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    If You Loved "The Fear Street Trilogy", You'll Surely Love These 17 Other Horror Classics

    The ultimate watchlist for slasher movie fans!

    If you're a horror/slasher super-fan like me, you're probably already two thirds of the way through Netflix's latest slasher film series The Fear Street Trilogy. And if you haven't started it yet, you simply must!

    Netflix

    The trilogy comprises, unsurprisingly, three movies – Fear Street Part One: 1994 and Fear Street Part Two: 1978 are already out, and the final film Fear Street Part Three: 1666 is scheduled for release THIS Friday!

    The movies, which are based on a novel series by American author R. L. Stine, follow the inhabitants of Shadyside – a town with a terrifying past that's gradually uncovered throughout the three films.

    Netflix

    I'm absolutely loving the series so far! It's hella gory; it has a gripping narrative; and it has a really amazing cast that includes Kiana Madeira, Olivia Scott Welch, Benjamin Flores Jr., Sadie Sink, Gillian Jacobs, Emily Rudd, and Ashley Zukerman in leading roles!

    But here's an important question – what will we all do when The Fear Street Trilogy reaches its explosive conclusion this week?! Well, we spoke to horror film expert Dr Alison Peirse about other movies that should be on your watchlist if you love Fear Street. And believe me, she knows what she's talking about!

    Why do you love horror movies?

    Paramount Pictures

    Alison: "Horror is like comedy. Both genres need to elicit a specific emotional reaction to succeed. Either the film scares you (or makes you laugh, in the case of comedy), or it doesn't. To me, horror viewing is a game. Can the film manage to manipulate me, in just the right ways, to make me feel what it wants me to feel?

    I’m always asking – can you scare me? Do you know how? How are you going to make me jump? I know all your usual tricks, so you’d better bring something new. The stakes are high when watching horror movies – there’s only win or lose."  

    What makes a good horror film?

    Universal Pictures

    Alison: "It's the same thing, for me, across all major film genres – give me characters that I care about, give them something to do, to strive for, make it almost impossible for them to get it, make it life or death (and that’s literal, not metaphorical in the case of horror), and then, at the end, give me a final scene that lets me breathe out and decompress before the credits roll.

    So, without further ado, let's dive in to the movies Alison recommends every horror/slasher movie fan watch!

    1. Demon Knight (1995)

    Universal Pictures

    What it's about: A demon hunts for a key that will trigger the end of days, and it's up to a group of misfits to stop him in his apocalyptic mission.

    Alison says: Historically, the slasher film has been blindingly white. One of the pleasures of The Fear Street Trilogy is the casting actors of colour in major roles – roles that go way beyond the "eternal sidekick" or the "sassy confidante" stereotypes whose traditional function has been to "help the white protagonist towards their goal". In Demon Knight, Jada Pinkett Smith gives us our much-needed and hugely overdue first Black Final Girl, and we are HERE for it.

    Starring: Jada Pinkett Smith, Billy Zane, William Sadler

    Where to watch: Prime Video, Sky Store, YouTube Movies

    2. Friday the 13th (1980)

    Paramount Pictures/Warner Bros. Pictures

    What it's about: A group of teen camp counsellors are picked off one-by-one by an unknown killer as they attempt to re-open an abandoned summer camp.

    Alison says: Director Sean S. Cunningham watched John Carpenter's seminal Halloween (1978) and fancied a piece of the action! He transplanted the stalk-and-slash concept to a summer camp setting, and by doing this, he inaugurated the summer camp slasher film cycle that Fear Street Part Two: 1978 so lovingly references. Just watch where you swim when you visit Camp Crystal Lake – you never know what, or who, you might find in the water.  

    Starring: Adrienne King, Harry Crosby, Betsey Palmer

    Where to watch: Prime VideoSky StoreYouTube Movies

    3. Suspiria (1977)

    Produzioni Atlas Consorziate/International Classics

    What it's about: An American ballet student transfers to study at a German dance academy, but soon realises the school has a much darker purpose.

    Alison saysSuspiria gives you 1970s Italian witches; it gives you an American dancer attending an all girls dance academy in Germany; it gives you the most outrageous crashing­-through-the-skylight kill you have EVER seen in a horror film. And it will confirm your long-held belief that your teachers were not to be trusted.

    Starring: Jessica Harper, Stefania Casini, Barbara Magnolfi

    Where to watch: Prime VideoBFI Player

    4. The Witch (2015)

    A24/Elevation Pictures/Universal Pictures

    What it's about: A recently exiled Puritan family seemingly encounter devilish forces in the woods beyond their farm.

