Monday, May 23, 2011

from a whisper to a scream - retro horror gems on netflix instant: a guest post by karen g.

Sometimes living in the big city can be a bit overwhelming, even for the strongest and boldest of us. Lately, I’ve been finding great comfort in spending my evenings on my sofa that I’ve nicknamed “Ambien”, and browsing through the selection of instant horror downloads on Netflix. I won’t even get to touch on the incredible selection of creepy Asian horror available – but watch this space for my write-up on that another time!

An HDMI cable, a Wii, X-Box (or various other consoles) are all you’ll need to watch these downloads on your TV. If you don’t mind watching on your computer or laptop, do what I do and watch them at work.

While you may not find what is considered “top-shelf” selections, because of my alternate taste in movies, I’ve happened to find a bevy of cult and B-grade horror that is always enjoyable whether you’re ready to relax with a couple of good friends, a loved one, or even by yourself. So crack out the Jiffy Pop. Here are my suggestions for horror movies you have to check out on Netflix’s Instant download feature. I guarantee scares (or laughs for sure)!

Suspiria – 1977 – Dario Argento
An American ballet student at a dance academy in Germany discovers that all is not as it seems at the school. Known as the “Italian goremeister”, Dario Argento delivers an exceptionally creepy film, with the help of a bone-chilling soundtrack by Goblin. Warning, don’t watch this alone on a rainy night!

The Fury – 1978

There were a whole punch of pissed-off teenagers with telekinetic powers in the 70’s. Directed by Brian De Palma and with music by John Williams – how could you go wrong?

The Swarm – 1978 - Irwin Allen

And now for something realistically unsettling. This all-star cast shows us what to do if those African Killer Bees actually do make it to Manhattan.

Empire of the Ants – 1977 - Bert I. Gordon

When H.G. Wells’ imagination and Joan Collins collide…

Exorcist II – The Heretic - 1977 - John Boorman

A campy sequel to one of the scariest movies of all time. Unfortunately, no "Tubular Bells" in this one, but still worth a look.

From A Whisper To A Scream – 1987

Vincent Price tells four tales of the “cursed” town of Oldfield, Tennessee, and the residents who met gruesome fates.

The Thing – 1982

One of John Carpenter’s cinematic masterpieces in my mind. Terrifying on so many levels.

The Devil Within Her – 1975 - Peter Sasdy

So I have a mild obsession with Joan Collins. This is what I like to refer to as “Rosemary’s Baby without the budget”. Donald Pleasance plays the doctor who starts to realize that there really is something wrong with the baby.

The Manitou – 1978 - William Girdler

Tumors seek revenge! Native American Shamans vs. Tony Curtis!

The Howling – 1981 - Joe Dante

The Wasp Woman – 1959 – A Roger Corman classic

Popcorn – 1991 - Mark Herrier

Dolls – 1987 - Stuart Gordon

If you’ve ever been creeped out by those antique porcelain dolls, you’ve probably seen this movie. Dolls Gone Wild!

The Prowler – 1981 - Joseph Zito

Twins of Evil – 1971 - John Hough

Let Sleeping Corpses Lie – 1974 - Jorge Grau


  1. Excellent choices all and another classic to add to the list: Night of the Lepus! Beware - because those killer bunnies are gonna GETCHA!!!

  2. I looooooooved The Thing. Even in present times, it still scares the living daylights out of me. And to think...what if "the thing" got my poor kitty cat...and I never knew!?!?!?

  3. This is the most inspirational post I've seen in a WHILE! I effing LOVE Empire of the Ants. And the Howling.

    Also: Dolls was one of the first horror movies I ever saw! Caught it on TV some rainy afternoon when I was a kid. It was the scene where the British punker girl gets attacked by the evil dolls and has to fight them with a Zippo lighter and her "boy toy" belt. I was hooked.

    Oh hey, here it is!

  4. I love future Diva Joan Collins too! I saw Empire of the Ants ...need to see that other one now!