We thought it would be cool to make a list of some of the best horror movies based on real life events. We have put together this list from movies based on ghost/demon hauntings, animal attacks, serial killers and just plain psycho behavior. The list is not sorted in any particular order, but each and every movie here is based on real life horror events.
Based loosely on the story of Anneliese Michel, who is a German Catholic girl that changed her name to Emily Rose. She was diagnosed with epilepsy, but two priests believed that the devil possessed her. She eventually died of starvation and the priest was accused by the state of negligent homicide. The priest was accused because they performed sixty-seven, four-hour exorcisms on her within a ten-month time frame.
This story about a 25-foot shark is a true event that happened on the New Jersey Shore in 1916. Four people were attacked and killed over a twelve day period. A seven-foot shark was caught and killed on July 14, 1916. People were surprised that human remains were found in the dead shark’s stomach.
Tom and Eileen Lonergan was unintentionally left behind at the Great Barrier Reef in 1998 by a diving company during a scuba diving expedition. The diving company realized the couple was left behind and returned for them, but they were nowhere to be found. Director Chris Kentis added a little more drama to the true story by adding sharks to the story.
4. The Zodiac
The Zodiac killer in real life did most of his killing in Northern California in the 1960s and 1970; is identity remains unknown. The Zodiac killer would leave letters behind after attacking his victims. The movie is based on true crime events book written by Robert Gray-Smith.
5. Black Water
Black Water is about three family members who went on a fishing trip and soon finds out that they were being hunted. It is based on three friends who went to ride their bikes on Kangaroo flat on December 2, 2003, and a huge crocodile ate one of the friends.
6. Childs Play
This is a movie that almost all horror fans love to see. Childs Play was inspired from Robert the Doll. A skilled voodoo and black magic Bahamian servant in 1906 gave the cursed doll to Eugene because she was not happy with his family. Robert the doll would talk, move around, blink and gave devilish giggles. The doll is kept in a museum, in Key West.
Ed and Lorraine Warren is involved on this horror movie that is based on real life event once again. The Warrens helped with a haunting in Rhode Island where a witch by the name of Bathsheba Sherman who haunts and terrorizes everyone that lived in the house that she has resided in since the nineteenth century.
8. The Hills Have Eyes
This horror movie is not for the weak stomach horror fans because it is hard to believe that this movie is based on a real life event. Imagine living in the hills and eating human flesh, just thinking about it makes me shiver. The movie is about a tribe from the Scottish cave dwellers in the sixteenth century. They consumed/ate one thousand people in the twenty-five year period before they were executed.
9. Wolf Creek
The movie is about three people who were tortured and killed in the Wolf Creek National Park. This movie is based on Ivan Milat (kidnapped and tortured hitchhikers) and Bradley Murdock (tortured and killed a British tourist).
10. The Haunting in Connecticut
Al and Carmen Snedeker got a bargain for the new home that they are living in. They lived in the funeral home and started to experience paranormal activity. The Warrens were called in to investigate the paranormal activities in the house.
The movie is about the true events experienced by the Lutz family in their home, 112 Ocean Avenue in Amityville, New York. The Lutz family did not know there was a mass murder in their home one year before them moving in. The Lutz family began to experience paranormal activities such as green ooze dripping from the walls, hearing voices around the house and other frightening experiences.
12. The Girl Next Door
It was based on the 1989 novel with the same title by Jack Ketchum.
The movie was based on Sylvia Likens being brutally tortured and murdered during the summer of 1965 by Gertrude Baniszewski. The movie is about a girl who gets kidnapped by the neighborhood kids and held captive in the basement. They tortured, mutilated and raped her in the basement - really sick to know it is actually based on real life events that are still taking place today.
The movie is about a young couple who were attacked in their summer home. The stranger tortured, beat and then killed them because he likes to inflict pain onto others. This was a scary movie that left the audience sleeping with their lights on at night. The movie was based on numerous break-ins into homes when director Bryan Bertino was growing up. It was also based on the Charles Manson family killings in the 1970s.
Norman Bates is a fictional character that was inspired by real-life serial killer Ed Gein. The writer claimed that he did not intentionally mean for his character to be so similar to Ed Gein. He confesses to liking the case, reading about it and having it as a motivational inspiration.
The movie was based on Bari Wood and Jack Geasland novel, Twins. It is about the lives of two identical twins, Stewart and Cyril Marcus who exchange their professional and personal lives. Stewart and Cyril’s life became too complex and spiraled out of control eventually leading to both of them committing suicide in their Manhattan apartment.