As cozy as the hamlet of Estes Park but as huge and foreboding as the hotel it is named after, the Stanley Film Festival is the right festival at the right place and time. This is the only horror film festival you'll ever attend where the creepiness of the top-notch programming doesn't stay only on the screen. The setting itself, in the Stanley Hotel — the inspiration for Stephen King's The Shining — makes you feel like you could be bumped off at any moment walking in the dark. Big, important horror films and high-caliber guests from the genre made last year bloody good, and this year promises to be a cut above.
Readers' choice: Starz Denver Film Festival