Your Scariest Horror Movie Rec?

Okay, folks. I love horror movies and am hoping to see some recommendations that I don’t know of already. Personally, the gore and torture films aren’t what I consider scary horror. I’m talking about things that fill you with dread, are tense and leave indelible impressions. For instance… after seeing the Blair Witch Project I couldn’t get the sight of the guy standing in the basement corner out of my mind. Creepy is much more insidious than slash.

So please, if you’ve a mind to, tell what movies left that mark on you.

Comments | 28

  • Not the scariest, but.....

    …how about the movie Prophecy. It’s from 1979, so it’s a bit on the old side. It’s about a mutant bear thanks to poison waste in the water. Talk about never wanting to go camping again.

  • Throwback scares

    This genre is not a fav for me, but some titles do stand out from viewings years ago:

    -The Vanishing- the French/Dutch original, not the American remake
    -Don’t Look Now- Sutherland, Julie Christie, classic goth horror in Venice
    -Picnic at Hanging Rock- More a supernatural thriller than horror
    -The Stalker- Tarkovski’s masterpiece; haunting, slow and mind-bendingly unforgettable

  • The Ring

    The Ring, but it may have scared me more than others because I saw it in a movie theater.

    The Woman in Black was the most recent scary movie I have seen. I wasn’t expecting it to be so scary and disturbing because Harry Potter was the main character. 🙂

    • Yes!

      The Ring weirded me out too.

      Haven’t seen the Woman in Black but I remember the trailer and it looked good. It’s on the list!

      • Woman In Black

        The play is great, especially from a building-suspense-without-any-actual-visible-scary-stuff angle.

        I wasn’t quite as thrilled with the movie because it left less to the imagination.

        • Woman in Black and Insidious

          Recently saw them both and they’re both above-the-average of horror movies these days. There was something about Insidious that’s wormed its way into my heart. Still haven’t seen The Conjuring.

          I must say, TCM has been really good about this Halloween season.

          • Insidious 2

            Insidious 2 was very good. It continues the story in the first movie, with the same characters, but is even more creepy. On de Netflix.

  • Old but good if you missed it

    1987 version of The Stepfather is pretty creepy.

    • vintage

      My brother and cousin were the scary movie buffs/ devotees in our faimily and I being the younger was often dragged to all those horror double features that you were thankful it was still light out when the movie ended, thankful to embrace reality, actually thankful to be alive. I think they brought me and paid my way just for something to grab onto during the scariest moments, get a grip, because I dreaded many of these movies knowing I would soon be obligated to return if only to keep our tri-pack intact, united, also to prove my bravery. But people do love to be scared out of their wits, me, not so much not loving the over use of gore or warped insanity!.

      The three of us saw the Trilogy of Scanners, Altered States and one other all in one night, however we did not make the last film to be Q-ed up of the threesome series at the Tremont Theater in Boston that evening we had taken the T in to see when we were just youngsters taking advantage of the low budget deal, 3 for the price of one.

      The movie lineup itself, so happens, wasn’t what was so scary with 3x the horror in one grueling night, it was more the dingy/dark setting and rather the fact that we almost started a fire by accident in the upper balcony where we had seated creating a scary scene all by itself. I won’t go into detail but a live one was passed to us by a stranger in an “altered state” when it flared up, got away from me, ingnited a grease ladden popcorn box, ended up flamimg under my seat but was quickly extinguished by what was left of my drink, yes, the three stooges couldn’t have done it better. In a moment’s notice after a strange combination of smoke smells intermingled, we were spotted and identified then ousted in short manner knowing our guilt left without a struggle with the flashlight wielding attendant along with the backing of a scary crowd booing at us for disturbing and interupting the flow. One guy yelled, “I’m going to Scan your mf *ss” as we hurried along escorted relieved to breath the somewhat fresher air out on the street well ahead and a safe distance free from the uneasy crowd to depart much later, thankfully. I have to laugh when I think of this incident despite all it’s potential seriousness because of the mischief we used to get into and how ironically my brother and cousin both became police officers, one full time ( sergeant Cape Cod), one part time volunteer ( I guess fiction wasn’t enough) , serving/abiding the letter of the law and who in today’s world would not be as lenient if coming face to face with the likes of our former selves back in the day, I’m sure.

