Top Five Scary Movies

Top Five is a show where the hosts categorize, rank, compare, and stratify everything… from cars to gadgets to people and movies. From stuff that is hot, and things that are not nearly as interesting – it’s Top Five.

This week, just in time for the holiday (almost like we planned it), it our top five scary movies of all time.  Did Michael, Freddie, or Dracula make the list, or are these movies so scary we can’t even give you a hint because the mere mention of them will turn your hair white?


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  1. Havent listened to the show yet, but my top five scary movies are.

    5: The Michael Jackson Thriller music video :) This one creeped me the f#@k out when I was a kid. I was dead scared when there was clouds at night. Becaurse maybe, just maybe the sun was behind one of them.

    4: The Birds. This is the second time this movie is on my top 5 list. But i think the realism and the WFT factor are just about even in this movie, and thats surely one of the things that make it great.

    3: … speaking of things. John Carpenters The Thing from 1982. Is just creepy at hell. Its isolation, in a hostile enviromet with an agressive alien. Theres no way out and everybody is dying one at the time.

    2: … and speaking of aliens. Need I say more?

    1: And the number 1 for me is without a shadow of a doubt
    This movie never gets old. The characters are sturdy as ropes on boats, the “monster” is the silent killer. The music is some of John Williams best. (Everytime we hear a cello and think of sharks, its becaurse of this movie)
    Just saw this a couple of weeks ago, and it was even better than I remember.

  2. I’d be hard pressed to come up with five scary movies. Horror films really don’t do a thing for me. The universal monster movies were just laughable, not scary at all. Sci Fi movies with monsters don’t do a thing for me. The Gilligan’s Island movies were frightening, but this was unintentional so those don’t qualify. There are only two movies ever that really, genuinely, truly frightened me! Jaws is just plain stupid. Really. Giant Shark. Bites through anything. Big whoop.
    Alien still has the power to give me the willies – not only is it scary but we also get Sigourney Weaver in underpants! What’s not to like?
    But Psycho is the tops. Understated, no monsters, but oh my GAWD! Do not WATCH this movie late at night with the lights off! I wasn’t able to take a shower for weeks afterwards! The Jaws cello theme may be a little frightening, but it don’t do the job like the scratchy violin in Psycho.

  3. 5. The Frighteners – I love this pre-LOTR Peter Jackson horror/comedy. Michael J. Fox battles the ghost of a serial killer, and the Grim Reaper, neither of which are as creepy as Jeffry Combs as an FBI agent investigating a series of deaths. Some scary bits, but also pretty funny.

    4. Creepshow – I don’t find this particularly scary now, but when I saw this as a kid, it kept me up at night for weeks.

    3. The Omen – This was also on my 70s list. The events surrounding the birth of the Antichrist are horrible, horrible, horrible! ” Look at me, Damien! It’s all for you. ” And the nanny hangs herself. Creepy.

    2. The Wicker Man – I saw this for the first time a few years back. Taking place on a remote British island, dark pagan rituals and the search for a missing girl results in one of the most disturbing endings I’ve ever seen in a movie. Freaks me out to this day.

    1. Carnival of Souls – This low budget movie was made by a documentarian in 1962 and has a vibe very reminiscent of the original Night of the Living Dead, but predates it by 6 years. Hard to describe, it’s a ghost story and a mood that just stays with you. I always have a lingering unease for days after seeing this one.

  4. 5. Abbot and Costello Meet Frankenstein – This is technically my first scary movie . . . but I was probably six or seven at the time. Not truly scary, but it did feature Bela Lugosi, Lon Chaney and Glenn Strange (subbing for Karloff) alongside a cameo from Vincent Price in one of the first horror-comedies of the time. Though tame by “American Werewolf” standards, Lon Chaney’s transformations scared me as a kid. It also has had an unfortunate side effect on my personal life, as I suspect every woman interested in me might secretly be plotting to steal my brain and put it in the Frankenstein Monster.

    4. Shaun of the Dead – While more of a horror-comedy than anything else, Shaun of the Dead likewise has some genuinely scary movements. The best parts come before the zombie apocalypse – with the build-up to the brain-eaters. In particular, you see brief glimpses of a man trying to eat pigeons in the park and a moaning man trying to enter a closed bar. You know the zombies are coming. You just don’t know when exactly.

    3. Nightmare on Elm Street – So through most of my childhood, I was actually like Stephen – I didn’t watch horror movies. It didn’t mean I got out unscathed. True story: I had a hermit crab for a pet. On the same night I watched Johnny Depp get eaten by a bed, this hermit crap escaped from his cage and started scratching at my window. Guess who I thought was coming to get me when I fell asleep? SCRATCH SCRATCH

    2. Halloween – One of the first real slasher movies (outside of Peeping Tom and Psycho), it’s amazing how bloodless “Halloween” is – and how scary even by modern standards. As with this film, I’m still a big fan of the build-up – and in particular how Michael Myers turns up where you least expect him throughout the suburbs. In the car across the street. Behind the hedge next door. In front of your clothesline. Sure, Jason Vorhees and Freddy Kruegar may be supernaturally unkillable, but Michael Myers would give Solid Snake a run for his money in the stealth department.

