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Question for my followers: Do you have any movie/TV show/reading suggestions for titles that are not classified as horror, but definitely have horror elements to them? I don’t mean like Jurassic Park, which is an action-thriller but then has the scary-as-fuck raptors in the kitchen scene. I mean stuff that is definitely not horror/scary initially, but maybe has an element or two that plays into your horror kinks, even if it’s after-the-fact. …I always think that stuff you don’t see is much more scary than stuff you do see.
So, do you guys have an suggestions?
omg DID SOMEONE SAY HORROR? :D Gav pointed me in your direction so I totally feel justified writing you a bunch of recommendations.
(omg this got so long cutting all of this!)
The Others — imo this is a totally underrated little film that gets its scares primarily by suggestion.
"Hush," the famous S6 episode of Buffy, the only time the show was nominated for an Emmy, iirc. Available on Hulu! Can’t even shout, can’t even cry, the gentlemen are coming by…
The Awakening (the 2011 film with Dominic Cooper)
The Korean horror film Tale of Two Sisters, which is classified as horror in the US but which is definitely more of a psychological thriller
The Japanese horror film Pulse, for the same reasons as the above
the classic Picnic at Hanging Rock
the other classic Don’t Look Now
the classic Night of the Hunter, which isn’t really horror but which is definitely an amazing example of Expressionist terror.
if you’re into sci-fi then you’ll probably like Cube, a mid-2000s mindgame thingy starring David Hewlett.
If you haven’t ever seen it, The Blair Witch Project definitely falls into your description of atmospheric horror.
Last year’s Black Swan also counts.
Hitchcock’s The Birds and Vertigo both fall equally into the category of psychological terror, imo, and if you haven’t seen Vertigo then wtf are you waiting for, it’s a masterpiece and unquestionably one of the best films ever made.
Spoorloos (The Vanishing), the original Dutch thriller that gets parodied into oblivion—but I just watched it for the first time earlier this month and I found it incredibly creepy and effective.
David Lynch’s Blue Velvet, which is the most psychologically creepy movie EVER to inexplicably not be labeled a horror film, oh my god I love that movie
And while we’re at it, the incredible Mulholland Dr, one of the best movies of the last 30 years, which everyone needs to see, especially if they want creepy
The original BBC mini-series of the Woman in Black—gav thinks the remake is 10x scarier but I disagree, I DARE YOU TO WATCH IT IN THE DARK AND NOT GET FREAKED OUT BY THE WIB.
Shadow of the Vampire, the black comedy/horror film/fantasy that revisits the making of another brilliant horror film, F.W. Murnau’s Nosferatu, and asks: what if the reason Max Schreck’s Dracula was so brilliant was that he WAS AN ACTUAL VAMPIRE? absolutely fantastic.
David Fincher’s The Game. This is a weird sci-fi mindfuck but it’s totally fun and more creepy than action thrillery, though there’s definitely an element of that, too.
Shiki - this is a wonderfully creepy short anime horror series currently available to watch on Hulu.
Something Wicked This Way Comes - I’ve never read the famous Ray Bradbury
short story novel, but the Disney film version (yes, Disney) is actually REALLY SCARY.
Company of Wolves, my favorite werewolf movie ever, a cheesy (so so great) but effective rendition of Angela Carter’s novella, with screenwriting by Carter herself, starring Angela Lansbury as a vicious grandmother to Red Riding Hood. it’s AMAZING.
Wait Until Dark, a 60’s thriller starring Audrey Hepburn as a blind woman trying to defend herself against intruders in her house that’s actually really intense and almost totally atmospheric.
The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, because YES.
These next bunch are all straight-up horror films but they all have serious elements of atmospheric terror in them that I love:
The Shining <3333
Night of the Living Dead <33333
The Exorcist <33333333
Ju On: The Grudge — this is the original Japanese film, not the American remake (which, let’s face it, is still fucking scary, I don’t care what anyone says). IMO Ju On is *the* best of the Japanese horror film wave, second only to…
Audition. Okay, just watch this. WATCH IT. This is not like any other horror film you will ever see, I promise. omfg so amazing, possibly my favorite horror film ever. <3
Suspiria. Everyone always says that this is one of THE atmospheric horror films, and I don’t know if it’s what you’re looking for because it’s so gory it’s ridiculous, but it’s also beautiful and amazing and completely scary (shut up, it totally is) and the SCORE SHOUTS “WITCH!” AT YOU, which is hands-down the single best rec for a horror film that I can think of, dunno about you.
THE TURN OF THE FUCKING SCREW, omg I read this every year at Halloween, it is the best, most classic horror novel ever written. And all of the film versions of it (see: The Innocents) are also very very good. <3
Monster, the manga / anime about a serial killer in post-coldwar Germany and the guilt-ridden doctor who saved his life. Brilliant and wonderful. The anime closely follows the manga, and I believe is available to watch on Hulu.
Spiral / Uzumaki, the japanese horror manga (also a pretty decent atmospheric horror film by the same name), WHICH YOU CAN READ HERE BECAUSE INTERNET
As a zombie series I’m not sure how well this holds up, but as a standalone, Carrie Ryan’s YA The Forest of Hands and Teeth is gripping and chilling and fun.
The House of Leaves, which is a postmodern masterpiece must-read in addition to being FUCKING TERRIFYING and full of ~layers~
The Spiral Stair, a classic British suspense/mystery gothic thriller
Rebecca, i.e. the classic modern gothic romance, also turned into an equally wonderful must-see Hitchcock film in 1940 <333333
Agatha Christie’s famous mystery novel Ten Little Indians, aka And Then There Were None. I read this on Halloween the first and only time I ever read it, and I found it absolutely terrifying.
Mist by Stephen King. This is much less gore-driven and more mysterious than many of King’s novels, and it’s short so it’s an easy read.
"A Rose for Emily" by William Faulkner.
Tennessee Williams’ Suddenly Last Summer. The ending totally qualifies.
I love horror films so if you have more specific questions, feel free to ask away!