Top 70 Movies Shown on “The Last Drive In with Joe Bob Briggs”

For over 40 years, the legendary John Bloom (or as he’s professionally known “Joe Bob Briggs”) has served as a champion of the types of films that most critics wouldn’t touch.  Between reviewing movies at drive-ins and grindhouses, and promoting low budget gems on his numerous TV series over the years, Joe Bob has certainly done a lot for not just horror, but genre films in general.

And in the process of doing so, he unintentionally created a fan base of misfits who all found a wonderful and welcoming community with each other in their shared fandom.  He remains the quintessential drive in critic and beacon of unusual movies, and still manages a freakish encyclopedia-style knowledge of these movies.

So in honor of his 70th birthday, we thought it would be fitting and fun to look at his most recent series The Last Drive In on Shudder, and rank the top 70 movies he’s shown on there (yes top 70)!!!

70. Hogzilla – We all know how bad this movie is, but it has to be on this list just for the fact that Darcy helped bring it back from the dead just to show it, much to the dismay of Joe Bob!

69. Pieces – It’s dumb, it’s fun.  We all remember it for the infamous “bastards!!!” line and that’s about it.
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68. Tammy and the T-Rex – They only made it because they had the dinosaur animatronic and it does the best it can and has fun with that resource.

67. Popcorn – It appeals to the film buff in me, but that’s about it.

66. Deep Red – Decent giallo, but not even in Argento’s top 10.

65. Evilspeak – Clint Howard is fun, and it utilizes the tech of the time interestingly.

64. Butcher, Baker, Nightmare Maker – Great murder mystery, but very dated in a lot of ways.

63. Brain Damage – Bizarre in every way that’s awesome.
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62. Halloween 5: The Revenge of Michael Myers – Decent in its own right, but feels like a lesser version of Halloween 4.

61. Habit – Cool indie vampire movie that does the most with what it has.

60. Terror Train – Remains an okay early 80s slasher, mostly worth it for Jamie Lee Curtis’ performance.

59. Uncle Sam – It knows exactly how dumb it is and makes for a great 4th of July watch!

58. Maniac – About as grindhouse and gritty as it gets with amazing Tom Savini gore.

57. Basket Case – My man Belial, nuff said!

56. Blood Rage – Not the most memorable slasher, but great for Thanksgiving!

55. Humanoids from the Deep – Epitome of the low budget monster movie from Roger Corman and the suits look pretty good considering the resources they had.

54. Blood Harvest – Movie is kind of a mess, but Tiny Tim elevates it.
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53. Ice Cream Man – Clint Howard at his finest and just a fun disturbing slasher.

52. Scare Package – Has fun with the tropes and features the man himself Joe Bob!

51. Nightbreed – Often overlooked Clive Barker adaptation that feels trippy and dreamlike in a fascinating way.

50. Maniac Cop 2 – Solid sequel, but won’t rank as  high as the first.  Plus we still get Bruce Campbell.

49. Madman – Fun camp slasher that was largely forgotten by general audiences.

48. Tenebrae – Another awesome Argento giallo that’s highlighted by John Saxon’s performance.

47. The Little Shop of Horrors – In retrospect, it feels more like a stage play, but it’s great for its era and features Dick Miller and Jack Nicholson.
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46. Don’t Open Till Christmas – Not the best made Christmas horror movie, but unique enough in that Santa is the one getting killed instead of being the killer.

45. Chopping Mall – Pure 80s cheese complete with robots and commercialism!

44. Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer – Almost feels like snuff at times and really sticks with you.

43. Castle Freak – Gorgeous location and one of the overlooked gems by the trio of Stuart Gordon, Jeffrey Combs, and Barbara Crampton.

42. Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers – One of the better sequels in the franchise and feels like a soft reboot.  Plus it introduced the world to Danielle Harris.

41. Black Christmas – OG Christmas slasher that brilliantly uses POV and none of the remakes have come close to it.

40. Society – Disgustingly awesome makeup design that makes you even less trusting of rich people.
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39. One Cut of the Dead – Great underrated zombie gem that goes meta and messes with your expectations.

38. Tourist Trap – Great early example of a 70s slasher that wasn’t trying to copy Halloween.  Plus those masks are creepy as hell.

37. The Changeling – Tragic, but compelling story led by a powerhouse performance by the legendary George C. Scott.

36. Cannibal Holocaust – Definitely not for everyone (especially with the real animal cruelty), but it invented found footage and conveys a compelling commentary about what it means to be civilized versus savage.

35. Elvira’s Haunted Hills – Elvira at her finest because she feels much more at home in 19th century Europe than modern day America.

34. Dial Code for Santa – Great killer Santa movie that was basically the plot of Home Alone but came first.

33. Nosferatu the Vampyre – Eerie and hypnotic adaptation of the classic vampire story with an incredibly creepy performance by Klaus Kinski.

32. Heathers – Feels like the much darker, 80s version of Mean Girls.
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31. The Stepfather – Joe Bob put it perfectly when he said this was basically a Lifetime movie, but it’s done in more of a horror style and Terry O’Quinn is creepy as hell.

