25 scariest moments in non-horror movies. A compiled list by a bunch of different writers.
Some really interesting and startling entries.
The infamous eye-slice from Un Chien Andalou, that I can’t even think about without shivering.
Alison Willmore writes:
Classics are classics for a reason. This 16-minute silent film meeting of surrealist minds, a collaboration between BuÃ±uel and Salvador DalÃ, may be 80 years old, but it kicks off with a shock that still has the power to make audiences recoil in their seats.
Jimmy Stewart’s breakdown in Vertigo. So unsettling – and I love how the writer suggests that it is even MORE unsettling because it is JIMMY STEWART, and all of the baggage we bring to such an actor. Yes. Classic Hitchcock: taking an iconic actor and up-ending his persona, messing with our expectations.
Alison Willmore, again, writes:
In the best of Hitchcock’s dream sequences, Scottie’s horror and guilt about what happened unfurl in flashes of color to the terrible clicking of castanets. Carlotta’s made flesh, and she’s there by the window at the inquest as Gavin Elster tells him “you and I know who killed Madeleine,” and there in the portrait come to life, smirking triumphantly at the camera as it closes in with thudding dread on the necklace that links “Vertigo”‘s women. It’s terrifically frightening, and it’s where the film turns — ghosts may be scary, but so are crumbling heroes. Jimmy, we hardly knew you.
And then, I was so glad to see the final scene of The Vanishing on there (the original, not the American remake) – a film so horrifying, and it just got worse after you left the theatre, as you kept thinking about it, and thinking about it … I actually had to have my boyfriend HOLD ME after that film, I was so freaked out about it.
Sam Adams writes:
Although he has all but given up hope of finding Saskia alive, Rex is obsessed with finding out what happened, to the point that he strikes a deal with her abductor: He will submit to everything Saskia experienced, from the abduction on. The answer he finally gets is so much worse than we could ever have imagined, and yet perfectly in tune with the movie’s logic of estrangement and reunion. It’s enough to make you fear letting your loved ones pass out of sight, even for an instant, and a reminder that some secrets may be better left buried.
I am thinking now of a specific scene from John Cassavetes’ Opening Night, which is a movie that creeps me out to my core – when Gena Rowlands, sitting alone in her echoing apartment, glances up, with a look truly MAD – and sees her ghostly nemesis appear at the door. We can’t really see the ghost fully, just fragments, her furious gleaming eyes, her long hair, and we know, we know, that Gena Rowlands is seeing something that is not there. It’s terrifying. It’s Macbeth seeing the ghost of Banquo. Madness is the scariest thing of all.