Looking back over the past twelve months has been an eye-opening experience for me. I had this feeling that 2009 had been a renaissance year for genre films-and then I started compiling my best of the year list and discovered that while a lot of horror films came out between January and December, finding ten great ones was going to require a lot more effort than I'd originally anticipated.

I didn't see every horror film released in '09 (I don't go to festivals so I missed out on things like Rec 2 and small market releases like Carriers), but I did see most of them. More than enough, in fact, to make me comfortable talking about the ten best of the past 365 days. This list is what I've come up with. Like any list I craft, it's never entirely etched in stone because I'm fickle and my moods can change on a whim. However, after thinking about it for two weeks, I'm comfortable that this is the closest it's ever going to get to concrete. Could one movie come off in favor of another? Yes (and I've got a movie that just missed making the cut that I've vacillated on quite a bit), but I think that's basically true of any list. So, without further ado, here are my top 10 horror films of 2009.

Click past the jump for the full list.
categories Features, Horror