There are a ton of great horror movies out there.
A lot of the time they get the recognition they deserve, and are seen by the vast majority of the lovers of this dark genre, but in a small number of cases some really amazing film slip through the cracks and get missed by the masses.
The following list is a compilation of under-the-radar films from the last ten years that you need to watch. This list is in chronological.
I hope I can shed some light on something you never heard of. I would love some feedback about other horror movies that fit the same bill.
This psychological thriller is a remake by director Michael Haneke of his 1997 Austrian film by the same name. The film follows a family on a retreat at their swanky lake house. The weekend away is interrupted when two seemingly innocuous young men stop by to introduce themselves. The story line takes a quick turn, and the family finds themselves in the midst of something truly sinister. At first the film may feel very dry, but it will leave you with a uneasy feeling once its over. The writing, directing and acting all are wonderfully done. If you can deal with subtitles the original is equally as good.
This is a Swedish vampire film by director Tomas Alfredson; yes you must read some subtitles. The story focuses on the relationship between a 12-year-old boy, Oskar, and a vampire child, Eli, as they form a deep friendship. The movie is beautifully written, and the cinematography is breathtaking. There is an English remake that was released, but the original Swedish version is much better. Sit back and enjoy a fantastic and unique vampire tale.
This film is completely brutal, and in French. French director Pascal Laugier serves up something that will slap you in the face. Martyrs sits in a category known as New French Extremity, a collection of transgressive films by French directors. The entire tone of the movie is one of confusion and questions and transformation, and you just need to watch it. Be aware; if you are easily disturbed you may want to opt out of this one.
This is a combination creature-feature, body-horror, and trapped/escape thriller. The opening scene from this movie put me off for a while, as it leaves you feeling like the film will be cheesy and cheap, but then the story fires into overdrive. You are taken on a high-paced adventure that will have you scratching your skin. On top of all that, the film has some dark-comedic moments that make it quite endearing.
Bradley Cooper in a horror film? Ya, it sounds weird, kind of like a peanut butter and onion sandwich, but this is a truly fantastic, bloody film. Cooper plays a struggling photographer that is trying to uncover his artistic style. In his exploration of the city he uncovers something evil is happening on the subway. An interesting fact about this one, there is actually a callback to this film in Cooper’s 2012 drama/comedy Silver Linings Playbook, where the film is listed on the marquee in the background – image right here.
This is one of my favourite movies out of Australia. A young woman is turned down by a boy when she asks him to prom. The girl and her father take matters into their own hands. Not to give anything away, but this movie always had a real People Under The Stairs  vibe to it. Its a bit dark, and bit funny, and the family is definitely messed up.
A true psychological thriller. A hit man is recovering from a botched job, and promised a big payoff on a new assignment of three killings. As the story unfolds you find the main character slipping into darkness, as he tries to figure out the world around him. There is one scene that involves a hammer and a guy tied to a chair; gruesome and intense.
This is a remake of the 1980’s film by the same name. Elijah Wood stars in this instalment, and he does a fantastic job of making the main character creepy and just generally off-putting. The movie is shot entirely as a first person journey, from the eyes of a serial killer.
A young father with extreme agoraphobia lives in the bad end of an Irish suburb. A side from the normal levels of aggressive behaviour, something is just not right with the local hoodlums. The young man is forced to fight for his baby daughter.
A young woman is ordered to return to her family home as a form of house arrest. Her mother is driving her up the wall by injecting herself into every aspect of her life. Soon she realizes her mother may also be going mad, when she starts to claim their home is haunted. A great late night gem, that is usually kicking about on Netflix.
As a junkie of the horror genre, I have a ton more great under-the-radar movies to share.
Here are some runner ups that didn’t make the list:
- American Mary  – Made by Canadian twin sisters the Soska sisters.
- The Children  – Creepy kids that kill adults? Yes please!
- Sightseers  – A couple goes on an RV trip through the English country side. Neither of them is quite right in the head.
- Frozen  – Not the Disney one. 3 people get stuck on a chair lift overnight. Its way better than you think it will be.
- Eden Lake  – A romantic weekend away quickly turns into a battle to stay alive.
- Cheap Thrills  – A man struggling to keep his family afloat finds himself in a situation where he can make money by doing horrible things.