It is common practice by today’s standards to remake or reboot movies from a popular franchise. Lots of times these films can be a safer bet than an original idea since filmmakers assume that a remake or reboot will already have a devoted fan base, compared to an original story where people are being introduced to characters for the first time.
Things are a bit different when it comes to horror since the horror genre has such a loyal fanbase that people typically don’t want to see a new movie tarnish the reputation of the original. Sometimes remakes of classic horror movies fall flat, but there are plenty of examples of horror remakes that were worthwhile. Here are The 10 Best Horror Movie Remakes, Ranked.
10 A Nightmare On Elm Street
In what is sure to be a controversial addition to this list is the 2010 A Nightmare on Elm Street. The film was directed by Samuel Bayer and replaced the iconic Robert Englund with Jackie Earle Haley. The remake of A Nightmare on Elm Street has gotten a lot of hate since its release, but there are a lot of positives to the film.
Even though Englund could never be replaced as Freddy, Haley did great in the role. Freddy had become pretty comical in later sequels starring Englund, but Haley’s Freddy brought the franchise back to the dark roots that Wes Craven originally had in the first film.
9 The Crazies
The Crazies originally came out in 1973 and was created by horror legend George A. Romero. Romero is mostly remembered for his Night of the Living Dead series, which had a huge influence on the horror genre. The Crazies is often forgotten but was remade in 2010 by Breck Eisner.
The 2010 film stars Timothy Olyphant and Radha Mitchell, who have to fight to survive after a virus infects the residents of a farming town. The film did generally well with fans and critics, with many people claiming that the remake was actually better than Romero’s original film.
8 The Fly
The Fly starring Jeff Goldblum as Seth Brundle was a remake of the 1958 film of the same name. In the film, Brundle is a scientist who has discovered the secret to teleportation. When he tries to teleport himself, a fly accidentally gets trapped in the device with him, causing his DNA to be merged with the fly.
The movie follows the same premise as the original, but where the remake excels is the special effects. Chris Walas and Stephan Dupuis won the Academy Award in 1987 for Best Makeup and after watching The Fly, it’s not hard to see why.
Over 30 years after William Lustig’s Maniac was released, the film was remade with Elijah Wood as Frank Zito. In both the original and the remake, Frank was a serial killer that targeted women and collected his victims’ scalps.
The remake took some liberties when it came to story details and the way the film was shot, which provided a fresh take on the terrifying tale. In the remake, most of the film is shot with a first-person point of view, much like the film Hardcore Henry. Franck Khalfoun’s Maniac lived up to the original while being a brutal and visually pleasing film starring the always talented Elijah Wood.
Dario Argento’s original horror masterpiece was released back in August 1977. The film revolved around an American ballet dancer, Suzy Bannion, who travels to Germany and discovers something sinister behind the school. Fast forward to 2018 and the film was remade by Luca Guadagnino with Dakota Johnson in the leading role.
Both films follow the same basic premise, but the remake makes a lot of changes especially when it came to the end of the film. Besides Johnson, the film had some notable talent including Tilda Swinton and Chloë Grace Moretz. Even though the remake of Suspiria may have not been able to top the original, the remake excelled when it came to gore and choreography.
5 Nosferatu The Vampyre
The original 1922 Nosferatu is often considered a horror masterpiece even though it took a great deal of inspiration from Bram Stoker’s novel Dracula. The film starred Max Schreck as Graf Orlok and was directed by F.W. Murnau, a successful German director of the 1920s and ‘30s.
Dracula has gotten several reboots and remakes over the years, but the only man who has attempted to remake Nosferatu was Werner Herzog in 1979. The film is highly praised to this day for paying homage to Murnau’s original film and for Klaus Kinski portrayal of the Count.
When it comes to horror, Stephen King is one author who has had several of his books adapted for the big screen (and the small screen). In 1990, King’s IT was adapted for a TV mini-series. While Tim Curry is praised for his portrayal of Pennywise, the rest of the mini-series doesn’t really stand the test of time.
In 2017, the mini-series was remade by Andy Muschietti and starred Bill Skarsgård as Pennywise. The film did well with both fans and critics and will be getting a sequel this year. Aside from Skarsgård, the film stars a lot of young talented actors like Jaeden Martell, Jeremy Ray Taylor, Sophia Lillis Finn Wolfhard, Chosen Jacobs, Jack Dylan Grazer, and Wyatt Oleff.
3 Bram Stoker’s Dracula
Characters like Frankenstein and Dracula are some of the most recognized characters in the horror genre thanks to Universal Studios' classic monster movies, but the characters have been included in multiple movies and TV shows since then. One of the most notable remakes is Bram Stoker’s Dracula from Francis Ford Coppola.
Gary Oldman takes on the role of Dracula, with Keanu Reeves portraying Jonathan Harker. The film has a knockout cast and is visually stunning. Everything from the set design to the costumes will keep fans of horror entertained from start to finish. It also helps that this film is much closer to Stoker’s novel, hence the title of the movie.
2 Evil Dead
Fede Alvarez’s Evil Dead remake in 2013 got mainly positive reviews and was a remake of Sam Raimi’s original Evil Dead starring Bruce Campbell. The film stars Jane Levy, a recovering drug addict who stumbles upon the Book of the Dead with her friends. Even though Campbell didn’t appear in the film (until a post-credits scene), the 2013 Evil Dead lived up to its predecessor.
Alvarez was able to pay homage to the original by having tons of over the top gore, all of which looked incredibly realistic due to practical effects. A shared Evil Dead universe including characters from both the originals and remake was thought to be on the table at one point, but with Campbell retiring from the character Ash, fans may never get to see the crossover.
1 The Thing
Many people might not know, but John Carpenter’s 1982 film The Thing is actually a remake of the 1951 film The Thing from Another World. The Thing is one of the rare exceptions where the remake is actually considered better than the original. With John Carpenter’s track record with films like Halloween and The Fog, the success of The Thing shouldn’t have come as a surprise.
The film has a talented cast with Kurt Russell as the star and some deeply disturbing and unique creature designs. The film wasn’t considered a box office hit when it originally came out; nowadays, The Thing is often regarded as one of Carpenter’s best movies.