Today is my birthday! To celebrate I wanted to create some fun movies lists for you all. I couldn’t decide what the basis for my list should be so I’m giving you not one, not two, but THREE movie lists! This list features my favorite films that came out the year I was born, 1988. There were a lot of great films that year so it was difficult to narrow down to just a few favorites.
Here are my top five favorite horror films that were released in 1988 (in no particular order):
1. KILLER KLOWNS FROM OUTER SPACE
Killer Klowns from Outer Space isn’t just one of my favorite movies from 1988, but it’s also one of my favorite movies ever. It has a space ship that looks like a circus tent, cotton candy cocoons, living balloon animals, dangerous popcorn, and alien clowns who want to drink us dry. It’s really a recipe for an 80’s masterpiece. The film is definitely out there, but it’s campy and fun and the design for the clowns is amazing. There was so much clever thought put into all the clown details and how they could be made deadly that it’s nearly impossible not to enjoy this flick.
2. NIGHT OF THE DEMONS
I only saw Night of the Demons for the first time a couple years ago, but it became an instant favorite. A group of kids go to an abandoned funeral home to party on Halloween night and accidentally unleash ancient demons that possess and kill the kids one by one. The practical effects are to die for, and the plot is surprisingly good for how campy the film is overall. There is one specific practical effect alone that makes the film worth watching (and if you’ve seen the film you know what I mean). This is a must-watch every October.
Of all the horror films on this list, Waxwork I have the oldest memory of. I remember finding it on TV one day when I was very young and instantly being mesmerized. The film brings a creative story in which a mysterious wax museum comes to town and when a group of kids explore it they find the exhibits come to life, sucking the kids into the scene. This film also has many recognizable faces from other horror films such as Zach Galligan (Gremlins), Deborah Foreman (April Fool’s Day), and David Warner (In the Mouth of Madness). This isn’t an 80’s film that gets much recognition, but it is one worth seeking out.
4. POLTERGEIST III
Poltergeist III scarred me for life as a child. To this day I refuse to have mirrors anywhere in my house (except the bathrooms) and my dislike/fear of mirrors started with this film. Carol Anne moves in with her aunt and uncle into a fancy high-rise, only to have Kane try to come after her through mirrors and any other reflective surfaces from the other side. This is honestly the weakest film in the Poltergeist franchise, but it is the one that effected me the most as a child and remains a favorite of mine.
5. SORORITY BABES IN THE SLIMEBALL BOWL-O-RAMA
A group of sorority girls and frat boys break into a bowling alley. They accidentally break open a trophy and unleash an imp set on mischief and carnage. If that sounds ridiculous, it’s because it is. I only saw this film for the first time last year (thanks to Joe Bob Briggs) and it is so bizarre and hilarious that I couldn’t help but fall in love. As shocking as it may sound, this is the most ridiculous and outlandish 1988 films on this list. If that doesn’t convince you to see Sorority Babes in the Slimeball Bowl-o-Rama, I don’t know what will.