    Alison says: If you're into movies about witchcraft, persecution, and the perils of patriarchy (see Fear Street Part Three: 1666) then you should check out Robert Eggers' debut feature film. In 1630s New England, a god-fearing family are banished from their settlement, their crops fail, and their baby disappears. The blame for their misfortune is soon levelled at their teenage daughter, Thomasin, with predictably diabolical results.

    Starring: Anya Taylor-Joy, Ralph Ineson, Kate Dickie

    Where to watch: Prime VideoSky StoreYouTube Movies

    5. Chopping Mall (1986)

    Concorde Pictures

    What it's about: Three shopping mall security robots malfunction, and begin hunting and killing the teenage employees that work there.

    Alison says: Shopping malls in horror films are always brilliant – Fear Street knows this. That's why the movies use the Shadyside Mall as the setting of their most outlandish kills! Dawn of the Dead (1978) is the OG of Mall Horror, but Chopping Mall is Fear Street’s real spiritual originator. In this film, a group of sexed–up teenage mall workers stay late after work to party and are attacked by killer robots (yes, really). The film’s tagline is: "When shopping costs you an arm and a leg." This is all you need to know.

    Starring: Barbara Crampton, Kelli Maroney, Tony O’Dell

    Where to watch: Prime Video, Shudder (US)

    6. Scream (1996)

    Dimension Films

    What it's about: A young woman must evade the clutches of a mysterious serial killer known as Ghostface in this subversive '90s classic.

    Alison says: The opening of Fear Street Part One: 1994 is a glorious homage to Drew Barrymore in Scream (which is, in turn, a glorious homage to Carol Kane in When a Stranger Calls from 1979 – such is the meta joy of horror film). Wes Craven rebooted the slasher genre in 1996 with this gem. Watch and learn why you must NEVER answer the phone to a weirdo caller who asks if you like scary movies.

    Starring: David Arquette, Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox

    Where to watch: ShudderPrime VideoYouTube Movies

    7. Us (2019)

    Universal Pictures

    What it's about: A family go on a vacation and have an unwelcome run-in with another family who look ~exactly~ like them.

    Alison saysUs is a masterclass in balancing horror and humour – it terrifies you one minute, and makes you roll in the aisles the next! If you want to do a good job with horror, you need light – it makes the darkness that follows so much worse. Fear Street knows this, combining kills with satisfying moments of revenge on bullies.

    Starring: Lupita Nyong’o, Winston Duke, Elisabeth Moss

    Where to watch: Netflix

    8. Mirror, Mirror (1990)

    New City Releasing

    What it's about: A teenage outcast becomes obsessed with an old mirror abandoned in the house she has recently moved into with her mother.

    Alison says: No, this is not that Lily Collins Snow White disaster! It's actually a neglected early entry in the "evil mirror" horror sub-genre (see The Boogey ManCandymanOculus). We follow goth longer Megan – who looks a lot like Winona Ryder in Beetlejuice – as she gains occult powers and wreaks Carrie-like havoc upon her dreadful schoolmates. It's just what you need to set off on your 1990s supernatural slasher journey post Fear Street Part One: 1994.

    Starring: Karen Black, Rainbow Harvest, Kristin Dattilo

    Where to watch: Arrow Player

    9. The Craft (1996)

    Columbia Pictures

    What it's about: A trio of high school outcasts recruit a new girl to form a coven and enact revenge on their classmates and enemies.

    Alison saysThe Craft is a double win for Fear Street fans – a gang of outsider teenage witches and peak 1990s fashion! After watching The Craft, you'll probably realise that Nancy is the BFF you've always needed, you will model a black PVC trench coat, and your morning affirmations will have mysteriously transmuted into the occult chant, "now is the time, this is the hour, ours is the magic, ours is the power".

    Starring: Fairuza Balk, Neve Campbell, Rachel True

    Where to watch: Prime Video, Sky StoreYouTube Movies

    10. Blood Diner (1987)

    Lightning Pictures

    What it's about: Two men set up a restaurant as a front for them to murder women and collect their body parts in order to summon an Egyptian deity.

    Alison says: For those who enjoyed the gorier moments of Fear Street, you need to watch Blood Diner – a splatter horror comedy featuring wrestling, naked aerobics, and a pair of idiot brothers resurrecting Sheetar, an Egyptian goddess who fires lightning out of her nails and uses the vagina-mouth in her stomach to devour a night­club full of zombies.

    Can I also mention the fact that Jackie Kong directed and produced this film? She was not yet out of her 20s, and a woman of colour in the notoriously guy-centric horror scene. AND that this was her third feature film! Now that is seriously impressive – nice work, Jackie!

