With the new release of Piranha 3D (2010), and the classic horror movies such as Cujo(1983) and Jaws (1975), it’s easy to relay on them for a good horror movie that involves killer animals. But what about the other movies out there which are not that well known or just underrated? Being a fan of horror movies, I’ve come up with a list of my top five killer animal movies that deserve to be recognized and remembered along with the classics.
5. Orca (1977, Rated PG, 92 minutes runtime)
A killer whale that goes on a killing spree after his family is killed in an attempt to capture and sell his mate. What gives this movie the creepy, scary factor? Just this February, 2010, a Sea World trainer was killed by an Orca in Orlando, Florida.
Best Part: The whale ends up biting off a girl’s leg and she lets out a scream then faints. At least the leg that was bitten off was broken; so in a sense, the whale did her a favor. Sometimes it’s good to think of the cup as half full.
4. Man’s Best Friend (1993, Rated R, 97 minutes runtime)
This movie is based around a huge dog, a Tibetan mastiff, named Max that is genetically engineered with the DNA of various other animals. They’ve taken abilities from other animals in the wilderness to come up with a breed of dog that is the perfect guard dog, but if not sedated in time he goes rogue. This is exactly what ends up happening to the dog and he kills a bunch of people, all the while looking cute and fluffy.
Best Part: When Max climbed up a tree to reach a cat he was chasing and then swallowed the thing whole, or when he attacked a junkyard owner that abused him. Let’s just say Max made sure he could never have children again. It’s not very gory, but still a great movie.
3. The Ghost and the Darkness (1996, Rated R, 109 minutes runtime)
Two lions terrorize workers attempting to build a bridge in Africa. The engineer kills a lion during his first week in Africa which gives the workers a false sense of hope, letting their guards down and become prey for two lions that the locals call the Ghost and the Darkness. These lions are different since they hunt and kill together which is unusual. They also lick the skin off of a human body and drink the blood- yummy.
Best Part: The first kill scene is awesome simply because you’re expecting it, but it still takes you by surprise scaring the heck out of you. Did I mention this movie is based on a true story? If you’re ever in the Chicago, Illinois neighborhood you can view the Tsavo Lions on display at the Field Museum of Natural History.
2. Black Sheep (2006, Rated R, 87 minutes runtime)
While watching this movie, you might not know if you should laugh, scream, or vomit. This movie takes place in New Zealand, where sheep dominate the Kiwi population. Thus a sheep farmer takes regular sheep and contaminates them with genetically engineered DNA. These sheep turn into killers that completely eat up people and if you’re bitten by one of these altered sheep, you turn into one. It’s almost a werewolf thing or were-sheep rather.
Best Part: It has to be the huge massacre at an event to unveil a new sheep breed and all the guests are attacked, it’s rather gory. But it doesn’t beat out another scene where the main characters fall into a pit of blood and guts, it takes the cake-or liver.
1. Black Water (2007, Rated R, 90 minutes runtime)
“Three cheeky monkeys sitting in a tree, teasing Mr. Crocodile, ‘can’t catch me!’ Along comes Mr. Crocodile, quiet as can be, snap!” This is a great movie about three friends that go fishing and end up being bait for a crocodile. The boat is capsized by the crocodile and their guide is eaten first. They eventually all end up in a tree trying to wait for rescue, but no one knows they’re even missing-good luck.
Best Part: The night scene; it was shot completely in darkness and all you hear is the dialogue of the remaining survivors speaking over the sound of rain and thunder. When lightening strikes, you get only flashes of images and then you hear some nice bone breaking and crunching sounds. Sometimes your own imagination is the best horror scene.
The Field Museum The Tsavo Lions FieldMuseum.org