Another year has arrived, which means another year filled with horror films! We’re starting a new decade so we’ll start to see trends and tropes surfacing early on and continuing for the next 10 years. This year is already looking promising for our selection of horror movies, so here are 21 of the most anticipated films of 2020.
The Onania Club
Those who are fans of The Human Centipede trilogy will be pleased to hear that director Tom Six is back with another controversial horror film that is going to keep the Internet calling him a sick fuck. The Onania Club follows Hanna who joins an elitist club which is made up of strong, independent and successful LA women who are sexually aroused by the despair and misery of others. To give you an understanding of how provocative the film is; there is one scene where the women sit around masturbating to footage of 9/11… Personally I find Six to be a fascinating director that gives no fucks when it comes to being controversial, and feel we need more directors that are willing to push the boundaries like this.
Gretel and Hansel
This classic Brothers Grimm fairytale is less magical and more horrifying, and therefore it looks like it’s finally going to get the terror given to it it deserves. Oz Perkins, who gave us the chilling The Blackcoat’s Daughter / February, is returning to depict this haunting tale where a young girl and her brother get lost in the forest and stumble upon an evil witch in the woods. The trailer alone is enough to give you nightmares for the rest of your days, and therefore this one looks amazing. There have been a lot of complaints around it being PG13, however, this feels like a story that doesn’t need gore or anything adult to frighten us.
Promising Young Woman
Even though not completely categorised as a horror film, this one has many elements and is quite close to being a rape revenge film. Young Promising Woman follows Cassie who as the title suggests, is a young promising woman with everything in life ahead of her. However, she is leading a double life in order to make sure that the men who take advantage of vulnerable girls are no longer alive to prey on their victims. Directed by Emerald Fennell, who is known for UK TV show Call The Midwife, and starring Carey Mulligan, this film looks like it’s going to ruffle some feathers, but become a very topical film within the industry.
We are finally getting another creature feature and this one is set in the depths of the ocean, which for me is similar to Hell. A research station which is submerged 7 miles under sea is terrorised by some kind of monster that dwells below. This film comes from William Eubank who was behind the 2014 The Signal film, and stars Kristen Stewart as the lead role and Vincent Cassel who you’ll recognise from Irreversible. Personally I find the sea one of the most frightening places that exists and therefore it feels that Underwater will provide many hide-behind-your-pillow scenes.
A Quiet Place II
After the outstanding reception of the first film, there’s no wonder that nearly everyone is excited about the release of A Quiet Place II. Following on from the last film and giving a little more insight into the events that unfolded at the beginning of the monster apocalypse, the Abbott Family must fight for their survival outside of the safe haven they had built from themselves. The film comes once again from John Krasinki and stars Emily Blunt, plus we finally get to see Cillian Murphy in a post-apocalypse film again, but this time he doesn’t seem as friendly as he did when escaping from zombies.
When you hear the news that they are remaking a new Candyman, your heart sinks, but when you hear it’s being produced by Jordan Peele and directed by Nia DaCosta, that’s when you get pumped. Also this Candyman isn’t a direct remake, it’s a sequel to the original 1992 film from Bernard Rose starring Tony Todd. The specific plot details are a little sparse at the moment, but it will star Yahya Abdul-Mateen II who we saw at the beginning of US as The Candyman and also it’s rumoured that Tony Todd will be returning in some aspect, so it looks like it’s going to be a dream remake.
ILL: Final Contagium
In 2017 a film called Trauma was released by chilean director Lucio A. Rojas and was helmed as the new A Serbian Film. Now he’s back alongside four other international directors to give us an anthology film that looks extremely fucked up. ILL: Final Contagium is about an experimental virus created by a psycho in Chile, which is spread by contaminated money. Three stories told in Italy, Kosovo and Germany show the effects of the virus and what happens to the infected. The other directors are all known for their extreme horror films and they include Kai E.Bogatzki (Scars of Xavier), Domiziano Cristopharo (Red Krokodil) and Lorenzo Zanoni.
