12 Horror Movies That Sent Fans Running from Theaters

12 Horror Movies That Sent Fans Running from Theaters
Image credit: Universal, Arclight Films, Metrodome Distribution, Netflix, Phase 4 Films, XLrator Media, Showbox, MGM, Focus World, Distracted Media, Cathay-Keris Films, Aura Films

Just a suggestion: keep you lights on for these ones.

1. Raw

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Vegetarian vet student Justine develops an unbidden taste for meat after a hazing ritual. Yet, her cravings escalate beyond the ordinary to the taboo: human flesh. As her urges intensify, her relationship with her sister Alexia unveils dark family secrets. A spiraling descent into cannibalism ensues, overshadowed by a haunting atmosphere of compulsion and dread. By the end, Justine's transformation is both figurative and terrifyingly literal. A familial twist reveals this hunger runs in the blood. But can one ever satiate such an appetite?

2. Noroi: The Curse

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Paranormal investigator Masafumi Kobayashi dives into a complex curse afflicting several unrelated people. His tape-driven investigation leads to a woman named Junko Ishii and her son, both suspected of being involved in dark arts. A demonic entity, Kagutaba, from a remote village's ritual, emerges as the antagonist.

Kobayashi uncovers the village's attempts to appease Kagutaba through sacrifices, which went disastrously awry. The cursed tape's viewers vanish or die, with Kobayashi's house catching fire, taking his wife. The film culminates as a found-footage documentary, Kobayashi's last. But where is he?

3. Banshee Chapter

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Journalist Anne Roland traces the mysterious disappearance of her friend James, linked to an experimental drug from the '60s. This drug, derived from the mysterious MK-Ultra project, induces terrifying visions and attracts… something.

As Anne delves deeper, she encounters eerie radio frequencies, unsettling the very air. The frequencies beckon an otherworldly presence, and those who hear it either vanish or turn alarmingly strange. The climax at a hidden desert shack sees Anne face-to-face with the inexplicable entity. She survives but at a cost. Some frequencies, it seems, should remain silent.

4. Terrified

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In a quiet Buenos Aires neighborhood, terrifying paranormal events plague three households. Voices from the sink, a dead boy at the dining table, and levitating beings are just the tip of the iceberg. Paranormal investigators and a retired cop team up, attempting to decipher the disturbances.

They discover a gateway to another dimension, and a malevolent entity wishing to cross over. Amidst the chaos, one investigator gets trapped in this alternate dimension. By dawn, the entire team is decimated or missing. The haunting, it appears, has just begun.

5. Gonjiam: Haunted Asylum

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A crew decides to live-stream their exploration of Gonjiam Psychiatric Hospital, rumored to be haunted. Inside, they find eerie relics of patients and doctors. As night deepens, so does the terror: doors slam, objects move, and shadows flit. One by one, crew members face horrifying visions or disappear entirely. The twist? The show's producer had staged some scares, but the real spirits of Gonjiam retaliate. The chilling finale? Only the camera remains.

6. The Poughkeepsie Tapes

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Police discover hundreds of tapes in an abandoned house in Poughkeepsie. These tapes chronicle a serial killer's reign, recording every grim detail of his abductions, tortures, and murders. One victim, Cheryl Dempsey, is kept alive, enduring years of torment. Her eventual release sees her so traumatized, she views herself as the killer's "slave".

The murderer's cunning traps law enforcement in a morbid game of cat and mouse. He remains elusive, rendering the tapes as haunting evidence of his prowess. The question lingers: Is he still out there?

7. As Above, So Below

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Archaeologist Scarlett Marlowe seeks the Philosopher's Stone in Paris's sprawling catacombs. With her team, she ventures deep, unearthing layers of history and horror. What begins as a treasure hunt spirals into a hellish nightmare. Each member confronts their darkest fears and sins, manifested in real, horrifying ways. The deeper they go, the more the boundary between reality and malevolent illusion blurs. Escaping becomes a quest for redemption. Yet, as they learn, some doors — once opened — aren't easily closed.

8. Lake Mungo

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Alice Palmer, a 16-year-old, drowns while swimming, shrouding her Australian family in grief. As they mourn, eerie events start to occur; are their eyes playing tricks, or is Alice reaching out? Surveillance footage reveals Alice's ghost haunting their home. Diving deeper, the Palmers unearth a tape of Alice digging a grave by Lake Mungo, chilled by the bone. Inside, they find her phone, portraying a sodden, ghostly figure: her future self. The realization? They saw Alice's ghost before her death.

9. The Borderlands

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A team is sent by the Vatican to investigate a miracle in a remote UK church. As their equipment captures mounting supernatural occurrences, skepticism gives way to dread. The discovery of an ancient pagan temple below hints at the church being a conduit for something ancient and malevolent. The horrifying climax sees the church as a living entity, consuming those inside. The investigators, trapped within its stone belly, face a fate worse than death. Can faith stand firm against such terror? In this chiller, perhaps not.

10. The Autopsy of Jane Doe

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A father-son coroner duo receives a pristine body: Jane Doe. Yet, her insides tell a different story, one of brutality and torture. As they dissect, bizarre phenomena begin: storms, shadows, and unexplained sounds. The body's clues hint at witch trial rituals, suggesting Jane might've been a suspected witch who's now seeking revenge.

As the morgue turns malevolent, the duo realizes they're battling an ancient force. The movie's claustrophobic finale delivers a chilling message: sometimes, the dead don't rest. And sometimes, they shouldn't be disturbed.

11. The Tunnel

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Journalists venture into Sydney's abandoned underground train tunnels to investigate government secrets. What they find is far from bureaucratic. Their journey becomes a fight for survival against an unseen, malevolent entity. Disappearances, eerie noises, and chilling discoveries ramp up the tension. The found footage style enhances the film's oppressive dread, trapping viewers in the dark with the characters. The climax? A frenzied escape, but not everyone emerges from the depths.

12. Absentia

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Tricia's husband Daniel disappears near a mysterious tunnel. Seven years later, as she's moving on, she experiences terrifying visions of him. Simultaneously, her sister Callie encounters a sinister force in the same tunnel. The entity, linked to a series of disappearances, appears to be an ancient predator, trading lives for lives. As they probe deeper, the line between reality and nightmare fades. The film culminates with Tricia making a gut-wrenching decision, proving that sometimes, the unknown is best left unexplored.