Even non-horror movie can scare the hell out of you. In fact, sometimes non-horror movies can be even scarier, because horror movies don’t always make sense. So hey, want to trick someone you know into getting terrified by a movie that’s not technically a horror movie? Well, I’ve got some options for you — here are the creepiest movies that aren’t explicitly horror movies:
At two hours and forty minutes long, Zodiac is a detail-oriented crime procedural before anything else, so I understand why people were hesitant to see it. Here’s the thing though; this movie is an EPIC. It follows THREE characters’ attempts to solve the Zodiac killer’s identity, each of which are essentially separate from each other, and there is some unnerving stuff in those characters’ journeys. We’re talking scary basements, a reenactment of a day time murder, and even just the general David Fincher tone. It’s all enough to propel something like a guy calling into a live television show deeply disturbing.
There Will Be Blood
Some people might disagree with me about There Will Be Blood‘s creepiness, since it’s a movie about how rampant greed and corruption corrupts absolutely, but the tension in this movie just feels… different than it does in so many other movies. Even No Country For Old Men, a film about an unstoppable killer, doesn’t have the same kind of creepy tension. Maybe it’s because the score is a lot of discordant strings, or the fact that this air of violence just hangs over the whole thing (even though it’s not a particularly violent film). By the end of the movie, though, there’s a good chance your skin will be just crawling.
THE DUTCH ONE, NOT THE AMERICAN REMAKE! THAT’S VERY IMPORTANT! I’M GOING TO GIVE YOU AN ELLIPSES SO YOU HAVE TIME LET IT SINK IN!
The Vanishing is very, very good, and deeply unsettling. A Dutch couple is on vacation, when one of them goes missing. To tell you anything more would be unnecessary, since my glowing recommendation should be enough for you. Watch it.
Taxi Driver, a ’70s movie (which right there means it’s probably going to skeeve you out a touch) is the story of a Vietnam vet feeling adrift upon returning to America. The film is extra creepy these days, since his descent into violence feels incredibly… possible in 2016 America.
It doesn’t matter if he’s making a fantasy, Guillermo del Toro is going to put some scary ass stuff in his movie. The monster with eyes in hands? Come on man. You hear “fantasy” and you think something for kids, and then you end up with that spooky sh*t. Nice work, Guillermo, you got us again!
Pinocchio is 100 percent nightmare fuel. Okay, maybe it’s more like 85 percent, but still. Watching a bunch of kids not only be turned into donkeys, but shrieking and wailing against the fact that they’re being turned into donkeys… oh my God, who wouldn’t be scarred by that? And then that whale… THAT DAMN WHALE! How could I not have my life ruined by something named “Monstro”?
This version of Pinocchio doesn’t actually have any horror elements in it, it’s just really, really disturbing watching Roberto Benign run around dressed like that. Bud, you are like forty.
Any movies unexpectedly scare you lately? Reach out, let us know. We’re friends, we can talk about this kind of stuff on Twitter @Smosh.