Besides the relatively well-received Oculus and The Babadook, 2014 was a disappointing turnout in terms of quality horror movies. Optimistic horror aficionados are hoping 2015 can turn that smile upside down. Film buffs are predicting seriously lasting scares this year, with a plethora of scary movies on a much more promising roster.
From the expected remakes to much-anticipated sequels and a bevy of original ideas coming to life, horror fans can breathe a sigh of relief before getting their screams on.
In 2015, Rob Zombie is making his goriest and most twisted film yet. Insidious gets a third chapter, while Sinister gets its much-anticipated sequel. Festival darlings of 2014 promises top notch scares with their mainstream releases, and Guillermo Del Toro and M. Night Shyamalan are getting back into the game of thrilling and terrifying in 2015. From major studio releases to independent horror films, we've got you covered with our top 15 most anticipated movies of 2015.
14 Da Sweet Blood of Jesus – February 13
Who would have thought that Spike Lee would make a vampire flick? The controversial director has made numerous films with race issues being a central theme, but few would ever have expected him to tackle the vampire lore.
Early reviews are mixed since this was released in the American Black Film Festival last year, but the general horror-loving public can't help but be excited to see what director Spike Lee can do with his first foray into horror.
Funded by Kickstarter, Da Sweet Blood of Jesus is described as a funny, sexy and bloody love story that borrows heavily from the 1973 horror film Ganja & Hess.
13 The Lazarus Effect – February 27
Many fans of horror love the idea of bringing the dead back to life, especially when it’s something original which turns the zombie theme on its head.
The Lazarus Effect features a group of medical students who discover a serum that can bring dead patients back to life: you can be fairly certain this doesn't end well. With a solid director and a great cast including Olivia Wilde and American Horror Story’s Evan Peters, fans are hopeful they'll get some quality scares. The trailer left many with mouths agape, wildly excited at this flick's potential fear factor.
12 It Follows – March 27
Following a limited released on the festival circuit, David Robert Mitchell’s It Follows has garnered fantastic reviews from the critics. It currently holds a 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes.
Genre fans are now anxiously awaiting March to see how 19-year-old Jay carries a curse after a sexual encounter.
Plagued by visions, she always feels as if something is following her - something that won't stop tormenting her until she passes it on. With praise for its acting, story, music and old-fashioned scares, It Follows looks to be a contender for best horror movie of the year.
11 Insidious: Chapter 3 – June 5
Horror lovers still see that dancing boy in their nightmares as that creepy song plays over and over… Both Insidious films were superb supernatural horrors, with this third entry serving as a prequel to the story. In Chapter 3, a father struggles to protect his daughter from evil entities; he is forced to bring in a team of paranormal investigators for help.
Most fans of the original aren't too worried that director James Wan and stars Rose Byrne and Patrick Wilson aren’t back for this one. It's expected that Leigh Whannell, writer of all three films and director of the third, will do an admirable job directing Chapter 3.
10 Poltergeist – July 24
Remakes are always a hot topic for controversy as they're usually hit or miss – mostly miss. Fans of the original classic shouldn't get too eager, but many can't help but be excited for the re-imagining of this horror favourite.
In Poltergeist, a family is terrorised by ghosts, with the youngest daughter being kidnapped by the supernatural entities. There have been rumblings that this one will be a little more kid-friendly but with quite a few scares; as long as the quality is there, fans won't necessarily mind. With a Pulitzer Prize-winning scribe writing the script and an amazing cast starring Sam Rockwell, film goers are cautiously optimistic this remake will be a hit and a worthy entrant in the Poltergeist series.
9 Sinister 2 – August 21
The original Sinister was among the best and scariest horror movies to hit theatres in years, with scenes of families dying in the most gruesome ways scarring the viewers. The iconic still of the family hanging from a tree still haunts viewers to this day.
Although a different director is set for the sequel, most are happy to see the same writing team come up with something sinister to scare them again this go around. What we know so far: the demon Bughuul makes his return as a young mom and her twin boys move into a new house that hides some deadly secrets.
8 The Visit – September 11
Despite many failures in recent years, some horror fans are actually excited for M. Night Shyamalan’s next film. Sure, hopes aren’t too high, but there’s a glimmer of possibility that he might make something that comes close to The Sixth Sense again.
