A Decade of Horror: 2004

Shaun of the Dead

One of the best zombie films of the last ten years came to us disguised as a comedy. Shaun of the Dead is packed full of references to the zombie genre, and while it is typical sold as a comedy, the horror and zombie violence is on par with any other “Serious” zombie film. A killer soundtrack and loveable characters make this one of the best films of the decade and one that should be in every horror fans collection.

Dawn of the Dead(Remake)

If anything can be said about the 2000’s is that it was the decade of the remake, and while 99% of those remakes were complete and utter wastes of time and money, a few gems managed to rise to surface, and the James Gunn penned, Zack Synder directed Dawn of the Dead was one of them. Taking George Romero’s classic film and updating it for a modern audience, Dawn used the “Fast Zombies” that were initially introduced in 28 Days Later and made them real zombies. The story here isn’t much different from the original, but like The Texas Chainsaw Massacre remake, taking the core of the original story and building from there is what makes this film work so well. Instead of trying to just retell the same story that Romero told in 1978, Synder and Gunn give us a new spin on the zombie outbreak, complete with gallons of gore and healthy dose of humor.

Saw

A film that launched one of the most bitched about franchises in recent memory, Saw was a breath of fresh air when it initially came out. A unique twist on the typical slasher/serial killer film, we are presented with a villain who never directly murders any of his victims, instead placing them into a deadly, yet escapable situation, with the purpose of making the victims appreciate the lives that they, in Jigsaw’s view, are wasting.

Seed of Chucky

Let’s just be honest now, the Childs Play series is a silly franchise built on a silly premise (A serial killer transfers his soul into the body of a doll),and yet it’s still one of the few franchise from the 80’s that managed to survive into the 90’s and on into the 2000’s. Seed of Chucky is a completely tongue in cheek film that takes the hints of self-awareness that were in Bride of Chucky and ramps them up to 11. If you go into this film knowing that you’re in for a ridiculous 87 minutes, you’ll have a good time.

Ginger Snaps II: Unleashed

Picking up from the events of the original Ginger Snaps,  this film builds on the story of Bridgette Fitzgerald as she deals with trying to find a cure for her own curse. While not as good as the original, Ginger Snaps Unleashed does manage to be an entertaining sequel, even though it loses some of the heart that made the original such a delight.

Ginger Snaps Back: The Beginning

Prequels are always tricky, and even though Ginger Snaps Back is technically a prequel, it’s almost a remake of the original Ginger Snaps. Taking place in 19th century Canada, we follow the Fitzgerald sisters as they deal with curse of the wolf once again, but this time the action takes place in a fur trading outpost. Ginger Snaps Back feels more in line with the original than Unleashed, and is the better of the two sequels; it manages to tell a similar story as the original within a new timeframe and setting perfectly.

Freak Out

Another “Horror Comedy”, Freak Out follows two friends who capture an escaped mental patient and their attempt to turn him into a real slasher. At times hilarious and incredibly dark, Freak Out is a fun satire of the idea that horror films make people into maniacs.

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