Now Scream This: Gruesome And Gross Horror Movies To Indulge In This Thanksgiving

(Welcome to Now Scream This, a column where horror experts Chris Evangelista and Matt Donato tell you what scary, spooky, and spine-tingling movies are streaming and where you can watch them.)

Matt: After indulging in Thanksgiving gluttony, who wants to leave the house? Let alone squeeze into pants that "fit?" This holiday season, Chris and I suggest you batten down the hatches for some streaming horror marathons instead of rushing to theaters. I mean, see Knives Out at some point. Just not when you're shaking yourself out of turkey-based tryptophan comas (actually a myth). Without further adieu, "Now Scream This" presents our "All The Trimmings" marathon with an emphasis on gore, guts, and practical effects that resemble staple November side dishes. 

Chris: Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! It's the time of year where you eat like a monster and fall asleep at 2 p.m. It's also a time spent mostly inside, and while some jerks out there probably want to watch a football game or something lame like that, horror movies are a much better choice. This list is all about horror movies that, like Thanksgiving food, extra. Movies that pack on the blood and gore the way Thanksgiving food packs on calories. Dig in! 

The Devil’s Rejects

Now Streaming on Shudder

Matt: How can we write about go-go-gore flicks without Rob Zombie's mention? Maybe I'm just nostalgic for a time when the Firefly gang was given their proper due (ugh, 3 From Hell). Maybe The Devil's Rejects is Zombie's nastiest, most prolific, often nihilistic slice of serial psychotics of the most revolting order. Sid Haig, Bill Moseley, and Sheri Moon Zombie all massacring in this Texas Chain Saw Massacre inspired world architected by the once rocker turned genre provocateur. Unlike other Zombie films, there's legitimate character development and world-building no matter how unsightly or perverse. If we're talking about "trimming," you can't ignore faces being stripped of flesh.

Chris: This will probably get me banned from the horror community, but this is the only good Rob Zombie movie. Lords of Salem comes very close to being good, but fails because Sheri Moon Zombie shouldn't be the lead of any film. But hey, Devil's Rejects

Upgrade

Now Streaming on HBO Go

Matt: Leigh Whannell serves such a wonderful "action horror" treat with Upgrade. Logan Marshall-Green plays not only a paralyzed victim hellbent on revenge, but a microchip controlled superassassin with deathly dangerous skills. Between Ginsu-swift knifework, snapped limbs like flimsy twigs, and a particular sequence where Grey Trace headshots a thug with his own implanted arm cannon, think John Wick meets Her. Upgrade is fun, ferocious, and wildly outrageous. Also doused in waves of cybernetic henchmen blood! Not to mention cinematography ensures fluid fight sequences that expose every droplet of spilled insides.

Chris: Upgrade rules. Leigh Whannell rules. More movies like this, please. 

Saw

Now Streaming on Amazon Prime

Matt: Is James Wan's Saw the goriest of all the franchise entries? Not by a long shot. Is it one of the most infamous "torture porn" movies in that it kickstarted a mercilessly grotesque subgenre hinged on vile practical effects? Indeed. Has that often-hated subgenre ever appropriately paid reverence to Wan's masterfully involved "whodunnit" puzzle of the utmost dread? Other filmmakers simply diluted Wan's formula down to "ew gross" moments with gimmicky reasons to threaten innocent lives. Credit the duo of Wan and Whannell for influencing countless copycats who could never achieve their creation of a modern horror icon (Billy or Jigsaw, take your pick).

Chris: I am not a big Saw franchise fan, but I do think the first film is strong – it's a small-scale, extra-nasty horror movie that somehow spawned an increasingly ridiculous series. 

Thankskilling 

Now Streaming on Tubi

Matt: Jordan Downey, the miracle worker behind indie sensation The Head Hunter, started his career with the microbudget slasher Thankskilling. Inarguably, Mr. Downey gets credit for crafting what can only be described as the most Thanksgiving horror offering ever (recently challenged by Marcus Dunstan's Pilgrim). Imagine a world in which a homicidal turkey puppet murders college kids as an act of festive defiance. Is it a "good" movie? More refined tastes might scoff at this "canned cranberry sauce" of the proverbial horror dinner table – but you know those people who *crave* that cylindrical maroon gelatin? Let's just say there are audiences for everything, and if an axe-swinging turkey dishing holiday puns after each kill – plus WAY MORE ridiculous happenings – sounds remotely fun, why not get messy with Turkie's spree?

Chris: I tried watching this movie one Thanksgiving. I got about three minutes into it before I said, "Oh, fuck this." But hey, maybe you'll like it! Matt did! 

