r Wicked Things Horror Blog: 5 Best Horror Franchises of All Time!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

5 Best Horror Franchises of All Time!

1. Hellraiser - Pinhead and the Cenobites never cease to scare the bejesus out of me.  You can add anyone to the plot and they are still scary!  Even if the characters in the movie suck, Pinhead and the Cenobites never cease to disappoint!

Hellraiser (1987)   
Hellbound: Hellraiser II (1988)   
Hellraiser III: Hell on Earth (1992)   
Hellraiser: Bloodline (1996)      
Hellraiser: Inferno (2000)   
Hellraiser: Hellseeker (2002)   
Hellraiser: Deader (2005)   
Hellraiser: Hellworld (2005)   
Hellraiser: Revelations (2011)

The franchise & The Prophecy are available on one DVD for $5 & under!


2.  Hammer Films Dracula - Hammer Films produced nine Dracula films between 1960 and 1974. (Courtesy of Wikipedia)...
The first five were direct sequels to the original film. Brides of Dracula did not include Dracula, but Peter Cushing repeated his role as Van Helsing to battle vampire Baron Meinster (David Peel). The Kiss of the Vampire did not include Van Helsing or Dracula, but continued the theme of Brides of Dracula, showing vampirism as a plague infecting other pockets of unfortunates.

Christopher Lee as Dracula returned in the following six films, which employed ingenuity in finding ways to resurrect the Count. Hammer upped the graphic violence and gore with Scars of Dracula in an attempt to re-imagine the character to appeal to a younger audience.

Dracula A.D. 1972
Dracula Has Risen from the Grave
Horror of Dracula
Taste the Blood of Dracula
The commercial failure of this film led to a change of style with the following films, which were not period pieces like their predecessors, but had a then-contemporary 1970s London setting. Peter Cushing appeared in both films playing a descendant of Van Helsing.

Christopher Lee grew increasingly disillusioned with the direction the character was being taken, and with the poor quality of later scripts – although he did improve these slightly himself by adding lines of dialogue from the original novel.

Lee speaks at least one line taken from Bram Stoker in every Dracula film he appeared in, except for Prince of Darkness – in which the Count does not speak (Lee claimed he was appalled by his dialogue in that film and refused to speak it, but Jimmy Sangster rebutted that no dialogue was written for the character in that film). He was also concerned about typecasting. After Satanic Rites, he quit the series.

I used to watch these flicks with my dad while gorging down on pizza and snacks and it was definitely one of the most entertaining memories I have of my childhood. Christopher Lee is one of my favorite actors, and of course, my favorite Count Dracula.

3.  Re-Animator - followed by Bride of Re-Animator in 1990 and Beyond Re-Animator in 2003 were preceded by another film based upon an H. P. Lovecraft story, From Beyond; though this film featured a story unrelated to Re-Animator, it was also directed by Stuart Gordon and starred both Jeffrey Combs and Barbara Crampton.


In the book Lurker in the Lobby: The Guide to the Cinema of H. P. Lovecraft, producer/director Brian Yuzna mentions an idea that he had for a fourth Re-Animator. This version would have been titled Isle of Re-Animator, and would have been strongly influenced by the H. G. Wells novel The Island of Doctor Moreau.

You can watch From Beyond for free here.  

Herbert West–Reanimator was a short story by H. P. Lovecraft that was written 1921-1922.  In 2011, a musical adaptation opened on Broadway, which director Gordon participated in.

 You can listen to the H.P. Lovecraft original short story on Audible.com here.

4.   The Omen - Who doesn't love movies about the Antichrist coming home to roost?  You can't really include Rosemary's Baby, but I have hear the theory that the baby who has his father's eyes is supposed to be Damien.  

Anyway, The Omen includes:

 The Omen (1976)
Damien: Omen II (1978) 
Omen III: The Final Conflict (1981) 
Omen IV: The Awakening

The Omen, of course was remade in 2006 and starred Liev Schriber and Julia Styles.  I am a fan of the remake as they pretty much stuck to form and added a cool little twist, Mia Farrow as Mrs. Blaylock.  Seeing Mia evil was great!  Julia Syles kinda aggravates me so watching her get kicked around by Damien was an added bonus!

The Omen - 1976
The Omen - 2006
Damien: The Omen II
The Omen III: The Final Conflict
The Omen IV: The Awakening

5.  The Evil Dead -  The Evil Dead, of course, consists of "Ash", Ashley J. Williams (Bruce Campbell), kicking possessed demon asses and taking names!  Ash finds the Necronomicon Ex-Mortis, an ancient Sumerian text in a cabin, which is located in a remotely wooded area in Tennessee.  Everyone gets possessed pretty much except for a couple of survivors, Ash and Linda. 

Ash is the only character to appear in every installment of the original trilogy Linda, Ash's girlfriend makes an appearance in all 3 films, but her only appearance in Army of Darkness is during the prologue. The original trilogy includes:

Evil Dead II (1987) 

The Evil Dead was remade in 2013, sacrilege, let's not discuss that!

I also noticed that that abortion of a film is called Evil Dead and not "The Evil Dead".

 I've already blogged and asked, Where was Ash?  Where was Ash?  Where was Ash, my question has been answered and I won't discuss it again!



I watched Army of Darkness with my dad, too!  He would not remember or admit to it, but he loved it.  He was making commentary throughout the entire thing, which he never does!  He tells you to just shut up and watch!!!

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