With the D.C. premiere of The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence) last week, it seems we’ve arrived at the time of year when movie studios release their boldest (and grossest) horror films into the public sphere. As Halloween approaches, even non-horror fans temper up their fright nerve in order to sit down and watch a scary movie. It’s a right of passage for kids, and somehow, never goes out of style as you grow older.
There are about a million different sub-genres of horror films. Many creep just this side of exploitation cinema. Sure, many were dared by their older siblings to watch some gory horror film when they were kids. You might have even been passing around a copy of one of the Faces of Death films in grade school. But until you’ve prefaced a few of the films on this list, you haven’t truly had the pleasure of almost gagging while watching a film. Most of the films on this list seem to be made with a dare in mind. You will want to grab your camera (as well as a container to throw up in) to post your friend’s reaction on YouTube. So, here is a simple list of 10 sick, gory, and gross films that you can freak out your friends with:
The Human Centipede (First Sequence) (2010) Gore hounds and horror buffs scoffed at this film when they finally saw it. For a movie which such a premise as this one, the blood-thirsty found Tom Six’s debut surprisingly restrained. About a scientist who sows three people together lip-to-anus, the lack of gore seems like an attempt for the director to hold back and use a subtle approach. Although horror fans rolled their eyes, Six has made a response to those who doubt his ability to shock with his new sequel.
A Serbian Film (2010) Here is a film that shocks everyone, but actually has some artistic merit. A Serbian porn star gets a job to do a film that will set his family up for life, only he can’t be told what the project consists of. You wouldn’t believe what the project actually does consist of. Two words: “Newborn porn.” Not for the squeamish of gore or sex, but it’s certainly disturbing and quite powerful.
Martyrs (2008) A new, American remake is in the works for this French-Canadian film. It’s certainly shocking, wholly depressing and oddly moving in one stroke. Won’t frighten you as much as it will make you want to kill yourself, the director of the remake has come out and admitted that he will give his new film a happier ending.
Grotesque (2009) Snuff for the sake of snuff. Two co-workers on a date get kidnapped and tortured. The End. An excruciating experience to sit through, this was only made for the snuff purest. Nothing happens in this film except torture. Easily one of the most pointless exercises in torture porn to rival that of the August Underground films.
Gutterballs (2008) It’s a comedy. Sort of. With too many twists at the end to care about, Gutterballs attempts to present a new version of the last woman standing. It works like I Spit on Your Grave in a bowling alley with a who-done-it angle. A sickening depiction of humanity in general, the film doesn’t bother to sympathize with any of its two-dimensional characters. It does attempt to, but it does far better at dishing them out unspeakable, gruesome deaths.
The Midnight Meat Train (2008) A fun and creepy horror film from producer Clive Barker. A photographer goes in search of a man who’s killing people on the subway at night. Apt title for a gross little film. It even has evil, hungry lizard things living in the subway. You can’t ask for much more.
August Underground’s movies (2001-2007) A series of three films, all available on video, that are essentially snuff films. They are all low, low, low budget indie fair. The look of the films themselves is unappealing enough to make you sick. You may laugh at parts of it, but August Underground, August Underground’s Mordum, and August Underground’s Penance are some of the sickest films imaginable.
Saw II-3D (2005-2010) There are seven films (so far) in the Saw series, the latest called Saw 3D. The first one could be called a thriller, however loosely. It made the term “torture porn” a buzz word, which is odd, since it wasn’t until the sequels were released that the series really focused in on the carnage. The film’s killer, Jigsaw, has a flair for the over-the-top. Any of these six films are a decent squirm-fest to shock your friends with.
Final Destination series (2000-2011) In the late nineties era, along with the popularity of Scream, here was another series that concerned itself with killing off teens. The pleasure here is watching people get killed in ridiculous ways. The third film was rather comical, the fourth was just bad, and the fifth was released just this year with alarmingly strong reviews. They’re studio films to be sure, but they do deliver gory death scenes.
Frontier(s) (2007) The family that kills together, stays together. This family runs an inn in a quaint French town. When a group of thieves make their escape during the country’s political turmoil, they decide to stay at an inn. Bad idea. Another creative French film with buckets of gore.