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Top 10 Saddest Deaths in Horror Movies

VO: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Mark Sammut

To be fair... it comes with the territory. For this list, we’re looking at the most heartbreaking deaths in horror movie history. This should go without saying, but spoilers are inevitable. Our list includes deaths from “I Am Legend” (2007), “10 Cloverfield Lane” (2016), “A Quiet Place” (2017), “The Fly” (1986), “The Shining” (1980), and more! Join WatchMojo as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Saddest Deaths in Horror Movies.

Check out the voting page for this list and add your picks: https://www.WatchMojo.comsuggest/Top+10+Saddest+Deaths+in+Horror+Movies. Special thanks to our user SMC0DT for suggesting this idea!


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Script written by Mark Sammut

Top 10 Saddest Deaths in Horror Movies

To be fair... it comes with the territory. Welcome to WatchMojo and today we'll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Saddest Deaths in Horror Movies.

For this list, we're looking at the most heartbreaking deaths in horror movie history. This should go without saying, but spoilers are inevitable.

#10: Emmett DeWitt

"10 Cloverfield Lane" (2016)

You know what, maybe fighting an alien race is safer than being stuck in a bunker with a madman. Following 2008's Cloverfield, 10 Cloverfield Lane largely ignores the monsters and focuses on a group of humans hiding out in a bunker. Michelle was kidnapped by Goodman's Howard, who explains that he did it for her own safety, while Emmett actually begged to get in. After learning that Howard is in the abduction business however, the two hatch an escape plan - only to get caught in the act. Emmett takes full responsibility, before being shot dead by Howard. To add insult to injury, Howard later dissolves Emmett's body in acid.

#9: Dick Hallorann

"The Shining" (1980)

The Overlook Hotel is just not kind to people blessed with the shine. Dick Hallorann makes a handful of appearances throughout Stephen King's stories, with his most famous occurring in The Shining. While detested by the author, Stanley Kubrick's adaptation is considered a classic. Hallorann is a kind chef who - like Danny - possesses telepathic and clairvoyant powers. After receiving a premonition that hell is breaking loose at the Overlook Hotel, Hallorann rushes over to try and help out. Sadly, things do not work out.

#8: Lee Abbott

"A Quiet Place" (2017)

Though young Beau's death really tugs at the heartstrings, we don't really get to know him before he's taken away from the Abbott family, and our screens. As such, we've picked the untimely demise of patriarch Lee, who's a strong protector that truly loves his family. Set in a post-apocalyptic world where sounds attract sightless monsters to kill living things, the climax of "A Quiet Place" sees Lee making the ultimate sacrifice when he attempts to distract one of these creatures off his kids' scent. This allows Regan and Marcus to escape and go back to their mother and newborn sibling - only for them to have to continue the fight at the farmhouse.

#7: Nancy Thompson

"A Nightmare On Elm Street 3: The Dream Warriors" (1987)

Freddy really has a twisted sense of humor. The third film in the series takes place within a mental hospital housing the surviving children of the people who originally killed Krueger. Nancy is back from the original Nightmare On Elm Street, as she attempts to form a dream team capable of taking Freddy down for good. After surviving multiple encounters, Krueger lures Nancy in by shape-shifting into her father. To Nancy's credit, she refuses to be defeated even after a fatal stabbing and returns the favor by stabbing Freddy with his own glove.

#6: Seth Brundle

"The Fly" (1986)

David Cronenberg's 1986 remake of the film by the same name, "The Fly", follows Seth Brundle, a highly intelligent but eccentric scientist who holds the key to instant teleportation. With the experiment's kinks seemingly ironed out, Seth decides to use himself as a test subject. Unfortunately, a fly gets into one of the pods causing its DNA to fuse with Seth's. As the film progresses, Seth's mental capacity slowly deteriorates and he transforms into a terrifying human-insect hybrid. Desperate to survive, Seth tries to fuse with his girlfriend and their unborn baby but ends up mixed with a metal frame instead, and then pitifully begs for death.

#5: Carrie White

"Carrie" (1976)

Just in case someone missed the memo, bullying is bad and can lead to dire consequences. Carrie is based on the Stephen King novel and stars Sissy Spacek as the victimized title character. Treated like dirt by her classmates, and terrorized by her horrible mother, Carrie reaches her last straw when she's crowned prom queen only to have pig's blood dumped on her. Suffice to say, everyone in that gym dies painfully. After mummy dearest literally stabs her in the back, Carrie loses control and burns the house down with both of them still in it. So yeah; be kind to each other.

#4: Samantha

"I Am Legend" (2007)

Dog lovers, you might want to look away for this one. Believing that he is the last remaining human, Dr. Robert Neville spends his days trying to find a cure for the virus that's killed most of the population and turned the rest into vampiric mutants. With no other human in New York City, Neville's German Shepherd Sam, who originally belonged to his daughter, helps keep the loneliness at bay. One day, Neville is caught in a trap, forcing Sam to defend him from the infected Darkseekers. While successful, the dog is bitten and has to be put down by Neville. Making the moment even worse, Sam is strangled to death.

#3: Everyone in the Car

"The Mist" (2007)

The term 'jumping the gun' was seemingly coined specifically for this moment. The Mist centers around a group of survivors who gather in a grocery store due to the onset of a mysterious mist, concealing creatures that kill anyone unlucky enough to be exposed. The film ends with David, his son Billy, and a few other survivors leaving the store in a car before eventually running out of gas. Instead of being eaten alive, they decide to shoot themselves, leaving David to the honors. Once everyone besides David is dead - because he runs out of bullets - the U.S. Army shows up to reveal the creatures were defeated. Five minutes was literally the difference between life and death.

#2: Georgie Denbrough

"It" (1990; 2017)

Well, at least, we now know that the boat floats. In both the 1990 and 2017 version, Stephen King's IT starts off with one of the most haunting deaths in horror history. Georgie is a sweet kid who just wants to play in the rain when his brother's paper sailboat falls into the sewer. Thankfully, Pennywise the clown is around to help Georgie retrieve his toy. Instantly bonding over the smell of popcorn, their budding friendship is cut short when Pennywise bites Georgie's arm clean off and drags him into the sewer. All Georgie wanted was his paper boat!

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.

Omi Engel

"Krampus" (2015)


"Black Water" (2007)

Father/Dr. Damien Karras, S.J.

"The Exorcist" (1973)

Nancy Cartwright

"The Final Girls" (2015)

#1: Gage Creed

"Pet Sematary" (1989)

People process grief in different ways, although most would probably avoid resurrecting their loved ones as deranged zombies. Louis is a doctor who learns about a pet graveyard capable of bringing animals back to life. Tragedy strikes when Gage - Louis' innocent young son - is run over by a truck. Unable to accept what happened, the doctor ignores multiple warnings and revives Gage by burying his body in the cemetery. The boy returns as a malevolent zombie and, with the exception of his father, butchers his family. At that point, Louis has no choice but to kill Gage. And that plot summary pretty much speaks for itself as far as emotional devastation is concerned.


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