New Horror Movies Review – Derek Barton – 2023

Back in 2019, before Covid derailed everything, I did a review of some of my favorite horror films to that point. Here’s that posting if you are interested. It was a lot of fun and a popular blog. So, I decided to do it again as some real gems have come out. (I do know that I am missing some of YOUR favorites on this list. I haven’t seen everything and some I am still planning on watching.)

This list is just that a list, no ranking and it’s completely subjective. Also some of your favorites, I might have already discussed in the last post (like Saw or Evil Dead). I will say that almost everyone of these today were awesome, unexpected surprises—either because I hadn’t heard much about them, the trailer didn’t grab me, or I didn’t predict the direction the movie took.

A Quiet Place II — Following the events at home, the Abbott family now face the terrors of the outside world. Forced to venture into the unknown, they realize the creatures that hunt by sound are not the only threats lurking beyond the sand path.

While I loved the first one, I didn’t know where they were going to go with the story. Sequels usually don’t live up to the hype, but this one was fantastic! Just as the first one, be ready for some intense scenes of suspense and thrilling fight scenes. I’m really hoping they can do at least one more!


The Collector — Desperate to repay his debt to his ex-wife, an ex-con plots a heist at his new employer’s country home, unaware that a second criminal has also targeted the property, and rigged it with a series of deadly traps.

This movie came out of nowhere and was brilliantly done! Think Saw but more on an intimate personal level. The lead actor, Josh Stewart at the time am unknown truly shined with his breakout performance and made this a great horror movie. It’s sequel, The Collection, is also very good! I have heard rumors of a third, but nothing yet has been released.


Smile — After witnessing a bizarre, traumatic incident involving a patient, a psychiatrist becomes increasingly convinced she is being threatened by an uncanny entity.

Many people loved the horror film, It Follows. I wasn’t one of them as I felt the movie was over hyped and other than the beginning and end, it was boring. Smile takes the idea of a relentless chasing horror and keeps the action and intensity throughout! I’m not a jump-scare fan as I feel they’re used too often, but this has appropriately placed, amazing jump scares and fantastic gore effects! The “neck breaking” scene alone is mind-blowing!


Prey — Naru, a skilled warrior of the Comanche Nation, fights to protect her tribe against one of the first highly-evolved Predators to land on Earth.

One of the best films out this last year in my opinion. Certainly a nod to the great Predator franchise and a stand out horror-action film. Great effects, a well developed story and in depth characters. How many horror films can you say that about?


The Wretched — A defiant teenage boy, struggling with his parents’ imminent divorce, faces off with a thousand year-old witch, who is living beneath the skin of and posing as the woman next door.

A well done, but obscure film that’s been underrated and over looked. A sleeper that warrants watching. Really creepy and chilling scenes.


The Black Phone — After being abducted by a child killer and locked in a soundproof basement, a 13-year-old boy starts receiving calls on a disconnected phone from the killer’s previous victims.

You know by now how big a Stephen King fan I am. This story’s writer, Joe Hill, is one of his sons. I have been disappointed by Hill’s books so I wasn’t too hopeful for this movie. I’m very happy to say he surprised me here. Ethan Hawke stars (gives a brilliant performance) and directs this terrifying, supernatural thriller!


The Visit — Two siblings become increasingly frightened by their grandparents’ disturbing behavior while visiting them on vacation.

Another shocking, twist-filled film by M. Night Shyamalan. And like a lot of his other films like Devil, it’s underrated. Great scares and a fun horror film mixed with some truly horrific horror—the ending especially lived up to expectations!


Ready Or Not — A bride’s wedding night takes a sinister turn when her eccentric new in-laws force her to take part in a terrifying game.

The trailer seems a little predictable but overall the film has a lot of fun horror scenarios as well as a real, strong female protagonist who you easily root for. A sure entertaining movie!!


Happy Death Day — A college student must relive the day of her murder over and over again, in a loop that will end only when she discovers her killer’s identity.

This is another film using the Groundhog’s Day Trope, but they do a great job and really hook you in. Another dynamic lead female actress, Samara Weaving and is a well written mystery “slash” (pun intended) horror film. Side note, Happy Death Day 2U, the sequel is not as good, use your own judgment there.


Hush — A deaf and mute writer who retreated into the woods to live a solitary life must fight for her life in silence when a masked killer appears at her window.

Obscure movie and certainly not given enough praise film! A powerful, survival movie with a main character doing everything and anything to live. Well done and very polished horror-thriller.


Plenty of time to stream these awesome gems! Go get your scare on! Enjoy!!

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