Scary Movies Based on Common Phobias

As many of you regular readers will know I have a fascination with common phobias. Last month I wrote an editorial where I went through some of the most common and terrifying phobias that have been included in horror movies.

Since I wrote that I have been looking through the comments below my other list, as well as on facebook and twitter, and I decided that I clearly missed many phobias. Therefore, I decided to make another list of Scary Movie common phobias.

This list adds some new phobias, as well as breaks down some of the categories from the former list.

1. Spiders – Arachnophobia

Yes, this one was on the last list, but, as many readers pointed out, a fear of spiders deserves its own category! I think that if you’re not afraid of spiders, Arachnophobia will be more comedic than anything to you. However, if you’re so scared of spiders that you can barely look at them, then this movie will probably give you nightmares.

2. Buried alive – The Premature Burial

Honorable mentions: The Vanishing

I think almost everyone has a fear of being buried alive. I noticed that this was one of the more popular phobias, mostly because it combines a fear of death with a fear of confined spaces. The Premature Burial is based on an Edgar Allen Poe story of the same name. The film follows a man whose fear of being buried alive is so intense that he builds a mausoleum with escape routes. It is definitely worth watching, and will most likely make you cringe if you have an intense fear of being buried alive. The Vanishing (the original) is also pretty frightening, but it is more of a mystery/thriller than a horror film.

3. Needles – Saw II

I always get crap for putting Saw films in my lists, but they do have some creative torture and killing scenes. Out of the whole series, the scene that gave me the most anxiety was the needle pit scene from Saw II. I would not consider myself afraid of needles, but this scene was extremely difficult to watch for me.

4. Loneliness – I Am Legend

Honorable mentions: He Was A Quiet Man

Usually the fear of loneliness is more about dying alone in a world full of people, but I think that Will Smith’s character in I Am Legend had it much worse than that. Not only did he have to deal with being the last person alive in New York, but he also had to fight off these really creepy vampiric monsters. It’s really sad to watch how the isolation has affected him, as well as learn how he came to be on his own. He Was A Quiet Man isn’t really a horror movie, and I think it would be seen more as a drama, but it still gives a pretty good insight on the effects of crippling loneliness. It’s always the lonely ones, right?

5. Snakes – Snake Island

Honorable Mentions: Venom (1981,) Snakes on a Plane

Now, I’m not afraid of snakes. Never really have been, but there were parts of Snake Island that I had to watch through my fingers. Based on the title it’s fairly self-explanatory that the film is about an island infested with snakes. It follows a group of tourists who visit the island and have to survive the lethal snakes. The acting in Venom isn’t amazing, but there are some stressful scenes. It’s about a kidnapping job that takes a turn for the worst when a black mamba is on the loose! And I had to include Snakes on a Plane here. Yes, it was a terrible movie, I am aware of that, but there were a shit ton of snakes in this film, and I guarantee that if you have a phobia of snakes, this one will freak you out. Also, has anyone ever notices that in killer snake movies, there is always at least one scene where the snake decides to take its time and slowly slither up your leg or around your neck or whatever, and the character goes completely still? That’s usually what gets me in snake movies. I can hardly move or breathe until it’s over! Because, clearly, my movements will affect the outcome of the film.

6. Psychopathic families – House of 1000 Corpses

Honorable mentions: Devil’s Rejects, Texas Chainsaw Massacre

House of 1000 Corpses is one of my favorites. I have probably watched it a million times, and it just keeps getting better. Those kids in House of 1000 Corpses obviously did not read my list to surviving a horror movie, or else they would understand that picking up a hitchhiker in the middle of a night is never a good idea! Even if she is as adorable as Sheri Moon Zombie, you should just keep driving. I think that Devil’s Rejects was a better movie, but the torture scenes—committed by the Firefly’s—weren’t as intense as House of 1000 Corpses. And obviously the Texas Chainsaw Massacre would be here. Leatherface is one of my favorite horror movie icons—seriously guys, he’s just misunderstood! —but seriously, I can never look at a meat hook the same way ever again. And you thought your family was crazy!

Scary Movies Based on Common Phobias

7. Ghosts – The Sixth Sense

Honorable mentions: Thir13en Ghosts, Ju-on, The Innkeepers

I do have a fairly intense fear of ghosts, and when I saw the Sixth Sense, at a fairly young age, I was traumatized for life. It ruined the OC for me! (No, not really. The OC ruined the OC for me.) But seriously, that movie really freaked me out. Even to this day it gives me chills to watch it. Thir13en Ghosts is also a movie I watched when I was younger, and the images were really scary for me. I don’t even think I was even to finish that one! (Keep in mind, I was only like nine or ten when I watched it!) I was able to get through The Grudge (the American remake,) but I was not able to sit all the way through Ju-on either! There is this one scene where a girl is lying under the covers in her bed, already spooked by her TV acting up, and when she lifts her covers up… Well, you should watch it for yourself. That clip is on Youtube if you’re interested! The Innkeepers also really scared me. I started watching that one alone in my apartment with all the lights off, but by the end of that movie, damn near every light in my apartment was on.

Scary Movies Based on Common Phobias

8. Cats – The Uncanny

Honorable mentions: Uninvited

Believe it or not, quite a few people are afraid of cats, myself definitely included. Seriously, cats are everywhere. I’ve seen them on my school campus, around my apartment complex, in random parks, and the list goes on! A cat attacked me when I was really young, and since then I’ve hated those conniving little bastards. The Uncanny was one of the most stressful films I have ever seen. The film follows three different stories, but they are all horrifying. It’s literally just cats on cats on cats, and they’re all being horrible and terrifying. Uninvited is about a crazy monster cat that finds its way onto a yacht and starts terrorizing everyone on it. It’s really cheesy, but just the thought of being stuck in the middle of the ocean with a cat that wants to kill me is beyond frightening.

Isn’t it interesting how a movie can be frightening even though it’s not explicitly horror? I have friends who literally couldn’t watch the Aragog scene in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets because of the spiders. I hope I covered some of the more common phobias here, but please comment below if you have anything to add to my list!

You can read my first list here: Top 10 Horror Movies Based on Phobias

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