We’re back from Labor Day, which is usually a more sane person’s time to start the real Halloween season. Here at THS, we started a while ago on September 1st. But today, to celebrate the occasion, we’ll be going over the five most frightening films ever made. Now, before you go off and say “BUT NONE OF THESE MOVIES ARE SCARY”, that might be what you think, but this is my list, and that means, these are the movies that scare me. If they scare me, a seasoned veteran of the horror genre, they might just scare you too. Also, remember back to before you were jaded by horror movies. Before you’d seen anything and everything, usually that’s when you’re a kid or a teenager. The genre is new to you, so what do you watch?

It might be The Exorcist, it could be A Nightmare On Elm Street, or maybe it’s just Night of the Living Dead. Either way, there’s never a more scary time watching movies than that. So take yourself back to that place if you can. Imagine the first time you watched some of these movies, and if you haven’t seen them yet, even better for you. Because to truly get into the mind of a horror-head, you need to go back to the beginning.

Without further ado, here are the 5 Most Terrifying Movies Ever.

5. A Quiet Place (2018)

When you’re talking about terrifying movies, it’s hard not to mention A Quiet Place. The entire premise of the movie is built for tension and something even more than just scares. Imagine a world where you can’t make any noise at all. That’s what we’re working with here. Take the concept of a killer in the house and you have to creep around up to “eleven”. It’s a true testament to the directing and writing of John Krasinski and his collaborators Bryan Woods and Scott Beck.

The film only has about 25 lines of dialogue in the entire film, with a good portion of it being ASL. That only adds to the terror because the already claustrophobic film is made even tenser without any sort of vocalization from the cast. It’s just the monsters, the cast, and the audience. A Quiet Place Part 2 was good, but nothing can top watching this film for the first time. Some of the movies on our list get a little less frightening after multiple views, A Quiet Place only gets more terrifying.

4. The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

It could be the grimy nature of The Texas Chain Saw Massacre or just the realism of the low-budget filmmaking on display; either way, Tobe Hooper‘s seminal classic of the slasher horror genre is still just as unsettling and terrifying to this day. You don’t see horror movies like this one today, because to try to emulate what Tobe Hooper did with this film would be futile. It has everything, tension, moments of levity, confusion, scares, and most importantly, an iconic movie “monster” in Leatherface. Watching this one earlier in the year before the sequel, Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022), came out, was an exercise in fright.

I don’t think a movie captures the fight or flight response from humanity more than this one does. Sally Hardesty is all of us in the situation. It’s easy to think that we’d all be badasses and not crumble under the pressure and tension. She makes it through the whole mess but crumbles under the weight of what she’s been through, giving us one of the most iconic final shots in horror movie history.

If you haven’t checked this one out in a while, because you might think “oh, it’s from 1974 and I’ve seen it a million times” watch it again.

3. The Exorcist (1973)

Here’s the big one. This movie has been terrifying people as their first horror movie experience since 1973. There are far too many people who can sit back and go “I just laugh at The Exorcist, how can you find that scary?” Well, this movie is truly terrifying and combines that with one of the most haunting pieces of music ever. The theme of this list might be “go back and remember a time before you were jaded” because that’s what you have to do with The Exorcist. Ask most young people who are just getting into horror movies what the scariest movie ever is, and they’re likely to say The Exorcist.

Anything that comes after this regarding demonic possession, demons, the devil, ghouls, or ghosts owes this movie. It might not have invented the “found footage” or “documentary style” horror film, but this sure feels like a precursor to it. From the way its shot to the effects to the emotion on display, The Exorcist belongs on anyone’s most frightening horror movie list.

2. Threads (1986)

Now this one is probably one you haven’t seen at all. I watched this on a recommendation from a friend on Twitter. There is nothing scarier on planet Earth than what we all can do to each other. At the end of the day, humanity is the scariest thing we can think of. All our most famous movie monsters and villains come from our own heads and our own actions. Godzilla comes from the fallout of the nuclear bomb, Michael Myers, Jason Voorhees, Freddy Krueger, and other slashers come from real-life serial killers like Ed Gein, Jeffrey Dahmer, and Ted Bundy. Threads is the most realistic depiction of what a nuclear war and the fallout from that would look like.

Don’t dismiss this one because it’s a TV movie, it has the impact and weight of any big-budget horror movie out there. There is no happy ending, it’ll horrify you.

1. Fire In The Sky (1993)

I have watched this movie once. I will never watch this movie ever again, I do not recommend showing this movie to anyone who is easily scared. In my life, I’ve had nightmares because of a movie twice. Once was after I was forced to watch The Exorcist when I was 10 years old, the other was after watching Fire In The Sky. Now, I know I just went on a whole schpeel about how horror movies are scariest when they’re about the horrors of humanity. Well, Fire In The Sky is one of the better exceptions to that rule. Just go watch the whole abduction and testing scene from the movie for yourself. It’s nightmare fuel of the highest order.

Anyone saying that they’re not scared of this movie is lying to themselves. I will never watch this one again because of how much it scared me.

So, what are your most frightening movies ever? Did any of them make our list?

For more on horror, check out the two-month-long horror content marathon, THS Fright-A-Thon!

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