      Those two’s attraction to Horror and the Karma entailed would come back to haunt them one fateful night when they were left at the theater to finish watching the film in it’s entirety followed by a long walk home in the dark afterwards. My father ( who offered them an early exit/out they refused) was appalled they convinced and dragged him there in the first place inviting (conning) him just so, being under age, they could get in to see the Exorcist( he had no idea what was in store). My father didn’t make it past the first fifteen minutes and walked out. By the way those two did not walk home after the movie let out, they ran home over a mile away. I, to this day have never watched the entire movie and have no desire to!

      “Dr Phibes” with Vincent Price was another that haunted me for years thereafter when one of victims on the revenge list had his all his blood siphoned out pint by pint putting the bottles up on the mantel one by one until the last drop was drained, I had a hard time giving blood after that one! The 50’s classic “The Hand” was another I was dragged down to our basement late night in my cowboy pajamas to watch by another older brother who didn’t want to be alone, that movie imprint was definitely made for reoccuring nightmares. Stephen King’s Creep Show had a few choice selections!

      “Alien” was another that caught my friend off guard sitting next to me at the theater throwing his supersized cola and popcorn simultaneously up in the air to soak myself and my girlfriend at the time, thank goodness this was towards the end we suffered through. If I were to watch this film again compared to what’s out there for horror flicks today, not that I indulge, I would have to say it seems cheezey. I don’t think horror films can ever have the same effect the second time around without the element of surprise or the intensity of our initial disturbed fascination we all possess and taken advantage of. Especially a film like Blair Witch, which I saw alone having no idea of it’s background as a hoax. That really had me on edge, thankful for the pause feature on my VCR, enough to catch my breath and take a lap around the room pondering to return or not, but I did, it’s hard to resist!

      • Cool! These are

        the stories I love to take a minute and really read. Thanks rootrunner. I was also pulled out of bed to watch horror movies with my older brothers. And the Twilight Zone, The Outer Limits and One Step Beyond. Some movies get friend or family stories attached to them. I have a few attached to the Blair Witch alone.

        Horror movies do something for me. They make me happy. I like getting scared and spooked and then walking out with a big smile. That’s probably diagnosable in the new DSM (and they’re working on a pill for it I’m sure), but there it is.

        • Thanks

          It beats the hell out of trying to resolve the skatepark issue, holysmokes!!

          Yes, Twilight Zone, with Rod Serling, who I used to do a pretty good impersonation of sitting for a fireside chat introducing/bracing us for the twisted horror to come or his LSD awareness pa., how about Night Gallery?, I don’t think we missed an episode down in our homemade basement theater, also used for cub scout meetings, home movies w/ projector, my father’s neat bar, street hockey, ping pong,pinball, tinker work shop/dark room in another room.

          I still wish we had that massive RCA mahogany TV, a bulky piece of furniture in itself the cats had shredded the funky material on the front speaker panels. My brother, just a teen at the time, invented the first romote mute box I had ever seen, that the TV repair man ( yes things used to be repaired) helped him rig up( an over sized wooden box with a big deco switch spray painted black with cord to tv) because we we hated commercials so much, yeah all three of them between breaks, imagine that. There are so many commercials thesedays (drug companies) we record PBS shows and fast forward through the commercials which accounts for about half the air time .

          With my older brother’s mechanical genius, he should have been a millionaire but left home early (as did my oldest brother to New Mexico when I was just 9 yrs old) to pursue the back to the land movement in the early 70’s as an organic farmer/ homesteader in Up State NY where land was cheap, married with first son at 21 years of age, well before being n organic farmer was all the craze. This was a hard living back then breaking ground, been there myself much later 80’s elsewhere in VT for 15 years eking out a simular living but left that life. He bought his 76 acre beautiful farm with farmhouse, barn and equipment for 15,000 in Amish country in 1971 and lives there still although he travels alot. Ironically both his sons have thriving careers in New York city, seems to skip generations in our family back and forth again from farm to city.

          When we did stay up late to watch scary shows, we were lucky enough to have a fire place down in the basement growing up to roast/pop popcorn over the coals and have indoor cook outs in the middle of the winter which also served to dry out and eleviate the musty smells from annual spring flooding off our back hill that literally poured in as if a waterfall down the bulkhead the sump pump couldn’t even catch up with pooling up the entire basement up to 2″ to 3″ depth) The fireplace created the perfect ambiance for horror shows and helped diquise and cover the smell of sneaked cigarettes in the middle of the night, 4 boys, Bruins Hockey, Batman and horror flicks with parents that went to bed early to read, yeah baby!.

