While there was a lot of hype for Halloween Ends, the final film in David Gordon Green’s trilogy, it’s fair to say that the film left many horror fans wanting more. Making Corey Cunningham (Rohan Campbell) the main character was a bold choice that might not have paid off, and the love story between Corey and Allyson Nelson (Andi Matichak) doesn’t fit into the slasher franchise.


Horror fans have otherwise had a fantastic 2022, with many unique movies exciting audiences, making a lot of money at the box office, and impressing critics. There are a few movies in particular that deserve to be praised because they met high audience expectations and hopes.

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RELATED: 2022’s Horror Successes Prove Originality Can Win At The Box Office

Scream 2022

Making more Scream movies was both a no-brainer and a gamble. While there will always be fans psyched to see more of Sidney Prescott’s (Neve Campbell) bold and tough adventures, fans don’t think that all four previous films are equally good. Audiences could have received the fifth movie, which was released on January 14th 2022, either as a lackluster new entry in a beloved franchise… or as a fun film that stands on its own.

In large part thanks to Scream Queen Jenna Ortega, the movie was a hit with critics and fans and Scream (2022) also did well at the box office. The movie gives fans what they want: Ghostface, Sidney and Gale Weathers (Courtney Cox) and Dewey Riley (David Arquette), and jokes and comments about horror. There’s just as much anticipation for Scream 6 after seeing that the franchise can definitely continue to impress.

Mia Goth in X

Ti West’s slasher X was such a hit that he made the prequel Pearl and there will also be a third film called MaXXXine. Horror fans can’t get enough of the story of Pearl (Mia Goth), an elderly woman whose pain points surrounding beauty and youth cause her to kill. While watching Pearl’s origin story is fascinating, the first film, which was released on March 18th, is a fresh story that alludes to favorite movies from the slasher genre.

From the characters to the atmosphere, X is basically a flawless scary movie. The main characters are proud of the adult film that they’re working on and Goth impressively plays both Pearl and Maxine, a young actress who becomes the film’s final girl.

Jupe looking up in Nope

With impressive performances from Keke Palmer, Daniel Kaluuya, and Steven Yeun and a plot that surprises and fascinates, there are a lot of things to love about Nope. Jordan Peele’s third horror film is just as fantastic as Get Out and Us and fans of the genre have enjoyed figuring out the true meaning of Nope.

While there’s a disagreement about whether slashers need to be elevated, Peele is definitely making well-crafted and intelligent movies that scare audiences but also make them think, and that is necessary and important. There was a lot of anticipation for Nope and it doesn’t disappoint as it examines big themes and has a cool setting, too.

smile-movie

While there are many scary smiles in horror movies, Smile proves that looking at a character grinning in a strange way will always be effective. Parker Finn is a filmmaker to watch and adapted the movie from his short film Laura Hasn’t Slept. The movie not only has a solid, confident performance from Sosie Bacon but it also touches on mental health struggles with careful thought.

Smile also stands out because of the filmmaking choices, from an overall dark tone to the smart use of music throughout the story. Every time that Dr. Rose Cotter sees a horrifying figure or a distorted version of a loved one, the eerie music or startling sound affects make the scene even more memorable. Smile also deserves praise because while some good horror movies don’t have jump scares, the movie uses them in a wise way. There are some truly freaky moments that will make anyone jump in their seat.

Tess crawls up the basement stairs in Barbarian

As soon as critics and horror fans began seeing Barbarian in theaters in September, it was clear that this was a film to watch. Barbarian perfectly balances tones as it has funny and scary scenes and it’s a story that actually delivers on a flashy and fun premise. Tess Campbell (Georgina Campbell) arrives at a rental home to find someone else staying there. The movie deserves praise for not being predictable as it’s impossible to imagine what happens.

While smart movie plot twists will always be remembered, sometimes the turns that a story can take can be easy to figure out from the opening scene. Barbarian tells the story from different POVs and has enough surprises to keep anyone interested. Horror fans consider this a must-see and it will be fun to see what writer/director Zach Cregger does next.

NEXT: 10 Horror Movies To Watch Similar To Barbarian

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