    Starring: LaNette La France, Lisa Elaina, Rick Burks

    Where to watch: HMV, Roku (US)

    11. Ginger Snaps (2000)

    Motion International

    What it's about: Two teenage sisters obsessed with death are attacked one night by a large dog, causing one of them to start behaving very strangely.

    Alison says: Sisterhood is one of the central themes of Fear Street Part Two: 1978. As Ziggy and Cindy struggle with their relationship, they would be well advised to check out Ginger Snaps, in which sisters Ginger and Brigitte have their relationship severely tested when Ginger is bitten by a werewolf. Ginger’s transformation causes her to grow up – and away – from her idolising little sister, who just wants things to go back to how they used to be.

    Starring: Emily Perkins, Katherine Isabelle, Kris Lemche

    Where to watch: Prime VideoShudder (US)Tubi (US)

    12. Black Sunday (1960) aka La Maschera del Demonio, or The Mask of Satan

    Unidis

    What it's about: Based loosely on a story by Nikolai Gogol, a witch is put to death by her brother and returns 200 years later to seek her revenge.

    Alison saysBlack Sunday begins in the 1600s when Asa Vajda (Barbara Steele, being iconic) is found guilty of witchcraft. Before they kill her, she curses her captors, "my revenge will strike down you and your accursed house, and in the blood of your sons, and the sons of their sons, I will continue to live, immortal!” In short, Sarah Fier is totally fan-girling Asa, and would absolutely have had her posters on her bedroom wall if that was a thing in the seventeenth century.

    Starring: Barbara Steele, John Richardson, Andrea Checchi

    Where to watch: Prime VideoTubi (US)

    13. Bit (2019)

    Vertical Entertainment

    What it's about: A transgender teenager moves to LA and falls in with a group of intersectional feminist vampires.

    Alison says: Another pleasure of the Fear Street films is how queer desire is central to the narrative. The trilogy is aware of the problematic "Bury Your Gays" trope, and – while you have to have wait for it ­– Fear Street ultimately gives its queer characters a happy ending. After Fear Street Part Three: 1666, your next stop should be Bit, in which a girl on holiday in Los Angeles falls in with a gang of queer feminist vampires who are preoccupied with ridding the streets of predatory men. Need I say more?

     Starring: Nicole Maines, Diana Hopper, Zolee Griggs

    Where to watch: Prime VideoSky StoreYouTube Movies

    14. House of Wax (2005)

    Warner Bros. Pictures

    What it's about: A group of teens get waylaid in a creepy ghost town where they seek shelter in a local wax museum – but what they don't know is they're not alone.

    Alison says: In honour of Deena's adorable relationship with her younger brother Josh, I give you my favourite teen brother-sister duo in a horror film – Carly and Nick in the House of Wax remake! Like Fear StreetHouse of Wax takes great pleasure in elaborate and unexpectedly gruesome murders – what the bad guys do to poor Sam from Supernatural will make your eyes bleed! However, there's also a ton of feels in this movie, mostly from Carly and Nick discovering that their respective sibling is not a huge douchebag and is in fact awesome!

    Starring: Elisha Cuthbert, Chad Michael Murray, Jared Padalecki

    Where to watch: Prime Video, Sky Store, YouTube Movies

    15. And finally, The Slumber Party Massacre trilogy (1982, 1987, and 1990)

    New Concorde/New World Pictures

    What they're about: In all three films, a different group of high schoolers throw slumber parties which are all crashed by separate masked killers.

    Alison says: Okay, this last choice is actually three films in one, but hear me out! The Slumber Party movies are old-school, uber-violent, super campy slashers – simultaneously ridiculous and entirely marvellous! They are, like Fear Street, a trilogy of horror films focussed on teenage life (but, again like Fear Street, possibly not quite as you experienced it).

    The films create a world of volleyball and driller killers, all-girl metal bands, and bad guys set on fire, while also racking up an impressive kill count of over thirty people across the trilogy! In addition, they are all written, directed, and produced by women, a nice nod to the sterling work of Fear Street’s writer-director, Leigh Janiak.

    Starring: Michelle Michaels, Robin Stille, Debra De Liso

    Where to watch: Massacre 1: PlexYouTube MoviesTubi (US) / Massacre 2: YouTube MoviesTubi (US) / Massacre 3: Diabolik DVD

    What did you think of Alison's recs – will you be watching any? Let us know in the comments.

    Dimension Films

    Fear Street Parts 1 & 2 (1994; 1978) are on Netflix now. Fear Street Part 3: 1666 launches on July 16th.

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