Although there may have been a few gems here and there, this summer season has been surprisingly slow for horror—there weren’t many movies that really stood out, which is why this month is so exciting. September brings with it what will likely be the biggest horror movie of the year in Andy Muschietti’s IT, Darren Aronofsky’s psycho-horror Mother!, and so much more. So let’s jump right into what the month of horror has for us in September.
Director: Kevin Greutert
Cast: Stephen Dorff, Deborah Kara Unger, Johnathon Schaech
Set in the 1980s, an estranged family hires a cult de-programmer to take back their teenage son from a murderous cult, but find themselves under siege when the cultists surround their cabin, demanding the boy back.
Director: Michael Barrett
Cast: Naoto Takenaka, Asahi Uchida, Logan Huffman
Three American tourists follow a mysterious map deep into the jungles of Japan searching for an ancient temple. When spirits entrap them, their adventure quickly becomes a horrific nightmare.
The Atoning (VOD)
Director: Michael Williams
Cast: Virginia Newcomb, Michael LaCour, Cannon Bosarge
While they are haunted by ghostly apparitions, two parents try to protect their young son from a dark secret that could destroy their family.
Director: Andy Muschietti
Cast: Bill Skarsgård, Jaeden Lieberher, Finn Wolfhard
A group of bullied kids band together when a monster, taking the appearance of a clown, begins hunting children.
Director: Aaron Mirtes
Cast: Brittany Belland, Aaron Mirtes, Monica Baker
Emma, a college student with a crippling fear of clowns, must come face to face with her worst fear when an evil spirit in the body of a clown is summoned terrorizing the town she calls home.
Director: Darren Aronofsky
Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, Javier Bardem, Ed Harris
A couple’s relationship is tested when uninvited guests arrive at their home, disrupting their tranquil existence.
Director: Kate Mulleavy, Laura Mulleavy
Cast: Pilou Asbæk, Kirsten Dunst, Joe Cole
Theresa, a haunted young woman spiraling in the wake of profound loss, torn between her fractured emotional state and the reality-altering effects of a potent cannabinoid drug. Immersive, spellbinding, and sublime, Woodshock transcends genre to become a singularly thrilling cinematic experience that marks the arrival of the Mulleavy siblings as a major new voice in film.
The Houses October Built 2 (VOD)
Director: Bobby Roe
Cast: Brandy Schaefer, Zack Andrews, Mikey Roe
Recovering from the trauma of being kidnapped last Halloween by the Blue Skeleton – a group who take “extreme haunt” to another level – five friends decide they must face their fears in order to move on. Heading back out on the road to visit more haunted house attractions, signs of the Blue Skeleton start appearing again and a new terror begins…
Friend Request (Theaters)
Director: Simon Verhoeven
Cast: Alycia Debnam-Carey, William Moseley, Connor Paolo
When a college student unfriends a mysterious girl online, she finds herself fighting a demonic presence that wants to make her lonely by killing her closest friends.
Director: Bev Land
Cast: Vanessa Angel, Parker Croft, Rebekah Graf
When six college kids in a sleepy Southern town are assigned a group project to rediscover a moment in history, one of them sets in motion a horrific fate when he proposes they head into the Georgia backwoods to tackle the legend of Emily Burt, the Talbot County werewolf. “Lycan” is a Hitchcockian tale of horror set in 1986 that delves into a hundred year old fable where our students are met with very real consequences that go beyond any classroom lessons.
Director: Niels Arden Oplev
Cast: Nina Dobrev, Ellen Page, Diego Luna
Five medical students, obsessed by what lies beyond the confines of life, embark on a daring experiment: by stopping their hearts for short periods, each triggers a near-death experience – giving them a firsthand account of the afterlife.
Gerald’s Game (Netflix)
Director: Mike Flanagan
Cast: Carla Gugino, Henry Thomas, Bruce Greenwood
While trying to spice up their marriage in their remote lake house, Jessie must fight to survive when her husband dies unexpectedly, leaving her handcuffed to their bed frame.
What you shouldn’t miss:
This was an easy one. I’m going with both IT and Mother! for this month’s must-sees. Here’s why:
- As if the hype wasn’t already massive enough for Muschietti’s take on Stephen King’s masterpiece, early word on IT is that it is every bit as gnarly and terrifying as its trailers suggest. We’re all going to float on the 8th. Sold, sold, sold.
- Aronofsky doing another psychological horror film is all we really needed to know, but then that brilliant trailer came around and it was an absolute stunner. I still can’t believe that this one is already coming out, just a month after we first caught wind of its trailer.
What you should take a chance on:
See, I told you this month was going to be a good one. There’s a lot here to chew on, but I have to go with Gerald’s Game and Woodshock.
- I haven’t given up on Mike Flanagan just yet, despite his string of not-so-good movies lately, because the dude certainly has a thing for the genre. That’s why I’m giving Gerald’s Game a chance because Flanagan doing an adaptation of Stephen King’s wonderfully weird novel sounds too good to pass up.
- I don’t know much about Woodshock other than it looks weird as shit (see the trailer for proof), and considering the roll A24 has been on lately I’m thinking this one is worth a shot.
Which film are you looking forward to the most?
Bring it, Pennywise!