    1. Trick r’ Treat – This is one Halloween flick I just can’t get enough of this season. Michael Dougherty of “X2” writes and directs this truly addictive interconnected horror anthology. You’ve got Dylan Baker playing the Ned Flanders of serial killers, brutally punishing anyone who breaks the rules of Halloween. You’ve got Brian Cox playing a grumpy old man, who just wants to be left alone on his least-favorite time of the year. You’ve even got a pre-True Blood Anna Paquin as an impressionable young woman looking for her first time. But then again, its Halloween and no one is quite what they seem. Best of all, all these vignettes bleed into one another, since they take place in the same small town at the same time on Halloween night. If you like plot-driven horror flicks, this is definitely one to pick up – especially with its comic book style credits and closing! Think “Love Actually” with a “Creepshow” twist.

    • My wife and I watched Abbot and Costello Meet Frankenstein last year with our daughter who was 7 at the time. While I was generally howling with laughter, my little one was hiding behind her blanket. She liked it as her first ‘scary’ movie. Good choice.

  5. Ghostwatch is a great pick. I have the DVD on my shelf here. As well as having Michael Parkinson as the presenter it had the husband and wife reporter/presenter team of Mike Smith and Sarah Greene who were somewhat the nation’s sweetheart couple at the time. Smith is in the studio supervising the call-in phone operators while Greene is the field reporter in the house. Thousands of callers jammed the BBC phone lines after watching Sarah Greene decide to down into the house’s basement to investigate the strange events that seemed to be happening there.

    Years after the broadcast there were still people who believed that they had witnessed the death of one of the presenters on air. Creepy stuff.

    • Years after the broadcast there were still people who believed that they had witnessed the death of one of the presenters on air.

      Well, it didn’t help that many people claim a memory that Sarah promoted the appearance on ‘Blue Peter’ (a claim which I have yet to see any actual confirmation of), which is clearly aimed at a younger demographic than this was. And holy crap, it’s a tense show, especially since it starts off as a peppy little “Let’s play with a haunted house!” kind of fluff show.

      • Yup, they cover that on the DVD features. They searched the other shows around the broadcast for a mention and it never happened.
        There’s a new documentary about the programme due out next year, and the writer has a sort of sequel script up on his website

        • There’s a new documentary about the programme due out next year, and the writer has a sort of sequel script up on his website

          I’ve read the pseudo-sequel. It’s interesting, if a bit odd….

  6. First of all if it bleeds and I can kill it it’s not really scary to me, there are enough edged weapons in my home (swords and knives) to take on a werewolf or 2 and everyone but my mom have years of training in classic and modern fencing.

    5. Blair Witch Project, I’ve been camping and gotten lost with no one been able to read the map add the supernatural and you have me scared. I agree with Matthew that end scene with the guy in the corner (a small throw back to an earlier dialogue) is all sorts of scary, specially from what your brain tells you happened next.

    4. Rose Red, when is a house really scary? When it literally grows like a living organism thanks to the ghosts it inhabits.

    3. Rosemary’s Baby, remember the creepy baby in the end scene? No you don’t, the crib is purposely empty and it’s your mind that fills in the blanks.

    2. Silent Hill, a place where you face what you bring with you, not your worse nightmares but what you subconsciously fear and think you deserve (at least it’s that way in the games). I has one of the creepiest scene in it, at the start the main character is been attacked by undead babies, but we don’t see them just hear then crawl and cry…

    1. Ju-On: the Grudge, I had sleep paralysis as a kid I have had nightmares where I was unable to move as a completely dark figure slowly makes it’s way to my face (only really see the red eyes) and can only whisper (until woken by my mother, I was screaming with my eyes open it seems). This movie has several “open your eyes to a ghost 3 inches from your face moment” which I can relate to.

    • First of all if it bleeds and I can kill it it’s not really scary to me, there are enough edged weapons in my home (swords and knives) to take on a werewolf or 2 and everyone but my mom have years of training in classic and modern fencing.

      Ever been attacked by a dog? Because I’ll tell ya this for free, sword or not, even a small one will hurt you, much less a human-sized version with superhuman strength and razor-sharp claws.

      • Not saying it’s gonna a fair fight, just that I’m much more scared of something I can’t fight then any flesh and blood critter.

    • Solid Muldoon on

      This is why Blair Witch terrified me.

      I know there are no such things as werewolves and vampires and such, but I have been lost in the woods. For two days. It was shattering. As in the movie, I could see jets flying above me. I knew there was a highway ahead of me if I could just walk in a straight line. I knew people were looking for me, and they couldn’t have been more than an hour or two behind me. I even knew how to live off the land.

      But it was still terrifying.

