The Internet has become infatuated with the legendary film director’s opinions Martin Scorsese. For several reasons, musings Good guys The director has impressed and angered a whole host of movie fanatics and online commentators. Whether it’s his views on the Marvel Cinematic Universe or why he continues to fund and produce the next generation of young filmmakers, it seems like a lot of people are eagerly waiting to hear what this guy thinks. However, the one area of ​​criticism you might not consider looking at in Scorsese’s opinion is the genre to which he has no direct ties: horror.

Although Scorsese has never directed a horror movie, he is a total movie buff, respectful of all genres to an extent. And since Scorsese has been in the film industry since the late 1960s, there is a long written and oral history of his opinions on some of the best (and most terrifying) in the horror genre. With such a flamboyant figure in the movie world, his word might as well work like gospel: so when he says something well, one should listen. So, in keeping with that motto, here’s a list of 10 movies that were so good, they scared Martin Scorsese.

10 mental patient

Paramount Pictures

While its reputation may precede it, even the die-hard horror fan can tell its importance mental patient In scary movie canon. The Alfred Hitchcock classic has continually terrified and baffled audiences since its release in 1960, even if the film’s constant parody and filming has somewhat diminished its staying power. For people of a certain generation, mental patient It was scarier than anything else they’d seen up to that point: breaking convention and shaping the archetype of the slasher genre in the process.

mental patient It relates in part to the exploits of the suave inn operator, Norman Bates (Anthony Perkins), and the people who cross paths with him and his establishment. What makes it so frightening is what happens within the confines of the hotel – the horrors of which were as if the public had not seen it until that point. When asked what he thought of Hitchcock’s brilliant work, Scorsese said, “…you really, really, really made a path [in Psycho]. But the cool thing about it is that your expectations are taken in and turned upside down.”

Related: Martin Scorsese: The Sacred and the Profane

9 The Exorcist

Captain Exorcist Hoody
Warner Bros.

Often cited as one of the scariest movies ever made, William Friedkin’s 1973 masterpiece The Exorcist It scared a lot of people more than just Scorsese when it came out. It’s hard to describe how massive a release it was The Exorcist It was: making the present-day equivalent of over $1 billion and launching a film and television franchise that has continued into the 21st century. Based on William Peter Blatty’s novel of the same name, the film’s legacy is colored with all its controversies, poignant aspects, and of course, its ability to scare the hell out of almost everyone who watched it.

The Exorcist The film is about a young girl who suddenly becomes possessed by an evil spirit, prompting her mother to seek help from two priests who promise that they can remove the demonic presence from the girl. What ensues is a bevy of insolence, violence, and plenty of vomit and blood as the priests take it upon themselves to exorcise the demon from the girl, wreaking havoc and pain in the process. Scorsese is referred to as saying (referring to The Exorcist) that the film is “just as terrifying as it was in the day it came out”.

8 innocent

Twentieth Century Fox

innocent is a movie that many might not expect to be on a list like this, but it has been marked as a favorite by quite a few directors, such as Guillermo Del Toro, and of course, Scorsese. It is directed by Jack Clayton (who also directed the movie The great Gatsby), innocent It is an adaptation of Henry James’ novel screw turn. It follows the exploits of a nanny (Deborah Kerr) as she watches over two children on a massive estate who becomes increasingly convinced that a sinister presence is haunting her.

When asked what he really likes innocentIn Exclaim!, Scorsese said the adaptation is “beautifully crafted and acted, immaculately shot by Freddie Francis, and absolutely terrifying.” Scorsese isn’t the only one who thinks this is true either, says del Toro innocent It remains one of his favorite horror films and was also a major influence on the 2015 gothic horror film crimson crest;.

7 devil’s night

Devil's Night 0

This 1957 Jacques Tourneur film may sound bizarre by today’s standards, but it managed to scare the living daylights out of an entire group of young adults when it came out, including a young Scorsese. devil’s night Adapted from a short story called MR James Casting runes, but serves as a sort of creature feature (which was among the most popular genres of B-movies of the period). As such, the film was originally billed as a double feature on the back of other B-movie fare such as The true story of Lynn Stewart or Frankenstein’s revenge.

The film concerns the adventures of an American psychologist who travels to England to investigate a satanic cult suspected of killing quite a few innocent victims. what makes devil’s night Standing out so far are the really eye-catching performances and the killer puppet designed to portray the titular Devil. Scorsese said the same thing when asked about the film, noting that “Tourneur made this film towards the end of his career, but it’s just as powerful.” [as his older films]. Forget the devil… What you don’t see is powerful.”

6 the shining

the shining
Pictures Warner Bros
EMI Films
Columbia Pictures

What can be said of Stanley Kubrick’s masterful adaptation of Stephen King’s Never Told Novel? the shining It follows Jack Torrance (Jack Nicholson in a career-defining performance) as he takes over as winter supervisor of a remote ski lodge, the Overlook Hotel, and brings his wife Wendy (Shelley Duvall) and young son Danny (Danny Lloyd). As we all know, things don’t quite go as planned, as Jack begins to lose his grip on reality and takes his frustrations out on his wife and son.

