The Best Horror Movies

Once again, it is Halloween.  It is a time for dressing up as ghosts and/or goblins; a time to eat boatloads of candy….unless you’re a diabetic, then that’s a really bad idea….just saying.  It is a time for spooky pumpkins.  It’s also a time for one of my favorite film genres of all time: HORROR!  For this Halloween Edition of The Best, I will be going over my favorite horror movies of all time.  Some of these films are going to be R-rated, some are going to be PG.  Some are going to be sequels and others are going to be remakes.  Some are going to be old and some are going to be brand new.  I’m mixing it up a bit.  So…let’s get right into it, shall we?


Clive Barker is one of the most prolific horror writers today, but his real first stab at directing a horror film is one for the ages.  Hellraiser came out at time when horror movies were starting to lose their luster, so to speak.  It re-energized an entire genre and gave us one of the most memorable on-screen villains of all time: Pinhead.  It’s a very gruesome and gory film featuring some major standout performances, specifically Doug Bradley as Pinhead.  Featuring a small puzzle box that when opened, demons from another dimension come through and take their victims back to Hell.  From a visual standpoint, this film is one-of-a-kind.  Sadly, the sequels starting with Hellraiser III would end up getting worse and worse.  Stick with the first two movies.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

My last post was about my favorite decade in horror movies, and I said that it was the 1970s.  There’s a reason for that.  I loved the way horror films looked back then.  They had a very gritty and almost documentary style about them that hasn’t been seen since.  The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is by far one of the most iconic horror movies, because it goes insane.  It’s not the goriest film in the world, but it didn’t need to be in order to shock and terrify people.  Having a main villain with a person’s face as a mask wielding a chainsaw coming after you is really all you need.  Leatherface is one of the scariest villains ever put on screen.


This little indie film jump-started an entire new horror film franchise.  It’s ironic, really, when you consider that the original film is more of a mystery thriller than it is a full-blown horror flick.  Still, there are elements here that make it qualify as such.  The performances are awesome, and I really love the fact that the majority of the film is shot in one small room.  Granted is for budgetary reasons, but it was very effective.  It is a bloody film, but the gore is mostly implied than shown.  It’s not until the sequels that the gore becomes a mainstay in the series.  The twist at the end of the film is one that most people never saw coming, and it was a huge “WTF?!” moment.  I love the other movies, but haven’t seen the new one, yet, but the original is still the best.

Army of Darkness

While most Evil Dead fans will point to Evil Dead II as the best in the series, Army of Darkness is my personal favorite of the bunch.  Don’t get wrong, Evil Dead 2 was a great film and IS the best in the series, but honestly, I had more fun with the third film than any of the others.  Why?  Because it truly embraces its silliness.  There certainly are creepy and atmospheric moments throughout, but most of the movie is just played for laughs.  Thanks to the incredible duo of Sam Raimi and Bruce Campbell, Army of Darkness is one of the most quotable and entertaining films of the early 90s.  It was also one of the last films to really utilize stop-motion animation.  It’s hilarious, exciting, and just an absolute joy to watch.

A Nightmare on Elm Street

Is it really a surprise to anybody that this film made it on this list?  While Wes Craven took the world by storm with his shocking films The Last House on the Left and The Hills Have EyesA Nightmare on Elm Street would be his signature film.  There’s a reason for that.  This is one of the best slasher films of the 80s.  Casting Robert Englund in the role of the demonic Freddy Krueger was a stroke of genius.  Not only would the character become one of the most celebrated villains in cinema, Robert Englund would become a household name.  While a good chunk of the sequels were inferior and some were really good, but none of them can top the original film.  This was also the film debut of Johnny Depp.  This was a career maker for a lot of people.

