This week’s Major Spoilers Poll of the Week is brought to you by Fangoria Presents – a new film series selected by Fangoria for Horror Fans!  Cast your vote, and then use the comment section below to share your thoughts, with the best comment winning a DVD of one of the films in the series as seen on the Fangoria Presents website!  (While anyone can share their thoughts and cast their vote, the contest is open to U.S. residents only!)

Reality horror films have been around for decades now, with the Blair Witch Project still sending Matthew diving under the covers the instant the snot rocket scene appears. There have been a number of franchises that have used the found footage gimmick to put the scare into audiences, and get that well timed jump of fright.


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  1. There’s a Canadian film called Pontypool that released in 2009.

    It’s a bit of a spin on the found footage genre. It’s a single-stage production inside of a radio recording booth as the Disc Jockey of a call in show “presides” over an outbreak and the seeming collapse of society.

    It’s only 90 minutes long and totally worth checking out.

  2. Voted for Last Exorcism because I had a brain fart and confused it with The Exorcism of Emily Rose, which kinda freaked me out a little. Troll Hunter would get my vote if I could change it.

  3. There are a good few to choose from, but I opted for Blair Witch. While it didn’t really invent the genre (that’d probably be Cannibal Holocaust) it was massively effective, and is why there are so many “found footage” movies of late. However, it may not stand up to repeated viewings.
    Nice to see Troll Hunter get so much love.

  4. Chose Troll Hunter.
    I myself am from scandinavia, and it was really refreshing to see a movie that digged a bit into the local myths and folk legends of the area.
    I liked that all the way through it kept the “fake documentery” thing going. some of the other films like cloverfield sorta changed into a first person godzilla movie instead.
    was real impressed how amazing they made troll hunter look and feel on a (somewhat) low budget.
    Not the scariest movie of the bunch, but the one i enjoyed the most.

  5. SmarkingOut Adam on

    The “family movies” of vacations and past Christmases my in-laws make us watch every Christmas.

  6. I’m sort of a scaredy-cat when it comes to horror flicks and of the listed alternatives the Blair Witch Project would have to win by default since it’s the only one I’ve seen.

    That is a really boring answer however, so I voted “Other” in favour of a mockumentary that truly digs into the horrifying and ugly truth behind the scenes of an event that is so cutthroat, so competitive and so violent that it makes hardened criminals look like fluffy kittens in comparison.

    I speak of course of the annual Mount Rose beauty pageant and 1999’s “Drop Dead Gorgeous” starring Kirsten Dunst, Kirstie Alley and Denise Richards. After all, what is more horrifying than the vanity and strife of human beings?

  7. Troll Hunter is super great. I suppose that you cant really “get it” if you did not grow up in northen europe. But I did, and love it :)

  8. Ryan 'Halite' King on

    Other: None

    As a fan of horror, I have yet to find any found footage movie that I’ve liked. They pretty much fail to ever explain (or show) anything and lean on jump scares.

  9. While I enjoy many on the list, I’d have to choose the movie [Rec] and well as its sequel [Rec]2. [Rec] is actually the Spanish film that Quarantine remade for US audiences. Quite effective in delivering scares.

    • Agreed. I haven’t seen Quarantine, and can’t attest to it’s quality, but REC (as well as its sequels) is just superb.

  10. I had to go with Blair Witch, because when I first saw it in the theater and the camera just drops at the end (no spoiler alerts for movies that old) the theater was absolutely silent. No one moved or spoke for several minutes. Driving back home through the dark woods was not easy. Plus, no one had seen the actors and they did an excellent job of making you believe this was a real documentary. In subsequent viewings the film just doesn’t hold up though. It doesn’t have the same impact on the small screen and with the secret revealed.

    Troll Hunter is possibly the most fun found footage movie I’ve ever seen. That’s the only one since Blair Witch, in my mind, that has been executed well.

  11. I’m just not a fan of “found footage” films, horror or otherwise, but I chose Cloverfield since it is the one I least dislike (I actually borderline enjoy it).

    My favorite “found footage” movie in general, though, was “Chronicle”. It may not have been the best movie, but it is the only “found footage” movie that I truly enjoy watching.

  12. I’m also going to say “Chronicle” (I picked Other) because I think its one of the first found footage which starts to take a step out of the horror and into another genre, even if its just sci-fi thriller. I like found footage when its done well, but I don’t think it’s exclusively limited to the horror genre.

  13. As a fan of found footage I have to go with Paranormal Activity. Even if it’s not the first one of his kind, it managed to creep me out longer than should have.

  14. Cloverfield was by far the best. Not only did it tell the story of what happened, you also see an excellent back story because you see some of the stuff they recorded over on an old tape. Half on New York gets leveled by a monster. Plus all the main characters die!!! Does not get any better then that.

    Also the things that fall off it remind me of the lizard-monkeys.

  15. I voted other. The first half of ‘Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon’ is a wonderful documentary following the preparations a masked killer has to make before his bloodbath of revenge. The second half drops the doc format, but works the shift into the story. With a ‘killer’ twist at the end and commentary on the slasher genre, Behind the Mask recieves my vote.

  16. On Matthew’s recommendation, I ended up seeing the BBC series “Ghost Watch” when it was still on YouTube. I watched it at work . . . on the night shift . . . and couldn’t stop looking over my shoulder for about a week. One thing I like about “Ghost Watch is they DON’T point out where the ghost is. He’s a background figure for the majority of the special, making you always uncertain if what you saw in the corner of your eye was your imagination . . . or Pipes.

  17. GraniteGamer on

    Allow me to offer up my personal Found Footage Horror favorite: Grave Encounters. It’s one of the best horror movies as far as both psychological and shock fear that I’ve seen in the last few years. The production values are especially good for a found footage, especially with regards to nauseating camera shaking.

  18. I voted other, because to me, while Blair Witch was the best, I recently watched one on Netflix called The Frankenstein Theory that was pretty good.

    Essentially, a guy who believes he is a descendant of a real life Frankenstein that the book was based on hires a film crew to track down his famous ancestors creation and prove all his theories right.

    It actually follows Blair Witch pretty close in the flow and all, but it was a nice spin on the idea of Frankenstein.

    btw, I realize I am not eligible as a sometimes contributor to the site ;)

  19. Oldcomicfan on

    The found footage technique just doesn’t work for me as a premise. It’s horribly contrived. Maybe I’ve just seen too much fake, grainy footage of flying saucers and bigfoot to be able to suspend disbelief enough to appreciate these sorts of movies. Which is sort of odd because I’ve read quite a few good novels that have the premise of the storyteller finding some old journal or diary that contains the story and they worked and I enjoyed them, but when transferred to film it just doesn’t work. I will give you that the Blair Witch project was uniques (at the time) and interesting. But every time I see fake found footage in a movie I think “here they go again, ripping off Blair Witch”.

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