According to RetroCrush.

#100 THE WICKERMAN (1973)

A strange pagan cult is visited by Sgt. Howie from Scotland Yard, who is investigating the disappearance of a young girl. He's a strict Christian and is shocked by their open sexuality, nude dancing, and bizarre rituals. It turns out they perform a virgin sacrifice by burning one inside of a giant wicker man, but little does Howie know who that sacrifice is! A very chilling ending that you should have seen coming a mile away, but you're so caught up in the spooky atmosphere that it's still quite a surprise. The burning Wicker Man is a great image that lives on in Nevada's annual Burning Man festival as well.

The Tar Man Wants to Eat Your Brains!

While George Romero's "Living Dead" series was based on pure horror, Return of The Living Dead had a decidedly more fun tone throughout. But it wasn't without it's share of horrifying moments. In this scene, a zombie, nicknamed The Tar Man as he's spent years inside of a sealed barrel, is waiting in the basement as he screams for tasty brains. As you can see from the pictures above, the poor sap's head becomes a Hometown Buffet o' Brains for the ghoul. The zombie himself is a remarkable makeup achievement, as a very tall super skinny mime was hired to play the creature. The result is a zombie that moves in such an unearthly fashion, your skin can't help but crawl.


This scene is something even David Lynch would be hard pressed to dream up. Jem and Scout Finch are walking home in the woods on a spooky night. Scout is wearing her ham costume from the school play she just finished being in. The wind is blowing and leaves are rustling around as they hear footsteps. Something or someone is following them! Soon they are chased. Scout is knocked down, stuck in her pork product outfit, and can't see that her brother is getting attacked!

In these days of child abductions, it's creepy enough to have two kids just walking in the woods by themselves, but the surreal dreamy quality of this scene makes it even scarier. And the character that they feared most of all, Boo Radley (played by a young Robert Duvall) makes an unexpected appearance that adds even more tension.


Long before Lenny was accidentally killing puppies in "Of Mice And Men", Frankenstein's Monster had difficulty with beautiful fragile things. In this scene from the 1931 classic, The Monster plays with the innocent Maria, holding flowers and throwing them into the water together. It's a touching, tranquil, and sweet scene, until he runs out of flowers, and he tosses her into the lake where she drowns. Boris Karloff himself fought to get the scene cut from the film, as he felt it was too disturbing, and it was missing from all prints and TV broadcasts after 1937, and was not restored until 48 years later in a special videotape!

#96 BLUE VELVET (1982)

David Lynch has made many creepy flix, but the scene in Blue Velvet where Frank Booth (played by Dennis Hopper) comes home while Jeffrey (Kyle MacLachlan) is hiding in his closet sticks out. I'll let retroCRUSH fan Jack Frink take it from here...

"Even though the film is not a "horror" film exactly, I'd have to say one of the scariest moments ever is the scene in Blue Velvet where Dennis Hopper's psychotic kidnapper/drug dealer Frank Booth is introduced. He walks into Isabella Rossellini's apartment, sits down with a glass of brandy, and then, while Kyle Maclachlan watches, begins to brutalize and molest Rossellini's character in one of the most shocking and disturbing scenes in film history. It's not that it is "jump out at you" scary, it is much more effective because its a perverse, backwards, repulsive act being portrayed by a sick, monstrous character."

#95 THE HITCHER (1986)

C.Thomas Howell plays a poor sap who while delivering a car on a cross-country trip, picks up a hitchhicker played by Rutger Hauer. Turns out, he's a serial killer who ends up framing him for his murders. During a quiet break at a truck stop, Howell is enjoying some french fries with his burger, until he sees tha one of them is a human finger! EEEEEEEEK!

#94 JAWS (1975)

After a many drinks and stories comparing old wounds and scars, Quint tells about his experience on the USS Indianapolis, a horrible shipwreck in which sailors were systematically eaten by sharks while they awaited rescue. Apparently there was a lot of disagreement as to how the scene should be written, so a frustrated Robert Shaw wrote the damn thing himself and it worked out wonderfully. With the night air, the creaking of the boat, and Quint's haunted delivery, it remains one of the most scary portions of a screenplay ever written.

