Top 10: Foreign Horror

I’m using ‘foreign’ here to mean non-American (because they obviously make the most films by far) and non-Asian (because I’ve already done a separate list for the best Asian horror films here: https://iwrotesomestuff.wordpress.com/2013/02/18/top-10-asian-horror/). These are some of the other gems from around the world.

10. Dead Alive (1992)

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Before he turned his homeland into Middle Earth, Peter Jackson was busy covering it with as much blood and guts as he could in what is widely considered to be one of the goriest films ever made. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dead_Alive)

9. Shallow Grave (1994)

uk danny boyle shallow grave 238

This is the first feature film from the man who would go on to direct such recent hits as Slumdog Millionaire and 127 Hours. It also stars a rather young Ewan McGregor and Christopher Eccelston both near the beginning of their respective careers. A great plot and some fantastic acting – look out for the rather stomach-churning scene where Christopher Eccleston has to hack a pair of hands off a corpse with a shovel! (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shallow_Grave)

8. Man Bites Dog (1992)

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Behind The Mask is one of my absolute favourite films and one that takes a slightly unorthodox approach to the genre. But it was certainly not the first to be filmed mockumentary-style from, more or less, the serial killer’s perspective. Although Behind The Mask switches tack half-way through this Belgian film beat it to its main idea and carries it off very well. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Man_Bites_Dog_(film))

7. Juan Of The Dead (2011)

Juan Of The Dead

Although this is nowhere near as good as Shaun Of The Dead (another of my all-time favourites) this Cuban zombie-horror is thoroughly enjoyable and is quite different from Simon Pegg & Nick Frost’s take on the zombie apocalypse which inevitably awaits us all. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Juan_of_the_Dead)

6. The Wicker Man (1973)

The Wicker Man

One of the all-time classics of horror starring one of the all-time acting greats, Christopher Lee. I really don’t feel the need to justify this film’s inclusion on this list. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wicker_Man_(1973_film))

5. Wolf Creek (2005)

Wolf Creek

Slightly like an Aussie version of Texas Chainsaw Massacre set in the Outback except that, in my opinion, it is a hundred times better than the Texas version – which I feel looks slightly dated now. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wolf_Creek_(film))

4. Troll Hunter (2010)

Troll Hunter

I absolutely ADORE this film. Granted I am a self-confessed Scandophile but I have heard nothing but praise for this film from genre and non-genre fans alike. Another gem in amongst some of the rubbish in the found-footage genre of recent years with some rather brilliant special effects for such a low-budget effort. Extra points for managing to include the line, “Det er trollstank.” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Troll_hunter)

3. [REC] (2007)

Rec 3 Film

Another found-footage film, this time from Spain. Some serious scares in parts and a fantastically chilling ending. Not one to watch with the lights off if you’re of a nervous disposition. Probably the Barcelona tourist board’s least favourite film! (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/REC_(film))

2. 28 Days Later (2002)

28 Days Later

Another Danny Boyle film and another of my absolute favourites. A new take on the zombie sub-genre with some incredible shots of a post-apocalyptic London. Just watch this film, you won’t regret it! (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/28_Days_Later)

1. Let The Right One In (2008)

Let The Right One In

Scandinavia’s second entry on this list, this time with a Swedish lilt. Probably the sweetest horror film ever made with some fantastic acting from the two relatively young leads. Although I have heard the American remake is actually very good (some people have even suggested it is slightly better) I refuse to watch it and cannot believe that this original can be outdone in any way. At any rate, I would thoroughly recommend watching this version first (and preferably, ONLY this version). (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Let_the_Right_One_In_(film))

Honourable Mention

Although Alien was written and directed by Ridley Scott I felt that the large contingent of American actors on its cast list meant I couldn’t quite include it on the final list. But at any rate and regardless of where it’s from this is an absolutely stellar film (no pun intended).

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