Body count busting baddies from the big screen
The Purge: Anarchy is putting the fear into cinema-goers as we speak so we take a look at the most mental mask wearing movie killers… The follow up to last summer's surprise horror hit The Purge, Anarchy features a merciless skateboard gang wearing freaky faceplates on the one night of the year when all crime is legal. You don't want to bump into them down a dark alley.
King of horror Tobe Hooper unleashed the terror of Leatherface in his 1974 classic The Texas Chain Saw Massacre which spawned five sequels and a prequel. Wearing a mask hewn from the skin of his victims the hulking beast terrorised lost travellers at his backwoods home carving them up with a range of power tools and using their bones to make furniture. You won't get that down IKEA.
John Carpernter's 1978 shocker Halloween made a star of Jamie Lee Curtis facing off with the sinister Michael Myers. Escaped from a mental institution the knife-wielding maniac returns to terrorise his home town. Inspired by Hitchcock's Psycho Carpenter's film features an eery synthesiser soundtrack ramping the tension towards a nerve jangling climax rarely rivalled in horror.
Hockey mask wearing killer Jason Voorhees returns to Camp Crystal Lake to carve up the kids. Inspiring ten sequels and a TV series, director Sean S. Cunningham conceived Friday the 13th in the wake of Halloween's success and pushed the body count with one of the sickest death scenes featuring a throat slashed Kevin Bacon in his first film role.
Anthony Hopkins brought Hannibal Lecter to a wider audience with his portrayal of the twisted psychologist in the Oscar-nominated serial killer thriller Silence of the Lambs. The cannibal boasts, “I ate his liver with some fava beans and a nice chianti!” Based on the books by Thomas Harris further adventures included scalping one victim and eating his brain. Delicious.
A tribute to the year of the pig in which Jigsaw began his wicked work, the killer and his acolytes don a rotting pig's head mask before subjecting their victims to torture by death trap. James Wan, producer of the long running Saw franchise, used a pig's head to symbolise Jigsaw's pessimistic view of the world and just generally scare the bejeezus out of people with skeletons in their closet.
Wes Craven brought the Ghostface killer to the screen in 1996. Scream triggered a renaissance of the slasher horror genre the director helped create in the 70s. Kevin Williamson's creation phones his victims asking, "What's your favourite scary movie?" With meta twists and multiple murders it paved the way for three sequels starring Neve Campbell.