The summer blockbuster season has arrived and the big special effects laden expensive films like Independence Day 2 are going to rule the box office and the media. However, let us not forget the film that created the “summer blockbuster” was a horror film (Jaws). With that knowledge, let’s look at some of the upcoming/recently released horror for the summer.
The Conjuring 2
An interesting article has The Conjuring 2 posted as one of the odds on favorites to take the top box office of the year for horror films. With a strong opening weekend of 40 million, those odds are looking pretty good at being correct. The second Conjuring has received better reviews than the original and looks to be much more action oriented. The Enfield Poltergeist case is much more interesting story (the movie, like its predecessor is based on an actual case by the Warrens) than the Snedeker Haunting. With the same cast on board, New Line is looking to create the foundation of a franchise they can squeak a few more movies out of. The Warrens do have over 50 years of cases to be made into movies – included the infamous Amityville Horror case.
Whether or not you agree that this is a horror movie, the franchise has been adopted by the horror community, so it must be mentioned. If you haven’t heard about the troubles the all female version of The Ghostbusters has been having, you have been in a coma for the last six months. The first trailer for the film became the most disliked trailer in the history of youtube. Some reviewers are even refusing to watch due to lack of interest. Remake/reboot loving Hollywood may have picked on the wrong beloved franchise this time. The question is how it will do in the box office. Here’s some news – it will do fine. It will make a couple hundred million dollars because everyone will still go and see it. The sequel will start being worked on by September. Though not a pure horror movie (it didn’t even show up on the odds sheet on the aforementioned article), this is an actual summer blockbuster.
The Neon Demon
The Neon Demon is a horror film that has already been released worldwide, but has yet to make it’s American debut. The film about an aspiring model sharing a penthouse with vampires who bathe and drink blood in order to stay young and beautiful has received mixed reviews at the very best. Perhaps the world is suffering from vampire fatigue (some zombie fatigue in the near future would be nice) or perhaps the Cannes film darling is mediocre when picked apart by the general public and its bloodthirsty critics. You know it’s a tough year for horror when beautiful girls in potential sexual situations can move the needle in the box office.
Ha! Just kidding! This piece of crap got moved to 2017. I’m sure it will come out then /sarcasm.
The Purge 3: Election Year
There’s a couple of rules in franchise horror. Number One – the success of a film is really a reaction to the last film. Number Two – each film should make more than the last with a bigger budget and a bigger spectacle. The Purge isn’t quite a franchise yet, but it’s well on it’s way because it has hit both of those rules with room to spare. Even with the strong opening from The Conjuring, my money is on this one for the runaway horror hit of the summer. While the original Purge film was met with some hesitancy, it was eventually embraced. The sequel was loved full bore from it’s opening. I expect the third installment of the franchise to out perform the first two, thus giving us a fourth installment making it an official franchise that we will see covered on the Resurrection of Zombie 7 podcast!
That’s some of what we can look forward to this summer as far as theatrical horror, but always remember that there’s also great horror to be found on demand and many other venues. It’s great time to be a horror fan!