Nekrotronic

Now Streaming on Shudder

Matt: Let me beat Chris to the punch here and admit while Nekrotronic is on this list for goriness, and is new to Shudder streaming, there's a disappointing lack of story development in Kiah Roache-Turner's sophomore feature. Visuals dazzle as a ghost hunting phone app turns out to hide an actual demonic possession network, but comedy rarely sustains while the tone – supported by candy-pop neon aesthetics – lands rather flat. So why recommend Nekrotronic? Well, my timeline is filled with supporters who are pushing others to watch the now-available title, and it does mix The Matrix with exorcism subjects in new ways. Plus, we're here to recommend gore and that's what Nekrotronic does best. Didn't work for me, but there are some serious Doom video game influences and killer production designs that might be worth Monica Bellucci's miscast villain.

Chris: It wouldn't be Now Scream This without at least one Matt pick that I haven't seen a single frame of. 

Evil Dead (2013)

Now Streaming on Syfy and DirecTV

Chris: I don't love the Evil Dead remake as some of my fellow horror fans do. The biggest problem is the script, which has some exceedingly dumb dialogue and paper-thin character work. That said, there's a lot to appreciate here. I love the overall vibe of the movie, which is dark and demonic. I also love how heavily it leans into the horror – this thing almost never lets up, it's scene after scene of never-jangling stuff. And then there's the gore. There's so much of it. And most of it is done practically, with make-up. I have a soft-spot in my heart for gory make-up effects, especially since they're so rare these days. The premise is mostly the same as the original: young people get trapped in a cabin and find a book that summons demons. There's a drug addiction angle thrown in here that's good in theory, poor in execution. But hey: that gore! 

Matt: According to me, as written on this very website, Evil Dead is the 9th best horror movie of the decade. This is now canon. I will not be taking questions or comments at this time.

Revenge

Now Streaming on Shudder

Chris: Revenge is a rape-revenge thriller, which is an understandably triggering subject. Which means this movie is not for everyone, and there's no shame in avoiding this thing. But if you can stomach it you'll be treated to a piece of pop-art splattered with gore. The bloodletting here is insane, to the point where it becomes comical. Matilda Lutz plays Jen, a woman sexually assaulted and left for dead by his boyfriend and his two dumb hunting buddies. Jen rises up for – you guessed it – revenge, resulting in a brutal saga that burns itself into your brain. 

Matt: I love how Revenge grossly overestimates how much blood the human body holds or can lose. That ending is QUITE the climax.

Terrifier

Now Streaming on Netflix

Chris: A disclaimer: Terrifer is a bad movie. It's utterly pointless from start to finish. I'm only including it here because it fits with our theme because, quite frankly, it's one of the goriest movies I've ever seen. This film – which involves a killer clown terrorizing people on Halloween – hammers you over the head with its wanton brutality, with one scene after another loaded up with blood and guts. Like I said: it's pointless. But the film does have a following, and who am I to judge? I like garbage too!

Matt: Outsiders often describe horror movies as these no purpose, hateful, kill-obsessed time waters that throw death at the camera just for the excuse of perverse torment. Terrifier does nothing to prove otherwise (boo).

Final Destination 2

Now Streaming on Hulu

Chris: The best entry in the series, Final Destination 2 also has the best kills. Like all the Final Destination films, Final Destination 2 follows a group of people who survive an accident only to have death come calling for them one by one after the fact. The first film took itself a tad too seriously for my tastes, whereas Final Destination 2 has fun with all of its Rube Goldberg-style death trap. Sadly, the series would never again reach the glorious heights of this sequel, and each following entry got worse and worse. But we'll always have Final Destination 2 and its glorious scenes of people being cut in half by flying barbed wire fences. 

Matt: There's a reason horror fans can't drive behind logging trucks without feeling dread or anxiety before flop sweats. That reason is Final Destination 2, the best of the Final Destination franchise.

Hellbound: Hellraiser 2

Now Streaming on Shudder

Chris: Hellraiser 2 doesn't have the artistry of the first film, but what it lacks in vision it makes up for in gruesomeness. The first film was pretty gruesome too, of course, but Hellraiser 2 takes it to the next level. There's a scene where a man slashes himself apart because he thinks he's covered in bugs that's one of the most disturbing things I have ever seen in my life. Here, Pinhead and those dang Cenobites are still mostly chilling in the background – they wouldn't become slasher-movie characters until the third entry. The story involves a mental hospital, a crazed doctor, and lots and lots of skin removal. Doesn't that sound like the ultimate Thanksgiving movie? 

Matt: Hellraiser is the one major horror franchise I haven't marathoned front-to-back just yet. Which is to say, I believe Chris here.