I might as well stop at the bottom so that I can keep the suspense going. My number ten movie of the year is Deadstream. When this popped up to stream and I read that it was about a disgraced YouTuber who tries to get his followers back by visiting a haunted house I was more than a bit disinterested. I hate the social media influencer thing and watching a found footage movie about one of them held zero interest for me. But I'll be damned if this isn't a great movie. Cleverly written with decent scares I was pleased.
My number nine movie is Antlers. This was a creepy and cool horror flick. I love the ending and the fact that it wasn’t Hollywood. The creature effects are simple but work perfectly and the entire idea behind it is more than a bit spooky. The kills are also disturbing in a subtle way that I promise will stick with you long after the end credits have rolled.
Movie number eight is an absolute silly blast that is sort of hard to explain why it is so awesome, but trust me it is. I'm speaking of Psycho Ape. There are several independent movies on my list this year. Director Addison Binek knocked it out of the park with this totally absurd romp in the vein of The Kentucky Fried Movie with a bit of Benny Hill tossed in. This was one of the funniest things that I watched all year and I needed some laughs so it was much appreciated.
Onto the seventh spot on my list. Sometimes you don't need a ton of locations or production value to make a great movie. Though I never thought I'd see such a well made Lovecraftian inspired gem like Glorious done on such a small scale and budget. Set in a rest stop bathroom this movie relies on just a couple actors and lots of speaking to tell an epic "save the world from Eldritch doom" story. It was fantastic and worth checking out.
Number six is another movie that I would never have guessed I was going to dig. I'm not a Dave Grohl but I'll be damned if Studio 666 was a hell of a lot of fun. I can’t believe that I liked this movie, but it was funny, and the gore delivered the goods. There is a great cast. Overall, I can’t complain about anything with this one. It is a blast and I highly recommend it. Really who knew that Grohl was so damn funny?
God Damn it they made a good Predator movie! This one is all about the gore and action. There are so many great kills that I can’t pick just one. I also enjoyed the throwback to the original with the “if it bleeds” line. I had very low expectations with this movie but had a blast.
Movie four has me looking at another independent movie, Hell Van. I was able to do a set visit a couple of years ago for a magazine article and could tell that something special was happening on set. Director Jorge Delarosa knocked it out of the park with this one. Shot on a low budget over many weekends this labor of love checked a lot of boxes for me. The effects are great including his decision to go old school with miniatures in the finale with the drive-in.
They say that you can't go back again but movie three proves that wrong. Beavis and Butthead Do the Universe is a perfect example of nostalgia done right. This felt exactly like it did back in the nineties when I was watching the original series on MTV. I was cracking up… the old jokes still land. Then again maybe I'm just immature and haven't grown up. Either way I loved this one and recommend you check it out.
Before I get to movie number two we need to talk. There is a huge difference between a zombie movie and an infected movie. It bugs the shit out of me when someone lumps a flick like 28 Days Later into the zombie genre. Why am I mentioning that? Because while I love The Sadness it isn't a damn zombie movie! It is awesomely twisted, bleak, gory, and unrelentingly nasty in all the best ways. It was nice to see something that kicked my ass like this movie did. As a jaded horror fan that is a rare thing.
So what was my number one movie of 2022? Last Night in Soho completely blew me away. I was completely drawn into the plot and characters. The plot twists and turns were amazing and fun to navigate. I’m also very happy to see that one of my favorite actresses, Diana Rigg, got to end her career with a wonderfully meaty part. This is a perfect movie that I will watch again. I've always loved the work of Edgar Wright and this may be his best yet. It is a great movie.
So there you have it. These are the best movies that I watched last year. Many great movies were watched and many awful ones too... I'm looking at you Suburban Sasquatch! All in all I had a blast and hope to come back at you in January of next year with another awesome list of new or new to me movies that I caught this year.
© Copyright 2023 John Shatzer