Martin Scorsese, a filmmaker synonymously linked with the New Hollywood wave of cinema, has listed some of his all-time favourite horror movies.
Scorsese, whose work with the likes of Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, Goodfellas and more has led him to becoming one of the most significant and influential filmmakers of all time, is also a keen historian of the art and an avid student of film.
With a career spanning more than 50 years, Scorsese’s frequent use of slow motion, long tracking shots and running a trend in his lead female actors, his work has also included nods to some of his idols like Alfred Hitchcock and more.
Tending to stick closer to the genres of crime thrillers and verging away into thrillers which lean towards psychological and drama, Scorsese has successfully cracked the area of biographical sports features with huge critical and box office success.
One genre Scorsese has yet to enter is the field of horror, a genre which dates back to the 1890s and a period of time that is relative to the beginning of history of film. As aforementioned, Scorsese is a keen historian and has track the genre closely throughout his life.
As part of an interview with Daily Beast, Scorsese was asked to pick 11 of his favourite horror films of all time. Perhaps predictably, Hitchcock’s 1960 effort Psycho makes into the pile, as does work from Stanley Kubrick, Lewis Allen, Robert Wise and more.
See Martin Scorsese‘s 11 favourite horror movies, here:
- The Haunting (Robert Wise, 1963)
Synopsis: “Dr. John Markway, an anthropologist with an interest in psychic phenomena, takes two specially selected women to Hill House, a reportedly haunted mansion.”
- Isle of the Dead (Val Lewton, 1945)
Synopsis: “Gen. Nikolas Pherides (Boris Karloff) takes leave from the 1912 Balkan War to visit a small island in Greece, where his wife is buried. While there, a plague breaks out forcing people to stay when quarantine is declared.”
- The Uninvited (Lewis Allen, 1944)
Synopsis: “While vacationing on the English coast, composer Rick Fitzgerald and his sister Pamela find an an abandoned 18th-century house and decide to buy it. The family soon find themselves battling it out with two very prickly ghosts.”
- The Entity (Frank de Felitta, 1982)
Synopsis: “Single mother Carla Moran is raped and attacked by an invisible force. She begins therapy with Dr. Phil Sneiderman, a psychiatrist who believes Carla’s traumatic past is motivating her to commit self-induced injuries, rather than anything supernatural.”
- Dead of Night (Alberto Cavalcanti, Charles Crichton, Basil Dearden and Robert Hamer, 1945)
Synopsis: “Architect Walter Craig (Mervyn Johns) goes to Pilgrim’s Farm to see a potential client. When he arrives at the house, he gets the feeling that he has been there before.”
- The Changeling (Peter Medak, 1980)
Synopsis: “Composer John Russell is vacationing with his family when a car accident kills his wife and daughter. Distraught with grief, Russell leaves his home in New York City for a giant, secluded house near Seattle.”
- The Shining (Stanley Kubrick, 1980)
Synopsis: “Jack Torrance becomes winter caretaker at the isolated Overlook Hotel in Colorado, hoping to cure his writer’s block. He settles in along with his wife, Wendy, and his son, Danny, who is plagued by psychic premonitions.”
- The Exorcist (William Friedkin, 1973)
Synopsis: “One of the most profitable horror movies ever made, this tale of an exorcism is based loosely on actual events. When young Regan starts acting odd — levitating, speaking in tongues — her worried mother seeks medical help, only to hit a dead end.”
- Night of the Demon (Jacques Tourneur, 1957)
Synopsis: “American professor John Holden arrives in London for a conference on parapsychology only to discover that the colleague he was supposed to meet was killed in a freak accident the day before.”
- The Innocents (Jack Clayton, 1961)
Synopsis: “Based on the Henry James story ‘The Turn of the Screw’, a psychological thriller about a woman who takes a governess job for two orphans in a Victorian home. She begins to see what she believes are ghosts and suspects the children’s bizarre behaviour is the result of supernatural powers.”
- Psycho (Alfred Hitchcock, 1960)
Synopsis: “Phoenix secretary Marion Crane, on the lam after stealing $40,000 from her employer in order to run away with her boyfriend. Traveling on the back roads to avoid the police, she stops for the night at the ramshackle Bates Motel and meets the polite but highly strung proprietor Norman Bates but all is not as it seems.”