30. Audition – Not exactly a “fun” movie unless you’re a sadist, but damn is it brutal and effective movie that taps into how people use each other.

29. A Christmas Horror Story – It’s the Pulp Fiction of Christmas horror movies, where each vignette is just as interesting as the last.  Plus it features William Shatner.

28. Head of the Family – Sure it’s very direct to video quality, but it commits 100% to its absurd premise, and the titular giant head is a genuinely interesting character.

27. Frankenhooker – This movie knows exactly what it is and just has fun with its premise.  Plus awesome makeup effects.

26. Deathgasm – Fun little demonic comedy that speaks to the metalhead in all of us.

25. Hellbender – Epitome of low budget DIY filmmaking, and kind of amazing that it as co-written and co-directed by a family.

24. Demons – The Italian classic that blends demonic horror with a love of all things cinema.  It boasts amazing makeup effects and feels like the perfect time capsule of the year it was made.

23. The Little Girl That Lives Down the Lane – Stellar performances by a very young Jodie Foster and an uncomfortably creepy Martin Sheen.
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22. Maniac Cop – This movie fits the perfect balance between fun/cheesy and violent/gritty with the talents of Tom Atkins and Bruce Campbell.  It pulls off the swapping out its protagonist trope subversion very well, and who could forget the legendary Robert Z’Dar?!

21. House of the Devil – 80’s nostalgia is everywhere, but this is one of the few movies that actually feels like it could have been made in the year it’s set.  It has such a great sense of dread and foreboding throughout and winds up being an excellent supernatural portrayal of the 1980’s Satanic Panic.

20. Fried Barry – Less of a movie and more a music video on acid, it’s a trippy visual experience!

19. Class of 1984 – Having been a former teacher, this one speaks to me personally.  It’s kind of darkly hilarious the way this movie starkly contrasts the inspiring educator trope with a badass teacher that just straight up kills the dangerous criminal students.  Plus we get a very young, pre-Back to the Future Michael J. Fox.

18. Sleepaway Camp – Other than Friday the 13th, this is probably the quintessential camp slasher movie.  It boasts countless quotable lines (“eat shit and live”), and was the entire basis for Felissa Rose being the “mangled dick expert” on The Last Drive In.

17. Nosferatu – It may be silent, it may be very short, but this movie remains the basis for so many pieces of vampire lore that are part of the mythos today.
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16. Ginger Snaps – Another great indie gem from Canada, it successfully uses werewolf lore as a metaphor for sexual awakening and a coming of age story.

15. The Hills Have Eyes – It’s violent, it’s gritty, and it involves cannibal mutants.  What more could you want from this subgenre?

14. Hello Mary Lou: Prom Night II – Vastly surpassing its predecessor, this movie goes full supernatural and gives us one of the most fun and lovable female horror villains in the form of Mary Lou.

13. The Love Witch – Much like House of the Devil, this movie almost feels like it was made in the 1960s and captures that era perfectly, along with boasting such a fun and unique visual style.
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12. Mayhem – This one goes out to everyone who’s ever hated a job before.  It’s like a better version of The Belko Experiment.

11. Train to Busan – Violent, brutal, and heartfelt, there’s no way to watch this without shedding a tear.

10. Phantasm – There are few things creepier than Angus Scrimm yelling, “Boy!!!”, plus the score is one of the creepiest, but hypnotic out there.

9. The Exorcist III – Directed by its own author William Peter Blatty, this is an intellectual horror movie that delivers on the scares, including one of the best jump scares in horror history.

8. Mandy – Visceral, trippy, and violent, Nicolas Cage is perfect in this gritty action thriller, especially with that axe!

7. Bride of Re-Animator – This one is (almost) as good as the original, expanding on Herbert West’s madness and upping the ante in every way.

6. Re-Animator – Jeffrey Combs was born to play Herbert West, in all of his smug, mad glory.  This movie has such a dark sense of humor, but never feels like it’s going into parody.
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5. Night of the Living Dead – It’s the zombie classic that basically invented the modern interpretation of what zombies are.  Without it, we wouldn’t even have that subgenre today.

4. Hellraiser – Without a doubt, Clive Barker’s masterpiece that is both a dark love story, and a BDSM fantasy.  What’s fascinating is that Pinhead is barely in the movie, but he makes such a lasting impression.

3. Hellbound: Hellraiser II – This sequel just barely beats out the original because of the way it shows us hell itself and expands on its own mythology.  The whole thing looks like a painting come to life in a nightmare.

2. Halloween – It may not have been the original slasher, but it’s the one that started all the tropes and kicked off a massive trend. Horror was never the same again after Michael Myers, and people are still fascinated with his character to this day.

1. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre – Of course the #1 pick had to be Joe Bob’s personal favorite film and them movie that best represents everything grindhouse and drive in.  It’s the movie he literally wrote an essay on and the one that best exemplifies all that we love about him and The Last Drive In!
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What were your favorite movies from the list?  Which ones would you have included?  Let us know in the comments!


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