Last Night in Soho
If you’re a fan of the cornetto trilogy and in particular Shaun of the Dead, then you’ll be excited to hear that Edgar Wright is returning to horror but with something a little less comedic. Last Night in Soho is a psychological horror film set in the Soho, London in the 60s starring Anya Taylor-Joy (The Witch) which has taken inspiration from Don’t Look Now and Repulsion. Wright mentioned that the film will use time travel in an interesting way, so we’ll have to wait and see to find out more about what we’re in for.
The synopsis of Antlers doesn’t sell the unsettling vibe that the trailer gives off, so I would advise you give that a watch before making your presumptions. This supernatural horror film is directed by Scott Cooper and produced by Guillermo Del Toro, and explores the lore of the Wendigo in horrifying detail making sure no bloody and gory detail is left out. From the trailer it looks like we’re in for something that will not only give us goosebumps but also make us squirm, which is often hard to do when it comes to the supernatural. The film stars Kerrie Russell and Jesse Plemons.
The Colour Out Of Space
Lovecraft and Nicholas Cage? I am in. For those who were lucky enough to see Colour Out Of Space screeners last year, there has been nothing but rave reviews about this vibrant looking sci-fi horror film. When a meteorite lands in the farm garden, a family are submerged by the omittance of an alien purple light which seems to make their crops grow, but has some disturbing effects on their behaviours. Directed by Richard Stanley, produced by the people behind Mandy and starring Nicholas Cage, it looks like this one is going to be something special.
Come To Daddy
This film has already been mentioned on my films from the decade in 2019, but technically it’s official release date is 2020 so it’s included again as I’m trying to ensure everyone gets a chance to watch it. Come To Daddy follows a young man who goes to visit his estranged father after receiving a letter from him after years of no contact. When he arrives to the desolate location, everything seems to be going well until it’s not. This one comes from Ant Timpson who gave us The Greasy Strangler and Turbo Kid, and stars Elijah Wood and Michael Smiley. No more details are needed but if you like horror, strange twists and dark comedy, this is for you.
This one comes from the masterful minds Veronika Franz and Severin Fiala, who brought us the very disturbing Goodnight Mommy back in 2014. Now they return with something that has been described as once again disturbing by those who were lucky enough to see this at London Film Festival 2019. Grace, played by Riley Keough who you might recognise from Under the Silver Lake, is left to look after her boyfriend’s two children in a remote cabin where they become snowed in. However, something more sinister lurks and haunts them than just family issues. It sounds like this film is going to be chilling in more than just the blizzard sense.
I’m Thinking of Ending Things
For those who are fans of Iain Reid’s novel of the same name, you’ll be pleased to learn that I’m Thinking Of Ending Things is being adapted into a film, and has an amazing cast attached to it. Charlie Kaufman is directing this film, and it stars Jesse Plemons, Jessie Buckley and 2019’s horror woman of the year, Toni Collette. The story follows a boyfriend whom takes his girlfriend to meet his parents on their remote and desolate farm, and the aftermath that comes from that. It’s described as a psychological drama with lashings of terror, which sounds exactly like the type of film that will give nightmares for nights afterwards.
This one is described as a romantic thriller, but give it a chance as it’s more of a gothic horror and has been covered by many sessions in which I’ve seen horror academics talk. It’s an adaptation of Daphne du Maurier’s novel, which was also adapted by horror legend Alfred Hitchcock in 1940, therefore we’re going to let it sit on this list. This time we have Ben Wheatley (Kill List) directing, which means we’re surely in for a couple of strange scares. Lily James plays newly married wife to her husband, Armie Hammer, and is haunted by his dead wife Rebecca, and must find a way to overcome living in her shadow.
