Stephen King is just peppered all over this list, as people loved taking his novels and making them into films. The infamous director and writer Stanley Kubrick decided to make the movie. With such a name behind it, this was going to be a hit. He also had a co-writer for the film, Diane Johnson, who was really making her film debut with The Shining. Adding in Jack Nicholson to star was a stroke of genius, as this movie truly put him on the map. “Here’s Johnny” still rings in our head!
The movie centers around Jack Torrance, who is both a recovering alcoholic and an aspiring writer. He accepts a position as the off-season caretaker of the historic Overlook Hotel. Located in the Colorado Rockies, it’s a well-known area people enjoyed staying. His wife and son tag along, yet his son happens to be gifted with “the shining.” This gives a person psychic abilities that allow them to see into the hotel’s horrific past. After a major snowstorm, Jack slowly loses his sanity due to the supernatural forces around him. Now, his family has to try to make it out alive.
Wes Craven seems to be incapable of making a bad horror movie. A Nightmare on Elm Street is historically one of the most notable horror films ever. On top of this, the movie was Johnny Depp’s film debut. Of course, this is the story involving the infamous Freddy Krueger, a serial killer who just wants to kill people without anyone stopping him. The plot of this film revolves around four teenagers living on the same street in the fictional town of Springwood, Ohio.
However, one should try to avoid ever sleeping here as these teens found out the hard way. A burnt killer, Krueger, uses a leather glove with some knife-like digits or blades. He invades their dreams to kill them, but by doing this, one will also die in the real world too. Therefore, if you die in your dreams, you die for real. Now, these teens must find a way out of the ordeal yet Freddy isn’t about to let that happen easily. This is still one of the scariest movies that still holds up today.
The Strangers is a small film series from the 2000s/2010s. But there were several other horror movies of the same name, many made outside of America. This is revolving around the 2008 version that follows two people, James and Kristen, who stay at a vacation home. Their world is turned upside-down as three masked criminals break into the home. This movie was actually inspired by real-life events regarding the multiple homicides committed by the Manson Family-Tate Murders.
It also involved many of the neighborhood break-ins, one of which happened to Bryan Bertino’s home. Yes, it happened to the director and writer of the film when he was a child! There were also some similarities to the Keddie Cabin Murders from 1981, even though Bertino did not use this as a reference. The movie is often known for its use of masks or sacks for masks, which makes it more terrifying. The Strangers still ranks as one of the scariest movies in history, especially with the real-life elements involved.
Truly terrifying to a point that some had heart attacks watching it, The Conjuring is one of the few films even jaded horror buffs were freaked out by. While James Wan, maker of the Saw series, directed the movie, it was the Hayes brothers who wrote the thing. Carey and Chad had been writing and/or producing films or television shows for years before this. But somehow, the idea for this film sort of just came to them. Unsurprisingly, their love for horror films led them to this script ultimately.
The plot revolves around Ed and Lorraine Warren, both of which are paranormal investigators and authors. They are known for being involved in very prominent haunting cases. In fact, we’re told they were involved in the real-life reports that inspired the Amityville Horror stories. Eventually, in 1971, they respond to a call for assistance from the Perron Family from Rhode Island. The family is experiencing disturbing issues in their farmhouse and needs the Warrens to help them stop it all.
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