"Japanese submarine slammed two torpedoes into our side, Chief. We was comin' back from the island of Tinian Delailie, we'd just delivered the bomb. The Hiroshima bomb. Eleven hundred men went into the water. Vessel went down in twelve minutes. Didn't see the first shark for about a half hour. Tiger. Thirteen footer. You know how you know that in the water, Chief? You can tell by lookin' from the dorsal to the tail. What we didn't know, was that our bomb mission was so secret, no distress signal had been sent. They didn't even list us overdue for a week. Very first light, Chief, sharks come cruisin', so we formed ourselves into tight groups. It was sorta like you see in the calendars, you know the squares in the old calendars like the Battle o' Waterloo and the idea was the shark come to the nearest man, that man he starts poundin' and hollerin' and sometimes that shark he go away... but sometimes he wouldn't go away. Sometimes that shark looks right at ya. Right into your eyes. And the thing about a shark is he's got lifeless eyes. Black eyes. Like a doll's eyes. When he comes at ya, he doesn't even seem to be livin'... 'til he bites ya, and those black eyes roll over white and then... ah then you hear that terrible high-pitched screamin'. The ocean turns red, and despite all your poundin' and your hollerin' those sharks come in and... they rip you to pieces. You know by the end of that first dawn, lost a hundred men. I don't know how many sharks, maybe a thousand. I do know how many men, they averaged six an hour. Thursday mornin', Chief, I bumped into a friend of mine, Herbie Robinson from Cleveland. Baseball player. Boson's mate. I thought he was asleep, Reached over to wake him up. He bobbed up, down in the water, he was like a kinda top. Upended. Well, he'd been bitten in half below the waist. Noon the fifth day a Lockheed Ventura swung in low and he spotted us, a young pilot, lot younger than Mr. Hooper here, anyway he spotted us and a few hours later a big ol' fat PBY come down and start to pick us up. You know that was the time I was most frightened? Waitin' for my turn. I'll never put on a lifejacket again. So, eleven hundred men went into the water. Three hundred and sixteen men come out, the sharks took the rest, June the twenty-ninth, nineteen-forty five. Anyway, we delivered the bomb."

What makes the scene even scarier is that it's based on a true story. According to THIS ( account, the sailor only saw one man actually attacked by a shark, but conceded that the bodies of 56 men who had apparently been bitten by something when all was said and done, and some believe the sharks may have feasted on those that were already dead.

#93 CREEPSHOW (1982)

Creepshow is a great collection of short spooky stories told in a Tales From The Crypt style. Though many of the Stephen King written/George Romero directed segments are great, one of the more terrifying is "The Crate". In a grisly take on pandora's box, a mysterious crate is found in the basement lab of a college from an old expedition. One by one various characters are exposed to the contents of the crate both accidentally and intentionally. The payoff of what's inside does not disappoint.


This seldom seen and long out of print film features Vincent Price investigating the goings on deep in the underworld of opium in the catcombs of San Francisco's Chinatown. After smoking some he has a tripout that is full of nightmarish imagery. Skulls float toward the screen, with smoke billowing out of the eyeballs, strange laughing men, and a collection of lizards and spiders abound. If they just showed this on TV to impressionable kids, it would have ended the war on drugs immediately. It gets weirder after that. I saw this on TNT a long while back, so it's likely going to be on TV again someday, so watch out for it.


Though more famous for Nightmare on Elm Street, Scream, and Last House on the Left, The Hills Have Eyes in an overlooked crazy classic that's chock full of scares. A mutated group of cannibals terrorizes a family that's stranded in the desert. Michael Berryman, who made his film debut in One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest, is extra creepy as Pluto. The movie's full of great moments, but the one everyone talks about the next day is when Pluto bites the head of a bird off. This was before Ozzy was as notorious for it, so it was pretty shocking for the time.