These Are the Horror Films Stephen King Recommends


Stephen King has been liable for lots of our nightmares over the years. The prolific creator has written a staggering variety of terrifying novels and tales, lots of which have been tailored into equally horrifying movies. But King can be a fan of the horror style, and continuously recommends books, films, and TV reveals which have hooked him. In reality, he usually showers them with effusive reward. In a brand new foreword for the 2010 reissue of his nonfiction e-book Danse Macabre, he referred to as The Blair Witch Project the “worst nightmare you ever had.” Read on to search out out why the film spooked King so badly, alongside along with his different favorites. And for extra ’90s nightmares, revisit The Scariest Movies ’90s Kids Can’t Forget.

As reported by Bloody Disgusting, King defined that what scared him so much about The Blair Witch Project was that it “looks real” and “feels real.” “It’s like the worst nightmare you ever had, the one you woke from gasping and crying with relief because you thought you were buried alive and it turned out the cat jumped up on your bed and went to sleep on your chest,” he wrote.

the blair witch project

The Blair Witch Project was launched in 1999, garnering rave reviews and terrifying audiences. As King notes, a part of the success of the film was in how actual it felt. At the time, audiences weren’t as aware of discovered footage films—which purport to be simply that, “found footage” fairly than one thing scripted—and the Blair Witch actors have been full unknowns who stayed out of the highlight throughout the promotional marketing campaign. While Blair Witch wasn’t the first discovered footage horror movie, it was undoubtedly the most influential, and positively one in every of the simplest.

It clearly labored on King, who first watched the film in a hospital room when he was recovering from being hit by a car, an accident that almost killed him. Partway by means of the movie, he requested his son to show it off. “It may be the only time in my life when I quit a horror movie in the middle because I was too scared to go on,” he wrote. “I was just freaked out of my mind.”

In his foreword, King wrote that he has subsequently seen the film in full. And that should be true, as a result of he describes Blair Witch‘s infamously unnerving ending intimately: “There is a thud as that unseen thing falls on Heather from behind. The camera drops, showing a blurred nothing. The film ends. And if you’re like me, you watch the credits and try to escape the terrified ten-year-old into whom you have been regressed.”

King’s in-depth tackle The Blair Witch Project is a good reminder of why the film is a modern-day horror basic. But that is removed from the solely movie he has robust opinions about. Keep studying for a listing of Stephen King’s different favorite horror movies, as compiled by Open Culture. And for a movie that is sure to maintain you up at night time, uncover The Scariest Horror Movie of All Time, According to Science.

still from jane doe movie
IFC Midnight

In a round-up of horror films Stephen King has recommended by Bloody Disgusting, King is quoted as saying that The Autopsy of Jane Doe is “visceral horror to rival Alien and early Cronenberg.”

still from the changeling
Severin Films

The Changeling was one in every of the movies King selected when he was requested to listing his favorites by the British Film Institute. “There are no monsters bursting from chests,” he wrote. “Just a child’s ball bouncing down a flight of stairs was enough to scare the daylights out of me.” And for extra of the classics, these are The Best Horror Films of All Time, According to Critics.

crimson peak
Universal Pictures

Per Bloody Disgusting, King went to an early screening of Crimson Peak and referred to as it “gorgeous” and “terrifying.”

dawn of the dead
Universal Pictures

“Genius perfected would be Zack Snyder’s Dawn remake, which begins with one of the best opening sequences of a horror film ever made,” King stated, as reported by Bloody Disgusting. And for stars you may not notice acquired their begin in scary films, take a look at these Celebrities You Forgot Were in Horror Movies.

deep blue sea
Warner Bros.

While King acknowledged that this film does not appear to have rather a lot happening, in keeping with Bloody Disgusting, there was not less than one second that actually caught him off-guard. “I screamed out loud,” he stated, “and I treasure any horror movie that can make me do that.”

the descent
AA Film Archive / Alamy Stock Photo

The energy of The Descent is in the robust characterization, Bloody Disgusting quotes King as explaining. “In successful creepshows, it’s not the FX, and mostly not even the monsters, that scare us,” he stated. “If we invest in the people, we invest in the movie… and in our own essential decency.” And for extra enjoyable content material delivered straight to your inbox, join our each day publication.

