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Top 10 Greatest Modern Horror Movie Endings

VO: Rebecca Brayton WRITTEN BY: Nicholas Miller

These modern horror movies terrified us right to the end! The scariest horror movies chill us, thrill us, and leave us sleeping with the lights on with a brilliant finale. And that’s just what happened when we watched “Saw” (2004), “The Witch” (2015), “The Mist” (2007), “It Follows” (2015), and the other nightmare-fuel films in our list! What horror movie ending most left you afraid of the dark? Let us know in the comments!

Check out the voting page for this list and add your picks: https://www.WatchMojo.comsuggest/Top+10+Modern+Horror+Movie+Endings Special thanks to our user liam_schell for suggesting this idea!


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Script written by Nicholas Miller

Top 10 Modern Horror Movie Endings

These modern classics know just how to give us the heebie-jeebies. Welcome to WatchMojo, and today, we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Modern Horror Movie Endings.

For this list, we’ll only be looking at films that have been released since the year 2000, and we’ll obviously be spoiling their endings, so spoiler warning!

#10: “It Follows” (2015)

Director David Robert Mitchell’s low-budget horror flick came out of seemingly nowhere when it shocked audiences back in 2015. The film deals with a sexually transmitted supernatural force that follows and kills its victims along a chain of sexual partners. The only way to avoid death? You guessed it. Pass “It” along via sex. At the film’s conclusion, when Jay and Paul believe they’ve gotten rid of the force during the bloody pool showdown, the film hints that they may not be so safe after all. While walking peacefully down their suburban block, we see a figure slowly walking behind them in the distance. It’s a perfectly ambiguous horror ending that left audiences terrified.

#9: “REC” (2007)

This Spanish found footage film details the plight of journalist Ángela Vidal and her cameraman Pablo as they find themselves trapped in an apartment building overrun with some sort of demonic possession virus. The film is scary throughout, but its ending is truly intense. Angela and Pablo in a darkened apartment, lit only with their night vision camera, when one of the possessed becomes aware of them. We see Pablo’s brutal death, as Ángela struggles to get ahold of the camera so she can see in the darkness. After finding but then dropping the camera, the audience sees Angela crawl towards it before she’s abruptly pulled into the darkness.

#8: “The Mist” (2007)

This Stephen King adaptation is notorious for its downer ending. After being trapped in a supermarket for the entire film, David Drayton and his group of survivors make their escape into the monster-ridden mist in an attempt to find rescue. After hours of driving, finding no survivors, the group’s car runs out of gas, with David using the last of his ammunition to put all the other survivors out of their misery, including his very young son, before they can be consumed by monsters. With nothing left to kill himself with, David prepares to be killed, only to be rescued by the military just moments after mercy killing 4 people.

#7: “Drag Me to Hell” (2009)

If you’ve seen any of his “Evil Dead” series, you know Sam Raimi likes his horror with a generous helping of tongue-in-cheek humor. “Drag Me to Hell” is no exception, delivering the absurd horror you’d expect from Raimi. The film culminates with Alison Lohman’s Christine realizing she failed to break the curse placed on her before falling onto a set of train tracks. A portal to hell opens beneath her, with spectral arms dragging her in and fulfilling the film’s title. Her boyfriend, played by Justin Long, can only watch in horror as Christine cries for help.

#6: “The Others” (2001)

Alejandro Amenábar’s 2001 ghost story stars Nicole Kidman as Grace, the mother of two children, living on an island of the coast of Normandy following World War II. Grace and her children begin to believe their house is haunted as the film goes on, but the real shocker comes near the film’s end. It’s revealed that Grace murdered her children before killing herself, and they’ve been the ghosts in the house ever since. Crazy, right? Eventually, Grace and her kids come to terms with their status as ghosts, and decide to happily and peacefully inhabit, or haunt, the house together.

#5: “The Witch” (2015)

This slow burn supernatural tale may not have been the type of horror movie many were expecting, but by the film’s end, all hell breaks loose and we’re paid a visit by the devil himself. After the family is plagued by strange goings-on and disappearances, things finally come to a head when the witch finally makes her move, creating chaos on the farm that ends with only young Thomasin left alive. Thomasin makes a pact with the devil in the form of the family’s goat before she joins a coven of witches in the midst of some sort of ceremony. It’s a creepy ending that serves as a perfect payoff to the film’s churning pace.

#4: “Saw” (2004)

The year 2004 saw director James Wan break onto the scene with his horror hit “Saw.” The film shows the struggle of several victims of the serial killer known as Jigsaw as they attempt to solve his puzzle and escape with their lives. The film’s twisting and turning plot comes to a head when it’s revealed that the seemingly dead body lying in the room through the whole film was actually the Jigsaw killer himself. Every other character in the film was essentially a pawn for his game, and there are no winners in this one.

#3: “Hereditary” (2018)

Most people weren’t too sure what to expect heading into “Hereditary.” It’s safe to say we got more than we bargained for. After a tangled plot involving a coven, a demon, and a tragic accident, 16-year-old Peter was penciled in as the new host for the demon Paimon. After a terrifying scene depicting an attack by his possessed mother, Peter is drawn into the backyard treehouse that belonged to his deceased sister Charlie. Charlie’s soul is transferred into Peter, fulfilling a prophecy that we can imagine is going to have some pretty dire consequences for the rest of the world.

#2: “Get Out” (2017)

2017’s massive horror hit “Get Out” drew both popular and critical acclaim for its frank analysis of race in America today. After Chris uncovers the full conspiracy at play and has nearly escaped from Rose’s family farm, she confronts him one last time in the driveway. As Chris tries to stop the bleeding, half-dead Rose from killing him, a police car approaches. With the added cultural context of police violence against black men, the scene immediately takes on a new feeling of dread before its revealed that the driver of the car is Chris’ TSA agent friend Rod. Talk about the biggest sigh of relief.

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

“Paranormal Activity” (2007)

“The Babadook” (2014)

“The House of the Devil” (2009)

#1: “The Cabin in the Woods” (2012)

This clever twist on a classic horror motif is a sharp and scary thrill ride that ends in a way that manages to be hilarious, frightening, and entertaining all at the same time. With Dana and Marty being the only survivors after uncovering the underground facility that caused the night’s chaos, the pair release the rest of the monsters, deciding to bring the facility down. They soon discover that they are part of a sacrificial ritual meant to stop the end of the world. Dana must kill Marty in order to prevent Armageddon, but decides that it isn’t worth it, leaving the pair to sit and watch the world come to an end.


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