When Blumhouse announced they were working on an adaptation of the classic 70’s show Fantasy Island, some fans of the original series – who also knew what Blumhouse is – were genuinely flabbergasted. After all, this is the same studio that gave us such modern horror classics as Get Out and the Paranormal Activity franchise. What could be so scary about Mr. Roarke and Tattoo?
To answer that question, Blumhouse produced an entirely new take on the idyllic show. The result was Blumhouse’s Fantasy Island – a chilling horror flick that wasn’t loved by the critic, but, like so many other films made by the studio, has garnered a considerable cult following. If you enjoyed the thrills and scares of Fantasy Island, here are 12 great movies that might be right up your alley!
Escape Room (2019)
The core concept behind Fantasy Island is that a group of strangers suddenly come face to face with situations that defy their comprehension. Now, what happens if we take the idea of a ragtag bunch, only this time we give them all a shared hobby? That’s the premise of 2019’s Escape Room.
When an innocent pastime becomes a deadly gauntlet, a group of escape room fans suddenly discovers that the puzzles in this particular game are to die for! The film got a sequel recently, but – if the review scores are anything to go by – we’d say you should stick with the first film only.
Ready or Not (2019)
There are a few moments more terrifying in any person’s life than meeting the in-laws, and Ready or Not takes this primal fear and turns it up to 11. Directed by the same team behind the new Scream reboot, Ready or Not is a horrifying (and sometimes humorous) flick that portrays a deadly game of hide-and-seek between a young bride and her husband’s eccentric family. Did we mention that the entire family explodes in a spectacular fashion if they fail to kill the bride before the night’s over? No? Well, that happens.
Truth or Dare (2018)
It seems like a common trend in our list has turned out to be games – which is funny, since Fantasy Island sounds just like the name of some kind of reality TV show (perhaps Blumhouse might use this idea for another reboot of an innocent 70s show turned into a horror flick.)
In Truth or Dare (which was also produced by Blumhouse,) we follow a group of college students as they across some sort of malignant presence that manifests through the otherwise innocent game of truth or dare. The demon somehow possessed the game – as in, the entire concept of the truth or dare game is possessed – cursing anyone who plays it. Kind of like The Ring, but this one has a “creepy” CGI smile instead of Sadako.
The Forest (2016)
A common trend in the 2020 reimagining of Fantasy Island is that some fantasies can turn into veritable nightmares. When Sara Price learns of her sister’s apparent suicide in Japan’s infamous Aokigahara Forest, there’s nothing she wishes more than to see her alive again – but these kinds of wishes must always come at a price.
The Forest is a thrilling horror film with some truly unsettling imagery based on Japanese folklore and the hundreds of urban legends surrounding the so-called “Suicide Forest.” If you’re a fan of Japanese myths and the yōkai, then definitely give this one a go.
Based on the Swiss graphic novel Sandcastle and directed by The Sixth Sense‘s M. Night Shyamalan, Old has all the right ingredients to become a mindbending horror experience – and it delivers. While growing old might be a common fear in most individuals, the people trapped in Old‘s secluded beach might be the ones that fear it most, seeing as they’re aging an entire lifetime in a single afternoon.
House on Haunted Hill (1999)
Not to be confused with the outstanding Vincent Price original, 1999’s House on Haunted Hill is a haunted house flick done right. The movie tells the story of a group of strangers invited to a sinister house on a haunted hill – props to the film’s name for conveniently establishing the movie’s setting.
The strangers are offered $1 million if they survive the night, but that won’t be easy with all the ghosts roaming around the estate when the lights go out. The original might be a tad better in terms of plot – and Vincent Price – but this remake is still a fun flick that lives up to the expectations.
Are you afraid of elevators? No? How about elevators possessed by the devil? Sounds much scarier, right? That’s what this group of strangers discovers when they board an express ride to hell in 2010’s Devil. Somewhat cheesy, but the M. Night Shyamalan script turns Devil into a “so bad it’s good” guilty pleasure for any horror fan.
You’re Next (2011)
In this low-budget slasher, a band of deranged killers finds out that they might have to choose their victims more carefully next time – if there’s even a next time. When the tables turn after a murder party goes wrong, young Erin goes from victim to Rambo real quick. You’re Next might be more of an action thriller than a horror flick – kind of like John Wick, but with more animal masks.
Fermat’s Room (2007)
Four brilliant mathematicians get invited by a mysterious man called Fermat to solve a series of riddles. The only problem is that failure to solve the puzzles results in death by crushing. The world of mathematics can be rather cruel.
Fermat’s Room is a Spanish thriller that will keep you at the edge of your seat – and will even make you feel a bit guilty for falling asleep during math class when you were in school.
While Fantasy Island is all about fantasies gone wrong, 1997’s Cube setting is more like an outright nightmare for claustrophobes. In a similar plot to Fermat’s Room, this movie features an unlikely group of individuals with dubious backgrounds who seemingly get abducted by some sort of sentient cubical prison. It’s as trippy as it is terrifying – definitely worth a watch if you’re into obscure sci-fi thrillers.
Eden Lake (2008)
This one falls more in line with Fantasy Island‘sidea of idyllic escapades gone terribly wrong. Eden Lake follows a couple as they retire for a quiet, romantic weekend – and are promptly interrupted by a gang of rowdy teenagers. Things escalate quickly, and soon, the couple runs for their lives as the hooligans prove deadlier than they look. While some of the film’s action scenes can look downright cheesy, the movie remains an enjoyable thriller that’s more than worth the price of admission.
The Cabin in the Woods (2011)
So, for most of Fantasy Island, the place we know as a resort to make your wildest dreams come true actually turns out to be a fear factory. However, what if that was the purpose from the very beginning? That is the idea behind the brilliant The Cabin in the Woods.
What begins as yet another teenage slasher soon turns out to be a wildly creative analysis of the entire horror genre, complete with all sorts of nasty creatures and gallons of blood. The Cabin in the Woods might be the most significant film for any die-hard horror fan, and it’s definitely one that should go into any film buff’s collection.