Horror movies will always show you that no matter how dead you make the villain or monster, they’re never truly dead. Trilogies are the gold standard for storytelling, but what happens when you go past that natural three-part arc? Well, this list is about what happens when you go past that natural three-part arc, past the fourth, and into part 5.
Here at Fright-A-Thon, we don’t discriminate against a movie series if it gets to part 5. Usually, that means the end is near or the series is going downhill, but we’re here today to show you that there are some great ones out there at the 5 slot in many different horror series. As we did with Top 4 Part 4’s In Horror for the 2020 Fright-A-Thon, this is only limited to the fifth entry in a long-standing horror series. So without further ado, let’s jump in.
5. The Amityville Curse (1990)
This one is straight to video goodness for The Amityville series. It might not follow the previous films at all, but it kicked off the reinvention of this series to follow the house itself and place different people in the evil structure. It tells the story of five people who spend the night in the Amityville house. What follows are some great effects, some pretty damn good scares, and an underrated sequel in the long-running series.
If you haven’t checked out some of the Amityville films after the first one, you’re missing out on some horror goodness.
4. Seed Of Chucky (2004)
Seed of Chucky comes from a strange place in horror history. It follows up the excellent, yet much different Bride of Chucky, and takes the series even further away from the strictly planted horror/slasher roots it started with. For Chucky, it was a reinvention that gave the series a new lease on life that continues to this day. Seed of Chucky was the second step down that wild and crazy path that has led us to the series Chucky and more.
Don Mancini steps into the director’s chair here and it tells the story of Glenda, the gender-neutral daughter of Chucky and Tiffany. Glenda resurrects both of them while a new movie about the killer dolls’ murder spree from the previous film is ongoing. So yes, it’s one of those movies that has a movie within the movie, including Jennifer Tilly playing an in-universe version of herself. This movie is completely insane and I love it for that.
3. Halloween 5: The Revenge Of Michael Myers
Is Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers the best film in that series? Absolutely not. But, for a part 5 of the long-running Halloween series, it’s among my favorites. This is set one year after the events of the fourth film and Michael returns seeking revenge. It still has Donald Pleasence, it’s the last time Danielle Harris would play the role of Jamie, and it’s got some pretty good kills from Michael.
It doesn’t really follow up on the premise at the end of the fourth film with Jamie murdering her foster mother, and more explains that as a nightmare of hers. This is where they really went off the rails with the series though, introducing the Cult of Thorn, and how Michael became who he is. If you’re in for a late-series sequel, this one isn’t the worst you can do.
2. A Nightmare On Elm Street 5: The Dream Child
A Nightmare On Elm Street can be separated into several arcs or eras. You’ve got the Nancy Arc with Nightmare 1 and Dream Warriors, then you’ve got Alice’s arc with The Dream Master and The Dream Child. The Dream Child follows Alice once again and features Freddy trying to cross over into the real world through her unborn child in the womb. It’s a pretty insane concept that works well for the film. Lisa Wilcox is great as Alice and Robert Englund shines as Freddy here. He’s at the top of his game with a nice balance of comedic quips but still remaining just as scary.
Too bad this one hasn’t had a deluxe edition, the MPAA really took the shears to this one with several scenes being gutted for gore. The footage remains locked away or unusable, but you can find some incredibly low-quality videos of them on YouTube. It’s a shame that they decided to kill Freddy after this and that Lisa Wilcox hasn’t returned to the series since.
1. Scream (2022)
This is a new entry, but holy hell, this is how you reinvigorate a franchise. Sadly, Wes Craven passed away before he could see this made, but this movie pays tribute to the previous four Scream films and skewers the idea of toxic fan culture and the fascination with legacy sequels. Each Scream movie had to make new rules for slasher movies, and this one is no different.
The creative team of Radio Silence (Matt Bettinelli-Olpin and Tyler Gillett) and the writers Guy Busick and James Vanderbilt crafted a film here that pays homage to the ones in the past but sets the franchise up for a bright future. We’ll have to see if Scream 6 can continue the hot streak when it releases next year.
You can read our review of Scream right here.
For more on horror, make sure to check out the full Fright-A-Thon 2022 Index for all the articles and content we’ve written so far.