It's barley even summer yet, but that doesn't mean there aren't a whole bunch of scary movies to see before Halloween. In fact, it often happens that the best horror movies drop during the summer months. There's something about this fun time of year that ratchets up the scare level in these horror offerings. Considering that we're a few months out from October 31, horror movie aficionados will be elated that the summer months are dripping with so much delicious blood.
There's reboots of old movies, continuations of previous franchises, sequels to current hits, and then the outlier films that make this whole thing so much fun. We are at a rare time in cinema. It is very hard to get anything original made on the big screen. However, horror movies always find a way, year in and year out, to make something totally fresh happen.
Whether it's Alien Covenant trying to take that franchise in a bold new direction. Or the Flatliners reboot that seems smartly served by virtue of the fact that original star Kiefer Sutherland is returning. Then there's films like Annabelle: Creation and Cult of Chucky. These thrilling sequels have built in audiences who will go and see each film at least once no matter what.
But what about films like It Comes At Night? Crepitus? Or, Cloverfield 3 (if it's even is called that come Halloween 2017)? Where do these movies fit into the current horror offerings? Maybe they don't? Perhaps this is exactly how things sort of need to be? We need these oddball films to show that horror movies can still be weird, exciting, scary and mean something other than just a fun scary house ride.
So, if you don't mind your scares coming a little bit early, sit back and discover every new horror movie coming in the next couple of months, before Halloween gets here. A list which we complied thanks to the help of UpcomingHorrorMovies.com. As we've said, some of these films you've probably seen in some way, shape or idea before. At the same time, you've never seen them in this form, here in good old 2017.
Alien: Covenant (Already in Theaters)
Ridley Scott returns to the universe he created in Alien with Alien: Covenant, the second chapter in a prequel trilogy that began with Prometheus, and connects directly to Scott's 1979 seminal work of science fiction. Bound for a remote planet on the far side of the galaxy, the crew of the colony ship Covenant discover what they think is an uncharted paradise, but is actually a dark, dangerous world, whose sole inhabitant is the "synthetic" David (Michael Fassbender), survivor of the doomed Prometheus expedition. If this doesn't sound like another terror tale in space, I don't know what does. With Scott's moody visuals and penchant for layering the horror scene by scene, Alien: Covenant is about as sure a thing as it gets for a full on frightfest. Happy early Halloween, indeed!
Be Afraid (Already in Theaters)
Not long after John Chambers and his family arrive at their new home in a small country town of Pennsylvania, John begins to experience sleep paralysis. Lying there paralyzed, trapped within his own nightmare, other-worldly beings visit John. They are entities which exist in the darkest shadows of the night and can only be seen out of the corner of one's eye. These encounters begin to haunt John, transforming to complete terror as he discovers the entities' sole purpose... the abduction of his seven year old son. In the end, John will uncover the town's horrific secret, a portal on his land, and make one last attempt to save his son before the shadow people permanently take him away to their world.
Dark Signal (June 2)
A stranded woman and the staff of a radio station team up to solve a girl's murder after her spirit returns with a message. While it is taking some strong queues from a few other horror classes, this one looks unique. And it should find a strong cult audience, even if it's not one of the bigger releasing heading our way before the Halloween holiday.
It Comes At Night (June 9)
In this creepy offering, a father will stop at nothing to protect his wife and son from a malevolent, mysterious presence terrorizing them right outside their doorstep. Directed by newcomer Trey Edward Shults, this creepfest stars the always good Joel Edgerton and Riley Keough. The best part about a June release for this film is that it will really play as counter-programming to all of the early summer films. On top of that, if you've watched the trailer for It Comes At Night, then you know that this film isn't your garden variety horror movie. With an almost Kubrickian visual to start off the festivities, and a scary conversation to serve as the voice over, this trailer literally hooks you in the first 10 seconds. This film may not do the box office of the Despicable Me 40, but it will most likely leave viewers with more to remember. And that is what a grand Halloween is all about.
The Mummy (June 9)
It would be very easy to try and look at The Mummy as a Tom Cruise film. However, the cool part about this movie is that it seems to actually be a horror movie first. Thought safely entombed in a crypt deep beneath the unforgiving desert, an ancient queen (Sofia Boutella) whose destiny was unjustly taken from her, is awakened in our current day, bringing with her a malevolence grown over millennia and terrors that defy human comprehension. Lets just say this, Tom Cruise has faced a lot of things on screen, I don't think he's ever gone up against an angry woman whose intent on destroying humanity. This film may be out long before people start putting candy in their pillowcases, but something tells us Halloween 2017 will see more mummy costumes than ever before.
Awakening the Zodiac (June 9)
A couple find a 40-year-old film reel that depicts the gruesome murders of two people by a serial killer who vanished. They quickly set out to solve the mystery and claim a reward but soon find themselves the target of the person they are hunting.
47 Meters Down (June 16)
Young sisters Kate and Lisa and travel to Mexico for a vacation filled with sun, fun and adventure. Lisa needs some extra persuasion when Kate suggests that they go diving in shark-infested waters. Safe in their protective cage, the thrill-seeking siblings come face to face with a group of majestic great whites. Their worst fears soon become a reality when the cage breaks away from their boat, sending them plummeting to the ocean floor with a dwindling supply of oxygen.