  7. The Great NateO on

    I watch a lot of scary movies growing up, and love them. I guessing that explains a few things, but here are the 5 that did scare me a little when I was younger and I watched them over and over again.

    5. Hellraiser (1987) –“What’s your PLEASURE Sir” Best line in that movie. What really got me is not the Cenobites or the hooks; it was that people were not satisfied with just sex, they needed more and Pinhead gave it to them

    4. The Unholy (1988) – Your Daemon vs. God movie, the Unholy tests priest’s to see if they will sin by becoming a hot chick and if they fail then their soul goes to hell. The scariest part was when Father Michael wakes up from a dream and finds that his is naked and has 50 or so snakes between his legs

    3. Witchboard (1986) – Never play with a Ouija board alone, this was another great move, I love it because you have an evil spirit trying to possess a hot chick so he can walk the earth again. Loved the hammer/axe that was use as the main weapon too.

    2. Grizzly (1976) – Got to see this one in a drive in after “Coal Miner’s Daughter”, This scared the hell out of me. 15th foot Grizzly Bear that eats people and you just see the large paw swipe and kill people. One of the reasons why it took me so long to be a Boy Scout.

    1. Cujo (1983) – Trapped in a Pinto on a hot day, and a rabid Saint-Bernard that wants to eat you. Just when you think it ok to get out that dog is right there to bit your head off. AAAAHHHHHHHHHHHH!

    Almost made the list –
    The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974), Alien (1979), A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984), Halloween II (1981), The Shining (1980), The Exorcist (1973), and Silver Bullet (1985)

  8. 5 – The Grudge, just for the noise…
    4 – The Devils Advocate, ovaries…
    3 – The Ring, seven days…
    2 – Event Horizon, she has such wonderful things to show you…
    1 – Evil Dead, watched it by myself, on a full moon, in the dark, then walked to work for a night shift…

    I also want to get in on the fictional villains action

    5 – Apocalypse, from the X-Men titles a true unrelenting evil
    4 – Hannibal Lecter, that’s good brains
    3 – Ozymandias, the true master of the evil scheme
    2 – T-1000, from Terminator 2 could be anybody and can’t be stopped
    1 – Joker, the Killing Joke story line specifically

  9. I’m not a horror fan, so these are more suspense than anything else.

    5. Manhunter (1986) He’s called the Tooth Fairy, how scary can he be?

    4. The Haunting (1963) Like with all great horror movies, it’s what you don’t see that scares you most. That, and a rubber door.

    3. The Night of the Hunter (1955) Chill-dren….

    2. Jaws (1975) Just hearing the theme gives me goosebumps.

    1. Silence of the Lambs (1991) To this day I refuse to follow a serial killer into his basement without first calling for backup.

  10. Mine are not all inherently scared, but scared me when I saw them.

    5. Leprechaun 3-When I was a little kid, about 7 or 8, I saw commercials on TV for this movie. There was a smash cut where this creepy leprechaun dude would lick some girls face. Gave me nightmares for years. I’ve never actually seen the movie.

    4. Star Trek-First Contact- So now, I’m like 10 years old. I go with my dad to see some Star Trek in the theaters. And Picard’s eye almost gets poked out….. eeewwwwww…. and there’s the scene where they’re walking around, inside the ship, the lights are all out, and data gets yanked under a door by some borg… I was so freaked out, I asked my dad to take me home. It’s only now I realize how big a sacrifice that must have been for him.

    3. Se7en- my brother showed me this one in middle school just to mess with me. It worked.

    2. Cube-I was up late one night in highschool. We had turned our garage into our own little teenage-man-cave. It was dark, and I was watching the Sci-Fi channel, and this movie comes on–Cube., Strangers trapped in a weird deathtrap where the real trap is the people around you. Scares the willies out of me, and I love it so.

    1. My scariest movie ever- Idiocracy. Not because its a horror film-because I believe it WILL happen. I watch this movie, and I laugh. Then I cry. Then I go hide under the blankets and shiver while I read Tolstoy with a flashlight. This movie is soooooooooooooooo scary.

  11. My top 5 villians include:

    1. Darth Vader
    2. Lex Luthor
    3. Clubber Lang
    4. Megatron
    5. Dr. Claw (from inspector gadget)

  12. bob terwilliger on

    After listening to the show, I felt compelled to get a copy of Ghost Watch. I cant even imagine having seen that live. I may have pooped myself in terror.

  13. Does anybody know which MS podcast they were referring to in this one? Something about a lost podcast or one they thought was haunted? I want to hear the spooky.

  14. Solid Muldoon on

    So glad that Duel got a vote. I saw it when it first ran on TV. It happened to be the first movie I saw when my parents first left me home alone. It scared the ever-loving crap out of me. For months after, I couldn’t ride in the car without freaking out. I would actually opt to walk to school in the morning instead of letting my dad drive me.

    As a kid, the movie that scared me the most was The Legend of Boggy Creek.

    As an adult, The Blair Witch Project.

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