Greetings Horror fans! The renaissance of mainstream horror that began three years ago, shows no sign of abating. Studios are continuing to bet BIG that appetite for the genre will stay strong. Here is what they have coming your way in 2020. Although we have mostly stayed positive, we are not shy about telling you which ones you should avoid.
January 3, 2020: NOT looking forward to the new Grudge movie. Sony has been tight-lipped about it. So has producer, Sam Raimi. The director is woefully inexperienced. No trailer yet. Plus, the release date has been pushed back twice, pointing to major production issues. This is the latest attempt at remaking one of the creepiest movies of all time (Ju-On: The Grudge 2002) and I am not confident it will come close to living up to the original.
January 10, 2020: Looking forward to Underwater. This is a sea creature movie, more in keeping with the spirit of Alien. The trailer looks solid, featuring a handful of people descending to the ocean floor, where they become trapped. But more importantly, the budget is generous: 20th Century Fox poured $80,000,000 into what they see as a potential horror blockbuster. That doesn’t guarantee a winner, but Kristen Stewart is playing the lead and since coming out of a Twilight-induced haze, she is making better choices. Trailer below.
January 24, 2020: Looking forward to The Turning. Billed as a cinematic retelling of the Henry James novella, The Turn of the Screw, it would be more appropriate to characterize this Universal Pictures film as a remake of The Innocents (1961), the movie which set the original standard for psychological horror. We probably cannot expect something similar from The Turning given how underwhelming the cast and filmmaking crew are, but it’s nice to see the original concept back… Even if it turns out to be a gutted version. Teaser trailer below.
January 31, 2020: Looking forward to Gretel and Hansel. I’m actually on the fence, but if I have to pick one, I’ll stay positive. There aren’t any names attached to this production that give me confidence. And after seeing the trailer, it could go either way… My gut tells me it’ll go the wrong way, but if you have a soft spot for fairy tale backstories that have a horrifying twist, this one could deliver at the niche level. Trailer below.
February 14, 2020: Looking forward to Fantasy Island. Honestly, we know very little about this film. Jason Blum is producing and that may be enough. Granted, not all of his are winners, but in Fantasy Island he seeks to reimagine a 1970s show about a magical island resort, while adding a horror twist. Cast looks solid (Michael Pena, Maggie Q, Lucy Hale, Michael Rooker) and that it is being filmed entirely on Fiji means that big bucks are behind it. No trailer yet. No stills.
February 28: Looking forward to The Invisible Man. There has not been a good remake of the original 1933 film, but there is reason to believe this latest attempt will buck the trend. Jason Blum is producing and Elisabeth Moss is playing the female lead (she has yet to make a bad career decision). The trailer looks compelling (see below) and hints at a departure from the maniacal antihero we were treated to in the original.
March 20, 2020: Looking forward to A Quiet Place: Part II, if only because the first one was a great flick and John Krasinski has retained the director’s chair for the sequel. Filming wrapped up just last month, so we should see stills and a trailer shortly, but really, what more do you need: Great concept, great director. I look forward to another great movie.
May 15, 2020: NOT looking forward to the new Saw movie. Don’t know much about it. Don’t really care either. It’s enough already with this franchise, although it is interesting that Chris Rock is producing. Hopefully that means the series will finally be transformed into a parody, a la Friday the 13th VI. Even then, I don’t think I would care, unless it was really well done. Above is a set photo that does not give me hope.
June 12, 2020: Looking forward to the Candyman remake. Jordan Peele’s storylines are usually full of holes, but he’s not bad with dialogue, plus always manages to find great acting and great directing. Also, according to producer Ian Cooper, Candyman has had his hook in Peele for twenty years now. Well, the rights are finally his. We’ll see if he delivers. If nothing else, it’s rumored that we will get more of the Candyman backstory.
July 10, 2020: NOT looking forward to the new Purge movie. This franchise should have been capped at three. The Purge: Election Day was a good end to a sick, compelling, original narrative. There’s not much to know about the latest one: No plot (though we could probably guess), no title, no trailer and no stills. (Above is a pic from the 2018 TV series.)
September 11, 2020: Looking forward to The Conjuring 3. What this franchise lost in originality in The Conjuring 2, it gained in creep factor. Leave it to James Wan to set new bars for atmospheric tension. Although not directing (as he did for the first two), he is producing/co-developing the third installment. Plus, both Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson are back to play the leads. Teaser trailer below.
September 25, 2020: Looking forward to Last Night in Soho, if for no other reason, because Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead, The World’s End) is directing and co-writing. And that’s about all I can say because the plot is currently unknown. Although it is rumored that the film will be more straight psychological horror. (The above still looks freaky enough.) Whether he can pull that off without making me laugh will be interesting to see. Should be a good time either way.
October 16, 2020: Looking forward to Halloween Kills. The 2018 direct sequel to John Carpenter’s 1978 classic was watchable… That’s more than I can say for many additions to the Halloween franchise. Story was decent and it was great to see Jamie Lee Curtis again. She and Nick Castle will be back for this follow-on, along with David Gordon Green, who will be directing and Malek Akkad who will be producing. Even Jason Blum threw his name in there for kicks. We’ll see where they take this. I’ll just hope for an entertaining film.
2020: Looking forward to Antlers. With Guillermo Del Toro producing and Scott Cooper (Hostiles) directing, we can probably expect a well-executed monster movie. Not much else is known, except that Keri Russell (exceptional acting talent) is playing the lead and the trailer looks promising. See below.
2020: Looking forward to Army of the Dead. Honestly, I’m not really a zombie guy, but even I enjoyed Zack Snyder’s 2004 Dawn of the Dead remake. Well, he’s back to unearth some more bodies. Netflix gave Snyder a budget of $70,000,000 to play with, so expect something similar in production value. As far as the plot: A group of mercenaries have ventured into a quarantine zone to rip off a Vegas casino. (Already loving it.)
2020: NOT looking forward to the new Wrong Turn movie. I really don’t have to say anymore do I? Isn’t it just enough to know that this god-awful franchise won’t stay dead and buried. Mike Nelson is the latest to unearth the putrefied flesh of these mutants. And they’ll probably stink worse than ever.