The Bad Batch (June 23)
Military officials escort a young woman to a Texas wasteland where society's outcasts all live together. Captured by a band of savage cannibals, she soon discovers that being good or bad mostly depends on who you're standing next to.
A Ghost Story (July 7)
Recently deceased, a white-sheeted ghost returns to his suburban home to console his bereft wife, only to find that in his spectral state, he has become unstuck in time, forced to watch passively as the life he knew and the woman he loves slowly slip away. Increasingly unmoored, the ghost embarks on a cosmic journey through memory and history, confronting life's ineffable questions and the enormity of existence.
Wish Upon (July 14)
Twelve years after discovering her mother's suicide, 17-year-old Clare Shannon (Joey King) is bullied in high school, embarrassed by her manic, hoarder father Jonathan (Ryan Phillippe) and ignored by her longtime crush. All that changes when her father comes home with an old music box whose inscription promises to grant its owner seven wishes. While Clare is initially skeptical of this magic box, she can't help but be seduced by its dark powers, and is thrilled as her life radically improves with each wish. Clare finally has the life she's always wanted and everything seems perfect - until the people closest to her begin dying in violent and elaborate ways after each wish. How cool is that we get an old fashioned horror movie with a 2017 twist? Wish Upon seems like one of those films that you would've seen as part of a double feature on a lazy Saturday. You know what I mean, the kind of horror film you remember and watch again and again. A perfect pre-Halloween offering that has scary written all over it.
Amityville: Awakening (June 30)
Okay, this is a property that hasn't been touched since 2005. However, for the 10th installment in this erstwhile franchise, it seems like the creators have gotten in right again. The original Amityville Horror film was a truly scary piece of cinema. The sequel was even more terrifying in some ways. However, the third film was in 3D and then after that this horror franchise became less than memorable. In this new version, Belle, her little sister, and her comatose twin brother move into a new house with their single mother Joan in order to save money to help pay for her brother's expensive healthcare. But when strange phenomena begin to occur in the house including the miraculous recovery of her brother, Belle begins to suspect her Mother isn't telling her everything and soon realizes they just moved into the infamous Amityville house. So you have the class act Bella Thorne teaming up with the always solid Jennifer Jason Leigh. Even though this film comes out months before Halloween, something tells us there will be more Amityville Horror films in our scary future.
The Dark Tower (August 4)
Stephen King's epic 7 book series is finally getting the big screen treatment. It begins with the first book, "The Gunslinger". It introduces Roland Deschain of Gilead as he pursues the man in black to the mountains that separate the desert from the Western Sea. Along the way he rescues the boy, Jake, who is from a different time and place, and soon they become ka-tet in spite of Roland's single-minded goal of reaching the man in black at all costs. With an intense cast that includes Idris Elba, Matthew McConaughey, Abby Lee and Katheryn Winnick, The Dark Tower has a chance to be the biggest horror film released this year. Sure, it defies a lot of the tropes that we might apply to certain horror films (this isn't A Nightmare on Elm Street Pt. 50), but it does come from the mind of the master of horror himself, Stephen King. So, saddle up, and get ready for the most gun slinging, supernatural, mind bending, pre-Halloween movie experience of 2017.
Annabelle: Creation (August 11)
Annabelle: Creation tells the tale of a dollmaker and his wife who, several years after the tragic death of their little girl, welcome a nun and several girls from a shuttered orphanage into their home. Very soon, however, they become the target of the dollmaker's possessed creation, Annabelle. If you think about it, from a horror movie standpoint, the Annabelle films are brilliant. The star of the films are not some temperamental actor. Rather the star is a doll who can work at any place, any time, and doesn't have the pesky union making sure that it is following certain rules. However, it is also brilliant from a horror movie standpoint. These films are both simple and complex. The fact that a doll has captured so many imaginations. That it broke out from the movie The Conjuring, itself a brilliant horror movie, says something about the compelling nature of the Annabelle character and these films. Best Halloween prop ever?
Cadaver (August 25)
When a cop who is just out of rehab takes the graveyard shift in a city hospital morgue, she faces a series of bizarre and violent events caused by an evil entity in one of the corpses.
Polaroid (August 25)
A teen finds a vintage Polaroid camera that brings death to those who get their picture taken by it.
Sky Sharks (September 1)
Deep in the ice of the antarctic, a team of geologists uncover an old nazi laboratory still intact where dark experiments had occurred. In order to conquer the world, the Nazis created modified sharks who were able to fly and whose riders are genetically mutated, undead super-humans. A military task force called "Dead Flesh Four", reanimated US soldiers who fell in Vietnam, is put together to prevent world downfall.
