10 Things Tuesday: Horror Films that SHOULD have been in the Oscar tribute

As promised, here are 10 Oscar-tribute-worthy horror films. Some were included in the montage, others not or not as featured as I would have liked.


1. Night of the Living Dead (1968)
, particularly the scene of the little girl, the one you're just waiting to turn into a zombie, feasting on her father and then coming toward her mother with blood all over her mouth. I just love Romero's first film which endeared the zombie genre to me.

2. Last House on the Left (1972) This is still one of my favorite horror films and it's incredibly difficult to watch. I love Craven's vision; this was his first film and it's amazing. It's intensely disturbing and the 1970's palette adds to the terror.

3. Near Dark (1987), directed by now Academy-Award Winner Kathryn Bigelow, is a fantastic vampire film, though they never use the word vampire, once. It has half the cast of Aliens in it. Okay, maybe that's an exaggeration but seriously, there are many recognizable faces in it. It is unflinching in its portrayal of the vampires; they are ruthless predators. The film itself is set among grimy, sleazy motels, busted RV's and truck stops. You may feel as though you need a shower after watching it, but it's worth it.

4. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) The pacing of this film creates so much tension for the last half of the film that you feel incredibly unsettled as you watch the chase scenes. There's a sense of claustrophobia here that each time makes me feel hot and panicky. Though it's certainly not as gory as its "updated" counterparts, what is scary, to me, is what you imagine.

5. Candyman (1992) I was a freshmen in high school when this film came out. It was rated R so I had to sneak into the theater to see it and thus when I was terrified of going into my bathroom, I couldn't tell anyone or explain my nightmares. It recalls the "Bloody Mary" urban legend I grew up with and goes beyond it as it creates its own momentum.

6. The Blair Witch Project (1999) I saw this film at midnight the night it was released. When I got home, I parked under the carport, which is coincidentally surrounded by woods. I don't know if I've ever run so quickly to get inside the safety of my home. The film has been spoofed so many times, you may actually forget how scary it really is.

7. The Hitcher (1986) I talked about this on my favorites list and it definitely deserves inclusion. Rutger Hauer is just so damn scary as John Ryder. The lengths he goes to in order to terrorize his victims is terrifying as you wonder what's going to happen next.

8. Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer (1990) I hadn't even heard of this film until about 5 years ago. This is quite possibly one of the most unsettling films I've ever seen. Michael Rooker is beyond amazing as Henry. The scenes we don't see but rather hear and can only imagine are what really ramps up the terror, not to mention the documentary style of the film makes you really uncomfortable.

9. The Ring (2002) scared the crap out of me and I found it difficult to sleep after watching this. The slow creepiness of Samara just got to me, especially the scene where she comes out of the TV. I couldn't close my eyes without seeing that image for a while.

10. The Devil's Rejects (2005) The performances in this film are what make it a great horror film. Like Henry, the realism is what gets you, here, as well. It is brutal and unflinching and the characters are so odd that there's both an unpredictability and a sense of reality that creates tension throughout the film. Easily, one of the best contemporary horror films I can think of.