The Witch

Now, this one was a huge surprise.  A horror film set in the time of the Puritans?  The entire film is such an extraordinary experience.  It’s a slow-burner of a film that really gets under your skin.  The environments and the setting really establish a sense of isolation and desolation.  When the infant goes missing, the family begins to suspect one of the daughters of colluding with Satan.  When you factor in the religious paranoia of the puritans with supernatural elements and isolation, you have a very interesting and powerful film that takes a huge jab at religious fundamentalism.  This is not an effects-heavy film, so it has to rely on the actors and the environments to get the idea across that there is something seriously wrong.  This is absolutely one of the best indie horror films that have ever been released.


Hey, what’s a science fiction film doing in a list about horror movies?!  Hold your horses, let me explain.  Yes, Alien on the surface is a science fiction film, but at its core is a tight, claustrophobic psychological thriller.  It’s often been said that it’s not what you see that scares you, it’s what you don’t see.  Alien is the best sci-fi/horror hybrid movie ever made.  With the tight corridors of the Nostromo, the crew is locked in a battle of survival against one of the greatest movie monsters in cinema history: The Xenomorph.  This is an absolutely nightmarish creature.  H.R. Giger’s design is one of the finest I’ve ever seen, and Alien goes down in history as one of the most terrifying movies of all time.

The Last House on the Left(1972)

One of the reasons why Wes Craven’s first film appears on this list is the sheer raw power of the film.  This was made at a time when people were dealing with the issues from Vietnam.  The footage from the war really turned people away from that stuff.  Wes Craven decided that the best way to deal with violence was to bring it out into the open.  The Last House on the Left broke boundaries and pushed the envelope to the breaking point.  Nobody had ever seen a film like this before.  Especially not one with very grisly and realistic imagery.  The film gave us the most memorable role of David Hess as Krug.  These criminals were definitely vile and evil.  Even today, The Last House on the Left is one of the most shocking and powerful horror movies that have ever been released.

Don’t Breathe

Now, THIS is a really solid thriller.  You have a group of good-for-nothings target an old blind man to rob, only to find out that he’s not entirely helpless.  This is an extraordinary film.  At first, you’re kind of rooting for the old man, only to find out that he has secrets of his own.  Making the old man blind was brilliant.  It adds a level of tension to the film that is almost unbearable.  His blindness allows him to use his other senses to get around and to figure out what’s going on.  The performances here are outstanding.  Stephen Lang as the old man is a revelation.  At first he comes across as sympathetic, but later you figure out that he is NOT a good guy.  This one is definitely worth checking out.  It’s not gory, but it is intense.


This one is a classic in every sense of the word.  It is also one of the most perfect horror films ever.  Jaws follows the residents of an island as they’re terrorized by a Great White shark.  What makes this movie so damned good, is because for most of the film, you don’t see the shark.  You hear the infamous score by John Williams and you know what’s going to happen.  What makes this film so terrifying, is because it’s realistic.  Shark attacks DO happen and most people never see it coming.  Combine that with great characters and a pacing that’s almost breakneck speed, and you have one of the best movies out there.  This was the film that really launched Steven Spielberg’s career as a director.

The Exorcist

The Exorcist is considered by many to be the greatest horror film of all time, and I can definitely see where they are coming from.  It’s intense, brutal, and has some of the most shocking imagery that was ever seen during the 70s.  Truth be told, there’s really not much more that I can say that hasn’t been said about the film.  The acting is phenomenal with standout performances from Linda Blair, Ellen Burstyn, and Max von Sydow.  Along with some pretty graphic visual effects, The Exorcist has terrified audiences world-wide for over 40 years.


Let’s be honest, here.  You can’t have a list about the best horror movies without mentioning the best horror movie ever made: Dracula.  Released in 1931, Dracula starred Bela Lugosi in the title role and captivated audiences the world over.  Adapted from Bram Stoker’s novel, Dracula follows the main character as tries to find a place in England from which he can rule the night.  This was the film that really kick-started the horror film craze.  It is a beloved classic in every sense of the word and features a truly captivating performance by Bela Lugosi.  I can’t find anything negative to say about this film.  It’s that good.  This is not just a must-see, it’s a must-own.

