- Horror franchises like “Saw” and “Final Destination” dominated the early 2000s.
- Many excellent smaller horror movies were completely forgotten.
- The decade also contains forgotten entries in the “Halloween” and “Exorcist” franchises.
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No one will argue that horror was at an all-time high in the 2000s, but between the popularity of franchises like “Saw” and critical darlings like “28 Days Later,” the early 2000’s still had a fair share of memorable horror movies.
Many horror movies from the decade, great and terrible, have been lost to time. These movies are forgotten sequels to long-running franchises or attempts to cash in on the vampire craze. Whatever the reason, these 15 horror movies from the early 2000s have already been forgotten by most people.
“Halloween: Resurrection” (2002)
2002’s entry in the, at the time, exhausted “Halloween” franchise is the most reviled, at a measly 11% on Rotten Tomatoes. The silly premise has a group of teens competing on a reality show set in the childhood home of killer Michael Myers. Surprise, unknown to anyone, Michael is back and ready to slash.
Dated in many ways, “Resurrection” is completely ridiculous, but is worth seeing for some inspired performances from Tyra Banks and Busta Rhymes as the skeezy show executives.
“The Others” (2001)
- Warner Bros.
The only reason people think about the fantastic gothic horror movie “The Others” is when reflecting on Nicole Kidman’s career. This ghost story is one of her finest performances. “The Others” is a haunting, award-nominated film that is well worth revisiting almost 20 years later.
“Exorcist: The Beginning” (2004)
- Warner Bros.
At 10% on Rotten Tomatoes, “Exorcist: The Beginning” is a prime example of bad horror movie franchise sequels. An attempt at a prequel to the iconic original, “The Beginning” is set in a post-WWII Kenya, where Stellan Skarsgard plays a man haunted by his war experience.
Like many bad prequels, the movie sets out to explain where the original evil came from, but it turns out “The Exorcist” didn’t need that sort of explanation.
“The Mist” (2007)
- Dimension Films
This Frank Darabont adaptation of “The Mist” is one of the best, and most easily forgotten, Stephen King movies. It’s no surprise that Darabont handles King’s source material so well. As the director of “The Shawshank Redemption” and “The Green Mile” before this, he had a track record of translating King’s work to the screen.
“The Mist” is about a Maine town struggling to keep a hold of their way of life after a large storm passes and a mist envelops the town. Part psychological thriller, part monster movie, “The Mist” is a must-see for Stephen King fans.
“Book of Shadows: Blair Witch 2” (2000)
- Artisan Entertainment
There hasn’t been anything quite like “The Blair Witch Project.” The pre-internet marketing scheme and mainstream introduction of found footage style made the original an instant classic. The following year, a sequel was released. Most of us forgot about it.
“Book of Shadows” takes a meta approach and focuses on five fans of “The Blair Witch Project” and visit the town where the film is set, looking for clues and answers. It’s an interesting premise, but the movie didn’t end up delivering. It did, however, make quite a bit at the box office.
“Cabin Fever” (2002)
Eli Roth became known for helming “torture porn” horror movies with the “Hostel” franchise, but his directorial debut is often forgotten.
“Cabin Fever” takes the “teenagers go to a cabin in the woods” formula and takes it to a claustrophobic extreme. A flesh-eating virus begins to infect the group one by one. It’s a gross, intense horror-comedy that was made on a tiny budget.
“The Ruins” (2008)
This 2008 Australian horror movie is long forgotten. Don’t be fooled, this supernatural thriller is no indie movie, “The Ruins” was distributed by Paramount.
An adaptation of a Scott Smith novel, “The Ruins” follows a group of college kids as these explore ancient Mayan ruins. What they find is, well, spookier than they expected. The middling reception may be why this was forgotten so quickly. However, some folks still love it.
“Jason X” (2002)
- New Line Cinema
Unless you live for ironically loving the weirdest and worst entries in franchises, “Jason X” is probably a distant memory in 2019. The 10th “Friday the 13th” movie decided it was time to go to space. Nobody thought this was a good idea – and the movie’s 19% Rotten Tomatoes score can attest to that.
James Isaac, a special effects producer who worked on “Return of the Jedi” and “Gremlins,” took directorial reigns on this. There is no reason to describe the ridiculous plot. It’s Jason in space.
“The House of the Devil” (2009)
- MPI Media Group
Ti West is known for his horror movies and “The House of the Devil” is the best one. This home invasion slasher is creepy and satanic. Jocelin Donahue was praised for her lead performance. The movie also features Tom Noonan and Greta Gerwig.
The movie barely made its tiny budget back, which explains why no one talks about it.
“Wolf Creek” (2005)
- Dimension Films
In this Australian horror-thriller, three friends go for an innocent backpacking trip at Wolf Creek International Park. They are eventually kidnapped and hunted in this unrelenting horror movie.
“Rise: Blood Hunter” (2007)
- Samuel Goldwyn Films
Lucy Liu and Michael Chiklis starred in this vampire action-horror movie from 2007. “Rise: Blood Hunter” was directed by Sebastian Gutierrez, co-writer of “Snakes on a Plane.” Lucy Liu, a recently turned Vampire, and Chiklis, a detective with a haunted past, track down a group of evil vampires in this mishmash of genres.
“Rise: Blood Hunter” is probably best known for this Marilyn Manson cameo.
“House of 1000 Corpses” (2003)
Another directorial debut overshadowed by a director’s future work, “House of 1000 Corpses” was Rob Zombie’s first film. The musician turned to filmmaking with this movie in 2000, but it wasn’t released for three years due to multiple distribution issues. The original cut was not released by Universal for fear of getting an NC-17 rating. Working with Lions Gate, Zombie cut an R-rated version of the movie that was released in theaters in 2003.
- Warner Bros.
Halle Berry and Robert Downey Jr. star in this largely forgotten psychological horror movie. The movie was directed by Mathieu Kassovitz and written by Sebastian Gutierrez
“The Midnight Meat Train” (2008)
Who could forget a movie with such an outrageous title as “The Midnight Meat Train?”
Everyone, as it turns out.
Based on a Clive Barker short story, the movie stars Bradley Cooper as Leon, a photographer who is trying to track down a serial killer butcher. It’s a pre-super star Bradley Cooper, so worth seeing for that alone, but ends up being a movie that holds up in most ways.
The movie also stars Brooke Shields.
“Queen of the Damned” (2002)
- Warner Bros.
“Queen of the Damned” stars Aaliyah as a vampire queen awoken by the power of music. That’s all that needs to be said.
Seriously, though, this vampire film based on “The Vampire Chronicles” by Anne Rice was released after Aaliyah’s death to poor reviews. Still, it’s one of the weirdest movies of the era.
Anne Rice was not pleased by the result.