effects and a good cast. Proof that it doesn't have to be an original idea to love a movie, just thoroughly. 









































16. BOUND TO VENGEANCE (Scream Factory) 

I didn't love this the first time I watched it but upon re watch it really stuck with me, a violent tales of revenge that just keeps going further down the rabbit-hole, quite a strong performance from the lead actress.  









































17. KNOCK KNOCK (Lionsgate) 

Eli Roth's remake of DEATH GAME was just as odd and weird as the original, which was quite strange. Keanu Reeves is such a likable guy in general, but he makes some weird choices  with this one, his line delivery is skewed and I just enjoyed it for how deranged it was. 




















18. STUNG (Scream Factory) 

As creature features go this is an engaging slice of bug-horror cinema with just the right out amount of action, humor and splatter, with a one-perfect final scene that made me smile from ear-to-ear. 









































19. BLOODY KNUCKLES (Artsploitation) 

I loved the spirit of Bloody Knuckles, it has a few pacing issues but overall this is a winner of an offensive comedy with fun gore. A punk rock middle-finger to those who would censor art. 










































20. LAST SHIFT (Magnolia) 

Caught this on Netflix and was really blown away with just how creepy it was. Definitely a film that came under the radar for me, a claustrophobic watch and a creepy one.  

2015 MOVIES I JUST HAVEN'T WATCHED YET WHICH MIGHT HAVE MADE THE LIST... WHO KNOWS. 


The movies below are movies I've heard some good buzz about and I would have been jazzed to watch them and maybe include on my list but I just did have not had the time to get out and watch...yet. 

WHAT WE DO IN THE SHADOWS
TALES OF HALLOWEEN
BONE TOMAHAWK
SOME KIND OF HATE
THE FINAL GIRLS
GREEN INFERNO
A CHRISTMAS HORROR STORY
TURBO KID
CREEP
GOODNIGHT MOMMY

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