The Halloween season is here and in the run up to the big day I decided to examine what is considered “scary” in the world of horror movies.

Going with Rotten Tomatoes list of the 31 scariest movies, I decided to compare each film with another horror film from the same year to determine which one I found scarier.

Hereditary

When the matriarch of the Graham family passes away, her daughter and grandchildren begin to unravel cryptic and increasingly terrifying secrets about their ancestry, trying to outrun the sinister fate they have inherited.

Ari Aster directs a film that has an interesting take on familial relationships as well as definite Rosemary’s Baby vibes.

Pros

The story is engrossing and there are enough twists and turns to keep you guessing where the story is going next.

Some awesome surprises throughout. Did not see what happened to Charlie coming and its horrific and visceral aftermath.

The juxtaposition between the models Annie creates and the real life events happening to her and her family are brilliant.

Peter’s emotional and mental breakdown is subtle and beautifully played by Alex Wolff.

Toni Collette is pitch perfect across the board. There is not one scene where she doesn’t come off as real in her terror, confusion and grief.

Aster has some truly disturbing imagery and utilizes it well.

Cons

Gabriel Byrne is wasted. I never got a sense of him as a father, husband or person. He was just there.

The cult elements of the film were lackluster.

The light effects were cheesy.

The Nun

When a young nun at a cloistered abbey in Romania takes her own life, a priest with a haunted past and a novitiate on the threshold of her final vows are sent by the Vatican to investigate. Together, they uncover the order’s unholy secret. Risking not only their lives but their faith and their very souls, they confront a malevolent force in the form of a demonic nun.

Another film in the Conjuring universe is another prequel that explains the demonic Nun from the second Conjuring film and its connection to the Warrens.

Pros

Beautifully spooky scenery.

There are some great jump scares throughout.

The characters is sufficiently scary on its own.

Cons

The pacing is too fast.

The story is lacking in depth, emotion or characterization.

The mcguffin of the blood of Jesus is poorly introduced and utilized.

The ending is poorly conceived and horribly executed.

As a fan of the Conjuring universe, I really rooted for The Nun to be a standout event film. Unfortunately, the only film out of the two that packed more than just jump scares and clichés is today’s winner….

Hereditary

Let me know what you think. Which film delivered the scares to you?

1 Comment

  • nscovell

    October 12, 2020 - 7:53 am

    I saw The Nun in the movie theaters and I was calling out everything that was happening before it happened. The movie is so unoriginal and boring.

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