IT (September 8)
Who doesn't love the clown Pennywise? With clowns recently making headlines across the US, a new IT film seems kinda necessary, doesn't it? IT centers on seven children in a small Maine town who confront the source of a series of murders in 1958 and again in 1985, when the cycle begins again. Once more, Stephen King provides the source material for this brutal horror film. Add to this that you have a clown doing the dirty work, and suddenly this film takes on a whole new level of creepy. In the day and age of Slenderman, it's nice to see that Pennywise can still elicit fear and trepidation. In fact, should this film fare as well as many think that it will, perhaps there could be some big screen cross overs between IT and some of the other urban legends that are banging around the scary parts of the world? IT could take on Jigsaw, Michael Myers, Freddy, or even Jason! IT is a perfect 2017 horror movie for the pre-Halloween movie season.
Friend Request (September 22)
A demonic presence starts to kill a college student's (Alycia Debnam-Carey) confidants after she unfriends a mysterious girl online.
Flatliners (September 29)
With the original Flatliners being 27 years old, it seems that the time is right for a reboot, right? Or, is this a sequel? Truthfully, does it really matter? If you liked the original film (and we sure did), then the fact that this film is getting the 2017 treatment comes as welcome news. That Kiefer Sutherland is returning to play the same character that he was in the original film only bolsters this films spooky prospects. The story is also pretty much the same as well. Medical students discover how to journey into the afterworld and then resurrect themselves - but, as often happens when anyone attempts to cheat death, things begin to go amiss. While I don't know that I would call the first Flatliners a horror film, it certainly was/is creepy. And, as with anything dealing with the supernatural, the fact that we don't know what is on the other side of this life only makes the premise of Flatliners that much more spine-tingling.
Happy Death Day (October 13)
A murdered college student relives the day of her death in an effort to learn her killer's identity.
Crepitus (October 15)
Seventeen year old Elizabeth and her younger brother, Julian are thrust into circumstances more terrifying than life with their abusive, drunken mother when they are forced to move into their deceased Grandfather's house. Frightened beyond belief, they are forced to learn horrible things about their family history. Never mind the ghosts in the house, there is something far worse that takes an interest in them ... a cannibalistic clown named Crepitus. At every phase of this horrorfest, Crepitus seems to be pushing the limits of what we expect from a horror movie. Based on the trailers, the scares never seem to let up. The fact that this film also appears to ground itself in reality, makes this horror film that much more of a frightfest gone wild. Crepitus really has a chance to be the most bizarrely brilliant horror film of the 2017 Halloween season.
Boo 2! A Madea Halloween (October 20)
Madea returns for another scary outing. No plot details have been released, but its said to stick pretty close to the formula of the first. In that movie, 17-year-old Tiffany sneaks out of the house to go to a Halloween bash at a fraternity. The fun soon ends when police and the cranky, fast-talking Madea (Tyler Perry) arrive to crash the party. Unhappy with this sudden turn of events, the vengeful collegians decide to scare Madea and her cronies with a series of pranks. She soon finds herself under attack and on the run from an assortment of ghosts, ghouls and zombies on the scariest night of the year.There's no telling what will happen in the second installment.
Cult of Chuck (October 20)
Confined to an asylum for the criminally insane for the past four years, Nica Pierce (Fiona Dourif) is erroneously convinced that she, not Chucky, murdered her entire family. But when her psychiatrist introduces a new therapeutic "tool" to facilitate his patients' group sessions, an all-too-familiar "Good Guy" doll with an innocently smiling face, a string of grisly deaths begins to plague the asylum, and Nica starts to wonder if maybe she isn't crazy after all.
Saw: Legacy (October 27)
Okay, Jigsaw (Tobin Bell) is back. Billy, the creepy doll from this series is also back. And the plot of this film is that Jigsaw is back from the dead for a whole new puzzle. With old characters who were seemingly gone from the franchise returning, it seems that Saw: Legacy is trying to make itself be the Halloween film to beat. Like the Fast & Furious series before it, the Saw franchise has gotten more and more outrageous as the series has gone on. Yes, it has been filled with blood and other grotesque offerings (like in Saw 3 when they opened up Jigsaw's brain), but the areas with which Jigsaw is pulling off his evil plots have become something out of medieval times! Gone is the small room that the first Saw has taken place in. However, something tells me that Saw: Legacy will be a mix of the outrageous and the sublime. At the same time, if it retains enough of the original film's vibe, this new offering could potentially reignite this franchise in a whole new direction.
Cloverfield 3 (October 27)
Okay, what would the Halloween season be without a kickass creature feature? Even more, what would a Bad Robot release be without all the secrecy and back room shenanigans that accompany most J.J. Abrams productions? The story of this film is, as you can guess, quite vague. It follows an American space station crew left abandoned after a problem with a Hadron accelerator causes Earth to vanish entirely. Basically, anything that I could say beyond this is pure speculation. As this film (originally called God Particle) is part of the Cloverfield universe, I am assuming it is a creature feature like the other films sort of were. It may very well not be. Heck, this movie could very well not be called Cloverfield 3, right? It seems that all of these Cloverfield related films are part of an anthology series that reside in J.J. Abrams mind. One thing we do know for sure is that come Halloween time, whatever this is called, it should scare people to no end!