BloodGuts UK Horror Awards 2023
The best of horror from the past 12 months
Art the Clown (David Howard Thornton) - TERRIFIER 2 - [WINNER]
Chef Slowik (Ralph Fiennes) - THE MENU
Ghostface (???) - SCREAM
The Grabber (Ethan Hawke) - THE BLACK PHONE
Pearl (Mia Goth) - X
A small independent feature who has now appeared in 3 features yet remained relatively under the radar until 2022. TERRIFIER 2 hit the headlines and got audiences flocking back to cinemas as news outlets deemed it the most violent horror film ever made. Yet somehow, David Howard Thornton's Art the Clown somehow has a charm that transcends the depravities his escapades will take him.
Daniel Kaluuya - NOPE
David Howard Thornton - TERRIFIER 2
Ethan Hawke - THE BLACK PHONE [WINNER]
Ralph Fiennes - THE MENU
Sebastian Stan - FRESH
Ethan Hawke has never played a villain in his career. Something stipulated in his career spanning contract... Until now and oh boy have we been missing out. His turn as the terrifying child grabber in the adaptation of Joe Hill's short story is both scary and brilliant. More please Mr Hawke.
Amber Midthunder - PREY
Jessica Alexander - A BANQUET
Lauren LaVera - TERRIFIER 2
Maika Monroe - WATCHER
Mia Goth - X [WINNER]
A tough category with horror leading the way for female leads in 2022. PREY gave the macho muscle of PREDATOR to give us a new hero for a new generation. Maika Monroe and Jessica Alexander give paranoid nuance a new front and Lauren LaVera tought us that the final girl can still be badass. The forthright winner for best lead Actress though is undoubtably awarded to Mia Goth who's turn as Maxine/Pearl in Ti West's X was chaotic, frayed and heartfelt. A transition and extension of the character through PEARL not only made Mia Goth a household name but gave us a franchise to fall in love with.
Best Actor or Actress In A Non-English Language Film
Chumisa Cosa - GOOD MADAM [WINNER]
Fedja van Huét - SPEAK NO EVIL
Mariana Anghileri - ON THE 3RD DAY
Noomi Rapace - LAMB
Siiri Solalinna - HATCHING
GOOD MADAM has really slid under many moviegoers radar and that is a crime. The paranoia, alienation and sheer horror of Jenna Cato Bass' South African genre film is itself one of 2022's best films and it's elevated by Chumisa Cosa's spellbinding performance of a maid who is desperate to see well for her own child while breaking down in a strangers home. If you've not seen GOOD MADAM, make sure it's the next thing you do.
Best Actor or Actress In An Independent Film
Austin Chunn - PLAYDURIZM
Ed Hartland - WHEN THE SCREAMING STARTS
Gem Deger - PLAYDURIZM [WINNER]
Lanise Antoine Shelley - FRESH HELL
Sophie Bawks-Smith - HONEYCOMB
With nominations for both Gem and Austin, there is no denying the tour de force bought on by PLAYDURIZM. The film plays like a romanticised blend of BROKEBACK MOUNTAIN directed by David Cronenberg until the films shocking reveal which manages to feel both dirty and shocking. This is how it's meant to feel and the film's sharp 180 gives you whiplash all thanks to Gem Deger (who also writes and directs) delivering such a powerfully moving performance.
Best Supporting Actor
Bill Skarsgárd - BARBARIAN
Burn Gorman - WATCHER
David Arquette - SCREAM [WINNER]
Elliot Fullam - TERRIFIER 2
Keith David - NOPE
26 years after Wes Craven's meta slasher gave new life to the genre and gave us some of the best character's on film. Local cop Dewey played by David Arquette, seemed like the dumbest cop on film and over 4 consecutive films only now has he been given the depth of someone with much more to give. It's had to take his character's downfall to really give Dewey some meat to his soulful character and age has served both him and Arquette well. His character became a standout of legacy characters and became the MVP in SCREAM 2022.
