Most people love a horror film, and we all know the classics. Who hasn’t had a sleepless night at the hands of Carrie, Jason, or Freddy? The thing is, I have a big secret. I’m a massive wuss and struggle to cope with horror films. Embarrassing? Yep. However, this has led me to discover the sub-genre of horror-comedy. It sort of lets the air out of my tension, but the scares still land. I personally love being pulled between the two types of hysteria – how about you?
Jennifer’s Body (2009)
Diablo Cosy is known for her sassy one-liners and whip-smart female characters. Jennifer’s Body was her foray into horror while retaining her signature style. In this, the girls are the antagonists, rather than the victims, something which hadn’t been seen that often before. Megan Fox plays a possessed cheerleader, and Amanda Seyfried is her nerdy best friend who is desperate to find out what has happened to her. Evil fun, dangerous games and high school politics. Yay!
Director: Karyn Kusama
The Cabin in the Woods (2012)
This excellent ensemble horror-comedy came out right before Chris Hemsworth went stratospheric. It is the story of a group of college kids who go to a remote cabin in the woods for a naughty weekend of booze and sex, only to discover that what is lurking there has other plans. The twist at the end is not only smart and creepy but has a lot to say about society. A great Hallowe’en option for those who want witty banter with their gruesome killings.
Director: Drew Goddard
Shaun of the Dead (2004)
Who can forget the impact of the first film in the Cornetto Trilogy?! Edgar Wright exploded onto the scene with this British zombie flick which takes the piss out of all the tropes with two shambolic heroes at its core. Let’s be honest, what is more British that shambolic heroes? A riot, a modern classic and a must-watch.
Director: Edgar Wright
This film not only combines horror and comedy but Christmas too. Talk about a triple threat. The story, should you not know, is that of an adorable creature who is given as a gift, with a few simple rules: no feeding after midnight and no water. Even if you haven’t seen it, you can imagine what happens next. Mayhem, mini-monsters and one badass Mother who uses a microwave and blender in the most innovative of ways. But then, isn’t that just Motherhood?!
Director: Joe Dante
What We Do In The Shadows (2014)
Take the dry humour of Taika Waitiit and Jermaine Clement, add a superb ensemble cast, pour into a mockumentary mould and fill in the rest with vampires. This is a perfect recipe for excellent comedy. The mock doc crew gain access to a group of flat-sharing vamps who are trying their best to get on in with their peers in Auckland’s creepy community. An excellent premise, perfectly executed. One of the very best horror comedies.
Director: Taika Waititi & Jermaine Clement
I’m a big fan of the body swap genre, but here is a fresh take. The horror-comedy body swap – makes so much sense it seems crazy no one has done it before, really? Vince Vaughan is a serial killer and Kathryn Newton is his victim, what happens when they swap? Well, we get to see Vaughan doing his best teenage girl impression – something we have been denied for too long, frankly.
Director: Christopher Landon
This is a film full of genuine tension and great jump scares – it spawned a whole generation of sequels and spoofs, but for me, the original is best. Self-referential and sparky, the victims comment on the genre of slasher movies throughout, even as they face death themselves. Its smart, it’s scary, it’s full of 90s icons – what more could you want?
Director: Wes Craven
Idle Hands (1999)
Our final entry in the comedy-horror movie genre, this little-known slacker comedy about a teenage boy with a possessed hand took me by surprise – it is really rather hilarious. Perhaps not entirely intentionally, but never mind. It didn’t quite reach the heights of some of the other 90s scare fests, in terms of box office numbers or notoriety, but it is well worth a look. As we follow a hapless teenager trying his luck with his beautiful neighbour, despite the demon in his right hand.
Director: Rodman Flender
There are of course some classics I’ve left out here – Evil Dead and An American Werewolf in London for example…but we know and love them already. Maybe there is something on this funny horror movies list you haven’t seen yet? Let us know!