Horror isn’t just for Halloween. The genre is bigger now than it has ever been, and there’s a horror film for everyone — whether you like yours flavored with gore, comedy or monsters — in every month of the year. 2019 got off to a strong start with horror, and things are only getting more intense — it might just be the biggest genre of the year.
We’ve got a nasty revision of a superhero story, multiple killer doll movies, a rampaging animal and MA, which features Octavia Spencer’s first dip in the horror pool. Here are the best new horror movies currently in theatres and coming soon.
What if Superman was the total opposite of a hero? GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY writer/director James Gunn produces this twisted riff on one of the most classic comic book storylines, turning it into a story of vicious horror. Elizabeth Banks and David Denman play the Breyers, who are astounded and delighted when a meteor crash near their rural home reveals an infant. They raise the boy as their son, Brandon (played by Jackson A. Dunn), but all of their parenting skills cannot hold back the evil growing within him. And since this alien child has incredible powers on Earth, no one else will be able to hold him back, either. (May 24)
A teen new to a small Ohio town asks the quiet, lonely Sue Ann (Octavia Spencer) to buy her booze, setting off an utterly insane chain of events. Sue Ann offers the basement of her home to the girl, Maggie, and her friends, as a sort of party pad. There are just a few rules: One person has to stay sober, and they can never go upstairs. Oh, and they have to call Sue Ann “Ma.” Still, it all seems like a good deal to the kids, until Ma’s obsessive and violent tendencies turn a great time into a total nightmare. (May 31)
Andy Barclay (Gabriel Bateman) and his mom (Aubrey Plaza) move to a new city, where Andy has a hard time fitting in. Mom has a good idea and gives Andy a gift to make things seem easier. Too bad the present is a Buddi doll named Chucky (voiced by Mark Hamill), which can (supposedly) make a kid’s life more fun by connecting the doll’s system to all sorts of other Wi-Fi-enabled objects. Problem number one: Those gimmicks never work. Problem number two: In this case, Chucky achieves some kind of sentience and uses his network connections to go on a crazed rampage that threatens everyone in town. Thanks, Mom, we guess? (June 21)
Annabelle Comes Home
Producer James Wan and writer/director Gary Dauberman hit on a great way to expand the ANNABELLE stories without straying too far from the films that spawned them. This third film featuring the possessed doll actually takes place nestled into the timeline of the first CONJURING movie. Ed and Lorraine Warren (Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga) locked the Annabelle doll in their room of supernatural curios, where they thought it would be safe. They were wrong. When the Warrens leave their 10-year-old daughter, Judy (Mckenna Grace), with babysitters (Madison Iseman and Katie Sarife), Annabelle’s power rallies the destructive energy of all of the objects in the Warren collection, and the three girls are in for a hellish night. (June 26)
As a massive hurricane bears down on her home, Haley (Kaya Scodelario) has a problem: Her father won’t evacuate. Then, while looking for Dad, she finds him, and that leads to a bigger problem: He’s injured and stuck under her house. And all of that stuff looks like a pretty good way to spend an afternoon after the giant alligator shows up, ready to chow down on Haley, Dad and anyone else unlucky enough to be stuck nearby. Meanwhile, the water keeps rising, slowly erasing any safe space between Haley and the gator. “Florida Family Eaten by Monster Alligator” is no one’s idea of a good obituary. (July 12)