Well, there is my list for The Best Horror Movies.  What do you guys think, is there something I left off, or is there something else that you would like to add.  Please comment below and share this post.  This has been so much fun to write I would love to hear from people and what they think about it.


Interview with Cynthia Rothrock

Ladies and gentlemen, I have a VERY special post for you today.  Now, as you may or may not know, I’m a huge fan of the martial arts and martial arts movies.  These are some of the most unique action movies ever created.  Everybody knows who Bruce Lee, Jackie Chan, Chuck Norris, and Jean-Claude Van Damme are, but there are many actors and actresses who have starred in some of the most fantastic martial arts films.  But for me, there is one who stands out the most and is a real trail-blazer for women in the martial arts and martial arts movies.  Today, I present to you my interview with The Queen of Martial Arts, Cynthia Rothrock!

    First of all, I would like to say how much of a fan I am of yours.  I’ve seen a lot of your movies and they have been amazing to watch.
1.  Did you ever have an idea of where your career path was going to take you and are you satisfied with where it took you?

 I did not have any idea.  When I did my first film Yes Madam, I thought it was going to be a one time thing.  After the second movie Shanghai Express, which I got immediately right after, I knew that was what I was going to be doing for a career.  

2.  How many different styles of martial arts have you studied and is there one that you felt suited you best?
I started with Tang Soo Do, then Pai Lum Kung Fu, Ying Jow Pai, Wu Shu, Kenpo, Tae Kwon Do and a bit of Tai chi.  I loved the Tang Do for giving me the best kicking base suited for me, and the Wu Shu for weapons, and the Ying Jow Pai for self defense.
3.  Getting to The Martial Arts Kid:  What drew you to this particular project?

The producer James Wilson told me he wanted to do a family film with a good message for kids.  I was on board as soon as he asked.

4. I found The Martial Arts Kid to be a charming little family film.  Have you ever wanted to do a family film before?

Yes when my daughter was little, I wanted to do a cartoon show like Bear in the Big Blue House or the Wiggles using martial arts.

5.  What was it like working with Don “The Dragon” Wilson on the project?

Don and I are best friends, so it is always fun working with him.  Also he is a perfectionist so he will want everything to go the best it can for the film, and I love that about him.

6. I found Jansen Pannettiere to be very impressive.  What was your initial impression with him?

I thought Jansen was adorable.  Then working with him he is such a natural actor.  He worked hard was very physical in real life so he did the action extremely well and believable, without stunt doubles.

7. I don’t want to spoil the ending to The Martial Arts Kid in case some people in my audience haven’t seen it yet, but the film is getting a sequel.  Can you tell us a little bit about how it follows up to the first and how it expands on what we’ve already seen?

Martial Art Kid 2, Payback will hopefully be shot in March 2018.  It will be a bit darker, more fights because we are now dealing with the dad, Chuck Zito and he is after revenge.  I get to fight Marcus Taylor so I am really excited about that.  You will see some actors back and some new ones coming in.  It will still have a great message for people keeping up with the effect of the Martial Art Kid.

8. As a martial artist myself and a student of Wing Chun kung fu, I really appreciated the message and the lessons that The Martial Arts Kid was trying to convey to the audience.  Will the second film expand on those ideas and will it introduce new ones as well?

Yes, it will still have real martial artists, real teachers, real techniques.

9. It may be a little too early for you to say, but can you give us a general time-line on when we can expect the next chapter for The Martial Arts Kid?

March 2018 for shooting again in LA and Florida.

