December 20, 2019 Cryptic Rock Presents: Top 10 Horror Movies of 2019
In a year that had many film lovers waiting on the edge of their seats for Jedis, Horror once again refused to be overlooked. Stretching out to explore new territory, the genre delivered long-awaited and exciting sequels—one in particular starring an infamous man named Danny and another touting the star of your worst nightmares, a clown called Pennywise. Other films introduced brave new worlds full of pagan rituals, eerily familiar villains, and even a haunting lighthouse. As devout lovers of the genre, Cryptic Rock have culled together our opinions on all things Horror that occurred over the past year, and so we gift to you our Top 10 Horror films of 2019.
(Click movie poster for full film review)
Annabelle Comes Home:
Everyone’s favorite cursed doll is back with a vengeance, once again bringing the focus to where the Conjuring universe all began – with the Warrens. A veritable gauntlet of Horror tropes, Annabelle Comes Home still manages to conjure up plenty of jump scares and tense moments without feeling stale.
Purchase Annabelle Comes Home:
A passion project of James Gunn, Brightburn is an unofficial “what if” story of a world where Superman grows up evil. It doesn’t take long for young Brandon Breyer to come into his powers, and when he does the results are absolutely terrifying. Comics have explored the possibility of an evil Superman before, but none of those come close to the visceral on-screen depiction of a merciless demi-god who cannot be stopped by anything on Earth.
As the king of character development in the Horror genre, Stephen King has done it once again with this Mike Flanagan directed film adaptation of the best-selling novel Doctor Sleep, the sequel to the beloved The Shining. Featuring a great depiction of a grown-up Danny Torrance battling long-time bottled up demons in a whole new way, the story manages to eventually find its way back to the original Colorado hotel featured in the original classic. A not to be missed sequel that proudly stands on its own, Doctor Sleep does its forebear proud.
Purchase Doctor Sleep:
Happy Death Day 2 U:
Topping the first installment was a daunting task, but Happy Death Day 2 U adds some Sci-Fi flare to this Groundhog Day-esque time-looping sequel to keep the story fresh and interesting. Lovable, flawed characters and quirky humor make this series stand out among the crowd.
Purchase Happy Death Day 2 U:
It Chapter Two:
It Chapter Two perfectly followed up on the well-executed reboot, delivering a satisfying conclusion to an amazing story. The scares, the story, and the journey were woven together in a way that few franchises are able to accomplish. Hopefully future filmmakers can look to this film as a reminder to stick closely to the source material – all while making sure the audience is able to truly connect with the characters to create an engaging story.
Purchase It Chapter Two:
Our second sophomore effort on the list comes from Robert Eggers, who put his name on the map with the critically acclaimed 2016 film The Witch. Probably the most unique entry on the list, The Lighthouse is a surreal, mind-bending Horror offering about a pair of lighthouse keepers who struggle to stay sane after a storm strands them on the island. Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson deliver fantastic performances and carry this psychological nightmare to one of the best Horror films of the year.
Purchase The Lighthouse:
Likely the most talked about Horror movie of the year, Ari Aster’s Midsommar is an emotionally draining descent into the depths of lonely despair and subsequent rebirth through blood and sacrifice. An instant genre classic awash in pagan symbolism and rituals, Midsommar follows a failing relationship to an isolated cult in rural Sweden, where ancient beliefs, psychological trauma, and new beginnings coalesce in an unforgettable climax that will leave viewers reeling.
Ready or Not:
Ready or Not was a deliciously suspenseful and witty Horror film; a cocktail of murder, mystery, and mayhem with just a dash of humor to create a delectable viewing experience that held up till the very end. Throw in a stellar cast and a stand-out heroine, Ready or Not was a bloody good time and an obvious choice for our Top Horror of 2019 list.
Purchase Ready or Not:
Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark:
The book series whose artwork traumatized an entire generation of kids finally got its own movie after years of anticipation. Scary Stories is a teen-focused film that delivers decent scares for its target audience, but the real stars of the show are the monsters from artist Stephen Gammell. Brought to life in all their horrific glory by Spectral Motion Studios, Scary Stories is a fun flick that is definitely worth your time, especially if you grew up with the books.
Purchase Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark:
Jordan Peele’s sophomore film further establishes him as one of the most ambitious filmmakers in Horror. Focusing on a normal American family who are attacked by mostly-mute doppelgangers, Us is a thrilling ride layered in social critiques such as classism and poverty, topics that Peele is keen on. Peele’s work with the pen and camera, combined with great performances from the cast, make Us one of the top Horror films of the year.