The heart-wrenching screeches and the nerve-chilling darkness is the essence of horror movies, right? We all enjoy that surprise element, those spooky vibes, and the gloomy characters. Those dark pupils seem like endless pits and that’s what draws us to horror films. But sometimes, the makers go to an extreme level and end up creating a disturbing film instead of a horror movie.
There have been countless times the makers overdo it and end up getting the movie banned. Films like Slender Man and The Exorcist could have been top-charting horror movies had the makers didn’t go this far. But since they did, these epic movies had to face severe backlash.
Here is a list of the top 15 horror films that were banned due to their graphic representation of violent scenes! Know more about these now!
15. Cannibal Holocaust
The forests are a place of horror, especially those deep jungles that have swallowed so many people. Imagine what forests like the great Amazon Rainforest could do. Cannibal Holocaust centers around a film crew who went missing in the Amazon forest. It is a documentary-style thriller that embeds multiple elements to it, the top most being horror.
This film had some note-worthy elements, the most promising one being its narrative style. It bore a close resemblance to real-life events, only the makers went a level higher and made it overly graphic. It was banned in multiple counties due to its emphasis on violence and was deemed inappropriate. This 1980s movie was later released in the early 2000s with some modified scenes, it received a warm response then.
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14. I Spit On Your Grave
One of the most inspiring tropes in the horror genre is revenge and who would want to exert revenge more than an assaulted woman? Bearing the trauma her abusers inflicted upon her, she can take down the world brutally. Multiple horror films have used this trope and left their mark on us. But this movie, I Spit On Your Grave, has tainted the world.
It follows the same storyline, has a powerful set of actors, and yet received severe backlash due to its vivid portrayal of abuse that covers almost 30 minutes of the film’s time. It was banned in multiple countries and was considered to be a question against humanity. Who would want to bear watching a scene like this graphic?
Multiple female organizations protested against it but some understood the lesson behind that scene. Assault against women is a heinous crime and yet, some people don’t understand the depth of it. The creators were trying to symbolize the strength of a woman who is tortured by a group of people but it failed immensely.
13. The Exorcist
In a decade where graphics were still prevailing, The Exorcist became one overly vivid film that ended up banned in the US and UK. All the horror-genre lovers are very well acquainted with this movie but do you know how it was once the most hated film of the 1970s? Probably not since it is now one highly-acclaimed horror movie.
The Exorcist centers around a young girl who is possessed by Satan himself. You’d be amazed to know many people felt dizzy and fell ill because of this movie. The foul language, extensive violence, and frightening scenes were too much to bear. What you witness now is a washed-down version and it is still soul-chilling, imagine how intolerable the original movie has been.
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12. The Hunger
The name of this film should have been The Thirst because of its portrayal of excessive blood consumption. The movie features several tropes which complicate the movie to no end. It constitutes love triangles that seem too complex to be solved, bloodthirst that knows no bounds, and horror elements that threaten to make a person dizzy.
Though some horror lovers have enjoyed this film, a lot have complained about its absurdity. The movie centers around several characters who in the end form a crazy love pentagon. It is a dark portrayal of several elements that do not fit together.
How many times have we witnessed a possessed woman out to terrorize the world? Countless times, right? In the movie, Possession, a woman is suddenly possessed and demands crazy things. Starting from asking for a divorce, this woman goes as far as asking for death so she could enter heaven.
It is a wild ride that won’t let you down if you could endure the detailed violence, soul-chilling terror, and mysteries that don’t seem to solve. The makers were quite ambitious while creating this film which is why they added everything in this movie they could. It backfired on them and their movie was banned in multiple countries because of its misleading quest to heaven and God.
10. The Last House On The Left
Revenge is the perfect trope for a horror film, isn’t it? Most of the horror films we’ve witnessed so far are based on some kind of revenge plot but none of these movies is as extreme as The Last House On The Left. This movie was released worldwide but was banned in the UK due to its disturbing scenes in the 1970s.
This movie revolves around two girls who were brutally assaulted, murdered, and left to the wild animals in a forest. They were found bloodied later on and an investigation began. But the parents of these girls took matters into their hands and decided to avenge their children.
No matter how strong of a plotline it is, some scenes are too brutal to be bearable. However, there is majority of people who have enjoyed this film. This movie was altered later in 2008 and those excessively violent scenes were removed. The UK accepted this version and allowed the film to be released.
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9. Faces Of Death
Probably the movie that has the potential to irk anyone. Faces of Death was meant to be a movie that symbolizes our fear of death. We all know death is inevitable but often forget it. It’s a distant reality for us and even if we try, it doesn’t feel as real as it should. So, Faces of Death was manifested to help lessen the distance we have established between us and the inevitable death.
The idea was embraced highly but the film wasn’t. The makers included real-life dead bodies, cruelly slayed animals, and bloodshed that could cripple anyone. It was a vivid portrayal of hundreds of bloodied dead bodies that is as disturbing as it could get. Faces of Death ended up being banned in over 46 countries because of this graphic portrayal that seems inhumane.
8. Land Of The Dead
Zombies have become the latest trend in horror cinema. Who doesn’t want to witness their lifeless eyes, pale faces, and desire to turn the world to dust? But we love it only if humans come out unscathed in the end, we never want to witness humanity being crushed. Land of the Dead follows an ambush of zombies followed by the great escape of humans.
