Eli Roth names his five favourite horror movies of all time – Far Out Magazine

Posted: April 20, 2022 at 11:05 am

Nurturing the horror genre through the early noughties, American filmmaker Eli Roth is a crucial part of the cinematic makeup of Hollywood at the turn of the new century. An actor, producer and director, Roth is a multi-talented creative, helping to bring multiple successful projects to life, from Quentin Tarantinos frenetic war drama Inglourious Basterds to his own, grimey 2002 horror Cabin Fever.

As a crucial part of the torture-porn movement that flourished during this time, sparked by the success of James Wans Saw in 2004, Roth contributed with his own vision in the Hostel series, telling the story of three backpackers who fall victim to torturous businessmen in a Slovakian city. Whilst such films were popularly denounced in the mainstream for their graphic violence, they undoubtedly remain a crucial part of the evolution of horror throughout the 21st century, speaking to an innate fear of the contemporary zeitgeist.

Roths career certainly peaked throughout this period of time, with his later efforts Knock Knock starring Keanu Reeves and cannibal movie The Green Inferno failing to drum up the same excitement from horror fans. Despite this, Roth remains a key figure in the genre thanks to his work as a producer and pioneer, having worked with the likes of Ti West, Daniel Stamm, Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino.

As a key voice in the cinema community, Roths opinion still holds considerable weight, so when he told Larry King his top five favourite horror movies of all time, fans sat up and listened.

His first pick went to the classic video nasty Cannibal Holocaust directed by Ruggero Deodato, a film that Roth directly attempted to recreate in his disappointing 2013 effort The Green Inferno. Known for its surprisingly incredible soundtrack, the original 1980 movie follows a rescue mission to find a missing documentary crew in the Amazon rainforest that goes violently wrong.

Sam Raimis iconic horror movie The Evil Dead takes his second spot, with the strange zombie hybrid movie going on to influence much of his own work, not least Cabin Fever. Starring Bruce Campbell and Ellen Sandweiss, the film spawned sequels, remakes, spin-offs and more, remaining one of the most beloved horror properties of all time.

Sticking to the classic, the William Friedkin horror movie The Exorcist takes Roths third position, a movie often called the scariest of all time. Influencing the future of filmmaking in general, the power of The Exorcist would change how the horror genre was perceived by general audiences, largely thanks to some incredible performances from Linda Blair, Ellen Burstyn, Max von Sydow and Jason Miller.

Cinematic master Stanley Kubrick claims the fourth position with the Stephen King adaptation, The Shining, starring Jack Nicholson and Shelley Duvall, an eerie, atmospheric journey into the insanity of one mans mind. Still considered a classic of horror cinema, The Shining is considered among Kubricks best, sitting alongside 2001: A Space Odyssey and Dr. Strangelove.

Topping off the list, Roth goes for (arguably) the best horror movie of all time with The Texas Chain Saw Massacre directed by Tobe Hooper, a film that would help kick off the slasher craze of the 1980s alongside such classics as Psycho by Alfred Hitchcock and Halloween by John Carpenter. With intense DIY filmmaking and a grubby overall aesthetic, you can see Hoopers influence quite clearly on the filmography of Eli Roth.

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Eli Roth names his five favourite horror movies of all time - Far Out Magazine

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