Fear is the most abstract of all emotions. One is a doubter until consumed and overpowered by profound terror – almost like possession. Many of us enjoy spooking ourselves because science explains that when in fear, our body releases stress hormones that help us brace ourselves for the fight or flight situation. And most of us enjoy the ecstasy.
The weekend is just a day away, and the phantom won’t hurt anyone. Here are six horror flicks that you must watch if you have not. Gear up for the wicked weekend.
- The Shining (1980)
The Shining is a psychological horror film based on a Stephen King-novel by the same name. A family of three move into an isolated hotel for the winter, when the father (played by Jack Nicholson) takes up the job of a caretaker, while simultaneously struggling to break his writer’s block. Things go horribly wrong for the seemingly-normal family, when a snow storm hits the town and the father starts suffering from cabin fever. A troubled child with horrifying premonitions makes the plot grislier. Relish this classic film as it builds up its horror quotient gradually.
- The Conjuring (2013)
If a plot is based on one of the many cases cracked by paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren, rest assured it will haunt you for a lifetime. The Conjuring was a story that stayed with us long after it moved out of the theatres. A family of seven – father, mother and their five daughters – move into a charming, old house by a lake. And the picturesque house holds a history so sinister, it starts troubling the innocent family. They are forced to seek the Warrens’ help when a rancorous spirit of the previous resident – a Satan-worshipping woman – threatens the mother. Unnervingly haunting and emotional, this film is the real deal.
- A Nightmare On Elm Street (1984)
Keeping cynicism aside, what will you do if a menacing entity was to haunt you in your dreams, to the point that you would dread going to sleep? The children of Elm Street are all grown up now, but are troubled by a revengeful spirit that wants them to meet with a gruesome death in their sleep. They cannot close their eyes, and if they do, the charred chi of Freddy Krueger – a character from their shared past – will slash them with his blade fingers. But how long can they stay awake? “One, two, Freddy is coming for you”.
- Orphan (2009)
Not your average ghoulish plot, Orphan is a film that is unsettling on many levels, despite. A family welcomes a little girl into their lives, years after losing their third unborn. While the parents – fighting their own demons – expect joy, compatibility and completion, the girl brings chaos and madness. Days after settling in, she discloses her not-so-naïve colours to the mother and the siblings. While she is on her best behaviour with the father, her presence becomes a concern, almost a threat, to the rest of the family. An unanticipated ending nails this psychosomatic thriller.
- House of Wax (2005)
When I first watched this film, I was scarred mentally. The movie has the right amount of gore and distress. A group of holidaying friends get marooned in a ghostly town when a stranger sabotages their trip. They soon find themselves separated, fighting the malevolent twins who are obsessed with creating wax statues. But what of it? Their special skills include rendering people paralytic using drugs and pouring gallons of hot wax to trap them inside a sculpted version of their own selves. Can you stomach this one?
- Ju-On: The Grudge (2002)
The Japanese have a penchant for aesthetic horror films. While most of us are aware about the American adaption, its Japanese counterpart is scarier and more savouring. The basic storyline is the same – a cursed house in Japan with an atrocious history. Ju-On: The Grudge delves deep into the house’s past, while debating about the fate of those who have accidently been cursed. The spirits of the former residents – a man who murdered in rage, his unfaithful wife and son – still linger. A myth or a waking reality?