It poses a greater question on humanity which led to its ban in Ukraine. The movie wasn’t criticized as much by other countries as it was by Ukraine. It highlights the cultural barriers, the selfish nature of humans, and how survival is our primary instinct. In this movie, the zombies end up conquering the world and humans are confined to a smaller island where they struggle to live.
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7. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre
Despite receiving a warm response from the viewers, it has proved to be one of the most disturbing movies of all time. This movie closely follows mass murders, psychopaths that are cold-blooded killers, and harsh weapons. This 1970s film centers around a masked killer who goes on a rampage of killing people.
It is a graphic portrayal of killers blended with the horror genre. It was banned in multiple countries and is still facing backlash in these countries. The use of chainsaw as a weapon, the pools of blood, and the lack of direction have made it one highly criticized horror films ever.
6. The Evil Dead
A trip to the forest enchants us all, doesn’t it? We all want to have some time away from the glamour of the city and enjoy the serenity of the woods. And when we have our silly gang to company us, it calls for a perfect vacation, right? The Evil Dead follows five friends who decide to have a trip away from city life and explore the deep woods.
Only, the forest is littered with demonic spirits who play with humans as if they were toys. Four of these friends get possessed by spirits, leaving only one to fend for himself and save them. These spirits ensure a bloodbath, and their violent nature leaves everyone hawk-eyed.
It was banned in multiple countries due to its highly violent content including Ukraine, Singapore, and more. Though it received warm responses and garnered stellar ratings, some people and countries couldn’t bear to swallow the atrocity this movie depicts. It was originally released in the 1980s and a remake was launched in the early 2010s. This remake didn’t succeed to remove the ban but received great appraisal from the audience.
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We all love Japanese animes, don’t we? What about Japanese horrors? We all have enjoyed several Japanese horrors and while Grotesque received positive feedback, it was banned by the UK. It portrays overly vivid assaults and cruel torture methods.
It centers around a couple who is kidnapped and then brutally tortured by their captor. They have been sliced open, left to bleed, and watch life drain by them only to be brought to life back. This vicious cycle continues until Grotesque feels like an elaborate torture more than a horror film.
4. Hostel: Part 2
Hostels are meant to be places of unlimited fun, silly people, and memories we would treasure for a lifetime. But when such a happening place turns out to be the center of horror, the thrill and scare multiply tenfold. Hostel: Part 1 received a warm response and inspired the makers to create part 2.
They decided to climb a level up and go all out with the violence and that’s the reason the movie received severe criticism. Germany even went as far as to ban the movie, claiming that it was promoting violence and misleading the youth.
Hostel: Part 2 centers around a group of students who leave their hometown and pursue their studies in Rome. They come bearing high hopes, bright smiles, and unyielding energy only to lose it all here. They are kidnapped and dragged into an organization where money is power and humans are slaves. These rich people pay to torture and kill anyone anyhow, no matter how cruel the method is. It is brimming with violence, more than anyone could stomach.
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3. The Human Centipede 2
Part 1 of this movie was appraised all over the world and while multiple points were criticized, nothing deterred its success. But part 2 is nowhere close to part 1. The Human Centipede 2 is a huge question on how far the makers can go to portray torture.
This movie was banned because of its excessive focus on abuse, even more than the storyline. The makers tried to portray everything in fine detail which is why they went as far as comparing human skin to leather while a surgeon stitches a human after he is brutally tortured.
The foster system could be cruel but not all kids are innocent either. This movie follows a young orphaned teenager, Mikey, who has a deep longing to have a place to call home. Only, his desire to kill overpowers his longing. Mikey is a deadly killer with a sharp mind who leaves no trace behind him.
Though many fingers point at him, there is no evidence that Mikey has killed his so-called foster parents. This film was banned in multiple countries due to its psychological effect on children. It also showcases a foster child in the wrong manner, which isn’t acceptable. It could have been a great horror thriller if the makers didn’t highlight a child in such a way.
Mikey film had to undergo several modifications and was later released with the graphic scenes being cut short. It didn’t receive a stellar rating or garnered the attention of multiple critics even after being altered.
1. The Slender Man
One of the movies to receive the highest criticism and lowest ratings. The Slender Man, released in late 2018, revolves around a kidnapper who goes out at night to kidnap any child he can get his hands on. This was one of those movies that were banned due to its close resemblance to a myth that people believed came true.
Slender Man is known to be a faceless creature who enjoys torturing children. His bleeding neck and creepy stance would rub you the wrong way too if you watch closely. If you could overlook some gruesome details and follow the story of a man who derives sick pleasure from kidnapping, torturing, and killing innocent children, you could have watched it. Now it is banned by the production house itself.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Generally, horror movies are banned due to explicit abusive content or storylines that seem extreme.
You cannot find a banned horror movie on legit sites.
The popular streaming giants do not stream banned movies but some sites allow you to stream banned movies. Do note that these are illegal sites and watching banned movies might be a criminal offense in your state.
Australia is notorious for banning horror movies. The Australian film board is stricter than others.
It is banned because of its extreme portrayal of violence.
Yes, it is banned. But it is still available in some countries.
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