As the battle for streaming services becomes the next big war in the entertainment world, companies such as netflix and disney try to outdo themselves by offering movies and TV shows that are unique to their platform. This has become a problem for consumers, who must navigate the ever-growing market to determine which service offers what they want to watch. quiver tries to avoid this subscription war by going directly to horror fans.
By featuring only horror movies and a few shows such as horror show, Shudder has carved out a place for itself in the crowded market. Every year, the service adds more movies to its library and also has a collection of Shudder Originals, movies that are exclusive to the platform. Although they vary in quality, Shudder has proven to produce some of the best recent horror films through this initiative.
‘The Queen of Black Magic’ (2019) IMDb Score: 6.5
Originally from Indonesia, The queen of black magic is a remake of the 1981 film of the same name. When a father takes his family to the orphanage where he was raised to visit the ailing owner, they soon encounter horrific illness. Two other families join them as they fight to survive the night.
Although it’s a supernatural movie, the movie doesn’t skimp on the violence and there are more than a few moments that aren’t for the faint of heart. He works almost like an Indonesian evil Deadthough it replaces the comedic undertones of that franchise by emphasizing the buried childhood trauma that haunts well into adulthood.
‘Host’ (2020) IMDb Score: 6.5
When the world went into lockdown in 2020 at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, filmmakers had to get creative to keep producing their work. No film has excelled in this area more than Hosta ghost story set entirely on Zoom, proving that there are worse calls than your company’s mandatory 9 a.m. meetings.
When a group of friends invite a psychic to conduct a seance with them on Zoon, they accidentally summon a demonic presence with deadly consequences. As they stay on call trying to “stay together”, they each begin to be haunted in their own homes in various creepy and clever ways.
‘The Sadness’ (2021) IMDb Score: 6.5
One of the most brutal films of recent years, and perhaps of all time, Sadness is a whirlwind of uncompromising violence. As a virus sweeps through Taiwan, it transforms the population into sadistic monsters who unleash their most carnal and barbaric desires, no matter how grotesque or depraved. Two estranged lovers attempt to reunite as their town is engulfed in blood.
An extreme horror movie, Sadness is not for anyone with a weak stomach. However, the Gorehounds will be in heaven, as no part of the human body is safe, with heads and limbs cut, broken, and spattered with reckless abandon.
‘Vicious Fun’ (2020) IMDb Rating: 6.5
Tapping into the 80s nostalgia that has exploded in popularity lately thanks to shows such as stranger things, Vicious fun is a hilarious throwback to the horror comedies of this decade. When horror movie critic Joel accidentally stumbles upon a serial killer self-help group, he must play along to stay alive.
Each of his band members is an homage to a popular fictional killer, from Jason Voorhees’ stand-in Mike to Bob in a soft-talking plastic suit reminiscent of Patrick Bateman. With Joel’s attempts to escape his psychotic new friends yielding suitably bloody results, Vicious fun is an absolute blast that all horror fans should experience this spooky season.
‘La Llorona’ (2019) IMDb Rating: 6.6
La Llorona (also known as The crying woman) follows an elderly Guatemalan dictator who stands trial for a genocide he ordered in the 1980s against indigenous peoples. Surrounded by his loyal family, the dictator fights the charges but begins to be haunted by the spirits of those he has wronged.
A dark drama disguised as a haunted house movie, La Llorona has a lot to say about the atrocities committed by governments and the men in power who get away with it. The film uses the horror genre to highlight these horrific events, and the real-life terrors similar to those depicted in the film are more disturbing than any horror movie.
“Impetigore” (2019) IMDb Rating: 6.6
Another Indonesian ghost story, Impetigore takes place in a remote village where children are cursed to be born without skin. After learning that she has inherited a house in the village, Maya goes there with her best friend in hopes of selling it. Instead, she finds hostile villagers who believe her death will end the curse placed on them.
Impetigore succeeds by focusing on Indonesian folklore, a subject that is underrepresented outside the country. As fascinating as it is terrifying, Impetigore is one of the best international folk horror films, and you won’t want to travel to new cities anytime soon.
‘Speak No Evil’ (2022) IMDb Rating: 6.6
A recent release Speak no evil is a disturbing psychological thriller from Denmark. When a Danish family vacationing in Italy meets a Dutch family, they quickly become friends. After receiving an invitation to stay with their new friends at their home, the Danish family accepts the invitation, with chilling consequences.
To say more would spoil the surprises Speak no evil contains, but it is a twisted examination of social norms and how far one will allow oneself to be lowered to accommodate others. The film ventures into very dark territory as the plot unfolds further, so be prepared for a dark story that will stick with you once it’s over.
‘All the Moons’ (2020) IMDb Score: 6.7
Set in 19th century Spain, all the moons tells the story of a young orphan seriously injured by a bomb dropped during the civil war. Saved by a mysterious woman, the young girl is endowed with immortality by being transformed into a vampire. She lives in the woods with her new mother, learning to live with her newfound powers.
Make comparisons with Leave the one on the right in and Pan’s Labyrinth, all the moons is a dark fairy tale. Examining loneliness seen through the eyes of a child, the film focuses less on its protagonist’s desire for blood and more on her desire to be loved, creating a narrative that is both beautiful and heartbreaking.
‘Mad God’ (2021) IMDb Rating: 6.8
Less a film and more a glimpse into the mind of its creator, Good food is a thirty-year-old stop-motion project. Telling the story of a masked man known as the Assassin, Good food follows this character’s journey through an unrelenting pit of nightmarish images and bizarre creatures. It will appeal to anyone who likes to watch scary animated movies.
Created by the famous master of visual effects Phil Tippetknown for his work on jurassic park and star wars, Good food is his passion project. He began working on it in 1990, and its creation had a huge personal impact on Tippett, suffering a nervous breakdown in the process. His deteriorating sanity is present in the suffocating and dark atmosphere of the film, showcasing the pain that art can inflict on its creators.
“Dogs Don’t Wear Pants” (2019) IMDb score: 6.8
Reeling from the death of his wife, Juha struggles to connect with his teenage daughter as he navigates life emotionally paralyzed. A chance encounter with dominatrix Mona ignites a new spark in Juha, and as their sessions grow increasingly dangerous, a bond begins to form between the submissive and his dom.
An unconventional dark romance from Finland, Dogs don’t wear pants is a sex-positive examination of grief, trauma and human connection. While the extreme bondage sessions may be too much for some viewers, the connection that blossoms between the two main characters makes for a surprisingly sweet and hopeful story.
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