There are plenty of terrifying scenes in horror movies — that’s the whole reason people watch them, after all. However, interestingly enough, many people have noted that a surprising percentage of these scenes occur in basements. Some individuals, intentionally or unintentionally, think of basements as being scarier because they’re typically dimly-lit, poorly-trafficked, and sometimes ill-maintained. That’s why basements have become such a staple in horror. Take a look at this list of basements in horror movies, then look at some of the absolute scariest.
The Amityville Horror
One of the most terrifying parts of The Amityville Horror is the fact that the original creators insist that it’s a true story. The veracity of their claims is not proven by any means, but that hasn’t stopped people from continuing to be interested and horrified by the movie. The basement is one of the scarier portions of the home. In the basement, the family finds the infamous Red Room, which is a room that wasn’t on any of the building plans and has a crimson red color inside.
A Nightmare On Elm Street
This was an early slasher film, and its cultural impact can’t be understated. In fact, many people remember Freddy Krueger — for better or for worse — as a significant impact on them as a young child. A Nightmare on Elm Street definitely had a host of horrifying moments, and the basement in Freddy Krueger’s house was one of the scariest settings. He called it his “Nightmare Factory” because he would torture and kill people there.
Of all the movies on this list, Psycho probably had the greatest cultural impact. In fact, Psycho is such an important movie that it consistently ends up on lists of “Top Movies of All Time,” and most people argue that it deserves this lofty designation. In one crucial moment of the movie, the main character heads into Norman Bates’ fruit cellar. Here, she discovers something truly horrifying: the mummified corpse of his mother, whom he had pretended was alive this whole time.
This is a classic horror movie, and it’s one that has a lot of tropes that many people adore nowadays. There are definitely a wide variety of horrifying moments in The Evil, and they all start from the basic premise, which has to do with the basement. The couple who buys the home in The Evil believes it rests on hot sulfur pits, but when they open the trap door to the lower level, they find out it’s actually a portal to hell.
One of the reasons Get Out was so well-received is because it intentionally took horror movie tropes that audiences were used to and flipped them on their heads. Director Jordan Peele even intentionally cast individuals he thought would mislead the audience into thinking they were sympathetic. Though the outside of the home in the movie looks very pristine, the basement is actually a laboratory for transposing human consciousness.
The Silence of the Lambs
The scariest basement on this list definitely belongs to The Silence of the Lambs. There are lots of terrifying things that can happen in a basement, but Buffalo Bill uses the dry well in his basement to kidnap and starve women so he can skin them. Plus, the movie is basically a test of wits between two serial killers, which is a terrifying premise that anyone would find absolutely horrifying.
Clearly, scary basements are a dime a dozen in horror. However, what should you do to get the most from a scary basement horror story? These basements are all absolutely terrifying, and if you love a good scary basement scene, they should definitely go on your “to watch” list.
Scariest Basements and Crawl Spaces in Movies & TV Created By: OhioBasementAuthority