This low-budget film, billed a 'horror comedy', tells the tale of two children visiting their grandparent’s house in Pennsylvania only to find dark secrets. It has definitely got many intrigued. Many are hoping Shyamalan can deliver on the thrills and tension as the grandparents are apparently involved with some messed-up evil that puts the kids in serious danger. The film’s original title, Sundowning, lends a clue to what the dark secret may be, as it refers to a condition where dementia patients get worse after the sun sets.
7 Victor Frankenstein – October 2
Don’t be fooled by the title: color us excited for this dark origin story that focuses on Doctor Frankenstein’s assistant, the hunchback Igor. Despite James McAvoy’s top billing as the strange Doctor, this film is told through the perspective of Daniel Radcliffe’s Igor, describing his friendship with Frankenstein and how the two came to create one of the scariest monsters in horror history.
Both actors are more than capable of delivering some great performances with a touch of horror. Although most are expecting some Universal-style monster action and angry mobs with pitchforks and fire, this one will be a darker affair that will treat viewers to some scares.
6 Goosebumps – October 16
Every 90s kid will surely rush to see this movie. Who wasn’t a fan of this awesome book series and TV show? Jack Black stars as R.L. Stein, author of the Goosebumps series, who must team up with his niece and her friend to battle the creatures that have been unleashed from his books. It's an original, meta premise that promises to be a hit with nostalgic fans.
The film is expected to be as much comedy as it is horror, but that’s ok with us if it means we get to revisit the Living Dummy and the Haunted Mask. Nostalgia will reign supreme in what's expected to be a highly entertaining film.
5 Crimson Peak – October 16
One of the most buzzed-about horror movies of 2015 comes from the sick and twisted mind of Guillermo Del Toro. Crimson Peak has been in the works for a while; it’s a Gothic horror film set in the 19th century starring Tom Hiddleston, Mia Wasikowska and Jessica Chastain.
If Pan’s Labyrinth and The Devil’s Backbone are any indication, we’re in for a treat as Del Toro works wonders with his horror stories, perfectly intertwining scares and humanity. A haunted house movie at its core, horror buffs are ecstatic to see how this 19th century mansion becomes a horror villain of its own with the gloomy atmosphere and feeling of dread that permeates throughout.
4 Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension – October 23
While some argue that the series has already been run into the ground, lovers of this franchise can’t help but be excited for the latest movie in the Paranormal Activity franchise.
Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension is not a spinoff like last year’s The Marked Ones. It is in fact a sequel to the main series, serving up some demonic action with the returning Toby and continuing the story that started it all. With whispers of it being a creative rebirth instead of a rehash with new director Gregory Plotkin, fans are thrilled to see another suburban family haunted by evil forces.
3 Scouts vs Zombies – October 30
Starring Arnold Schwarzenegger’s kid Patrick, Scouts vs Zombies is yet another zombie comedy following three boy scouts as they test their friendship and their skills, attempting to save their town from the dead.
We like the idea of this coming-of-age zombie movie where young scouts try to thwart brain-hungry creatures from eating their townspeople. Tye Sheridan, who portrays one of the three boy scouts, is a star on the rise as his previous performances in films such as Mud garnered him enough praise to star as Cyclops in the upcoming X-Men film. Before he can kick ass alongside mutants, let’s see what he can do against zombies.
2 Rings – November 13
Little is known about this feature besides the fact it is set in The Ring universe and the creepy Samara will surely make her triumphant return to scare the daylights out of viewers.
Paramount made the decision to bump up its release date to November of this year, dropping the equally anticipated Friday the 13th to next year in favor of an actual release date of Friday the 13th in May.
With the return of a familiar video tape that kills its viewer after 7 days, genre lovers are super stoked to see what director Javier Gutierrez has in store.
1 31 - TBA
Very little is known about Rob Zombie’s next effort, but what is known has horror fans ridiculously excited. The crowdfunded 31 pits five people in a slaughterhouse called Murder World against a gang of terrifying, sadistic clowns known as “The Heads”. They have 12 hours to survive in a game of kill or be killed.
No cast is known yet, but those in the know expect Zombie’s wife Sheri Moon Zombie to portray some sadistic character. The controversial director has a track record for putting out some disturbing material, but we can only imagine how bad it’s going to be in this film considering the director said this will be his bloodiest and goriest yet.