Top 5 Must Watch Found Footage Horror Movies
It’s one thing to make a horror movie, it’s quite another to give the audience a front row seat in viewing it. Found footage films are nothing new. They present themselves as footage that’s been obtained via camcorder or cell phone video in order to tell the viewers what they are about to see actually happened. The marketing for these movies has been very effective and for this list, we’ll be looking at these found footage movies that are not only fun to watch, but are memorable in the fact that their impact surely affected audiences and have secured their place in film history.
The Blair Witch Project
The film that revolutionized the found footage genre is the story of three student filmmakers investigating the so-called Blair Witch, a local legend that apparently lives in the Black Hills of Maryland. While the film may be slow-going for some, at the time of this film’s release in 1999, many people believed that this film was indeed real and not just a horror movie. Blending suspense, an unseen villain and a haunting ending, The Blair Witch Project has certainly aged well and even with the two sequels that were made years later, this is the found footage film that everyone remembers. Just because we never see the Blair Witch doesn’t mean that the unseen entity can strike fear into our hearts and this film forever changed the horror genre.
This 2007 Spanish film was largely unknown in the United States that is until the American remake named Quarantine was released a year later in 2008. While the American version is a basic copy and paste job, they do exclude one key ingredient and that is the religious overtones that made Rec such a creepy movie. The movie follows a reporter and her cameraman who ride-along with the fire department. Everything is routine until an emergency call is made to an apartment building where the residents are acting strangely. Scary, intense and featuring a nail-biting ending, Rec is perhaps one of the most frightening found footage films of recent years and while the movie did explode into a franchise, the first one is still the highlight of the horror genre. That’s not to say that the American version isn’t good but stick with the original instead. Rec is an absolute thrill ride.
This is one movie that left audiences sick to their stomach. Not from the bloody images, or scary monsters, but the shaky cam that told the story of how an unknown, mysterious creature crashes into New York City and wreaks havoc. Think Godzilla if it were filmed with a camcorder. Cloverfield doesn’t answer all the questions that audiences were wondering about but that’s exactly the point. The movie is told from the point of view of a couple of New Yorkers who recorded everything they witnessed when something arrived in The Big Apple. With fast-paced action, visceral excitement and a true edge-of-your-seat experience, Cloverfield is scary, intense and is a roller coaster ride of a movie. Strap in when watching this film because things are about to get wild!
Diary of the Dead
George A. Romero defined the zombie genre with his 1968 groundbreaking horror masterpiece Night of the Living Dead and the rest is history. His movies blended gruesome body horror with social commentary that no one else could do better. He utilized his skills with his underrated Diary of the Dead that focuses on a group of film students who document their experiences when a zombie outbreak occurs. While there is plenty of zombie violence on-screen, once again, Romero shows us who the true monsters are and they aren’t the undead. Even if the film isn’t scary, it does deliver the goods and for one thing, it isn’t like his other films. Diary of the Dead isn’t the best zombie flick or most memorable, but it’s unique and feels more like a documentary that was found by accident. Even if the crew themselves didn’t live to tell us their story, we still can witness what they encountered because we have it on tape.
Israeli born filmmaker Oren Peli created this movie on a tiny budget of only $15,000 and the result was a film that grossed over $190 Million in sales and spawned a franchise. The first and best of the whole bunch, Paranormal Activity makes good use of keeping the audience in suspense instead of relying on fast cuts and flashy special effects in order to scare the viewer. Ninety minutes in length and filled with sheer tension, Oren Peli wrote, directed, produced and even edited his debut film that shocked audiences and thrilled critics alike. The story involves a couple who begin to hear strange noises in their house and set up cameras in order to determine who or what is causing these disturbances. The ending itself is downright terrifying and the impact that Paranormal Activity had is undeniable. For everyone who has ever heard a bump in the night or some odd noise in your house while you’re asleep, don’t watch this movie alone!