I’m back again today with the third in my “best of” series. Today’s list comes from 1982. You can check out my Top 5 Horror Films From 1980 and my Top 5 Horror Films From 1981. I’m loving putting these lists together and have gotten a great response. Here goes!
Chewie’s Top 5 Horror Films From 1982
All of these films received their US theatrical release within calendar year 1982. If you want to see the full list of all films eligible for this list you can view it here. Keep in mind, these are my “favorite” movies not necessarily what I’d consider the “best” movies.
Halloween 3: Season of the Witch – A large Halloween mask-making company has plans to kill millions of American children with something sinister hidden in Halloween masks. This one gets a bad wrap in my book. It’s part of the Halloween franchise but it really has nothing to do with it because it doesn’t have Michael Myers in it. If you can get past that fact this is actually a pretty decent little horror flick.
The House Where Evil Dwells – nudity, ghosts and an exorcism. Throw in a bit of quirky humor and you’ve got yourself a film worth watching.
The Dark Crystal – Wait… what the hell’s this Jim Henson fantasy movie doing on this list? Well, I’ll tell you. This was a dark (excuse the pun) film. I saw the name Jim Henson and immediately expected Muppets. And while they’re here in theory, this one threw me for a loop. I have no idea how it holds up as I’ve not seen it in forever but it left a mark deep enough for me to mention it here.
The Top Five
#5 – Amityville II: The Possession
A family moves into their new home, which proves to be evil, resulting in the demonic possession of the teenage son. Only the local priest can save him. This is actually a prequel to The Amityville Horror. Cast includes Burt Young (of Rocky fame). This is one of those films that gets pretty universally slammed but I enjoy it for what it is.
#4 – Creepshow
A horror anthology directed by George Romero and written by Stephen King. The cast includes Hal Holbrook, Adrienne Barbeau, Fritz Weaver, Leslie Nielsen, Ted Danson and Stephen King. Makeup by Tom Savini makes this a great LOOKING horror anthology. It consists of five short stories: “Father’s Day”, “The Lonesome Death of Jordy Verrill”, “Something to Tide You Over”, “The Crate” and “They’re Creeping Up on You!”
#3 – Poltergeist
A young family are visited by ghosts in their home. At first the ghosts appear friendly, moving objects around the house to the amusement of everyone, then they turn nasty and start to terrorize the family before they “kidnap” the youngest daughter. Directed by Tobe Hooper, written and produced by Steven Spielberg and starring JoBeth Williams, Craig T. Nelson, Beatrice Straight and Heather O’Rourke as the cute and now iconic Carol Anne Freeling. They’re HEEERE!
#2 – The Thing
Scientists in the Antarctic are confronted by a shape-shifting alien that assumes the appearance of the people that it kills. John Carpenter’s remake of 1951’s The Thing from Another World is a horror masterpiece. It’s also one that I came to rather late in life seeing it for the first time only a few years ago. Not sure why I’d missed it for all of those years but it’s amazing. Starring Kurt Russell, Keith David and Wilford Brimley, The Thing combines the concept of being trapped with a monster with the idea of running out of time. It holds up incredibly well to this day and has some simply outstanding special effects.
Directed by Steve Miner and originally released in 3D. It’s the first time we get our main man Jason Voorhees with his signature hockey mask. It is the quintessential “slasher” film that follows a group of co-eds on vacation at a house on Crystal Lake. It’s got some of the best deaths in the series including a clever to the chest, a knitting needle through the back of the head, a pitchfork through the throat, a shot through the eye (3D style) with a spear gun, a machete chop to the balls and many more. Xina lists it as #6 in her ranking of the franchise but for me it’s near the top of the list. This was intended to be the “final” film in the series which is shown in the final scene of the movie. The fact that it was released in 3D gives all the more enjoyment – though it’s more just for “cheese” factor.
Did I leave off your favorite horror film from 1982? Leave a comment with your thoughts!