Best Supporting Actress
Jasmin Savoy Brown - SCREAM [WINNER]
Jenna Ortega - X
Kristen Stewart - CRIMES OF THE FUTURE
Lucy Martin - THE SEED
Ruby Stokes - A BANQUET
Last year Jasmin Savoy Brown the Rising Star In Horror award and now a mere 12 months later she's proven why. While her character wasn't the front and centre of SCREAM, she made every scene she is in the most memorable, especially a scene for scene shock of the sofa kill that was more than entertaining, not to mention her quips that kept the film very tongue in cheek.
Rising Star Of Horror
Mia Goth [WINNER]
How do you blast through the doors and welcome yourself into an over-saturated market of talented actresses? By giving not one, but two stupendous performances in a single film, delving deeper into one of those to a dedicated prequel film within the same filming period and then announcing a third film in the series all before the UK have even got to see PEARL. Mia is no stranger to horror with turns in A CURE FOR WELLNESS and SUSPERIA but with the X series in full swing and her performance as Pearl outshining everyone around her, no mean feat when you are starring alongside 2022's fellow castmate Jenna Ortega (SCREAM, WEDNESDAY). With even bolder things to come (INFINTY POOL from Brandon Cronenberg) it's a privilege to give the award for Rising Star Of Horror to Mia Goth who shares this alongside previous winners Anya Taylor-Joy and Jasmin Savoy Brown.
Christian Tafdup - SPEAK NO EVIL
Dario Argento - DARK GLASSES
Scott Derrickson - THE BLACK PHONE [WINNER]
Ti West - X
Travis Stevens - A WOUNDED FAWN
Scott Derrickson has proven himself as this generations horror auteur. Bringing us SINISTER, The EXORCISM OF EMILY ROSE and DOCTOR STRANGE before he got to his horror phase, his return back to the genre in 2022 gave us one of the most terrifying villains in recent horror cinema but also held no bars when it came to terrorising the youthful cast and gave us a mystery everyone invested in.
David Cronenberg - CRIMES OF THE FUTURE
Justin Bull - A BANQUET
Scott Derrickson, C. Robert Cargill - THE BLACK PHONE
Seth Reiss, Will Tracy - THE MENU [WINNER]
Ti West - X
THE MENU was a star studded feast and one of three films in 2022 using food as a metaphor for more sinister meanings. Fortunately, Seth Reiss and Will Tracy's script is as razor sharp as the sterling knives used in Chef Slowik's kitchen. The blend of humour and unravelling of random guests in a celebrated chef's reclusive restaurant is closer to the likes of GLASS ONION than SAW but the film lulls you into a false sense of security and whips the rug from underneath. Once the real game play begins, the film becomes a sophisticated slasher taking out guests one glorious taster after another.
Benjamin Kirk Nielsen - WATCHER
Brenna Rangott - DASHCAM
Eliot Rockett - X [WINNER]
Jarkko T. Laine - HATCHING
Ksusha Genenfeld - A WOUNDED FAWN
Somehow Eliot Rangott managed to give us a film that looked straight off the reel of Daniel Pearl and made out like X was a spiritual sequel to THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE. The opening shot with a barn forming a rough 4:3 ratio expanding out into the modern 1.90:1 is just beautiful to watch fold out and interjecting the film with sharp cuts from a handheld cam just breathe 70s. The film feels effortless in it's era and I can almost smell my nan's perma-dye through the screen.
Tyler Bates and Chelsea Wolfe - X
Foo Fighters - STUDIO 666
C J Mirra - A BANQUET [WINNER]
Disasterpiece - BODIES BODIES BODIES
Samuel Sim - THE FEAST
Firstly, can we take a moment to thank the heavens we had a musical horror film that was a blast from start to finish, not only that but FOO FIGHTERS blew it out the water to give us a thrash alt version of themselves against a backdrop of Bava-esque horror. But the real winner here is the tense and atmospheric wonder from C J Mirra. A BANQUET is an audiophiles haven and amongst empty rooms and a cast of three, the sound amplifies the drama and tension to extraordinary levels.
