10 Lesser Known Disturbing Horror Films

10 Lesser Known Disturbing Horror Films

by Dusan on July 24th, 2018 | |

Sometimes lists of the best horror can get a bit repetitive. We know Saw is a bloody movie and we know Psycho is old and scary, but what about movies we haven’t already seen, dammit! “We want lists that actually inform us about movies we haven’t heard of!” shout the masses, horror fans new and old alike. Well, turns out that shining a light on lesser known horror movies is kinda what we do here at All Horror. So, we dug up some golden (somewhat obscure) films for this 10 Lesser Known Disturbing Horror Films list. Ok then, ready for some insane and disturbing films?

  1. Deranged (1974) from directors Alan Ormsby and Jeff Gillen. It might seem a bit easy to start with a film named Deranged, but Deranged, based on the real story of Ed Gein, follows an insane farmer who begins digging up graves to make company for his own mother’s corpse. Unlike other films inspired by Gein, like Psycho and Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Deranged chooses to present its story in a cold matter-of-fact manner, having a reporter even speak to the camera at one point. This makes the film more grounded than its sibling movies, making it all the more horrific when he starts beating women to death.
  1. Don’t Look Now (1973) by Nicolas Roeg, starring Donald Sutherland. After opening with the death of a couple’s young child the film moves said couple to Venice, appropriately dropped in down-cast tones and a moody atmosphere. The couple is haunted by what they think is an apparition of their daughter, but it turns out to be more sinister than that. Also, weirder than that. It’s a hell of a plot twist for sure. If you’re a reader, not a watcher, I’ll just leave it at that, but Joel will let you know. The film also engages the audience with unique editing and repeated themes that raise it above other shock-and-awe horror films of the decade.
  1. The Nanny (1965) from Seth Holt. If your child accused the nanny of trying to kill him, would you believe him? What if he has recently returned home after a stint at a children’s home because he had drowned his baby sister? Oh now it’s more complicated isn’t it? But what if the nanny was actually trying to kill him? Bette Davis stars in this film and, believe me, I never want to get in a tussle with that old woman and her powerful, scary jowls.
  1. Cannibal Holocaust (1980) from Ruggero Deodato. Now we can’t have a deranged horror list without giving due diligence to Cannibal Holocaust which unendingly assaults the senses and would offend most of the world if they watched it. The acting is laughable and the script is more of a “script,” but if you’re in search of watching real animals die and contemplating just how vicious humans can be, then this is the movie for you.
  1. Red, White, and Blue (2010) by Simon Rumley. This film is a superbly violent indie affair following a man out for revenge after his friend is kidnapped by an ex fling. It surprised watchers by just how brutally violent it was and makes the audience wonder just for whom this man is doing these shocking actions.
  1. My Little Eye (2002) by Marc Evans. Five young men and women sign up to stay in an isolated home for 6 months together and have their every move recorded by camera for a grand prize of one million dollars, as long as none of them leave. It sounds like a possibly trashy MTV series, but this time, there’s actually a serial killer in the mix and the reality TV is a live snuff film.
  1. Funny Games (1997) from Michael Haneke. The films we often find the most depraved are films which explore the depth of human violence. Just how much harm can we inflict on another person with no feelings of guilt? Haneke was interested in this idea but was also interested in how we as audiences could sit through watching these actions. In his Funny Games movies (He directed an American remake of the same name in 2007) he addresses these concerns and keeps most of the physical violence off screen, leaving it to our imagination. What feels deranged though is the glee of the two brothers committing the violence on an unsuspecting family. They are charismatic and casual in their torture and break the fourth wall often, making us, the audience, feel like we’re playing a hand in the violence.
  1. Martin (1978) from George A. Romero. Romero is best known for his zombie films, but this disturbing vampire film deserves to be just as well known in non-horror circles as his others. Martin follows a young man who believes he is a vampire and who acts like he is as well. He sedates women, cuts their wrists, and then drinks their blood like any other vampire. It starts to get very strange and very twisted as Martin tries to balance being a vampire, but also just a regular guy. It does not go smoothly.
  1. Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer (1986) by John McNaughton. With a small budget and mostly no-name actors, this film set out to disturb its viewers. A fictionalized account of Henry Lee Lucas’ life, a serial killer who claimed to have killed way more people than possible, the film tells the story with an emphasis on Henry’s complete lack of empathy. The casual violence with no sense of guilt or remorse is disquieting. In addition the film was shot in 16mm, making the images on screen grainy and more realistic.
  1. Peeping Tom (1960) from Michael Powell. The films opens with the main character, the loner Mark Lewis, picking up a sex worker and promptly killing her. He’s making a documentary about fear, see, so filming the faces of his victims while he murders them is the perfect material. He also spotlights as a pin-up photographer and his upsetting childhood is explained. The film is a master class in disturbing the audience as the unstable Mark racks up the victims.

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