It’s already been an insanely packed year for genre offerings, and the Halloween season is about to compound that tenfold with some major anticipated releases still on the horizon. It’s a continuing trend from last year, in which a steady stream of horror content made it tricky to keep up with all of the titles.
In case you missed some worthwhile 2020 releases or wanted to wait until they were available on streaming, now’s your chance. This week’s streaming picks belong to some 2020 highlights.
Here’s where to stream them….
Love and Monsters – Epix, Hulu, Paramount+
Seven years after a monster apocalypse decimated the population, the survivors retreated into secluded communities hidden away from the surface world. Lovelorn Joel (Dylan O’Brien) decides to leave the diminishing safety of his bunker and trek miles to reunite with his high school sweetheart. He’ll encounter friends and gigantic foes along the way. It’s a big spectacle kaiju adventure, with horror, comedy, and plenty of heart. The creatures are creative and well done, but canine pal Boy threatens to upstage them all. If you’re in the mood for lighter thrills, this charming feature will do the trick.
Hunter Hunter – Hulu
Everything about Hunter Hunter seems like your average survival thriller. Save for a few plot details, you think you know exactly what to expect. Writer/Director Shawn Linden wants you lulled into that false sense of familiarity to make the harrowing final act hit so much harder. With a deceptively simple setup, Linden presents a pressure cooker for Anne as all the red herrings, plot threads, and dangers slowly converge to create one of the most intense third acts to come along in recent memory. Within the familiar survival thriller setup lies a film unafraid to get savage, delivering one of the most hardcore endings in recent memory. It’s as brutal as it is strangely cathartic, but boy, is it grim as hell.
Possessor – Hulu, Prime Video
Brandon Cronenberg’s long-awaited follow-up to Antiviral was well worth the wait. In this mind-bending sci-fi thriller, Andrea Riseborough stars as Tasya Vos, a high-tech assassin who takes over other people’s bodies to execute high-profile targets. When she inhabits the body of her latest host, Colin (Christopher Abbot), his soul isn’t quite as willing to let her take over thanks to her weakened mental state, and the war over control threatens to obliterate them both. It’s insanely gory and violent. Matching the glorious gore and intricate character/actor work is the slick production. Cold, slick sci-fi meets a Grand Guignol aesthetic, and it’s stunning. That sterile coldness means it’s a little bit tougher to acclimate to this world and its detached characters, but it’s a must for fans of cerebral thrillers.
Come True – Hulu
Writer/Director Anthony Scott Burns’ standout segment “Father’s Day” in Holidays exuded an eerie atmosphere, mystery, and cosmic horror that left you excited for more. Come True lives up to the anticipation, once again bringing the cosmic horror vibes and unsettling retro synth mood. Julia Sarah Stone stars as a teen runaway who takes part in a sleep study, but that decision might prove lethal when it threatens to bring her deep-seated nightmares into waking life. A strange examination of dreams and their power, Burns delivers some potent nightmare fuel and imagery.
Underwater – HBO Max
Underwater is a grand spectacle film that feels explicitly tailored for the horror fan, one that doesn’t bother with pretension and dives straight into the horror. There’s not even a first act. The inciting event that knocks out an entire underwater drilling station and leaves its handful of survivors scrambling across the ocean floor to safety happens within the first few minutes. While director William Eubank (2014’s The Signal) does borrow from some obvious influences, it doesn’t make it any less fun or nerve-fraying. And it doesn’t prepare you for an epic third act reveal. It’s the perfect popcorn movie, full of splendor and chills. And considering Eubank’s Paranormal Activity: Next of Kin is just around the corner, now is a great time to revisit this aquatic horror nightmare.