          • Night Gallery

            Absolutely loved Night Gallery. I still remember some of them, 40 years later! “Porterfoy! Porterfoy!” 😀

          • Still available

            You can catch Night Gallery late on basic cable. MeTV has it every once in a while. I saw one recently where a hunter had a spell cast on him by his african servant so that he would feel what the animals felt. The final seen showed the hunter’s head up on the wall with all his other trophies.

            In the movie category, I also recommend The Ninth Configuration – it’s not quite horror, but it is weird and well-done.

          • Night Gallery

            I remember that one! You can catch a lot of these old tv shows on hulu (if you have it) or youtube. I’ve spooked myself right out with a marathon of One Step Beyond there.

  • Invaders From Mars

    My brother couldn’t stop talking about the 1953 Invaders from Mars, which he called “the David Movie,” because the protagonist was a kid named David.

    He was particularly obsessed with the scene at the police station, where David had gone for help when none of the grown-ups would believe him that the Martians were taking over people’s minds.

    To David’s enormous relief, the police chief listened attentively to David and did not blow him off like every one else was doing. Finally, David thought, he would get help. That is, until the chief turned his head and David sees the red spot at the back of his neck, showing that he too was under control of the Martians.

    My wife and I have talked about setting up a family prank in which his wife, 3 sons, and other relatives would have red spots at the back of our necks, and act mesmerized for the benefit of my now 62 year old little brother… maybe at his next birthday, but so far we haven’t done it and maybe it is a bit too elaborate of a plot.

  • Ugh..

    The Shining… I still cannot watch it! I just gave myself the creeps thinking about it!

    • Yup.

      A favorite creepy film for me, too.

      (Note: Everybody here is invited to join the Great Movies group to discuss movies any time.)

      • Bank on it

        We all can’t seem to shake the inate morbid fascination within and that’s why horror movies will never disappear!

        • creepy is good

          Thanks for all these recs! I’m making a list of all I haven’t seen, and there are more than I thought. Recently caught “The Changeling” and that was a great creeper.

          • Jeepers Creepers

            Try this one. There’s a sequel too and it’s not as bad as most sequels. There’s also “Wrong Turn” Which is pretty gorey. But it’s kinda scary because it reminds me of driving through Halifax.

          • JC and WT

            I agree with both those summations. The original JC is the best of the series. And Wrong Turn isn’t for the squeamish.

  • The Conjuring

    From what I’ve seen in previews, it’s a real creeper and I can’t wait to see it.

    • so

      A friend saw “The Conjuring” and says he has the willies afterward at home alone now. Sounds good to me. The last time I had willies after a movie was back when we saw “The Blair Witch Project”.

  • Hauntings

    Finally broke down and got Netflix, and am sooo glad I did. There’s a smorgasbord of haunted house movies. I particularly recommend the paranormal-investigations-go-wrong genre. Delightful!

  • Haunter

    Not a ‘scariest’ horror movie, per se. But in this overworked genre, it has an original twist and plenty of tense moments. On Netflix now.

  • Double bill

    On this cold rainy evening, I recommend two more from the Netflix:

    Darkness Falls- the tooth fairy is a killer, and there are plenty of jumps in this one. Really well done.

    The Tall Man- brave people who make stupid choices vs. a scary child-snatching specter. Standard, but a fun ride.

    Neither of these are for kids.

    • Repulsion and Peeping Tom,

      Repulsion and Peeping Tom, both from the 1960s are extremely creepy horror/thriller films. Repulsion was shot in London and was directed by Roman Polanski. It gets so intense that it becomes almost unbearable to watch. It’s really one of the finest horror/psychological thriller films every made. Peeping Tom is a very stylistic, beautifully filmed British film about a film director who kills with his camera. It’s become a cult film, and it came out the same year as Psycho. Both of these films are very creepy in their own unique way and have very little violence. Repulsion is just brilliant. I highly recommend it and Peeping Tom.

    • Without a Video store WTH

      I thought Gingivitis was the real tooth fairy killer in a rotten sort of way or maybe it could be that greedy adolescent half gorged/crazed on Halloween candy habitually going to bed without brushing teeth, ever crouching in bed peering with one propped eye to scan the darkness while waiting in ambush (faking sleep) baiting a freshly plucked, loose bludgeoned tooth/ harbored & kept-fast tightly held under an unsuspecting and innocent puff pillow, springing up in shifty exchange seething to hang TF upside down, shaken out of pocket for all she’s worth in petty coinage she keeps on person any given night, wait that’s my insurance company just for maintaining proper dental hygiene !

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