Retro Reviewer’s Best/Worst Films of 2012

Bleeding Dead’s Top Five Best/Worst films of 2012. Albeit three days late into the new year, but posted no less.

As Truly Disturbing’s Retro Reviewer I made an effort to watch newer films, purely for the purpose of this list. As I rarely watch newer releases unless they seem interesting to me. I didn’t get to see all though, such as AMERICAN MARY or CITADEL, which may have changed some of the placing on this list. But for what I did see here it is.

WORST:

BestWorst - Dvl Angl#5 DEVIL’S ANGEL – I couldn’t even recall to you what this film is about if I wanted too. The premise was interesting enough, a woman who gives birth to the first human clone doesn’t know that the DNA used to create the embro was taken from the blood of Christ. Again interesting and a unique horror concept but when the child actors are better than the adults there’s no saving this film. Not to mention it was just strange and the actual plot didn’t amount to much sense. The film doesn’t have an IMDB page or a Wikipedia page which lets way a bit to how much anyone cares about this. Again if maybe treated to right, in both script and production, this would of  had a chance but that’s not what happened, so it makes my worst.

#4 THE WOMAN IN BLACK – Though THE WOMAN IN BLACK has a beautiful Gothic lens the film is rather slow and didn’t catch my interest enough to even finish it. Radcliffe as a lead is a bit of a mixed bag, as his physical acting lets that of a mature actor who’s past his iconic childhood role, but then when his mouth opened all he became was Harry Potter. Such a shame because Radcliffe really is a great actor but Hammer’s rebooted horror film didn’t do much in revising their place in modern horror. Not that all is a lost as said the film is creepily shot and is lovely to look at, but I think Hammer has a little ways to go before they bring out another classic.

#3 KILLJOY GOES TO HELL – This film is bad. In fairness the title and the description offered little hope so I should expect this when renting a film of such means. But to be honest what really bothered me was this is the FOURTH Killjoy film. How that’s possible is beyond me, but I have issues with the film despite being a sequel to three prior killer clown films. The main being is that there’s nothing horror about this. The living victim who laughs irrevocably isn’t any means scary. Killjoy needs to stop acting like Chucky, because he’s not. And any horror film that’s set in a judicial hell isn’t the kind to offer scares.

#2 THE APPARITION – Let’s just be honest here, this is purely a copy and paste film where a studio uses every technique it can pull to mass market to teenagers. Not only do they have Tom Felton from the Harry Potter films and Ashlee Greene from the Twilight films, but they essentially just rip off any J-horror and Ghost film, which in truth only scares teenagers. What’s worse though is they attempt to call it their own and original, which is rather sad considering how blatantly obvious it is. Greene is awful and they style her hair so massively that it nearly eats her head, maybe in truth the only ‘horror’ to the film. And lets not forget a consistent stupidity that every character seems to posses. There’s really no other way to say it than that this film is horrible.

#1 THE DEVIL INSIDE – This was inevitable. There was never any other choice as really THE DEVIL INSIDE choose itself as the worst movie of the year (or maybe ever) when it really used that ending. But honestly THE DEVIL INSIDE would of been the worst movie without that ending, having problems in almost every field of film-making  The acting is atrocious and the film sucks the life of both it’s sub-genres. The possession sequences are weak, not terrifying, and they only offer us one in the entire film. The found footage is contrived, poorly edited, and doesn’t bring any remote sense of realness. Rogue exorcists? Exorcism school? I feel ridiculous just typing it.

BEST:

#5 CREEP VAN – CREEP VAN is a throwback to old 80’s slasher films in the most peculiar way, by having people viciously slaughtered by a shabby van with no particular reason or effective killer as a means. It’s fantastically funny in its simple B-movie nature. CREEP VAN, like my love Killer Klowns From Outerspace, has acknowledged and accepted that its a B-movie. In no way is it cleaver or intelligent but by simply being itself it managed to charm me. It makes absolutely no sense but why should it? Most everyone who’s seen this film hates it but I’ll be the black sheep of the horror community in saying that CREEP VAN was awesome.

#4 CABIN IN THE WOODS – I like CABIN IN THE WOODS more on a professional level than I do on a personal. Its a hard matter to explain but I appreciate and respect Joss Wheadon’s film more for its original story then do I actually like it. I’ll watch it again, but really only to show to other people. And I’ll talk about it, but only to appreciate it, not because I love it. Like it’s cover it’s an arubix cube of a film, there’s many different sides as it’s appearance and blunt title is intended to mislead you. Without a doubt a funny, intelligent horror film with a few decent scares.

#3 V/H/S – Unlike most I found V/H/S to actually be the scariest film of the year. The found footage cavity can wear thin and even more so when the effect of the bad footage is a result of unexplained elements in some of the shorts (I’m looking at you ‘Tuesday the 17th’), but when paired with the anthology genre it plays out to be a weird, unsettling, snuff film of sorts. There’s not a lot of character development and some of the shorts leave more questions than should be allotted but again that ads to the effect of V/H/S, feeling as if your really watching the tape itself.  Of course like all anthology films the small stories within the film are a hit and miss. Ti West’s ‘Second Honeymoon’ and David Bruckner’s ‘Amateur Night’ are the highlights of the film.

#2 THE MUSE – This film is little known and it’s not likely that many have heard of it. But I got the chance to view it earlier this year and I was rather impressed with the small budget thriller, that I found to be eloquent and haunting. Set at a gorgeous lake house and centering around a struggling one hit wonder musician,who’s trying to re-gain his music and find his muse. The film is filled with a beautiful score, chilling moments, and a great cast. Director Rufus Chaffee captures his story well and effectively evokes a horror in the mysterious guitar that Addison takes too and in the isolation that he’s surrounded with. THE MUSE is available to watch and purchase on Twixflix, and one I’d recommend you watch.

#1 EXCISION – EXCISION is an beautiful, disturbing, bizarre, warped, bloody, exquisite art house film. It

BestWorst - Excisionfollows a mentally unhinged teenager who has a love of surgery, often which results in erotic necrophiliac dreams. The film is really just incredible with an ending that leaves you uneasy and somber. Lead Annalynne McCord is absolutely stunning in her role as Pauline and paired against Traci Lords as her mother, who has never been better in a part. A good bulk of the film focuses to the relationship between the mother and daughter and Pauline’s absence of acceptance in her house, and the two really act well against each other. Pauline, despite being undoubtedly insane is touchingly human, which does tend to take you off course when the end occurs, all attributed to writer/director Richard Bates Jr. and McCord. Of course the other part of the film is of Pauline performing ghastly acts and having intensely disturbed sex dreams, all bathed in blood. The makeup is incredible and the camera work equally impressive as often the director will focus direct shots to Pauline, resulting in McCord looking rather unnerving with her wicked expressionism and psychotic get up. EXCISION really is a beautifully warped film that executes both the horror and the drama to near perfection. It’s without a doubt the best film I’ve seen this year, and also one of the best films I’ve seen ever.

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  1 comment for “Retro Reviewer’s Best/Worst Films of 2012

  1. January 9, 2013 at 1:39 AM

    Interesting Best & Worst list. I concur wholeheartedly with you with voting THE DEVIL INSIDE as the worst film of 2012. However, I saw V/H/S at my local indie theater and thought it was awful. In my review I said that film, ” gets my vote as one of the worst horror films of 2012! I really wanted to like this film, but it was just a complete waste of time and a complete pile of garbage!” But, as they say, everyone’s a critic. Excellent write-up!

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