10.  Last question and it’s a big one:  What’s your favorite martial arts movie and why?
Oh that is a tough one, one of my favorites is the Kingsmen , now I don’t know if you consider it a martial arts movie but I loved it both 1 and 2, loved the story, the actors and the action.  To get to the classics I always liked Enter the Dragon
Thank you very much for taking the time out of your busy schedule to answer some questions for me and my audience.  I’m definitely looking forward to seeing the next Martial Arts Kid film and whatever else you have planned.
Cynthia Rothrock can be seen in the recently released Death Fighter, as well as The Martial Arts Kid, Showdown in Manila, Righting Wrongs, Shanghai Express, and the Rage and Honor films.  It has been an extraordinary honor having Miss Rothrock take some time out of her busy life to answer some questions for us.  I have been, and always will be a huge fan of hers.  I would urge anybody who hasn’t seen it yet, to check out The Martial Arts Kid, currently available streaming on Amazon or available on DVD and Blu-Ray.  It is a wonderful little film that is perfect for families and has a message that is for people of all ages.

The Best Decade in Horror: The 1970s

The 1970s was a time of social and political upheaval.  The early parts of the decade were mired with the Vietnam War as well as the anti-war/peace protests.  They also had a president that resigned because he was going to be impeached and charged with a federal crime.  To say that the decade was chaotic is a major understatement.  It was also a decade of change.  There was a huge push against censorship in the media and news outlets.  The film industry was also affected by these changes and events.  The 1970s saw some of the greatest films that were ever made:  Star Wars, Superman, Enter The Dragon just to name a few.  There was one genre that really began to take on a different shape:  Horror.  The genre has been around since the beginning of cinema and gave us amazing movies like Dracula, Frankenstein, The Invisible Man and King Kong.  While the genre would continue to evolve over the decades before 1970.  In the 70s, horror took on a particularly mean streak that would last for decades.  To be fair, there were a lot of movies that came out of that decade which were b-level schlock and not very good.  That happens every decade.  What I’m going to do for this Halloween special of The Best is to go over the best and most controversial horror movies that came out during the 1970s.  Be aware that some of these movies are very graphic and can be very disturbing for certain audiences.  You have been warned.


1972: The Last House on the Left

Now, the first two years of the decade were filled with movies that were not particularly memorable.  It wasn’t until 1972 that we got to see how vicious the genre could be.  Enter Wes Craven and his first real movie: The Last House on the Left.  This was the film that put Wes Craven on the map.  The film was notorious for its graphic and sexual violence.    It was so controversial that it was banned in several countries and landed on the U.K’s Video Nasties list.  I remember seeing this one several years ago and it was pretty shocking, even by today’s standards.  But for 1972, this movie pissed people off.  It would not be the first time that Wes Craven would craft something so savage.  Oh, no.  He had a lot more up his sleeve.

1973: The Exorcist

1973 had some pretty decent horror flicks, but one stood out among all others: The Exorcist.  What is now regard as one of the greatest horror films of all time, was released to a suprisingly positive reaction, with some people hating the film.  It’s to be expected.  This is one of the most engaging horror movies that I’ve ever seen.  It handles the investigation into Reagan’s possession fairly realistically with priests telling the mother to take the girl to a psychologist first.  That’s exactly what would happen.  The film also gained a level of notoriety with some of its……graphically violent scenes.  There were some….scenes involving a crucifix which I will not describe her, but that along with the foul language coming out of Linda Blair’s mouth during the movie took a lot of people off guard.  While the film was definitely a success, it definitely came with a price.

1974: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Of all the horror films that came out during the 1970s, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, along with The Exorcist, was talked about the most.  Supposedly based on a true story(which it wasn’t), the followed a group of college kids as they run into the maniacal Leatherface and his crazy cannibal family.  There really wasn’t a whole lot of story here, but the images of Leatherface chasing down and killing the kids was shocking and brutal.  It was very controversial upon release with several people praising it for its intensity and technical prowess while others hated the film because of its brutal violence and gore.  You wanna know something funny about the film?  It really isn’t that gory.  One of the greatest tricks that the film pulled, even if it was unintentional, was fooling the audience into seeing something that really wasn’t there.  Yeah, there was a shot of a gross skeleton at the beginning of the film and we saw a girl get put onto a hook, but do we actually see people getting eviscerated?  No.  It was implied, but never really shown.  Even for 1974, it wasn’t that gory.  1974 also gave us the Christmas chiller, Black Christmas.