We all know why the shining It’s been ranked as one of the most important and iconic horror films of all time, but Scorsese has a few things to say about it, too. He says he’s never read the original novel and has no idea how faithful the film adaptation will be, but “Kubrick has made a majestic horror movie.” Similar to his views on some of the other films here, he notes that “what you don’t see or understand is what the characters’ every move does.”

5 Pearl

Crocodile eggs crushed pearls
A 24

The internet caught fire with Scorsese’s opinions when he described Marvel movies as the cinematic equivalent of “parka rides,” but few would have expected his opinion of a mid-budget horror movie to have the same effect as stirring up discourse. After the director saw the movie T-West Pearl (A prequel to his other 2022 horror film X), Scorsese remarked that it was “deeply disturbing, dizzying, and brutal.” He even went so far as to say that Pearl It made him unable to sleep comfortably the night after his vision, which is high praise from a man who has probably seen everything under the sun.

Pearl It is, as previously mentioned, the prequel story to the T-West movie X. Trace the origins of Villain X – the fame-obsessed and repressed title character – Pearl serves as a peek into the events and circumstances that made her a soon-to-be serial killer. From facing her controlling mother’s wrath and scorn to pursuing a career in entertainment that never quite seems to take off, Pearl is rejected at every turn–that is, until she takes matters into her own hands.

Related: Martin Scorsese is back for another classic

4 and replace

A man in front of a burning staircase in The Changeling
Cineplex Odeon Movies

Supernatural horror film by Peter Medak from 1980 and replace He is often considered one of the greats of his era, especially by horror fanatics. Again, Scorsese and del Toro have been quoted as saying that Medak is one of the scariest things they’ve ever seen. Scorsese says so and replace is “not just another haunted house movie, but one full of sadness and dread.” Del Toro echoed the same sentiment, telling Medac in 2018 “You are my teacher! Your movie, and replace, Masterpiece! “

and replace It follows a music composer (George C. Scott) who, after a tragic car accident that kills his wife and son, is drawn into a mystery surrounding the circumstances of the death of a young boy in the secluded mansion where he stayed. It’s a movie that not only preys on that natural fear of the creepy corners of a big house, but also the fear of losing those close to you and being left to pick up the shattering pieces of life.

3 dead night

The best movies turned into arranged dreams
Ealing Studios

An original film in many ways than the 1945 film dead night It is a legendary film in its genre for many reasons. Banned in her home country of Britain due to stopping the production of horror films during World War II, dead night It is considered one of the first controversial horror films. It is also one of the oldest anthology films, as it follows many different stories with an overarching storyline that gives the film a kind of backbone. Not only this, the movie has shades of comedy that make it one of the earliest examples of horror comedy as well.

Scorsese once commented on that dead night It was “a British classic: four tales told by four strangers who meet mysteriously in a country house, each deeply unsettling, culminating in a montage in which elements from all the stories converge to a crescendo of madness.” Fellow director Edgar Wright is also a huge fan of dead night, including his list of the 1,000 Favorite Movies of All Time. Suffice it to say, the earlier, somewhat forgotten film has its share of fans.

2 The haunting

The Haunting (1963)

A classic horror film that has been remade many times (though never to the same effect as the original), 1963 The haunting It is one of Scorsese’s favorite scary movies. First feature film adaptation of Shirley Jackson’s novel Haunting Hill HouseRobert Wise’s adaptation is one of the most well-remembered and most terrifying. Following a paranormal investigator as he assembles a team of people to investigate the mysterious Hill House Manor, The haunting It is one of the typical haunted house movies and stands the test of time without much scrutiny.

Scorsese is quoted as saying that The haunting is “extremely terrifying”. This speaks not only to the quality of the films, but also to their longevity, as another adaptation of Jackson’s book was released on Netflix in 2018 (a limited series by Mike Flanagan Haunting Hill House). As Scorsese likes to say, the true horror of the movie and book comes in what you don’t see, as its deeply psychological premise is the script and movie’s greatest strength.

1 Dead Island

Boris Karloff on Dead Island
RKO Radio Pictures

Featuring a great performance from horror screen legend and Frankenstein himself Boris Karloff, 1945 Dead Island is another of Scorsese’s favorite scary movies. Karloff plays a general who is stationed on a small, remote island in the early 20th century, where the entire island has become trapped by a recent disease outbreak, causing the entire island to lock up in place. And as all this happens, an even deadlier force preys on the islanders: a fearsome vampire of sorts who leaves a trail of destruction in his wake.

Scorsese once commented on that Dead Island It was a movie that “never fails to scare me.” Check-in is only 72 minutes long, Dead Island It’s an absolutely killer movie with no fillers whatsoever. If it’s good enough for Scorsese, it should be good enough for all of us.


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