Horror movies in the woods: 5 flicks to check out this Halloween | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Horror movies in the woods: 5 flicks to check out this Halloween

Rob Galloway

There’s a group of people in the forest. Person after person falls victim to a dangerous killer (or an evil force) until the final showdown where good seemingly defeats evil — but those remaining are left in a lurch wondering if the killer is really dead. Sound familiar? Welcome to many a premise that has been kicked out of Hollywood over the years.

As we descend upon Halloween — and given the fact that Tahoe is essentially the forest of all forests — I thought it would be fun to explore my top five scary movies set in the woods.

#5: The Cabin in the Woods (2012)

Premise: Five friends travel to a remote cabin where they find an assortment of old relics, including a book that unleashes deadly zombie killers.

My Take: It’s all about the twist. It starts out as a typical horror movie, but gets a very creative change that you don’t expect. That and — spoiler alert — Thor himself (Chris Hemsworth) meets his demise in a very un-Thor-like way.

Where To Stream It: Amazon

#4: Tucker & Dale vs. Evil (2010)

Premise: Loveable rednecks travel to their vacation cabin where they run into a group of college kids who think they are backwoods killers out to get them.

My Take: Horror comedy at its finest. It’s not every day a movie makes you laugh at people meeting their demise, but this movie does — in glorious, gory fashion.

Where To Stream It: Netflix

#3: Cabin Fever (2002)

Premise: Much like my fifth place pick, it centers around five friends who find themselves in a remote cabin in the woods. After an encounter with a man, they each begin to fall victim to a deadly flesh-eating virus.

My Take: Any time you watch a film from veteran horror movie director Eli Roth, be prepared to see anything. Not only will some of the scenes make you cringe, but much like swimming, wait at least an hour after eating before diving in.

Where To Stream It: Netflix

#2: The Evil Dead (1981)

Premise: Another unlucky group of five college kids heads to a remote cabin for a little R & R and wind up finding an audio tape that, when played, unleashes a force of evil.

My Take: It can be a little corny at times now, but growing up this thing scared me sideways; however, it gets a pass because it’s over 35 years old, created a cult following that paved the way for two sequels, and gave us one of the greatest characters in cinematic history: Ash. Director Sam Raimi went on to helm the first three installments of the Spider-Man franchise with Tobey Maguire.

Where To Stream It: Amazon

#1: The Shining (1980)

Premise: A family heads to look after an isolated hotel throughout the winter. The hotel begins to affect the family, ultimately driving the father into madness.

My Take: OK, so I’m bending it a bit here. The action is set in a hotel and not the forest, but the hotel itself is set in the remote woods so I give myself a pass… Plus, it’s got Jack Nicholson going mad (which still freaks me out). It’s also directed by Stanley Kubrick, so you know there’s going to be some points that cause unrest.

Where To Stream It: Amazon

Did I miss any of your favorites?

Publisher Rob Galloway can be reached at rgalloway@tahoedailytribune.com or 530-542-8046.

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