Don’t Get Lost in these 10 Creepy Maze Films
In real life, mazes are fun little distractions that you’ll find at fairs and stately homes. In films, they are dark pits of hell in which nasty things lie in wait for their next Victim. You don’t drop a Labyrinth in a film unless you want to freak the audience out and this list looks at some of the nastiest you’ll find in film.
Thir13en Ghosts (2001)
A modern take on labyrinth as the film traps a house full of people inside a glass maze. Whilst the ever-changing maze keeps everybody on their toes, it’s the spooks trapped inside that are the biggest danger. No Miniatures here, but they do have a bound woman, a torso and a Jackal, all eager to get their rotten hands on the living. With every twist and turn landing you in a dead end or dead pile of legs and guts, Thir13en Ghosts’ maze is one to be afraid of.
The creature filled musical feature Labyrinth, is just about the busiest film there is. Every twist and turn is filed with creatures and characters. Shoving them all into a crumbled old labyrinth is Jim Henson’s, telling the tale of a young girl forced into the Labyrinth to rescue her baby brother. And whilst the film is generally filled with pleasant or funny characters, it also has its mix of nasties, from the devil looking Fire Gang, the creepy Helping Hands and the ominous False Alarms. And don’t even mention the bog of eternal stench. It stinks!
Film director Chris Nolan envisioned a maze for the mind, in his 2010 hit Inception. With dreams becoming something, we can share, via experimental military technology, “extractors” perform corporate espionage, stealing valuable information for competing companies. A maze is created, within the dreamer’s mind, to keep them asleep and unaware that they are in a dream. The bigger the job, the bigger the maze. The darkest thing about this is that it’s your mind and your trapped within someone else’s maze. Mind bending stuff.
Dark City (1998)
Dark city turns an entire metropolis into a maze of streets and buildings. The film was clearly some inspiration to Inception, as an alien presence change the cities layout as the “humans” sleep, “tuning” buildings and pathways into new shapes and sizes. The city is created as a maze to prevent anyone from realising the boundaries of their prison and the people living within the city walls are unknowing lab rats stuck in an endless, dark and dreary, maze. Anyone trying to travel beyond will find barriers blocking their way. As the human prisoners fall asleep, “The Strangers” arrive, creating new lives and a new city for the people to live in. Here in the labyrinth of The Dark City, it’s always night and everything is wrong.
Maze Runner (2014)
The Maze Runner is a 2014 American dystopian science fiction action thriller film which finds a group of boys trapped inside “The Glade” with no memory of how they got there. The only exit is through a dangerous and ever-changing maze. With Grievers, deadly techno-organic creatures that roam the Maze at night, and other perils awaiting within the maze, escape is a deadly pursuit. The dystopian setting, the dark vine filled pathways and the mechanical menaces within the maze, all paint a bleak and hopeless picture.
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005)
Returning for his fourth year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Harry Potter found himself facing a spooky and dangerous maze in the Triwizard Tournament. The Third Task of the tournament was to navigate a huge hedge maze grown on the Hogwarts Quidditch pitch. With the Tri-Wizard Cup at it’s centre, the four contestants had to make their way to the centre to claim victory for their school. The dark and misty maze is filled with danger and hedges bewitched to prevent the contestants from reaching their goal. It’s dark, gloomy and damn right creepy. But what lies at it centre is far worse than Harry could ever imagine.
The Shining (1980)
Taking a few liberties with the source material, Stanley Kubrick made several changes to Stephen King’s chilling novel, The Shining. Kubrick swapped a loving family man for a crazed Jack Nicholson, a croquet mallet for an axe and topiary animals for a hedge maze. The latter became the environment one of the films most horrifying sequences, as an enraged Jack, axe in hand, chases his son through a snow-covered warren of horror. The camera angles, the music and the ever-building dread makes The Shining’s maze sequence one of the most terrifying ever placed on film.
Dave Made a Maze (2017)
Heralding from the cardboard forts you used to build as a Kid, Dave Made a Maze is a quirky comedy horror about a failed artist whose creation comes to life. Frustrated by his failures, the titular Dave decides to build a cardboard maze in his living room, only for him to become trapped by its fantastical pitfalls and endless corridors, as it grows and takes on a life of its own. His personal labyrinth is a series of infinite cardboard passages held together with Gaffer tape and filled with danger at every turn. With a rescue party slowly whittled down by crazy booby traps and a rampaging Minotaur close on their tracks, Dave Made a Maze is extraordinary trip inside a fun house from hell.
The surreal 1997 sci-fi called Cube sets a bunch of random people inside a giant maze of rooms. Whilst this is not your traditional maze of corridors and dead ends, this one is somehow a lot worse. Each room is connected to six others, and those are connecting to six more, and so on and so forth. Many are filled with traps such as acid, spikes and limb cutting wires and it’s hard to tell which rooms are safe and which are not. For the people trapped inside, there is apparently no way out and each room bleeds into the next. With no food or water, time is running out, and to make matters worse, the rooms appear to also be moving. This strange and terrifying maze is one you’ll prey you’ll never wake up in.
Hellbound: Hellraiser II (1988)
Hellraiser famously introduced us to the otherworldly Cenobites and their keen obsession with pleasure and pain. These Sadomasochist from Beyond the Grave were such a big hit with cinema goers, that sequel popped up a year later in 1988. Looking to push the envelope, the film explored the realm within in which the Cenobites reside, The Labyrinth of Hell. At its centre, the god Leviathan, who dwells in the shape of a gigantic, elongated diamond rotating in space above the labyrinth. The maze twists on forever, and trapped within side this dark domain, are the tortured souls condemned to an eternity of suffering. These dark corridors and tunnels are filled with horrors beyond imagining and is the darkest of all film mazes by far.
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“Hey Horror Fans – Amazing isn’t it? I do love a good maze (or even a BAD one), but i’ve yet to get LOST inside one. Imagine being TRAPPED inside one of the 10 Creepy Mazes listed above? What would you do? How would you escape? Lets get this conversation started in the comments on the bottom of the page. Until next time maze runners….