10 Most Terrifying Horror Movie Children | Screen Rant – Screen Rant

10 Most Terrifying Horror Movie Children | Screen Rant – Screen Rant

Child-like innocence adds an extra disturbing element of terror to horror films. These horror movie children are some of the most petrifying.
Instinct dictates the unspoken rule of humanity that everyone should protect the children by any and all means. So, when the source of evil that everyone needs protection from is an allegedly innocent child, it is so unnatural that it becomes all the more terrifying.
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There are quite a few films that utilize the evergreen oxymoron of evil innocence to instill fear in their viewers. Whether the children are ghosts, possessed by a demon, or undead, they are normally always terrifying. Horror films like Ju-On and Pet Sematary are among the films that highlight particularly nightmare-inducing kiddos.
Samara is the antagonist of Gore Verbinski’s The Ring. The demonic girl with supernatural abilities was trapped in a well at roughly twelve years old, but she lives on to kill those who watch a certain video after seven days.
Anyone who has seen The Ring is surely haunted by Samara’s ghostly whisper of “seven days” over the phone. A common prank call even plays off of the young girl’s signature phrase, because it is just so chilling when she delivers it. Samara’s method of killing by crawling out of the television makes her quite the terrifying young girl but it also makes The Ring one of the best movies on Paramount Plus.
Alejandro Amenábar’s 2001 film The Others features a little girl named Anne who lives with her family in a house that they suppose to be haunted. The end of the film reveals that they are the haunt in the house, making it one of those twisted horror films viewers have to watch twice to understand.
Although Anne is a ghostly little girl, neither she nor the audience knows this for quite a while. So, she does not necessarily spend the entire movie as a terrifying entity. However, as the film nears its climax, a scene occurs in which a living medium comes through Anne while she plays with a headless marionette and insists that she is Grace’s daughter. This scene yields the iconic line of “I am your daughter,” said in Anne’s sweet, childish voice that earns her a spot as an utterly terrifying horror film child.
In Ari Aster’s Hereditary, Charlie Graham is the younger sister of Peter Graham. In an emblematic scene of the film, she is decapitated by a telephone pole while sticking her head out of the car window.
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While Charlie certainly has some peculiar behaviors, she is not entirely terrifying up until the reveal that she is never actually Charlie at all. Charlie’s own soul was consumed long ago by Paimon, who possesses her form but seeks to take Peter’s body. Charlie’s arc in Hereditary has big brothers everywhere shooting suspicious glances at their younger sisters and hoping that their clucking noises do not signal an evil entity trying to get out.
In the iconic Japanese horror franchise, The Grudge, the ghost of Toshio follows around the vengeful spirit of his mother. His presence is not marked by the same haunting noise that Yoko makes, but he does let out a “meow” due to the emotional attachment that he had to his cat in life.
Toshio does not necessarily carry out the kills of the curse, but that does not make him any less terrifying. Viewers of The Grudge will forever be haunted by the thought of the child’s black eyes staring back at them when they peek under a table or look up at the banister. Plus, there’s no hiding under the covers from Toshio. Those who try will come face to face with his mother under their own blankets.
Karen Cooper is a little girl in Night Of The Living Dead that meets the same unfortunate end as so many others do in zombie movies. She gets bitten, turns into the undead herself, and then gruesomely chows down on her own parents.
Zombies are terrifying, and Karen proves that they are made no less so when they are children. Regardless of the fact that she is undead, watching her bite into her own dead father’s flesh and disembowel own her mother with a trowel is nothing short of stomach-churning. She serves as a reminder to audiences to prevent the zombie apocalypse by all means, even if just to avoid unnaturally scary undead children running around.
In Pet Sematary, Gage Creed is a three-year-old boy that is killed by a speeding truck. After his father buries him in an ancient burial ground, he comes back to life, but not as the same sweet little boy that he was.
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Pet Sematary pulls the audience in to love sweet Gage, so the last thing that viewers want is for the young child to die. When he does die and come back, however, he instills a fresh fear in the audience of a murderous three-year-old. It makes it worse that he kills his own mother and aims to do the same to his father. Perhaps the most harrowing portion of Gage’s arc is the fact that his own father has to put him down, leaving the audience all around unsettled.
Stanley Kubrick’s The Shining is responsible for two of the most iconic horror movie children of all time: the Grady twins. These two little girls haunt the hallways of the Overlook Hotel, appearing to Danny in both their ghostly form and as their bloodied corpses.
The phrase “Come and play with us” lives in infamy because of The Shining twins, and the girls themselves have become cultural icons. The image of two identical little girls standing at the end of a long hallway and asking a living person to play with them is undoubtedly haunting, which is likely why the imagery has become a staple in horror movie iconography. The same can be said for other elements of the film, which is why The Shining is one of Eli Roth’s favorite horror movies.
When it comes to terrifying horror movie children, no child is quite as chilling as Regan MacNeil from The ExorcistThe twelve-year-old girl falls victim to demonic possession, with fatal results for those who try to help her.
From levitating off of the bed to vomiting pea soup, there is no doubt that Regan is one of, if not the most iconic horror movie child of all time. Although she begins the film very sweet and charming, the demon inside of her turns her into something utterly petrifying. Regan makes The Exorcist one of the scariest films of all time, and also one of the favorite horror films of iconic filmmaker Stanley Kubrick.
Richard Donner’s The Omen follows a young boy named Damien. The strange events that occur around Damien allude to the fact that he is, indeed, the Biblical Antichrist on the rise to power.
Damien is not just any scary horror movie child. He bears the mark of the best on his skin, “666.” Putting so much evil power in the body of a seemingly innocent boy is a twisted yet very effective move. After the first film, The Omen franchise continues to follow Damien as the little boy who breathes life into the Devil himself.
In Children Of The CornIsaac stands at the head of a town of killer children who murder any adult that steps foot in the town to pacify a malevolent spirit of the cornfields.
An entire cult of murderous children is scary enough. The thought of one single child standing at the head of all of them, persuading and manipulating them to the dark will of an otherworldly entity, is entirely horror-striking. Out of all of the children of the corn, Isaac certainly takes the cake as one of the most terrifying horror movie children.
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Gabby Etzel is a Manhattan-based writer with an affinity for the fearsome and an inexplicable identification with Throg. She’s easily charmed by two things: A well-written villain and a smoked salmon bagel.

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