The best scary movies based on true stories are not always the ones that are most well-known, but they are all guaranteed to give you goosebumps and make you sleep with the lights on. A true story can make for a handier horror movie than an invention.
- The Exorcist, 1973
The Exorcist is a popular horror movie of the 1970s. It was based on a best-selling novel of the same name. The movie was directed by William Friedkin and had Linda Blair as the protagonist, Regan MacNeil. The movie is rated R and has many disturbing images and violent scenes.
- The Silence of the Lambs, 1991
The Silence of the Lambs is a 1991 psychological thriller novel written by Thomas Harris, later adapted into a film of the same name by director Jonathan Demme. The Silence of the Lambs is often considered one of the best horror movies to date. The movie’s popularity is largely due to Anthony Hopkins’ portrayal as serial killer Hannibal Lecter. He received an Oscar for his performance and was nominated for Best Picture at the Academy Awards that year.
- The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, 1974
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre, 1974 movie is one of the most well-known horror movies. The movie’s horrific story is based on one of the most notorious murderers in American history, Ed Gein. Ed Gein was born in 1906 and grew up on a farm with strict religious parents. The relationship between him and his mother was never good because she would beat him for any disobedience. For example, once when he was five years old, she found out that he had stolen some candy from her store and she punished him by making him wear women’s clothes (he didn’t like this).
- The Conjuring, 2013
The Conjuring is a 2013 American supernatural horror film directed by James Wan. It was produced by New Line Cinema and released in theaters on July 19, 2013. The movie is based on the true story of Ed and Lorraine Warren, paranormal investigators, who were called to assist a family terrorized by a dark presence in a secluded farmhouse.
- A Nightmare on Elm Street, 1984
A Nightmare on Elm Street is a 1984 horror film that has been considered one of the best movies based on a true story. A Nightmare on Elm Street is a 1984 horror film that has been considered one of the best movies based on a true story. This movie was produced by the famous American filmmaker Wes Craven and it tells a story about Freddy Krueger – a fictional serial killer with an extraordinary ability to invade people’s dreams. Freddy Krueger was created by Craven as an allegorical representation for nightmares and childhood trauma, with his character being based on people from Craven’s past. And this is what makes it such an interesting movie to watch – you can relate to it because you know that it’s based on real events or feelings.
- Psycho, 1960
Psycho is a 1960 American psychological thriller film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. It tells the story of Norman Bates, a man with an Oedipus complex who becomes fixated on his mother after their relationship becomes increasingly strained following the death of his father. The movie has been called “perfect, brilliant Hollywood storytelling” by director Martin Scorsese and it became one of Hitchcock’s best-known works, spawning three sequels.
- The Amityville Horror, 1979
The Amityville Horror is based on the paranormal experience of a family in Long Island. The movie portrays how a family moves into their new house and experiences paranormal events, such as the presence of an evil entity. Eventually they find out that the ghost is not real and it all was created by an evil demon living in the house, who killed people and manipulated them to kill themselves.
- Jaws, 1975
Jaws is a 1975 American thriller film directed by Steven Spielberg and based on Peter Benchley’s 1974 novel of the same name. The story revolves around a giant man-eating great white shark which terrorizes beach-goers from the fictional town of Amity Island, Massachusetts. The police chief, Martin Brody, enlists the help of marine biologist Matt Hooper to hunt down the great white shark after it kills four people in one summer.
- The Exorcism of Emily Rose, 2005
The Exorcism of Emily Rose, released in 2005, is a horror movie based on a true story. In 1998, 16-year-old Emily Rose was killed during an exorcism in the United States. The movie tells the story of her life and death from her perspective. The film is loosely based on a 2006 book by journalist Matt Baglio called “The Rite: The Making of a Modern Exorcist”.
- Child’s Play, 1988
Child’s Play was directed by Tom Holland and written by Don Mancini. The film stars Catherine Hicks as Karen Barclay, Chris Sarandon as Charles Lee Ray, and Alex Vincent as Andy Barclay. The story is about a woman who buys a doll for her son, Andy Barclay. After she gives it to him, he starts to experience terrible things happening at the house – such as furniture being rearranged or other electronic items turned on or off. The boy then realizes that the doll is alive and it wants to kill him just like his previous owner Charles Lee Ray (the “Lakeshore Strangler”).