1975: Jaws; Salo, Or the 120 Days of Sodom

Jaws is an absolute classic.  It’s the movie that really put Steven Spielberg on the map and made us afraid to go into the water.  The reason the film worked so well was, oddly enough, because the shark they built was malfunctioning, so they had to improvise.  That’s where John Williams came in with his iconic score.  Every time the music played, we knew that the shark was going to attack.  It’s often been said that less is more, and Jaws is a perfect example of that.  It’s absolutely one of my favorite films of all time and it is perfect in almost every way.  The less said about the sequels, the better.

If you’re looking for a film about subtlety, Salo ain’t it.  This is easily one of the most bizarre and twisted films that I’ve ever seen.  I’ve only seen it once, and I have no intention of going back for seconds.  This is possibly the most controversial film on this list.  The graphic nature of what takes place during this movie is disturbing.  It is very clear though, that the film was targeting capitalism as a form of barbarism and how it treats the lower classes.  The director of the film, Pier Paolo Pasolini was found murdered in Rome 3 weeks before the film was released.  Some of the rumors of his death were a result of the film, but there’s no conclusive evidence.  While the film is very difficult to sit through, there is no doubt that the film has artistic merit.  It does.  It’s just not my kind of art.

1976: Carrie; The Omen

What can I say about Carrie that hasn’t been said before.  This is one of the best Stephen King adaptations of all time.  It’s one of Sissy Spacek’s most iconic roles.  The scene that everyone talks about is the prom sequence, and why not?  It’s one of the most chilling and spectacular sequences of the entire movie.  It also featured John Travolta in one of his earliest roles.  There is no doubt that Carrie stands as one of the best horror movies of the 1970s.

Now, this is one of my personal favorites.  The Omen features Gregory Peck in one of his best and unusual roles as that of a United States Senator dealing with a child that may or may not be the Antichrist.  What makes The Omen work so well, is the fact it’s ambiguous about the nature of Damien.  Is he really the Antichrist or are some people just believe that he is?  Throughout most of the film, it’s smart enough to avoid directly answering the question.  All the deaths that happen, seem to be of some kind of coincidence, until an intrepid reporter discovers an unusual pattern in his photos.  While The Omen is not the goriest film on this list, it does have a sequence that really shocked the hell out of everybody, and it involves a sheet of glass.  It is such an interesting film.  While the sequels, would definitely answer the question of whether or not Damien is the Antichrist, I prefer the ambiguity of the original film.  It makes it a lot more thought-provoking.

1977: The Hills Have Eyes

The second Wes Craven on this list, The Hills Have Eyes takes an American suburbanite family and throws them into one of the worst situations you could possibly imagine.  Much like The Last House on the Left, this film was very gritty and unrelenting.  The level of violence in this film was very shocking to a lot of people.  In fact, in several countries, the film had to be edited down to make it more palatable for audiences.  While I personally think that the 2006 film is a better movie, there is no doubt in my mind, that this film was influential.  It became a huge cult classic and cemented Wes Craven as one of the greatest horror movie directors.  He would go on to write and direct a sequel in 1985, which he would disown, for good reason.

1978: Dawn of the Dead; I Spit on Your Grave; Halloween

The late, great George Romero was known as the godfather of the zombie film.  His first real zombie film came in the form of Night of the Living Dead.  It was considered to be one of, if not, the greatest zombie film of all time.  But, Mr. Romero would not stop there.  He would create a follow-up film that would not only be iconic in its own right, but would rival that of the original Night of the Living Dead: Dawn of the Dead.  Featuring a group of survivors that have found a mall to hole up in, they wait for rescue.  The film has some of the best gore you will ever see because of Tom Savini.  It’s well worth checking out.

