SCARIEST SCARY MOVIES THAT SCARED ME THE MOST, RANKED

Possible spoilers. Read with the lights on.
  1. 1.
    A NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET
    Lemme tell you what, this one fucked me up REAL good. Saw it at a friend's house at a super young age and, like game seven of the 2003 ALCS, will never watch it again. Successful in striking my every possible nerve, it probably marks the official end of my youth. By the time the heroine gets a white streak (which I also have, but whatever, IT'S NOT LIKE THAT MATTERED AT THE TIME), the damage had been done. Freddy is my Voldemort, basically. NOT A FAN.
  2. 2.
    "Thanks for ruining my childhood, Wes Craven!!!" - this sweet little white-streaked girl
  3. 3.
    FREDDY VS. JASON (still unseen)
    Allow me to clarify further: the original scarred me SO badly that I won't use the pictures, refuse to even see any of the sequels - no matter how comical - and don't even get me STARTED on the song "Dream Warriors." Still, in a moment of misguided bravery, I once told my friend Jason I'd go to this with him, then panicked at the last minute and ran into "S.W.A.T." Not my proudest moment.
  4. 4.
    HALLOWEEN
    This ran all the time on local Boston t.v. when I was little, so I (covertly) saw bits and pieces before I ever saw it in its entirety. By far my absolute favorite scary movie of all time. Jason - you know, Jason?, of "Freddy vs. Jason vs. S.W.A.T." fame? - and I have a tradition of watching this every Halloween and it's always the best time ever.....whatever, it's flawless, enough already. Hillary/Jamie Lee 2016.
  5. 5.
    (Please don't try convincing me a scarier moment than this exists)
  6. 6.
    BLACK CHRISTMAS
    As much as I love Halloween, Carpenter and Hill owe so much to Black Christmas, one of the most underrated horror movies ever. Every cliché (and they weren't cliché back then) - the use of a Holiday and suburb, killer point of view camera, teens getting punished for having sex, unknown motive, unresolved ending - were all done first in this. Really stays with you and, aside from he who shall not be named, boasts the most terrifying killer on this list.
  7. 7.
    ROSEMARY'S BABY
    You won't find my name on any pro Polanski petitions, but this movie remains the best. It's always the little things - the people creeping past Rosemary when she thinks she's alone, Guy covering his eyes in the last scene - that kill me the most. I used to spend a lot of time in the Dakota, and when I wasn't watching Lauren Bacall scare the doormen, I was waiting to get murdered, basically. Not even Yoko herself could get me back in there. Evil.
  8. 8.
    SALEM'S LOT
    This one caused many a sleepless night thanks mainly to this ONE short scene. Seriously: this floating, brooks brothers pajama-wearing, rude little vampire bastard has indirectly funded the annual Carribbean vacations of half the shrinks in the United States. Not his best or favorite adaptation, but a good time to point out that Stephen King is The. Best.
  9. 9.
    WHEN A STRANGER CALLS
    "HAVE YOU CHECKED THE CHILDREN?" Whaaaaat? "THE CALL IS COMING FROM INSIDE THE HOUSE!" Another Boston weekend movie staple. Did for babysitting what Jaws did for beaches.
  10. 10.
    THE EXORCIST
    I went to Georgetown, where my friend Elin had to run up and down the Exorcist steps (SUCKER) every single day for the crew team. I didn't, because I was very, very busy (researching my thesis on the short term effects of pizza and dorito abuse)
  11. 11.
    PROM NIGHT
    Not all that scary (anymore) - but I couldn't make this list without it. 70s/80s campy, unintentionally hilarious horror films are my favorite genre, and the entire last half hour of this one is a masterpiece. You've got a badass bitch villainess (my hero), a disco prom, Leslie Nielsen as Jamie Lee's Dad/Principal and, best, you've got the greatest choreographed dance scene in the history of cinema, one @tcolerachel and I will literally never tire of: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=YDhMp7lvR9I
  12. 12.
    Pictured: someone who will not be making it to Prom Night
  13. 13.
    THE OMEN
    You KNOW a movie is gonna fuck you up when it ends with (spoiler alert) ATTICUS FUCKING FINCH getting shot to death in a Church while holding a toddler down in order to murder him using an extra special set of religious knives. What? Also managed to do more damage to the nanny business than Ben Affleck and Gavin Rossdale combined.
  14. 14.
    THE TEXAS CHAINSAW MASSACRE
    Trying to explain my conflicting thoughts on long, exhausting torture/chase scenes of women in the horror genre is tricky, but for me, this one just went on too long. Which I also understand is - for some directors - kind of the point. But, why am I OK with so many other, similar films? And is the argument that it's somewhat of a feminist film because of the ending really valid? I don't know, have fun hammering that one out with Leatherface. I'll be next door in S.W.A.T.
  15. 15.
    TRILOGY OF TERROR
    Oh boy. And away we go again with the Boston latchkey kid television. Seriously, whomever was in charge of selecting the super old syndicated reruns throughout my childhood was moonlighting from his full time gig, "circus clown driving windowless white van past playgrounds"
  16. 16.
    Pictured: the gentleman in charge of Boston's local programming during my early childhood
  17. 17.
    DARBY O'GILL AND THE LITTLE PEOPLE
    I remember nothing about Darby OR little people, and the wikipedia summary just confused me more (excerpt: "That very night, Darby is captured by the leprechauns while chasing his runaway horse Cleopatra - he is actually led astray by a Pooka - on top of the fairy mountain Knocknasheega"), but I do remember: 1) a hot young Sean Connery, and 2) a BANSHEE THAT WILL HAUNT ME FOREVER. Amazingly, this movie also destroyed my stepmother back when it was in actual theatres.
  18. 18.
    Disney: bringing generations together through ethnic stereotyping and the misappropriation of terrifying Celtic folklore
  19. 19.
    MOMMIE DEAREST
    While technically not horror, some movies are just so disturbing that they ultimately become something worse than scary. Very painful to watch, this one. Despite her admirable brow game, I remain deathly scared of Faye Dunaway (and, of course, wire hangers)
  20. 20.
    Pictured: what I saw on my bedroom doorknob roughly every ten seconds for a solid two week period before I even hit 3rd grade
  21. 21.
    INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS (1978 version)
    Thanks to the ending, I will never feel entirely OK about Donald Sutherland again. By the way, this actress (Veronica Cartwright) was in this movie, The Birds, Witches of Eastwick, AND Alien. I don't have a point here, I just think she deserves her own block on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
  22. 22.
    THE HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL
    This is one of those films that tricks you into complacency: it's campy, it's not that scary, and you're just kind of mindlessly enjoying yourself when all of a sudden something HORRIFIC comes out of nowhere and ruins you for good (see also: Salem's Lot). I wish I had gotten to see all of William Castle's movies in actual theatres as intended, in-house gimmicks and all.
  23. 23.
    Pictured: my state of mind after reliving all of the movies for this list
    Thank you for the request, @angusisley! I'm sure I'll be able to sleep when I'm dead!
  24. 24.
    STRANGERS ON A TRAIN
    Obviously not Hitchcock's scariest, but Robert Walker is by far his creepiest - and, second to Joseph Cotten in Shadow of a Doubt - most debonair villain.
  25. 25.
    NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD
    Seeing this marked the first time I realized a scary movie could serve as a vehicle for political and social commentary AND ruin my night at the same time. With the exception of Sleepaway Camp, I don't think I've ever been so shocked by an ending. I'm not that into zombies (unless he's got a GREAT personality) - but this is the main exception.
  26. 26.
    ENTOURAGE: THE MOVIE
    RUN FOR YOUR LIVES!!!