Best On-Screen Death
Death by fire - SCREAM
DJ Tongue - HALLOWEEN ENDS [WINNER]
Acid clean - TERRIFIER 2
The neighbour - WATCHER
Zombie orgy - THE SADNESS
Love it or loath it, HALLOWEEN ENDS was undeniably brutal. While the film reiterated the plot of HALLOWEEN IV and Rob Zombie's HALLOWEEN II and undid the plot twists of KILLS it still managed to give us some entertaining, albeit reduced, Michael murders. The most memorable and possibly of the new trilogy, is the moment he comes across a DJ and decides to use the tricks of the trade to smash his skull and leave his tongue resting on the record player still spinning.
Best Independent Film
WHO INVITED THEM
WHEN THE SCREAMING STARTS
The everlasting impact of watching PLAYDURIZM is life changing stuff. A film with no distribution deal and made on a low budget, it is overwhelming how much Gem Deger has achieved with this very personal and emotional film. Not only does it give us some of the most authentic Gay relationships on film, it gives us a protagonist to fall in love with and feel his pain every step of the way. Not only that but PLAYDURIZM is amazing to look at in it's cerebral neon lights and larger than life cast including Austin Chunn and Issy Stewart make a superb trio of talent.
Best Non-English Language Film
ON THE 3RD DAY
SPEAK NO EVIL
When it comes to horror, no matter how great the story, there has to be some element that transcends beyond the characters into the audience and INCANTATION gave us faith that audiences can still be left hiding behind their sofa's. Kevin Ko's fable of a mother seeking redemption for a curse she's passed on reminds us vividly of what not only makes found footage great, eastern cinema great but also the there are creatives out there still able to scare even the hardened horror fan. Based on scare factor alone, INCANTATION is the horror film of the year!
HOCUS POCUS 2
SLUMBER PARTY MASSACRE
TERRIFIER 2 [WINNER]
If anyone was to be the poster boy of the genre in 2022 then it would hands down be Art the Clown. The menace now 3 films in including anthology film ALL HALLOWS EVE, has really carved his name in what is the most depraved and graphic film of the year. Yet despite it's sheer brazen love for sleaze, Damien Leone's film goes above and beyond even the depths it's predecessor stepped and comes out on top. Giving us more clowning around and even buckling hardened horror, it somehow falls heavily between omedy and the most gross out horror film in history. Fortunately, it's not all gross and Lauren LaVera gives a lot of heart and soul to the new final girl.
Best TV Show
STRANGER THINGS [WINNER]
In recent years, no series has put horror in the reigns of pop culture quite like STRANGER THINGS and it's young adult friendly vibes may have softened to more mainstream audience over recent series but the latest season of the Netflix hit gave us Vecna and something to really scream about. The stakes were higher than ever and the soundtrack blasted over radio stations across the globe. 2022 really was the year of STRANGER THINGS.
Best Original Film
CRIMES OF THE FUTURE
THE BLACK PHONE
Within a year that gave us the return of Dario Argento and David Cronenberg, no director surprised genre fans more than Ti West. The director of THE SCRAMENT, HOUSE OF THE DEVIL and THE INNKEEPERS gave us a 70s throwback of sex and violence and a standout performance from Mia Goth who not only stole the show but spawned her own equally great prequel with PEARL. In a cast of talent including Jenna Ortega (SCREAM, WEDNESDAY), Brittany Snow (PROM NIGHT, WOULD YOU RATHER) and singer turned actor KID KUDI, the depths of depravity that West took them down was not only memorable, but spawned a reignited love for 70s shock horror and the sexual freedom that the video nasties expressed so fluently. Not only is X a great throwback to the golden age of horror but is an effectively creepy and grizzly slasher with a deeper memento of youth and the downsides of ageing.