still from duel
Universal Pictures

King put Steven Spielberg’s first film on his BFI listing, writing, “It’s his most inventive film, and stripped to the very core: one man, one truck, one fight to the death.”

les diaboliques

Also for the BFI, King picked Henri-Georges Clouzot’s Les Diaboliques, a “suspense-horror masterpiece” that is “as terrifying now as it was back in 1955.”

final destination
New Line Cinema

Per Bloody Disgusting, King is a fan of the total Final Destination collection. “I love all these movies, with their elaborate Rube Goldberg setups—it’s like watching R-rated splatter versions of those old Road Runner cartoons,” he stated. “But only the first is genuinely scary, with its grim insistence that you can’t beat the Reaper: When your time is up, it’s up.” And for an additional blast from the previous, revisit The Biggest ’90s Horror Icons, Then and Now.

event horizon
Paramount Pictures

Event Horizon has gotten less-than-stellar reviews over the years, and King is prepared to acknowledge its deficiencies, as Bloody Disgusting studies. “The plot’s messy, but the visuals are stunning and there’s an authentic sense of horrors too great to comprehend just beneath the eponymous event horizon,” he stated.

still from the 1986 the hitcher
TriStar Pictures

For his BFI listing, King in contrast The Hitcher to Duel, as a result of each are “terrifying road movies stripped to their very basics.” He added, “What sets this apart, other than some spectacular stunts, is the amazing performance of Rutger Hauer as the mysterious and homicidal John Ryder.”

still from the 2007 the hitcher
Rogue Pictures

The 2007 remake of The Hitcher might not have Rutger Hauer, however King remains to be a fan. “This is that rarity, a reimagining that actually works,” Bloody Disgusting quotes him as saying. “Do we really need this film? No. But it’s great to have it, and the existential theme of many great horror films—terrible things can happen to good people, at any time—has never been so clearly stated.”

still from the 2009 the last house on the left
Rogue Pictures

Another remake King has praised: this 2009 tackle the infamous Wes Craven basic. In reality, Bloody Disgusting says that King referred to as it “the best horror movie of the new century,” saying, “the Dennis Iliadis version is to the original what a mature artist’s painting is to the drawing of a child who shows some gleams of talent.”

the mist

Yes, King’s listing of favorites features a film primarily based on one in every of his tales—however to honest, he referred to as out the movie’s ending, which is a radical departure from the one he wrote. As Bloody Disgusting quotes, King stated, “The ending will tear your heart out… but so will life, in the end.”

night of the demon
Columbia Pictures

“Although it’s old school, I love Jacques Tourneur’s Night of the Demon, a pretty wonderful adaptation of M.R. James’s story, ‘Casting the Runes,'” King wrote for the BFI. “Tourneur was a disciple of Val Lewton, which means the horror here is pretty understated, until the very end.”

the ruins
Paramount Pictures

According to Bloody Disgusting, King praised The Ruins whereas additionally acknowledging what the unique novel does higher. “The Scott B. Smith-scripted adaptation of his novel isn’t quite as creepy as the book, but the sense of dismay and disquiet grows as the viewer begins to sense that no one’s going to get away,” he stated.

still from sorcerer
Universal Pictures

It’s not likely a horror movie—regardless of the title and path by William Friedkin—however Sorcerer is King’s favourite film of all time, he advised the BFI. “I am especially partial—this will not surprise you—to suspense films,” King wrote.

still from the stepfather
Shout! Factory

As with The Hitcher, the attraction of The Stepfather is in the theme of “terrifying men who come from nowhere,” King wrote for the BFI. In this case, that is Terry O’Quinn, who acquired great reviews for his harrowing efficiency in the titular position.

stir of echoes

Bloody Disgusting quotes King as saying that “writer/director David Koepp should be declared a national treasure” for this adaptation of a 1958 Richard Matheson novel.

the strangers
Rogue Pictures

King’s ideas on The Strangers, as documented by Bloody Disgusting, sum up what makes the movie get below your pores and skin so successfully. “It starts slowly and builds from unease to terror to horror,” he stated. “Why is this happening? Just because it is. Like cancer, stroke, or someone going the wrong way on the turnpike at 110 miles an hour.”

the witch

The Witch is one other movie that actually scared King, Bloody Disgusting studies. “And it’s a real movie, tense and thought-provoking as well as visceral,” he stated.


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