Join Monster Honey Sarah as she RAWRs her way in 2017 and shares her favorite films of 2016!


10. Hush 

A Netflix-only release, home invasions aren’t usually my cup of tea, but this promised a different spin by having a deaf-mute  protagonist who has to think differently to defend herself and her home. Hush is full of atmosphere and great, intense scenes, all achieving an attention grabbing story with only 15 minutes worth of spoken dialogue in the 70 minute runtime. Show, don’t tell, to a delightful degree. 

9. Sadako vs Kayako

I’m a shameless Asian horror nerd, I’ve never denied it, but this was something special. A face-off between the two biggest characters in the subgenre? This is my Batman v Superman, and thankfully it is much more entertaining than that film was. It managed spooky, silly, and even a few references to classic moments. A must for long time fans of these two ladies of horror

8. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies 

I’m as surprised as you are, okay? I’m an Austen fan and very much not a fan of the half-arsed parody book on which this is based, so I went in ready to hate this movie. Imagine my shock when I ended up having a really fun time. It’s funny and gory, and the great cast take the undead as seriously as they do the Jane Austen dialogue. Nothing world changing, but hugely enjoyable.

7. Goodnight Mommy 

What if someone in your family was an imposter? That is the question twins Lukas and Elias ask themselves when their mother comes home from the hospital with a heavily bandaged face and begins to act strangely. The delight in this Austrian film lies in the tension that permeates the single location that almost the entire film takes place in, which means you can never be sure what will happen. Plus, creepy twins in masks.

6. Under the Shadow 

A mother and her daughter in war torn Iran are haunted and tormented by a dark spirit in what some are calling a successor to 2014’s The Babadook, with its concentration on an increasingly desperate mother. Whilst maybe not as intense as that film, Under the Shadow has an almost old-school quality in its chills which make it a must-watch.

5. The Witch

This atmospheric historical horror from first time writer/director Robert Eggers, about supernatural forces terrorizing an isolated family in 1600s New England, is creepy and fascinating, especially when you find out that Eggers based a lot of the script on real accounts from the time period. The cast all do a great job, and the haunting cinematography is not to be missed. All hail Black Phillip. 

4. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story 

It’s a galaxy far, far, away, but not as you might know it. This is the Star Wars film that really goes for the war part of the title. Dealing with the group of rebels who steal the Death Star plans pre-1977’s A New Hope, Rogue One exists in some delightfully gritty shades of grey while the main saga focuses on its light vs dark motif. It helps that it has a great ensemble cast, special mention to Donnie Yen and Ben Mendelsohn, and some very impressive special effects. More than just a cash grab to tide us over until Episode VIII.

3. Green Room 

Punks vs Nazis. But enough about current affairs; let’s talk about Jeremy Saulnier’s latest film. Anton Yelchin stars as the front man of a band that finds themselves under siege backstage after seeing something they shouldn’t have in a middle of nowhere Neo-Nazi venue. This film is wonderfully tense and uncomfortable, full of moments that will leave you squirming. Throw in the always brilliant Patrick Stewart as the lead bad guy and you have a film that has moments of brilliance in its simple set-up. 

2. Train to Busan 

I try to avoid grand generalizing statements, but Train to Busan is, without a doubt, the greatest zombie film since 28 Days Later. However it doesn’t necessarily do anything new, it’s just that everything it does do it does really, really, well. The film focuses on an express train in the midst of a viral outbreak and the various characters on board, including a businessman and his young daughter, who are trying to survive. The director has previously worked only in animation and it really shows in the energy and flow of the set pieces. It is a terrific and occasionally terrifying thrill ride. See it before they ruin it with the American remake.

1. Your Name 

Probably not the most Horror Honey typical choice, but when a film is this sweet, emotional and beautiful, you have to make an exception. I’ve seen it three times now and I don’t think I could possibly ever get tired of it. This is a very different boy-meets-girl story as small town girl Mitsuha and city boy Taki switch bodies via their dreams. What then follows is an experience that takes you through all kinds of wonderful highs and lows in telling their story. The animation is breathtaking and detailed, the soundtrack utterly perfect, and everything just comes together to make a film that, if there is any justice, will still be talked about for a long time. 

A few honourable mentions: Midnight Special was wonderfully cool sci-fi, and from FrightFest, Egomaniac and faux documentary Fury of the Demon were delightfully original. Also, I think they’re still trying to get the nail marks out of the armrest from when I saw 10 Cloverfield Lane.

Worst-wise, I’ve gotten quite lucky this year, although Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice and Suicide Squad were exercises in what not to do with superhero films, and Sharknado 4: The Fourth Awakens was just painful. It’s not funny anymore. Stop it. I also wasn’t overly fond of Blair Witch.

The only trouble is the serious lack of monster movies. Unless you count Monster Trucks, which is coming out on Boxing Day. I do not.

Until next year, minions!

Did you have a favorite monster movie in 2016?
Tell Sarah on Twitter: @SarahJoSmiley

Belladonna Horror Mag 1.7
Belladonna Horror Mag: Belladonna Horror Mag 1.7
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