I Spit on Your Grave(A.k.a. The Day of the Woman)

This is another one of those grindhouse, Video Nasty films that have permeated the 1970s.  This one was met with a lot of criticism.  A lot of people took issue with the fact that the female lead, Jennifer Hills, played by Camille Keaton, was sexually assaulted for the better part of an hour.  A lot of people also dismissed the film because of the level of violence that the main character uses against her attackers.  While some people had begun to start defending the film over the years, I Spit on Your Grave remains one of the most controversial and divisive movies ever put on film.  The film would eventually inspire a re-make in 2010 as well as an official sequel that was finished filming last year.

When it comes to slasher movies, they all owe their existence to this one little flick by John Carpenter.  Starring Jamie Lee Curtis in the role that would define her career, Halloween also starred legendary actor Donald Pleasance as Doctor Loomis, the psychologist that warned people about the evil Michael Myers.  While Halloween may not technically be the first slasher film(that would by Hitchcock’s Psycho), this was the film that redefined the sub-genre.  Iconic music crafted by Carpenter himself, Halloween was an exercise in terror.  It wound up being one of the most iconic movies ever made, and put John Carpenter on the map.

1979: Alien

While one could argue that Ridley Scott’s Alien is a science fiction film, it is also a horror picture and deserves a spot on this list.  Alien was a defining film for many reasons.  It launched the careers of Ridley Scott and Sigourney Weaver, who would become the face of the Alien franchise, at least the first four movies.  Not only did the film feature one of the greatest movie monsters of all time, it was also incredibly claustrophobic and dark.  It’s often been said that in horror movies, it’s not what you see that scares you.  Alien is a prime example of that.  Widely regarded as one of the greatest films of all time, Alien is by far one of my favorite horror movies.

A lot of the films that I have presented here aren’t necessarily the most enjoyable of films.  Honestly, a film does not have to be enjoyable in order to be compelling.  A lot of these films were compelling in their own way.  The movies in this list are a reflection of the decade in which they were made, and as a result they mostly had something to say about politics or social issues.  While one or two of the movies hit it right on the nose, the other films were a little bit more subtle about their themes.  Regardless, these are the horror films that I feel defined the horror genre in the 1970s.  Some of you may disagree, and that’s fine.  I may do another one of these in the future, but it may take a while.  Anyways, what you guys think?  Is there something I left off?  Let me know.


The Hills Have Eyes 2(2007)

Released: March 2007

Director: Martin Weisz

Rated R

Run Time: 89

Distributor: Fox Atomic

Genre: Horror

Michael Bailey Smith: Papa Hades
Michael McMillian: Napoleon
Daniella Alonso: Missy
Jacob Vargas: Crank
Flex Alexander: Sarge
Jessica Stroup: Amber

When Wes Craven unleashed the original The Hills Have Eyes back in 1977, it sent shock waves throughout the genre.  The film’s unrelenting grittiness helped solidify Wes Craven as the next master of horror.  The film was regarded by fans of the genre as one of the best and brutal horror movies of the 70s.  In 2006, Alexandre Aja in conjunction with Wes Craven, released a remake of Craven’s film.  Not only did the film one-up the original in nearly every single way, 2006’s The Hills Have Eyes was elegant proof that horror movie remakes can be awesome.  However, when someone tries to follow-up a successful horror film with a sequel, it doesn’t always work.  Wes Craven released the original The Hills Have Eyes Part II back in 1985 and it was poorly received, shall we say.  Due to the success of the 2006 film, Wes Craven and company decided it would be a good idea to craft a sequel.  Just so everybody is aware, the 2007 The Hills Have Eyes 2 is not a remake of the the 1985 film.  No, the 2007 Hills is a sequel to the 2006 movie.  So, is The Hills Have Eyes 2 a worthy follow-up to Alexandre Aja’s film?  Short answer:  Not even close.

