So far, it's been an exciting year for horror. Afflicted is a "damn fine film," The Babadook is a must see, and Only Lovers Left Alive is one of the most gorgeous horror films ever. 2014 is really shaping out to be a great year for horror, and it's not over yet. Here are several reasons to be thrilled about the future of horror.
Top image from The Drownsman Movie.
Stage Fright (April 3)
Ok it's not technically science fiction or fantasy — but the premise of Stage Fright is too good (and too much like Phantom of the Opera) to ignore. This is a musical horror film. At a ridiculous theater camp, the aspiring stars are in for a bloody disaster as campers and counselors alike wind up dead. But the show must go on. Also somehow they got both Minnie Driver and Meatloaf (Eddie!) to sing and dance in this, which is just wonderful. Really wonderful.
Oculus (April 11)
The mirror is haunted! Our beloved Karen Gillan stars as a woman hell bent on getting revenge on a mirror that ate her parents. The supernatural-powered mirror has a myriad of powers including the ability to project images into its victims brains. So it can make you think a lightbulb is an apple, and you won't realize the difference until you've taken a bite.
13 Sins (April 18)
Inspired by the Thai movie 13: Game of Death, this new remake centers around Elliot, a man with no money, no prospects and no hope. Seemingly out of nowhere Elliot is invited to play a hidden camera gameshow called 13 Sins! All he has to do is complete 13 tasks and he will receive 6 million. But as each task is accomplished the next one becomes more and more morally repugnant task. How far will Elliot go? 13 Sins has two of our all time favorite cult actors — Pruitt Taylor Vince and Ron Perlman. And stars Mark Webber (Scott Pilgrim vs. the World) who is absolutely sensational in everything he's in (no matter how small the part) so we're excited to see this guy get unhinged. The director is from another io9 favorite The Last Exorcist. Here's the trailer.
The Quiet Ones (April 25)
Hammer Horror films cast Jared Harris and Sam Claflin in a vintage ghost movie set in the '70s. Harris is on a paranormal mission to use science to solve ghostly problems. Instead he only manages to create one giant, pissed-off spirit. Uh oh.
The Drownsman (Cannes Film Festival Debut, May)
After almost drowning in a lake, main character Madison struggles with hydrophobia. Frustrated by her ongoing fears, Madison's friends stage an intervention that goes horribly wrong. Excellent. What great friends you have Madison!
The Sacrament (May 1)
Found Footage meets Vice Production. A documentary crew from New York's Vice office heads to head to the Amazon to score an interview with the head of a major cult. But instead they find blood, just so much blood. The trailer is downright horrifying. Written and directed by Ti West of Innkeepers we expect nothing but insane slow burn on this one.
Alien Abduction (May 1)
This found footage-esque film follows a vacationing family through the woods and right into an alien encounter. The story is allegedly based on the "real life" Brown Mountain Lights phenomenon in North Carolina. From the looks of the trailer we're dealing with classic alien abduction horror, lots of creepy long arms, bright lights and terrible, terrible experiments.
Mr. Jones (May 2)
Hands down, the most bananas premise we've heard about in horror this year — but it has us absolutely intrigued. A couple on a woodland retreat stumbles upon the work of famous recluse and artist Mr. Jones. He's known for his epically creepy scarecrow creations. And they are utterly horrifying. But the plot isn't that linear — it's actually wrapped up with the couple's fights, and things become unclear on what is reality and what is scarecrow hell. Just go watch the trailer right now it's amazing.
The Signal (June 13)
A favorite at this year's Sundance, The Signal channels a whole heap of classic science fiction paranoia. A trio of friends search for an anonymous hacker who has been toying with them online, but then things go wildly astray when the kids bite off way more than they can chew. Every type of horror is in this movie and it's relentless with keeping the audience unbalanced and constantly questioning everything. Plus Laurence Fishburne and the main character Brenton Thwaites (who also stars in The Giver) are absolutely fantastic together. We've already premiered the trailer, but we cannot wait to see more.
Deliver Us From Evil (July 2)
Based on the "true story" from a real New York cop who really fought the devil (or something) Eric Bana plays the role of said troubled cop. Who finds out he can't arrest evil. Deliver Us From Evil was directed by Scott Derrickson, who gave us Sinister which we half loved. So that is promising. Here's a look.
The Purge 2 (July 18)
The Purge is back! And this time we've got an amazing cast, including Frank Grillo and Friday Night Lights' Zach Gilford. The sequel to the very successful movie about the one night a year when all crime is legal (all of it) takes place outside of the safe house, on the mean streets! Welcome back to The Purge and all its ham-fisted political themes!
Jessabelle (August 29)
From the producer of Paranormal Activity and Insidious, is Jessabelle. A movie about a young woman (Sarah Snook) who returns to her childhood home in Louisiana to revocer from a brutal car accident that killed her fiancé (and took away her ability to use her legs). But she will find no solace inside this crumbling old mansion with her father, because a spirit has been waiting for her return. We're kind of excited about this movie because the screenwriter is Deputy Travis Junior from Reno 911 (Robert Ben Garant) and he's brilliant. Fingers crossed he can find some humor in this seemingly bleak horror story.
The Green Inferno (September 5)
Director Eli Roth's latest! From what we've seen just about everyone in this movie is covered in blood at some time or another. The plot follows a group of student activists who travel to the Amazon to save a dying tribe. Unfortunately for them, their plane crashes and they become hostages of the very people they flew down to help.
Cooties (October 10)
Next to Mr. Jones, this is the second movie we are seriously crossing all of our fingers for. Two of our very favorites (Eljah Wood and Alison Pill) star in Cooties, a movie that sounds freaking brilliant. An elementary school is struck with a horrible virus that turns all the little students into quasi-zombies. Now the teachers have to fight their way out... through the children. Yes, it sounds amazing.
Tusk (No Date)
Kevin Smith's walrus horror movie. It sounds sounds insane. Starring Justin Long and Haley Joel Osment, Tusk is about what happens when a man answers a roommate ad that advertises free rent, granted they dress up in a walrus costume from time to time. It has been called very Human Centipede like with the body horror, so we'll just let your mind go from there. On the plus side it does have the wonderful Rob Kurtzman (Hisss, Bubba Ho-Tep, From Dusk Till Dawn) doing the special effects makeup, so at least it will look awesome. Not sure when Smith will be done with this one, hopefully this year, because we're dying to see Jusin Long all mutilated into looking like a walrus.
Clown (No Date)
Inspired by the excellent fake trailer created by Jon Watts, Eli Roth (who was the fake director of the fake trailer) decided to go ahead and back the project. And now this horrifying man-to-clown-monster transformation movie is being made. It even got a script from Robot & Frank writer Christopher D. Ford, and a brand new trailer that looks terrifying. There is nothing scarier than a clown.
Wolves (No Date)
David Hayter (writer for X-Men, The Scorpion King, Watchmen) makes his full feature directorial debut on Wolves. Starring Jason Momoa as the Wolf version of Mister Mistoffelees (we guess). The whole thing look ludicrous in just the best way possibly. The story is about a group of anthropomorphic werewolves who look absolutely fantastic.