Europe was not only the birthplace of important film movements like German Expressionism in the 1920s as well as the French New Wave that emerged in the late 1950s. Dubbed “The Other Hollywood”, cinema European gave films a new mindset from the public, where films often possessing experiences in addition to a focus on psychological and metaphysical events are treated with similar adoration by the public compared to mainstream films.
Lavished with themes ranging from death and existentialism to bizarre coming-of-age stories, European arthouse horror films are no exception to audiences that are both puzzling and intriguers from all over the world.
‘Deep Red’ (1975)
No list of visually terrifying arthouse horror films is complete without mentioning the Italian director’s mastery Dario Argento. Although audiences may be more familiar with the director’s 1977 film horror masterpiece Suspiriahis giallo horror predecessor Dark red (1975) deserves so much attention and adulation from today’s viewers.
Dark red sees David Hemmings as an English jazz musician who witnesses the murder of a famous psychic. With the help of a zealous journalist embodied by Daria Nicolodiboth begin to investigate a series of gruesome murders perpetrated by an unnamed figure wearing black leather gloves.
“The Skin I Live In” (2011)
Heavily inspired by the French horror classic faceless eyes (1960), this 2011 Spanish psychological thriller reunites the director Pedro Almodóvar and actor Antonio Banderas still since Tie me Up! Tie me up! (1989), and it is undoubtedly a truly seductive yet frightening experience.
Motivated by a family drama, plastic surgeon Robert Ledgard (Banderas) has developed an artificial skin named “GAL” that resists all types of damage, even burns and insect bites. Unbeknownst to the public, he tested his creation on a beautiful woman with a mysterious past called Vera (Elena Anaya), who is being held against her will in her secluded estate.
Literally translated as “The Devil”, Polish director Andrzej Żuławskiit is Devil (1972) is a horror drama that, despite a heavy dose of Polish history, still manages to introduce viewers to an unknown world of hysteria accompanied by a heavy psychedelic rock soundtrack.
The film follows a young Polish noble Jakub (Leszek Teleszynski) who is unexpectedly released from prison by a stranger. Along with a nun dressed in white, Jakub gradually descends into madness and becomes a murderer due to the nightmarish chaos in his hometown, where incestuous exploitation and futile corruption reign supreme.
‘Good Night Mom’ (2014)
Austrian psychological horror film Good night mom (2014) has one of cinema’s weirdest twins since the Girls of the 80s horror staple the brilliant (1980). The film is partially influenced by the American horror of 1972 The other and has since undergone a US remake released on Amazon Prime in 2022.
When their mother returns home from her cosmetic surgery, the nine-year-old twin brothers are surprised by their mother’s very different appearance where her head is wrapped in bandages as well as her eccentric and sometimes hostile demeanor. They begin to wonder if the cruel woman in their house is really who she claims to be.
“Funny Games” (1997)
Austrian director and screenwriter Michael Haneke is no stranger to delivering morally ambiguous and socially alienated characters in his work. Bringing out a third of the audience at the 1997 Cannes Film Festival, Haneke’s funny games (1997) is anything but funny.
The psychological thriller explores the violent and humiliating shenanigans that two psychotic young men force a family into for their amusement. With no obvious explanation of the men’s identities or intentions, the distressed family can only reluctantly participate while seeking any possibility of escape or help from the outside world.
“Let the Good In” (2008)
What if you find out your best and only friend is a 200-year-old vampire? The Swedish horror drama explores this albeit with small leaps, replaced by an abundance of romance and lyrical poetry aided by the captivating landscapes of Blackeberg, Stockholm.
Set in 1982, lone outsider Oskar (Kare Hedebrant) is constantly bullied by his classmates for his introversion and peculiarity. After befriending his new neighbor Eli (Lina Leandersson) who only appears at night in the playground, Oskar learns to deal with bullies and even becomes romantically attracted to Eli. Their relationship is tested when Oskar discovers that Eli kills and feeds on human blood to stay alive.
‘Kill, baby… kill!’ (1966)
Known by fans as the “Master of the Macabre”, Italian director Mario BavaThe movies typically feature recurring themes and visuals that cause audiences to question the distinction between reality and fantasy, leading to an abundance of cult horror classics that have inspired many art and horror films. test today.
from Bava Kill, baby… kill! (1966) centers on an early 1900s European village terrorized by the ghost of a young girl who curses those she visits. When Dr. Paul Eswai (Giacomo Rossie Stuart) and medical student Monica Schuftan (Erika White) investigate the mysterious deaths of the village, they soon find themselves entangled in the nightmarish hallucinations of the little girl with the vendetta,
Gaspar Noeit is Irreversible (2002) is such a brutal and cruel film that you will only want to see it once for the sake of your lie composition. Told in reverse chronological order, the psychological horror film is an unmissable tour de force of the French New Extremity film movement at the turn of the 21st century.
When the charming and free-spirited Alex (Monica Bellucci) is ruthlessly assaulted and sexually assaulted in a secluded pedestrian underpass by an evil psychopath known simply by his nickname Le Tapeworm, two men Marcus (Vincent Cassel) and Peter (Albert Dupontel) tirelessly seeks revenge on his attacker. The film’s desperation and nihilism are further heightened when audiences are forced to visit the trio’s happy past before the tragedy.
“The Devil’s Backbone” (2002)
Gothic Horror Fans Unquestionably Know The Director Guillermo del Toro‘s impressive filmography, including lesser-known gems like the 2002 fantasy-horror drama The Devil’s Backbone (2002) where the walking dead and other supernatural circumstances provide a chilling and gory cinematic experience.
In the final days of the Spanish Civil War in 1939, a young orphan Carlos (Fernando Tielve) settles in the Santa Lucia orphanage where he not only strikes up friendships and witnesses the horrors of war, but is bombarded with haunting visions of an otherworldly entity who embodies the dark secrets of war. school in which he currently resides.
Combining chimerical beings from Greek mythology like satyrs and fauns that exhibit half-human, half-animal characteristics, Valdimar JohannssonThe Icelandic folk horror film, unlike the 1991 horror thriller Thesilenceofthelambs, places the usually tamed species as its focal point where the ruckus ensues.
After discovering that one of their pregnant ewes had given birth to a half-lamb, half-human newborn on their farm in Iceland, a couple Maria (Noomi Rapace) and Ingvar (Hilmir Snaer Gudnason) decide to adopt the mystifying hybrid as their own child. Living a seemingly happy life, the couple slowly realize that their happiness is only temporary when nature and humanity are resolved to send the mixed-race child back to the desert.
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