10 Horror Films Based on Real Events

10 Horror Films Based on Real Events

by | Mar 3, 2017

Some films may give you nightmares, but you can always be reassured that the horrors you have witnesses are just fantasy. They are the artistic flourishes or directors and actors creating something terrifying to keep you up at night.  For some people the fiction you see on screen is real, the nightmares exist. These are 10 Horror Films Based on Real Events, each one documented and studied, revealing that true horror exists.

 

1 – The Amityville Horror (1979)

10 Horror Films Based on Real Events - 1 - The Amityville Horror (1979)

 

Possible one of the best-known haunting ever recorded. The Amityville Horror is based on the events that took place in 1975 at 112, Ocean Avenue, when the Lutz family moved to Amityville. The Family claim they were menaced by spirits in the house. With green ooze dripping down walls, doors opening and shutting by themselves and invisible spirits causing mayhem for the family, they only lasted four weeks in their new home. Whilst there is no real evidence of the haunting, the family swear that the events happened.

 

2- The Conjuring (2013)

10 Horror Films Based on Real Events - The Conjuring (2013)

 

The Conjuring’s poster boldly states that it’s “based on the true case files of the Warrens.” The real-life couple, Ed and Lorraine Warren (played in the film by Vera Farmiga and Patrick Wilson), were American paranormal investigators that foundedthe New England Society for Psychic Research in 1952. They claimed to have solved thousands of cases including that of Roger and Carolyn Perron, when they moved into a colonial farmhouse in Harrisville in 1971.  The Perrons complained of bad smells and of levitating beds during the 9 years that they had lived there. They even appeared in marketing for The Conjuring, to claim that the hauntings were true.

 

3- The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

10 Horror Films Based on Real Events - The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

 

The Murderous Hewitt family are purely fiction, but their habit of sculpting furniture, clothes and masks from their victims was inspired by real life murderer Ed Gein. Gein experimented in human taxidermy and a whole host of nightmare objects were found in his farm house, including Human Skulls used for bed posts, lips as window shade drawstring and a “Mammary vest” crafted from a woman’s torso. Gein also inspired characters such as Norman Bates (Psycho -1960) And Buffalo Bill (Silence of the Lambs – 1991)

 

4 – A Nightmare On Elm Street (1984)

10 Horror Films Based on Real Events - A Nightmare On Elm Street (1984)

 

Whilst Freddy Kruger is a work of pure fiction, the inspiration behind him came from a real life condition. Wes Craven learned of a condition known as Asian Death Syndrome, which effected scores of Cambodian refugees during the 1980s. One such story was reported in the L.A Times about a family that have survived the Killing fields of Cambodia. Their youngest son would stay awake for days frightened to sleep. When he finally did sleep, he woke his parents screaming in the night, only to be found dead minutes later. He died in the middle of a nightmare.

 

5 – The Serpent and the Rainbow (1988)

10 Horror Films Based on Real Events

 

Wes Craven’s jungle horror flick features a weird mix of political revolution and voodoo hallucinations. The film was based on a book by Wade Davis, a Canadian anthropologist, ethnobotanist and author who investigated the strange case of Clairvus Narcisse, a Haitian man who was allegedly transformed into a mindless zombie.  Wade concluded that certain venoms and poison could put someone into a near-death stage for several days.

 

6 – The Exorcist (1973)

10 Horror Films Based on Real Events - The Exorcist (1973)

 

The Exorcist is based on a 1971 novel by American writer William Peter Blatty. The inspiration for the book came from the last known Catholic-sanctioned exorcism in the United States which took place in Marland in 1949. An unmade 14 year old boy was subject of several Exorcisms, with many aspects of the story mirroring the book/films plot. The priests reported furniture moving around by itself, words appearing on the boy’s body and the bed shaking violently.

 

7 – The Girl Next Door (2007)

10 Horror Films Based on Real Events - The Girl Next Door (2007)

 

The Girl Next Door is loosely based on the real-life murder of Sylvia Likens. The 16-year-old girl was tortured to death by the family she was staying with after her mother was arrested and jailed for shoplifting. They beat, branded and starved the poor girl to death.

 

8- Borderland (2007)

10 Horror Films Based on Real Events - Borderland (2007)

 

Borderland is loosely based on the true story of Adolfo de Jesús Constanzo, a drug lord and the leader of a religious cult that practiced human sacrifice. Adolfo and their followers are believed to be responsible for the ritualistic killings of over 20 people, all used as part of his profitable business of casting spells to bring good luck to rich drug dealers and hitmen.

 

9 – The Exorcism Of Emily Rose (2005)

10 Horror Films Based on Real Events - The Exorcism Of Emily Rose (2005)

 

The Exorcism Of Emily Rose is loosely based on the story of Anneliese Michel, who underwent Catholic exorcism rites during the year before her death in 1976. Anneliese suffered from epilepsy, and her violent fits were not helped by medication. Her Family become convinced that Annaliese had become possessed by a demon. Two priest performed 67 session of exorcism on Anneliese over a period of 10 months. She died on July 1st 1976 of malnutrition and dehydration, due to the prolonged semi-starvation state forced upon her for the ritual. Courts jailed the two priests with negligent homicide and the Catholic church changed its position on the case, stating Anneliese was mentally ill, not possessed.

 

10 – Wolf Creek (2005)

10 Horror Films Based on Real Events - Wolf Creek (2005)

 

This shocking torture porn style thriller is based on a brutal series of killings that took place in the 1990s. Nicknamed the backpack murders, seven bodies of missing young people were found partially buried in the Belanglo State Forest. A man named Ivan Milat was arrested and charges for the murders. Milat prayed on foreign backpackers visiting Australia, violently beating and stabbing his victims to death. It is believed that Milat may have murdered even more, as many other missing person’s cases in the area remain unsolved, including three female backpackers that disappeared without a trace in the forest area.

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