I reviewed 20 horror flicks for the Georgia Straight this year, all but one of which opened theatrically in Vancouver. The only one I didn't see in a theatre, Creep, made me cherish the day I signed up for Netflix.
It didn't hold a candle to It Follows, though. Nothing did.
Best of 2015
1. It Follows "Every once in a while a low-budget indie fright flick comes along that makes everything on the major studios’ horror plate look like a pile of steaming crap. It Follows is that film, right now."
2. Goodnight Mommy "It’s the most unsettling identical-twin psycho-thriller I’ve seen since The Other–and that was back in ’72!"
3. The Gift "The actor best known for his gentle portrayal of the put-upon Michael Bluth in Arrested Development discovers his dark side in a big way in this unsettling revenge thriller about the terrible cost of youthful misdeeds."
4. Creep "Duplass’s whacked-out performance keeps you fairly riveted to the screen, wondering what crazy shit Josef’s gonna pull next–and how the tormented Aaron will respond. It’s one of the most memorable sicko roles I’ve seen in a while."
5. Backcountry "It all leads up to a scene of flat-out, primal horror that brings to mind how Werner Herzog might have felt listening to that tape of Timothy Treadwell’s final moments in Grizzly Man. Happy camping!"
Worst of 2015
1. The Boy Next Door "Sorry J.Lo, but since you also had the gall to produce this shameless turkey, your nickname now is J.New-Low."
2. Sinister 2 "Just when it looked like Blumhouse was on a winning terror track with The Gift—not to mention the quirky little Netflix item Creep—it got detoured straight into Shitsville with this groan-inducing cash grab."
3. The Lazarus Effect “ 'This is too much weird shit!' declares one victim-to-be, as if he were writing this review instead of me."
4. Poltergeist "The scariest thing about Poltergeist is the fear that your hearing may be permanently altered by the shreiking sound-effects. The soundperson clearly graduated magna cum loud from The Nigel Tufnel Academy of Turning Everything Up to 11."
5. The Intruders "Unfortunately, the iCarly star’s photogenic qualities far outweigh her acting chops here, which aren’t aided much by rookie screenwriter Jason Juravic’s cliché-ridden, phoned-in script. I hardly see the need for this watered-down twist on that ’70s TV-movie Bad Ronald."