2014 saw critically acclaimed über-cool vamp flicks, like Jim Jarmusch’s , and NC17-rated double-dare parlor tricks, like the SXSW favorite . But when it comes to the movies that will haunt your nightmares, these 14 films get our vote.
Considered the other Denis Villeneuve/Jake Gyllenhaal project, Enemy is a moody Kafka-esque story that follows a lonely professor who stalks his thespian doppelganger through the streets of Toronto. Yellowed to the tinge of a Soderbergh flick, the film culminates in a spectacular final image even creepier than the ending to .
Jonathan Glazer (, ) turns author Michel Faber’s fictional character into the mysterious Laura (Scarlett Johansson), a vixen who picks up hitchhikers for dinner – literally. Cannibal, vampire, alien, or a woman scorned? You decide. One thing that’s certain about this peculiar and polarizing sci-fi: Johansson kills it.
Cell phones, videotapes, ginger-haired dolls – the list of murderous housewares goes on and on. Go ahead and add really old mirror to the pack. The Lasser Glass to be exact. It’s what estranged siblings Kaylie and Tim believe killed their parents when they were kids. It’s also the reason you want to look into director Mike Flanagan’s reality-bending creeper.
While the title for all-time best revenge flick arguably resides with Chan-wook Park’s from 2003, this taut art-house thriller gives it a run for its money. The story: A bearded loner, who lives out of his car, finds himself unexpectedly involved in a brutal, vengeful conquest to protect his family.
Call it a stoner’s guide to fiction or chalk it up to writer/director Kevin Smith’s most delusional work to date – however you slice it, Tusk is a wackadoo watch that bombards viewers with creepy, blubbery images they just can’t unsee.
Master character actor Jake Gyllenhaal dropped 30 pounds and took on the characteristics of an L.A. coyote to play Lou Bloom, a self-taught crime news “journalist” whose sociopathic behavior leaves you feeling slimier than the greasy coif he sports.
A global undertaking, this film has 26 directors (including ’s Rodney Ascher and ‘s Soska twins), who were each given a letter, told to come up with a word, then create a tale of death based on that word. Given complete artistic freedom, the filmmakers birthed a gory anthology that leaves no body part un-severed.
You know what they say: Truth is stranger than fiction. And the Olympic-size scandal surrounding the self-professed “ornithologist, philatelist, philanthropist” – known to the rest of the world as John du Pont – fits the bill.
Perhaps the best thing since sliced garlic bread, this Iranian vampire western (yes, that) mixes spaghetti westerns, graphic novels, Iranian new wave, and horror elements into an eerily beautiful love story. Directed by Ana Lily Amirpour, her debut feature is tasty enough to have Tarantino salivating.
Hands down the creepiest thing to haunt 2014, the Aussie fairy tale-turned-American nightmare plays with one’s deepest, darkest fears and dangles the boogeyman out there just enough that we still check the closet and under the bed come nighttime.
Courtesy of Relativity Media/Intrepid Pictures; Semi-Professional; Film4; Bold Films; Bellanova Films/Ugly Duckling Films; Neighborhood Watch; Drafthouse Films; Causeway Films/Smoking Gun Productions