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Five terrifying true horror movies based on real-life events

Photo Credit: Pixbay

Written by Kimberly Cannon, Staff Writer

Stories of paranormal phenomenon or killers on a rampage seem to be the typical plotlines for horror movies. Overdone horror movie tropes may bore audiences with flat characters and unlikeliness. However, among the plethora of gory horror movies are some films which are based on real terror-inducing stories, which can provide the reality that many horror films or thrillers lack. From creatures that stalk humans to humans who hunt other humans, these horror movie characters are based on real murderers or victims who struggled to survive.

  1. “The Town That Dreaded Sundown” (2014) Directed by Alfonso Gomez-Rejon.

This is a remake of the 1976 film by the same name, and it is inspired by the unsolved “moonlight murders” that took place in Texarkana, a city with one municipality in Texas and a separate one in Arkansas, according to arkansas.com. The murderer wears a pillow case over his head with one eye-hole. This particular remake focuses on the murderer returning to the town after never being caught in the 1940s.

  1. “The Snowtown Murders” Directed by Justin Kurzel.

This horror film is based on the Australian serial killer John Bunting who committed the Snowtown Murders during in the 1990s. The film’s protagonist is 16-year-old Jamie who becomes close to Bunting after Jamie’s mother begins dating Bunting. Jamie is later pulled into participating in Bunting’s acts of murder and torture. Bunting, a murderer who dismembered his victims’ bodies and placed them into barrels, has been named one of Australia’s worst serial killers, according to true crime editor of the Herald Sun Paul Anderson.

  1. “Silent House” Directed by Laura Lau and Chris Kentis.

This film is an American remake of the Spanish film “La Casa de Muda,” which was based on events that occurred in a house in Uruguay in the 1940s, according to sitgesfilmfestival.com. The film follows a young woman who has returned, with her father, to her old family vacation home that will soon be put on the market. As night approaches, the young woman becomes stalked by something lurking in the house, and she cannot escape into the outside world.  “Silent House,” is meant to appear as if it was filmed in one continuous shot, so it appears to be in real-time, said Brendon Connelly of bleedingcool.com.

  1. “The Chaser” Directed by Hong-jin Na.

This South Korean thriller revolves around an ex-police officer that now works as a pimp. The protagonist hunts down a man who he believes kidnapped one of his prostitutes and killed others before her. The killer in the movie is based off of the real serial killer Yoo Young-Chul. Young-Chul killed numerous prostitutes and the pimps began working with police to catch him; Young-Chul was convicted of 21 murders, according to absolutecrime.com.

      1. “Open Water” Directed by Chris Kentis.

This film is based on the true story of the American couple Eileen and Tom Lonergan who went on vacation to Australia, and then went on a scuba diving excursion with a group of people on the boat “Outer Edge,” but the couple was left behind by the diving boat. After being stranded in the ocean for two days before the couple was discovered to be missing and a search was finally initiated, the Lonergan’s were never found, according to Jason Daley of Outside Online. This film plays on the theory that the couple was stalked and attacked by sharks.


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