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.

Get Out

Now that Chris (Daniel Kaluuya) and his girlfriend, Rose (Allison Williams), have reached the meet-the-parents milestone of dating, she invites him for a weekend getaway upstate with Missy and Dean. At first, Chris reads the family’s overly accommodating behavior as nervous attempts to deal with their daughter’s interracial relationship, but as the weekend progresses, a series of increasingly disturbing discoveries lead him to a truth that he never could have imagined.

Three of the films in this showdown have been cited as inspirations for Get Out including Night of the Living Dead, Rosemary’s Baby and The Stepford Wives.

Pros

Fantastic dialogue.

A new and interesting premise that feels timely as well as timeless.

Some dark, foreboding imagery throughout.

Excellent use of the close up to convey fear.

The cast is amazing.

The powerless feeling of the sunken place is terrifying.

The surprise ending was an unexpected twist on the norm.

Cons

The lack of nuance in some of the characters made them more comedic than menacing.

The Armitage’s overall plans felt a little under-developed.

The Ritual

Reuniting after the tragic death of their friend, four college pals set out to hike through the Scandinavian wilderness. A wrong turn leads them into the mysterious forests of Norse legend, where an ancient evil exists and stalks them at every turn.

Early in the film, the characters wake up and leave their tents in the same order they will eventually die in.

Pros

Some great imagery, especially in the woods.

I liked the transitions when Luke has his hallucinations about the convenience store and how they blend into the forest location.

The tragedy in the beginning was compelling, but it never gets explored properly in the film as the character motivation it is being set up to be.

The ending was interesting.

Cons

Everything in the film was predictable up to the ending.

There were no surprises either thematically or visually.

The creature was not scary.

I kept waiting for someone to confront Luke on what happened in the convenience store and when he did, it was over before it could get interesting.

While both films in this showdown had their moments, only one gave the horror genre a breath of fresh air and an original idea. That film is…..

Get Out

Which film do you like better? Which one did you find scary? Let me know what you think in the comments below.

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