Friday, October 19, 2012

Countdown to Halloween Day 19 -- 10 Favorite Horror Directors

My favorite horror directors, in no particular order 
  • David Cronenberg -- Although I've enjoyed Cronenberg's more recent forays into other genres, I do miss his old school body horror films.  The Fly, The Brood, Rabid, Shivers, and Videodrome all feature some wonderfully disturbing sequences.  And we can't forget Scanners and its infamous exploding head.
  • John Carpenter -- Carpenter is responsible for Halloween and The Thing, two of my all time favorite movies, as well as several other entertaining horror flicks like The Fog and Prince of Darkness; we'll all just pretend that Vampire$  didn't happen, okay?
  • Peter Jackson -- Before he achieved mainstream success, Jackson's early work was very horror driven, although filtered through a Kiwi's twisted sense of humor. Dead Alive, The Frighteners, and the apropriately named Bad Taste made me a fan of Jackson's long before he brought Middle Earth to life.
  • George Romero -- At times it's tempting to write Romero off as a one-trick pony, since his name is so closely associated with zombies, but he has several other entertaining horror films under his belt, including The Crazies, Monkey Shines, Creepshow, and the excellent Martin.
  • Frank Henenlotter -- Not as well known outside horror fans as most of the others on the list, Henenlotter's work is darkly comic, occasionally perverse, and frequently twisted. Basket Case is my favorite of his films, but both Bad Biology and Brain Damage have a lot to recommend them too.
  • Stuart Gordon -- He'd make this list for his Lovecraft adaptations (Re-Animator, From Beyond, Dagon) alone; the super-creepy Dolls is just icing on the cake
  • Wes Craven -- Craven is a bit hit or miss with me, but when he hits -- Nightmare on Elm Street, Scream, The people Under the Stairs -- he hits big
  • Guillermo del Toro --  I've been a fan of del Toro since Mimic, and most everything of his I've seen since (Cronos, The Devil's Backbone, Pan's Labyrinth) has cemented my admiration.  Plus, he brought Hellboy to the big screen.
  • Sam Raimi -- Raimi's horror output may be relatively small (Evil Dead trilogy and Drag Me to Hell), but the quality trumps the low quantity.
  • Steven Miner -- I was having a hard time rounding out my list to 10, since several of the directors I'd like to have listed haven't had enough horror films under their belt to warrant their inclusion. But, while scouring lists of my favorite horror films looking for patterns I discovered Steven Miner, director of Friday the 13th Pt 2 & 3, as well as two of my favorite horror comedies:  House and Lake Placid. Throw in guilty plesaure Warlock, and you have the perfect placeholder until Sean Gunn or Drew Goddard finally get around to making some more horror


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