If you haven’t already heard of Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead then I would say you are seriously missing out. These two first came to my attention in 2012 with their indie film Resolution, and then got their names out into the open with their follow up The Endless in 2019. Now they are completing this horror sci-fi trilogy with Synchronic, which is set to continue the theorem around another dimension that has horrific effects on our universe and everything in it. If you haven’t seen the two previous films, I would highly urge you to watch those in preparation.
Antrum: The Deadliest Film Ever Made
The release date on this one is a bit sketchy, but to most of us in the UK it looks like we won’t be able to see it properly until 2020, so it gets included on the list. Antrum: The Deadliest Film Ever Made is supposedly a cursed found footage film from back in the 70s that was lost after it caused deaths, and wouldn’t be touched by any film festivals. It was originally in Arabic and the guy translating it died in the process of doing so; could be a coincidence or it could really be the film. There’s a lot of mysticism around what really happened with this film, but either way it sure is one Hell of a marketing ploy that makes me want to watch. Antrum is about a boy and a girl who start digging a hole to Hell in the woods in order to bring their euthanised dog back to life. From the trailer, this one looks like it’s filled by occult symbolism and an ongoing tension throughout.
The Untold Story
This isn’t actually a new film, but will be rereleased in 2020 and so it definitely counts, right? Unearthed Films are the distribution company behind some of the most extreme and controversial films out there – ensuring sickos like myself have access to disturbing content. Stephen Biro who owns the company even remade the Japanese Guinea Pig series into American Guinea Pig, giving us gorewhores another taste of the disgusting. Now they are rereleasing The Untold Story which is an extreme CAT III film by Herman Yau which was released in 1993. It tells the tale (based off of truth) of a horrific murder which leads to the victims being served as pork buns… This one is not for the faint hearted.
The Profane Exhibit
Another one from Unearthed Films, because I’m a fan girl and love to ensure we get our perverse fill. The Profane Exhibit has been somewhat of an enigma to extreme horror film fans for some time – it was supposed to be released in 2013 but disappeared from the world, until now. Finally Unearthed Films are getting this film out there! It is an international anthology film featuring some of the most horrific shorts ever witnessed. All the directors involved are known for their extreme movies including Marian Dora (Melancholie Der Engel), Uwe Boll (Stoic), Ruggero Deodato (Cannibal Holocaust), Yoshihiro Nishimura (Tokyo Gore Police), Nacho Vigalondo (Timecrimes), Ryan Nicholson who sadly passed away October 2019 (Gutterballs), Andrey Iskanov (Philosophy of a Knife), Richard Stanley (Colour Out of Space), Sergio Stivaletti (The Wax Mask), Michael T.Schneider (August Underground’s Mordum), Anthony DiBlasi (Last Shift) and Jose Mojica Marins (Embodiment of Evil).
Another film from the horror noire genre, which looks to explore the relationship between authors and their worlds of fiction. The film stars Janelle Monáe as a successful writer who finds herself trapped within a nightmarish world that she cannot seem to escape to get back to the reality of life. This one is directed by Gerard Bush and Christopher Renz and produced by Sean McKittrick, who was the producer behind Get Out. The trailers are very ambiguous (exactly what I like to see in a trailer) which leaves us with only the notion that this film has a very unsettling tone to it, and one we’ll have to discover more about once it’s released.
Do you remember two films with the first being released in 2009, The Collector, and the second being released in 2012, The Collection? Well, we are finally get the long-awaited third film The Collected this year. The first film followed a burglar, Arkin, who entered a home only to find that the family he was robbing were being tortured by a masked man who had lined the house with traps he had to manoeuvre. The second film followed a young girl as she found herself abducted by the masked man, only for Arkin from the first film to be hired to help free her from his clutches. Both of the films, in particular the second, has some seriously disturbing gore and kill scenes in with the second film being the more favourable for this. Details are scarce about The Collected, but we do know it’s going to be directed by Marcus Dunstan who did the first two films and star Josh Stewart as Arkin once again. This one I’m really looking forward to!