The year of 2016 has seen plenty of ups and downs when it comes to movie releases. While lots of great flicks have hit the big-screen this year, there have also been a fair share of disappointments — and the horror genre is no exception. Though films like The Witch and Don’t Breathe earned critical acclaim in their theatrical debut, others horror movies were not quite as well received. Below, check out the 10 worst horror movies we saw in 2016.
1. Cabin Fever
Starring Samuel Davis, Gage Golightly, Matthew Daddario, and Nadine Crocker, the contemporary remake of Eli Roth’s 2002 film of the same name follows a group of college students who go on a weekend getaway to a remote cabin and are exposed to a flesh eating virus. Hollywood is already plagued with sequels and reboots, but this movie takes it to a new low, using the same script as Roth’s original, only trimming it down from 134 pages to 92.
Unsurprisingly, the movie has been internationally panned, earning a literal 0% approval rating on Rotten Tomatoes. As Variety put it, “It’s little surprise that Roth himself is the exec producer of this nearly beat-for-beat redo. Who else would feel as much passion for the middling material?”
2. The Darkness
Kevin Bacon, Radha Mitchell, Lucy Fry, Matt Walsh, and Jennifer Morrison star in this horror flick, which follows a family who brings home a threatening and dangerous supernatural force from vacation at the Grand Canyon. Despite featuring some well-known names, the movie has earned an overwhelmingly negative critical response. Reviewers have panned the film for offering few scares and relying all too heavily on past titles in the genre. It currently holds a 4% score on Rotten Tomatoes.
3. The Forest
The supernatural horror film directed by Jason Zada, is set in and around the Aokigahara Forest at the northwest base of Japan’s Mount Fuji, an area that’s known as a setting for suicide. The movie stars Natalie Dormer as a woman who heads into the creepy forest to find her twin sister and ends up confronting supernatural forces.
The film, which co-stars Taylor Kinney, earned overwhelmingly negative reviews in its January debut and currently holds a pitiful 10% on Rotten Tomatoes. Though the talented Dormer gave it her best shot, it wasn’t enough to save the film, which critics called “tedious,” “tiresome,” and chockfull of bad clichés.
After years in development, this remake of Pascal Laugier’s 2008 film of the same name proved to be a disastrous entry to the genre. Case in point? The film, which stars Troian Bellisario as a woman who tracks down the family that held her captive and tortured her as a child, currently holds a dismal 7% on Rotten Tomatoes. Heavy on gore but all too light on plot, the movie was dubbed “repellent” and “repulsively misogynistic.”
Critics widely agreed that this mystery horror thriller was a major step back for its typically charismatic leads, Emma Watson and Ethan Hawke. The movie centers on a detective (Hawke) who uncovers evidence of a satanic cult while investigating the rape of a traumatized teen (Watson). Standing at a low 15% on Rotten Tomatoes, the film has been widely criticized by both reviewers and audiences for its utter lack of either scares or suspense. As the Los Angeles Times succinctly described, it’s “a not-exactly-horror horror movie that’s also a mystery with no mystery.”
6. The Boy
Directed by William Brent Bell, this horror flick stars Lauren Cohan as a young American woman who takes a job as a nanny in a remote English village, only to discover that the 8-year-old she’s supposed to care for is a life-sized doll that the parents treat like a real boy. But when she violates the strict rules for his care, she starts to believe that the doll really is alive.
Despite the cast’s best efforts, the film wasn’t exactly well-received. Standing at 27% on Rotten Tomatoes, the movie has been criticized for its silly premise, which was only further weighed down by derivative twists and underwhelming scares.
7. The Offering
Written and directed by Kelvin Tong, The Offering stars Elizabeth Rice as a journalist who travels to Singapore to investigate the mysterious suicide of her sister — only to find out that the death is the beginning of a sinister demonic plan. The movie earned overwhelmingly scathing reviews, with critics calling the plot “muddled,” “laughably baffling,” and jammed with “shock cuts and grating music cues.” Between the murky storyline, the cliché genre elements, and the lackluster acting, there wasn’t much to love about this horror film.
8. The Disappointments Room
Written by Wentworth Miller (yes, that Wentworth Miller), this film stars Kate Beckinsale and Mel Raido as a couple who moves to a new house that contains a hidden room with a dark, haunted past. Despite Beckinsale’s best efforts, the movie was widely panned for lacking any real scares or tension. As Variety put it, “Despite Kate Beckinsale’s game efforts, D.J. Caruso’s thriller proves altogether worthy of its title.”
9. Blair Witch
A disappointing follow-up to The Blair Witch Project, this horror flick ended up striking out both critically and commercially. The film follows a group of college students who venture into Maryland’s Black Hills Forest to investigate the disappearance of one student’s sister. The movie failed to live up to the original, with critics calling it a less memorable rehash that offers few new twists. The movie currently holds a 35% score on Rotten Tomatoes.
10. The Other Side of the Door
This supernatural horror flick, directed by Johannes Roberts, follows a grieving mother who upsets the balance between life and death when she conducts an ancient ritual to bring back her recently deceased son. Though star Sarah Wayne Callies delivered a solid enough performance, the film earned mostly negative reviews for its flimsy scares and reliance on horror tropes. Scoring just 35% on Rotten Tomatoes, The Other Side of the Door proved itself to be another middling entry into the genre this year.
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