I am so excited for this post! Last month, I subscribed to Shudder and the rest was history! It’s only $6.99 a month in Australia and you get access to heaps of exclusive and original content, including every season of Dragula (except the first, which you can find on YouTube) and Resurrection. It is 100% my favourite streaming service. Today I want to share five Shudder Originals I highly recommend. In the future, I’ll list the best Shudder television shows, documentaries and exclusives. I’m also going to rank the episodes in each season of Creepshow. It was hard to narrow down but here are my top picks. Without further ado, let’s get into it!
Host is one of the best horror films I’ve seen this year. Hands down. It’s been a while since a film got under my skin and this one really went there. Set during the global pandemic, a group of friends perform a seance over Zoom as a way to pass the time in lockdown. However, things take a turn for the worse when a demon crosses over and begins taking them out one by one. Firstly, this movie takes place completely on webcam. It’s really well-made. Secondly, there are no notable actors and yet, the acting was insane. It felt so incredibly real. I think what made it so terrifying was the blend of reality and fiction. Being forced to isolate at home is a feeling we know well. With nobody else to help them, the participants fight to survive a violent end. It definitely has a slow beginning but I believe the pacing was intentional. The horror steadily builds and by the end, your heart is racing. In a recent study, this movie was voted the scariest of all time. I have to agree. If you only watch one feature on this list, let it be this one.
2.) The Boy Behind The Door
Let’s discuss The Boy Behind The Door because it really surprised me. It follows two young boys, who are best friends. One day, whilst playing in the park, they are abducted and taken to a rural farmhouse. One child is chained up inside, whilst the other manages to free himself from the boot of the car. He spends the rest of the film trying to save his friend and escape the evil kidnappers, who are involved in child trafficking. Despite his size and age, he shows an immense amount of resourcefulness, bravery, loyalty and strength. It’s brutal, suspenseful and full of emotion. I loved their friendship and the way they never gave up on one another. There were a couple of unrealistic scenes but overall, it was a great story and one I recommend. The lead plays a young Randall Pearson in This Is Us and we all know how I feel about him from this post.
3.) The Sadness
This is highly controversial but I really enjoyed The Sadness. As you can see by the film poster, this Taiwanese horror is described as the most violent and depraved zombie movie ever made. Do I agree? Yes I do! As you can imagine, it follows a young couple forced to survive after a disgusting and aggressive virus infects the majority of the population. The sickness itself targets a part of the brain linked to libido and anger, thus creating monsters that butcher and rape. I know. I said this was a controversial opinion. What I enjoyed about this story was the action. It was very fast-paced and full of shocking, bloody scenes. I think it’s the most blood I’ve ever seen in a movie. It’s named The Sadness because the creatures do not want to act in the way that they do. They cry as they massacre their victims. They literally cannot help it. Does this mean I endorse films with sexual violence? No but at the same time, Reagan in The Exorcist demanded her mother lick her down there. This is the essence of a possession story. It’s committing depraved acts against your own will. You don’t have to love it but you can accept that it’s an element of horror. This film definitely isn’t for everybody but I was a fan. Note all the triggers warnings before diving in.
4.) The Cleansing Hour
This film was so good! Wow! The Cleansing Hour follows childhood friends, Max and Drew, who host a popular livestream show where “Father Max” exorcises a possessed person during each episode. In reality, each possession is fake. They are carefully scripted and orchestrated to entice viewers to like their channel, follow their videos and purchase merchandise. Max is obsessed with drawing as large a crowd as possible and gaining a bigger following. Drew’s fiancée Lane is unhappy but supportive, even going so far as to agree to step in as the possessed person when an actor for their current episode doesn’t show. As the stream starts, it becomes clear that Lane is actually possessed and now it’s up to the phonies to save her soul before it’s too late. Unfortunately, everybody watching doesn’t realise the supernatural events aren’t actually part of the show. There are twists, turns and plenty of action-packed scenes in this film. You will be glued to your screen the entire time. It’s a fantastic concept that was executed perfectly. I loved how the friends banded together to outwit the demon but were also forced to confront their own dark secrets. You need to add this one to your list.
Last but not least, we have Revealer. The basic premise? A stripper and a religious protester find themselves trapped in a peep show booth and must come together to survive the apocalypse. Yes, it is as bizarre as it sounds. It’s also set in the 1980’s with an excellent soundtrack and theme music. There were some great conversations had, disgusting body horror and laugh-out-loud dialogue. I liked the narrative being told. The ending was wild! It was highly entertaining and worth a shout-out.
I hope you enjoyed this post! Thank you for reading. Please recommend more Shudder Originals. I cannot get enough!
Peace & Love xoxo