Horror films are tight crafts. Not everyone can do it well. You either fall into oblivion or rise to the top. It is not a genre that the audience easily appreciates. Generally, horror films are associated with specific directors. The year 2014 was also a year for horror filmmakers. Were they successful? In my opinion, they couldn’t succeed. The most interesting aspect of 2014 is that non-horror directors made an impact. Films like The Babadook and Annabelle were among the most successful films of the year. And then there’s John Erick Dowdle, a horror filmmaker, emerging with a film like As Above So Below. It was a year where found footage films, such as V/H/S and Devil’s Due, made their presence known. Especially these two films pushed the boundaries of what could be achieved with found footage.
As Abow So Below
John Erick Dowdle, known for his horror films, continues to climb the ladder step by step. As Above So Below, one of the best films of 2014, brings back the Philosopher’s Stone years later. Scarlett believes in the existence of the Philosopher’s Stone and that it is located deep underground in Paris. She embarks on a relentless journey underground with her team. But even if the Philosopher’s Stone exists, reaching it won’t be easy, right? If you’re looking for an action-packed and jump-scare-filled film, this one is perfect for you.
A Mike Flanagan film made in 2013 but released in 2014. Mike Flanagan, known for his love of horror films, managed to create a beautiful film like Oculus despite a stagnant year. After Mirrors (2008), mirrors appear once again as a source of horror. Kaylie, who believes her brother is innocent after being released from prison, thinks that the true culprit is the mirror. To prove this, Kaylie will spend a night in front of the mirror and observe what happens. Can she see the end of the night? You can watch the film to find out.
Deliver Us From Evil
Another horror film director, Scott Derrickson, presents us with a blend of crime and horror. Two police officers investigating the increasing cases of madness in the city find themselves involved in an unwanted case. With high doses of action and occasional scares, this film might be a remedy for those who are tired of typical demonic films.
The film that focuses on the Annabelle doll, introduced in The Conjuring, is one of the noteworthy horror films of 2014. With John R. Leonetti taking the helm instead of the original creator James Wan, the film brings a sense of apartment horror that Roman Polanski brought into our lives. Although Leonetti remains in the shadow of James Wan, the film is still among the watchable horror films of 2014.
Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones
The second-to-last film in the Paranormal Activity series. Despite the series losing its charm, as a staunch defender of the series, I want to say this: This film is definitely the worst in the series. Nevertheless, can it be watched in a year with a shortage of horror films? Yes, it can be watched. You can even watch it just to see what happens in the end because the ending of the film is truly intriguing. The Paranormal Activity series plans to bid farewell to the screens completely with the upcoming film Ghost Dimension next year.
The Babadook, chosen as the film of the year in Australia alongside Russell Crowe’s film The Water Diviner, can be considered one of the best horrors of recent times. The film tells the story of the experiences of a mother and her son after reading a storybook, and it is exceptional in terms of its storytelling, cinematography, and acting. Directed by Jennifer Kent, who made her first feature film years later and is not even a horror filmmaker, it is truly a marvelous work. I highly recommend this film.
Directed by Kevin Greutert, who also directed two films in the Saw series, this film tells the story of Jessie, who moves in with her father in a forest house and encounters mysterious and occasionally jolting events. It is a film filled with suspense. As Jessie starts investigating the cause of the things she sees at night, she encounters an unexpected story. Although the film deserves credit for its atmosphere and color design, it is not a particularly good film, just so you know.
The Taking of Deborah Logan
I don’t know how much you like found footage films, but this film is one of the successful ones in that genre. Directed by Adam Robitel, the film tells the story of two young people who come to the house of Deborah Logan, an Alzheimer’s patient, to document her with a camera. As the two young people start regretting their assignment little by little, shocking scenes unfold. It is a fine example of the genre with some striking scenes. It works well in times of scarcity.
A two-person horror film starring Rose Leslie, known from Game of Thrones and the owner of the phrase “You know nothing, Jon Snow.” The couple moves into a house in the forest for their honeymoon. After the move, Bea starts changing and growing distant from her boyfriend Paul. You can see why she has become distant and why her behavior has become strange when you watch the film.
Another found footage film from 2014. Samantha, who learns she is pregnant after their honeymoon, decides to give birth to the baby. However, the nine-month process will be extremely painful for the couple. Directed by two people, the film visually incorporates numerous new horror elements. In these years when the boundaries of the found footage genre are being pushed, we can say that the directors have created their own innovations with Devil’s Due.
Undoubtedly, the third film of the increasingly cult-like series of recent times. Once again, all the directors have done a fantastic job with their amazing shorts and horror scenes. Especially compared to the first two films, this film connects the story in a much different way and deserves admiration for the atmosphere it creates. Of course, I would advise against getting involved without watching the first two films.
Full Review: Next Generation of Horror: V/H/S Series
A film that enters my list under the category of “disturbing.” With its two-person cast, the film offers a magnificent tension in a confined space and introduces us to a character whose intentions you can never quite figure out. Creep, another found footage film, brings its own innovation to the genre in its own way. Although I can’t say you absolutely must watch it, I can say that it is among the best of 2014.
The Houses October Built
Actually, more disturbing than scary, this film is deeply unsettling to the core. A group of young people traveling in a caravan visits haunted locations and horror tunnels in America one by one. As the trip progresses toward Halloween, things start getting more and more interesting. The group realizes that some individuals are following them in the horror tunnel of the town they came from, and they start experiencing strange occurrences over time. Although the film starts with a good concept and offers above-average tension in its development, the ending at least disappointed me a little. It is watchable until the last 10 minutes and is an intriguing film.
The film, which is currently in its second installment, could have been great, but they missed the mark. Starting with a good concept, the film missed becoming the new Insidious at the last moment. It tells the story of deaths that occur after summoning the wrong spirit on a spirit board, which can be described as a mix of Mirrors and Insidious. If you want to watch a good film from 2014, you can give it a try.