“Little did people all over the world know what was in store for them as the clock struck midnight on 31st December 2019 and they welcomed the New Year”
This is how historians will begin their account on the events that transpired in the year 2020. It all started with the Australian bushfires, but little did any of us realize that this catastrophe was just a precursor to what was going to come next.
The COVID 19 pandemic completely changed our way of life. People all over the world were suddenly forced to stay at their homes, avoid interactions with their loved ones and wait for the day when things would get better; it felt like something straight out of a horror movie.
Since most of us spent a major chunk of the year staying (and working) at home, we all had to look for ways to distract ourselves and what better way to do so than to spend time watching movies and television shows; perfect time to make the most of Netflix, Amazon Prime, HBO Max and Mediacom cable subscriptions, right?
Horror Movies and Pandemics
Horror movie fans are psychologically more resilient to the pandemic than others. At least that is what a recent study suggests.
As per the study, the events that transpire on screen make people realize that there’s a lot worst that can happen in the world and helps them forget about their current predicament. Horror movies help people realize their deepest fears in a secure environment, which subsequently makes a person mentally stronger.
So you see, horror movies are good for you. The question now is, which movie do you watch first? There are certainly plenty of options to choose from. A lot of great horror movies released in the year 2020 alone. Let’s take a look at some of these:
1. The Turning
The Turning takes Henry James’s 1898 novella “The turning of the screw” and brings it into the modern world. The film started as a passion project for the legendary filmmaker Steven Spielberg back in March 2016 and went through several roadblocks before finally seeing the light of the day.
It also boasts a great cast that includes actor Finn Wolfhard (of Stranger Things fame), Mackenzie Davis, and Brooklyn Prince.
The plot of the movie revolves around a young governess, who is assigned the task of looking after two young children after their parents die.
All the staples of the genre such as creepy children, mental illness, intense soundtrack, and disturbing visuals are here in full force. Add gothic elements to the mix and you have a film that appeals to all horror movie fans.
Carlo Mirabella-Davis’s directorial debut film “Swallow” is an intense psychological thriller that will disturb and make you squirm with disgust at the same time. The film stars Haley Bennett as Hunter, a pregnant young woman who is trapped in an emotionally stifling relationship and as a result, develops an impulse to eat inedible objects.
The film deals with powerful themes like abuse, isolation, and obsession and is not for the faint-hearted. What makes this film particularly disturbing is that the source of terror is not something supernatural or external. Instead, the terror seen on screen is the product of a traumatized mind.
At its core, this film is a reminder to the audience that even though you might seemingly have it all but untreated past traumas will always come back to haunt you.
Natalie Erika James couldn’t have asked for a better directorial debut. Her first feature film “Relic” is a modern take on the pre-established haunted house movie trope and boy does the director hit it out of the park.
The film features an all-female cast with actors playing roles of women belonging to three different generations of the same family.
The movie tackles subjects like generational gaps, family bonds, and the effect of degenerative diseases. When it comes to pacing, it takes a slow-burn approach, but we suggest you stick with the film right until the end. It is certainly worth it!
4. The Rental
You know the film is a winner when it tops video-on-demand and the box office charts in the same weekend. The Rental is yet another horror film released by a debuting director. Dave Franco’s film revolves around two couples out on a celebratory getaway.
It seems like an ordinary weekend however, pretty soon it becomes evident that it’s anything but. There’s something about the owner of the rental home who appears to be stalking the couples. What follows is a nerve-wracking experience that changes our perceptions about the main characters.
In addition to directing, Franco also co-wrote the screenplay and produced the film and his wife Alison Brie plays one of the lead roles.
If you enjoy movies that tackle themes like secrecy, betrayal, and voyeurism or are just a fan of horror movies in general, then you can’t miss this one.
5. Beneath Us
Another directorial debut, Max Pachman’s Beneath Us is a story about how “the American Dream” turns into a nightmare for undocumented workers in the country. The film seems to be drawing inspiration from Jordan Peele’s excellent “Get Out” in how it attempts to explore social and racial issues within the context of a horror film.
The plot of the movie revolves around a couple of undocumented workers who are hired by a wealthy couple only to be held against their will in the couple’s mansion. Why is the couple holding these people against their will? What fate awaits those who are trapped in this modern-day American fortress?
You will have to check out the film to get answers to these questions.
6. The Invisible Man
This modern adaptation of the classic science fiction tale by HG Wells features an Oscar-worthy performance by Elizabeth Moss. That alone should be a good enough incentive for fans to check out the film.
This isn’t your typical horror film. It’s smart, inventive, and most importantly relevant in the way it tackles subjects like abusive relationships and domestic violence. Who knew that a project that started as a part of the atrocious ‘Monsters universe’ would culminate into something so amazing?
This one’s already one of the biggest hits of the year and once you have seen it, you will know why.
Ready for spooky fun?
Here you have it. A list of some of the best horror movies that have been released in the year 2020. Each one of these movies brings something new to the table and you will certainly have a lot of fun watching every single one of them. Just don’t forget to turn off the lights before you start watching.