The survivors of the first film have alerted the authorities and military to the fact that there are mutated people living in the wastelands of the New Mexico desert, and the Army began to bomb these freaks out of existence.  Some have survived and are hiding in the mines.  Essentially, the film really begins with a group of Army trainees on a training exercise that they hilariously fail, and are sent by military command to somewhere else.  On the way, they have to deliver equipment to a group of scientists in secret location called Sector 16.  Upon arriving, they discover that the camp has been abandoned.  Searching the bunker and the surrounding environment, the group soon realizes that they are not alone.  The setup is not the worst thing in the world, and using the military would have been very interesting, if it was handled by better film-makers.  The story is basically a reason to see these guys get killed or worse.  In fact, one of the aspects of the story is that because the mutant population is dwindling, the mutants kidnap women to breed and rebuild their numbers while slaughtering the men.  Again, it’s an aspect that could really amp up the horror of the film.  Unfortunately, it’s never truly realized as the film’s writing is fucking awful.  What makes the writing and script worse, is that it was written by Wes Craven and his son, Jonathan.  It’s a HUGE step backwards.  The first film was fairly well-received in the horror community, but this…..this is dreadful.

The bad writing permeates pretty much everything else about the film, the characters in particular.  Oh, my god, the characters in this movie are TERRIBLE.  There is not a single likable soul among these characters.  Every single one of them is an absolute disgrace.  These characters are supposed in the Army, but apparently they skipped Basic Training.  I read somewhere that the film-makers behind this….”film” had absolute respect for the military.  Really?  Then, why are these characters so….STUPID?!  They go from making one stupid mistake to another, and I guess somebody thought that this was good character development.  WRONG.  You can’t connect with these characters, because they are so annoying.  One of them is a peace-loving nimrod named Napoleon and you have a short-fused dingbat named Crank.  The mutants also get shafted.  Their only purpose in the film is to kill the men and kidnap and rape the women.  That is the crux of their motivation.  That’s not good enough.  In the first film, you find out why the mutants do what they do.  It doesn’t make them any more likable, but they have motivation, and it makes them more terrifying.  Here….I’m sorry, not even Michael Bailey Smith as Papa Hades could salvage this.

Effects-wise, we can tell that KNB had some hand in this, but it is NOT their best effort, I can tell you that right now.  There are moments of some really gruesome effects.  The opening scene in which a pregnant women gives birth to a mutant baby is suitably disgusting and shown in detail.  But there really isn’t a whole let else that matches that.  There is definitely blood and gore here, but the way that it’s done is surprisingly bad.  There is definitely CGI being used in some of these sequences and the green-screen effects are painfully obvious, especially when some of the soldiers fall off a cliff.  The make-up on the mutants isn’t awful, but it’s nowhere near as varied as the previous film.  They all look the same here.

Is the film boring, though?  No.  It does move at a pretty good clip, and the kills come quickly and violently.  Unfortunately, it’s not enough to save a film that was half-baked from the beginning.  The director, Martin Weisz, was clearly out of his element here, and his filmography on IMDB indicates that he hasn’t done anything worthwhile since.  Most of the actors are forgettable, with the exception of Daniella Alonso.  This could have been a decent outing if Wes and Jonathan Craven had spent more than a month writing the script.  I’m not kidding, they wrote the script in a month, and it clearly shows.  I forget who said it, but somebody once said that you can make a bad movie out of a good script, but you can’t make a good movie out of a bad script.  The script for The Hills Have Eyes 2 was very bad.  The film, like any other bad movie, has its moments, but unlike the first movie, it doesn’t have a whole to say.  As said in my The Hills Have Eyes review, the most effective horror movies are where you connect with the characters.  Craven simply didn’t do that here.  As a result, it’s a movie that I can safely say that you can skip, and you won’t be any worse off.

My Final Recommendation: Run to the hills! Run for your lives! 5/10