I LOVE a good supernatural/metaphysically themed movie and collect them in my mind. Tons of gore is a real turn off, but great story lines attract me like a vampire to virgins. So here is my list of some fantastic little gems you may have missed.
1) What We Do in the Shadows
(2014) So happy to see a really good, new vampire movie. I love to watch this one and just crack up laughing. All the usual vampire themes done in a refreshing new way, modern day bachelor style. If you like vampires, you gotta see this outstanding little independent film.
2) Devil’s Backbone
(2001) This is one of Guillermo del Toro’s best, and little known (in America) films. If you are the type of person I think you are (because you are reading this list!) then you will love this enchanted yet serious film set in Spain during Spanish Civil War. Performances are fantastic, story is incredibly rich, tragic, and HAUNTED.
3) Man Facing Southeast
(1986) A wonderful Argentinean film about a guy from another world with supernatural abilities who winds up in the looney bin (of course.) A provocative, moving little piece of art that will stay with you for a long time to come.
4) Mothman Prophecies
(2002) Watching this in the theatre back in the day left me permanently SPOOKED. Based on a true story, the cinematography is incredible (watch on as large a screen as possible,) and the story is downright creepy. This film impacted me so much I read the entire book of same title (on which movie is based,) with dry but interesting true investigation of this event. Richard Gere, Laura Linney, Will Patton, Debra Messing and Alan Bates.
5) The Haunting
(1963) Black and white weirdness in this psycho thriller from times gone by. Julie Harris is sublime and wonderful to watch in this twisted, quirky tale.
6) Room 1408
This one will have your heart pounding harder than most if not all on this list. But not your typical thriller, by any stretch. The story is clever and sophisticated supernatural juice. Don’t watch this by yourself.
(1995) A weird, brave flick you just can’t leave off a list like this. If you’ve ever felt like an outsider, you will relate to Powder.
8) The Lost Room
Actually a mini series, I have yet to mention it to anyone who has ever heard of it before. SUCH A GREAT RIDE. Starring Peter Krause (from Six Feet Under) and Julianna Margulies, this is an amazing maze of supernatural fun, unexpected characters, great acting, and profound and unusual insight on the nature of dreams and reality. Several hours of addicting drama.
9) Source Code
(2011) Jake Gyllenhaal, Vera Farmiga, Michelle Monaghan. Another incredible piece of cinema it seems no one has heard of. Hands down best movie I have seen on the nature of parallel realities. Do not miss this one.
10) Beauty and the Beast
(1946) Directed by Jean Cocteau. Fairytale and visual poetry combine in this work of cinematic art. A beautiful, enchanted film.
11) Don’t Look Now
(1973) Donald Sutherland is really good in this aging flick involving premonition, dealing with the loss of a loved one, and just plain weirdness. Eye candy as Julie Christie and scenes of Venice, Italy fill the screen, and of course Donald is so damn out there he’s always a pleasure even if the writing is, well, so so.
12) Shadow of the Vampire
(2000) Pulling from Nosferatu for vampire ideas instead of the typical “Dracula” themes, I found this movie refreshing in the genre. Plus, any excuse to check out John Malkovich and Willem Dafoe in the same movie is too much of a draw to pass up. Dafoe’s performance as vampire, “Max Schrek,” is not to be missed.
13) Drag Me to Hell
(2009) There is no way I would have ever seen a movie with a title such as this unless I was literally “dragged” to it, which is exactly what happened. So happy I was :-))) I can watch this thing over and over, and I do – cracking up every time. It is so hilarious, so campy, so well done and so well written, I might just have to be buried with this DVD in my cold stiff hands. Written and directed by Sam Raimi (of Spiderman notoriety,) and starring Alison Lohman.
14) Pan’s Labyrinth
(2006) To me, this film is consummate joy on any terms. It is so well done, start to finish, the magic has you by the throat as you enter this world through the person of a young girl. It is not a child’s movie, though, but a fantastic adult fairytale. After you watch this, watch it again with Guillermo del Toro narrating, where you will find the story secrets and brilliant artistic nuances you missed the first time.
15) House on Haunted Hill
(1959) Don’t bother with the (awful) remake of this classic. Go for the original and enjoy a classic Vincent Price performance. Campy, dated, and all that good stuff.
16) Mars Attacks
(1996) Who could live a truly full and complete existence without the memory of this ridiculous sci-fi living inside their brain? Scenes of Sarah Jessica Parker’s head attached to the body of a chihuahua pop up into my brain in the weirdest, most random moments, and will keep me chuckling forever. An early Tim Burton film, starring Jack Nicholson, Glenn Close, Pierce Brosnan, Danny DeVito, a young Natalie Portman, Martin Short, Jack Black.
17) The Nines
(2007) Ryan Reynolds, Melissa McCarthy, Hope Davis and Elle Fanning bring a provocative new twist to our supernatural movie genre, with Ryan Reynolds being haunted by himself as he exists in parallel lifetimes. This one will keep you on your toes, and have you arguing with your spouse about what actually happens at the end.
(1980) A young Ellen Burstyn stars in this old classic supernatural movie. After experiencing an NDE, miraculous healing abilities emerge, and the urge to help conflicts with not wanting to draw fanatical, small town attention to herself. Sam Shepard also stars.
19) The Gift
(2000) A MUST SEE for all you card readers out there. Great card reading scenes, plus chock full of psychic day dreams, psychic night dreams, ghosts, superstion and muuurrrrrddddeeeerrrrr……. EW! Just gave myself the chills! AMAZING cast of Cate Blanchett, Katie Holmes, Giovanni Ribisi, Hilary Swank, Keanu Reeves, Greg Kinnear, and more :-))