Horror Films in 2015

5:00 PM

In spirit of the release of Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension and the fact that Halloween is just around the corner, this post will give you a run down of horror in 2015 so far. Horror movies so far this year have had little impact on critics, the box office and no new 'classics' have been made. How does 2015 compare to previous years? What are the best and worst horror movies of the year so far? Which horror movie is winning the box office race? What horror films are remaining for the year? Find out here!
Box Office
Here are the 5 Highest Grossing Horror Movies of the Year So Far:
1. Insidious: Chapter 3 - $109.5 million
2. Poltergeist - $95.6 million
3. The Visit - $89.3 million
4. Unfriended - $62.9 million
5. The Gift - $53.2 million

May 2016 Update
1. Insidious: Chapter 3 - $112 million
2. The Visit - $98 million
3. Poltergeist - $$95 million
4. Paranormal Activity: The Ghost Dimension - $78 million
5. Crimson Peak - $74 million

As you can see, only 1 horror film has so far managed to crack $100 million internationally - now, this isn't a huge deal for horror films especially as they are usually made on micro-budgets so are almost guaranteed to make a large profit margin. Insidious 3 is likely to keep its crown for the highest crossing horror movie this year - I don't see any others surpassing it. Even though Insidious has done well in terms of 2015 horror, its total is actually over $50 million less than Insidious 2s total - this suggests that if we were to get a 4th instalment in the franchise, we might not even hit $100 million! Poltergeist had the highest budget out of all of the films in the top 5 - $35 million. The film needed to make at least $70 million to break even and it did! - however, add on marketing costs and there probably isn't much profit left in this property. The Visit was a pleasant box office surprise - don't be shocked if we see Blum team up with this director once again. Unfriended also did solid business - this film was marketed as the next Paranormal Activity -it was going to 'revolutionise' the horror genre - sadly, I don't think $63 million worldwide revolutionises the horror genre. The Gift closes the top 5 and will probably be pushed out by Crimson Peak in the coming weeks - however, The Gift is probably the least scary movie out of the 5 and still did solid business. 

Speaking of Crimson Peak - who with the right mind can think that a horror movie needs a $55 million budget - that means it needs $110 million to breakeven! Crimson Peak is currently at $48.85 million worldwide - that $110 million target seems almost unreachable. Other box office horrors of 2015 (see what I did there) were Sinister 2 and The Gallows - both films did pretty terribly. The Green Inferno was never meant to be huge so that explains its total gross of $7 million. 

So what is left for horror in 2015? Well the only scheduled releases are #Horror which has had little traction and Krampus which doesn't hit cinemas till December. Krampus is predicted to do solid business but will really determine whether horror films should be released during the happiest season of the year. I see the top 5 shifting around a little, The Visit could move up to second and Crimson Peak will also move into the top 5. 

Previous Years
By previous years, I mean the past 3 years or so - so 2015 definitely hasn't brought a horror film that people are going to be talking about for years. However, we did have It Follows which was critically acclaimed so maybe that wins the horror battle for the year? Last year, the winner was Annabelle which grossed over $255 million worldwide! In 2013, we had The Conjuring which made over $315 million worldwide and in 2012 we had the 4th instalment in the Paranormal Activity franchise which made over $140 million worldwide. Maybe the horror genre has become over saturated with companies like Blumhouse dishing them out constantly? 

Lets face it, there is rarely a horror movie these days that is critically acclaimed - it is very unusual for a horror movie to go 'fresh' on Rotten Tomatoes so anything in the 50%s is a good achievement. 2015 has actually had a few horror films which have been acclaimed - It Follows holds a 96% approval rating, The Gift holds 93%, The Visit holds 63%, Unfriended holds 61% and Insidious 3 holds 60%. However, these are the select few as most horror films land in the 0-20% range - Sinister 2 holds 13%, Paranormal Activity 6 holds 13%, The Gallows holds 16%, The Lazarus Effect holds 14% and The Boy Next Door holds 10%. Maybe audiences are tired of seeing the same predictable storylines? Out of the 5 highest grossing horror movies of the year, 4 out of the 5 are rated Fresh - Poltergeist is the only rotten film. This suggests that audiences are tired of just watching any horror film for the sake of it, they now want to see something that is actually good and worth their time.

In my opinion, the best horror movies of the year are The Visit and Insidious 3 - I liked both films very much and you can read my reviews by clicking on the films titles. On the opposite end of the spectrum, my least horror films of the year are Sinister 2 and controversially It Follows. You can read those reviews by clicking on the titles. 

So horror in 2015 has been pretty dead. There have been a couple of gems but the majority are just piles of trash - whether that are badly acted like The Boy Next Door or technologically advanced but lacking in scares like Unfriended...the horror films just don't seem to be gluing to audiences. If you want to watch a scary film this Halloween, buy Insidious 3 - that is worth your time or you could even consider going to watch Crimson Peak in the cinema (I would suggest The Visit but I think its come towards the end of its run). Or you could watch Jem and the Holograms as I've heard from other critics that that film is truly horrifying ;) Maybe 2016 will resurrect the genre? I hope we're in for a treat with The Conjuring 2!

Enjoy the spooky season! Happy Halloween!

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