December 6, 2023

Director Chris R. Notarile’s All Time Top 10 Horror Films

Chris R. NotarileScaretissue is thrilled to welcome write and director Chris R. Notarile today.  Chris is the man behind Blinky Productions which has produced brilliant short films including Krueger: A Tale From Elm Street and Krueger: Another Tale From Elm Street.  Chris will be debuting his newest Krueger creation early in 2014 – stay tuned!!!  You can follow Chris on Twitter at @Blinky500 or on Facebook.  Tell em ScareTissue sent ya!   

We asked Chris if he’d be willing to give us a list of his top 10 horror movies and this was his response:

Greetings everyone, while I may be known widely as a notable horror filmmaker, I actually did not begin watching horror films until I was 16. My parents felt that I would have nightmares if I watched any scary movies as a kid and that they might warp my sensibilities…… Now I make horror films for a living. I guess they were right! But what the hell, below is a list of my top 10 favorite horror movies. I hope you agree.

10. The Shining (1980)

The Shining (1980)

Okay so let’s get this straight, you mean to tell me there’s a movie where Jack Nicholson goes batshit crazy and tries to kill his family with an axe? And it’s based on a book by Stephen King and directed by Stanley Kubrick? Where do I sign up? Sure the movie makes practically no sense and you are basically waiting nearly 2 hours for the Jack with an axe pay off, but who cares? It’s still awesome and you know you will watch it if it’s ever playing on TV. The Shining is just a cool movie. It doesn’t really matter why. It. Just. Is.

9. The Thing (1982)

The Thing (1982)

Where to start? From the opening notes of the score to the ambiguous ending, I am hooked every time I watch this film. Kurt Russell is awesome and the FX used to bring the Thing to life, are as gruesome today as they were back there. There’s not really a single thing about this film that feels dated. I’d also like to recommend The Thing prequel film, which is a wonderful and seamless addition to the story. It fits right in and only enhances everything we know and love about John Carpenter’s classic.

8. Scream (1996)

Scream (1996)

If there was one horror movie that defined the 90’s it was Scream. Scream didn’t just reinvent the horror genre, it poked fun at it. It was the first horror movie I saw that felt contemporary and still does to this day. What I also love about Scream is the epicness of the movie, as personified by it’s score and self-examining tone.

7. Saw (2004)

Saw (2004)

What I like about Saw is that it was the first original horror film of the 21st century which ultimately sparked it’s own franchise as well as ignited the torture porn genre. Saw was fresh, gritty and very stylistic. I enjoyed the film from beginning to end and though I may despise many of it’s sequels, none of them have been able to tarnish this little film. Worth a watch for anyone looking for a good scare from something more recent.

6. Child’s Play (1988)

Child's Play (1988)

This film recently made it back onto my list after re watching it alongside the series’ latest installment, Curse of Chucky (which was really damn good). Child’s Play is more than just a horror film; it’s also a crime drama. I really enjoyed the cop elements to this one as well as the disposition of Chucky. Before he became gimmicky like in some of the sequels (3-5), Chucky was actually pretty menacing. He hid in plain sight and the techniques used to bring him to life were quite impressive. They have definitely held up over time, which is something I look for in films.

5. Maniac Cop (1988)

Maniac Cop (1988)

You cannot be a true horror fan without paying your respects to Officer Matt Cordell. Maniac Cop is and has always been, in my opinion, ahead of its time. It’s the ultimate genre hybrid. Jason Voorhees with a badge. Need I say more? Oh yeah, and it has Bruce Campbell in it!

4. Friday the 13th Part VIII: Jason Takes Manhattan (1989)

Friday The 13th 8 - Jason Takes Manhattan (1989)

Do I like the original Friday the 13th film? Of course I do. But nothing in the entire franchise can compare to the craptastically ludicrous adventure that takes Jason Voorhees to New York. Sure, its only for the last 20 minutes of the movie and the first 2 acts are on a rancid boat full of stupid teens partying it up, but who cares?!?! It’s an 80’s movie, no wait – it’s an 80’s Jason movie at it’s finest! Part 8 has everything you loved or loathed about the 80’s rolled into one film, with Jason trying to hack it to pieces.

3. A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

A Nightmare On Elm Street (1984)

You cannot have a top 10 without including Freddy Krueger, who literally has become the face of all things horror. A Nightmare on Elm Street is smart, original in its concept and quite unpredictable as far as 80’s films went. And let’s talk about Nancy who didn’t just run away to survive – she actually kicked ass. This film is clearly a must see.

2. Psycho (1960)

Psycho (1960)

Without a doubt, Alfred Hitchcock’s greatest contribution to not only film, to the invention of modern horror. Without Psycho all the other films on this list probably wouldn’t exist. Psycho, though somewhat dated, is still sexy and stylish. And Norman Bates is still a force to be reckoned with as well as his mother. If there was ever a movie that should always be included on everyone’s top 10 horror list, it’s Psycho.

1. Halloween (1978)

Halloween (1978)

My first introduction to horror is and will always be my favorite. Halloween is simple, stylish and irreplaceable. John Carpenter truly created a masterpiece. Michael Myers is terror personified. There is no debating this. But what I love about Halloween is that it has endured. It started off as a movie set during a holiday and has now become the very spirit of said holiday. You cannot celebrate Halloween properly without watching the movie with your friends, putting on a mask and scaring the neighborhood kids, or correcting that one idiot who thinks you’re (insert other slasher icon). So yeah, Halloween is my number one choice.

(Again, we thank Chris for being a guest contributor to  Every horror fan has a top 10 list, and we will be bringing the readers a new top 10 list weekly from those in the business.  If you are interested in contributing your list please contact us.)  

Chris R. Notarile

Chris R. Notarile is a writer / director / producer and CEO of Blinky Productions. Films include: Krueger: A Tale From Elm Street and Dangerman. Follow me on twitter at @Blinky500

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9 years ago

Love, love, LOVE the fact that you put Jason Takes Manhattan on your list. Agreed that it’s totally craptastic, but that doesn’t make it any less of an enjoyable film. I thoroughly enjoy Jason X for the same reasons. Thanks for contributing Chris!!!

Roberto Lombardi
9 years ago

Funny, I knew all these were Chris’ favorites!

9 years ago

I still get confused as to how the kids sailed from Ohio to New York City in Jason 8, but I still freaking love parts of that movie. I keep hearing good things about the Curse of Chucky, but haven’t checked it out.

I am pumped for your third movie. The first 2 were just awesome.

9 years ago
Reply to  Trapjaw

Apparently there’s a little known tributary from Lake Erie to NYC 🙂

Always bothers me too, but overlook-able for such a “fun” movie.

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