Although some thrill-seekers watch scary or bizarre movies to evoke feelings of discomfort deep within themselves, at the end of the day, most films aren’t all that traumatizing. Most viewers are able to go on with their lives, having satiated their desire to add a little fear to their lives. However, there are some films that take things too far and are so over-the-top that to watch the whole thing would be nothing short of masochistic.
These films have such disturbing content that you’ll want to take a shower after watching them. Here are the films that are too disturbing to watch in their entirety… view at your own risk.
The Human Centipede II (Full Sequence)
In 2009, the Dutch Horror film The Human Centipede took the world by storm. While it was utterly disturbing and nauseating to watch, director Tom Six wanted to make something even worse for his audience. The result was The Human Centipede II in 2011. The film focuses on a disturbed parking lot attendant named Martin who is obsessed with The Human Centipede.
He recreates his own version of the centipede, except this time he uses 12 people and he doesn’t have a lick of medical training. You can imagine how that went. The film is up close and personal in all of its gore and torture, with only the sickest of audiences making it all the way through.
You’ll Stay Far Away From Ouija Boards After Watching Veronica
Directed by Paco Plaza, Veronica is a Spanish supernatural horror film, loosely based on the events in 1991 when Estefanía Gutiérrez Lázaro died mysteriously after she used a Ouija board. At its core, there’s nothing exceptional about Veronica’s storyline.
A girl uses a Ouija board to contact her deceased father and things take a turn for the worse after she’s possessed by a demon. After being released on Netflix on February 2018, it was described by critics as “the scariest horror film ever,” with countless individuals unable to watch it in its entirety.
Coming up: are you surprised to find Peter Jackson on this list?
Revenge Has A Knack For Giving People Seizures
Coralie Fargeat’s 2017 release Revenge is a horror film that follows a woman who is assaulted and left for dead in the desert by her lover and his friends. Somehow, she miraculously survives and sets off in search for revenge which ends in a brutal and violent spree.
The film is intense, gory, disturbing, and was enough to cause a Toronto Film Festival attendee to suffer a seizure in the theater during its premiere. Even the lead actress, Matilda Lutz, claimed that many of the scenes in the film made her uncomfortable even though she was the one acting.
The Green Inferno Makes You Want To Stay Far Away From The Jungle
Director Eli Roth is known for his take on horror films, as seen in his work in the first two Hostel films. Unless you’re familiar with Roth’s previous work, you probably won’t stand a chance watching a group of college activists in the Amazon as they stumble upon cannibals in The Green Inferno.
Eli Roth commented on the film: “You don’t want people walking out of a movie; you want them running out of the theater screaming.” It’s the film’s use of physical special effects and horrifying convincing portrayal of torture that made this one a go-to for gore-lovers and a true nightmare for the average audience member.
There’s A Reason A Serbian Film Is Banned In Several Countries
A Serbian Film is a 2010 horror-thriller and the brainchild of director Srđan Spasojević. The film follows Miloš, a struggling adult performer who agrees to be part of an “art film” in order to make some much-needed money. However, he fails to realize that he’s agreed to participate in a film that forces him to commit horrific violent and abusive acts that are too depraved for almost all viewers.
Apparently, the movie isn’t repulsive enough to be shocking, but is a metaphor for “the monolithic power of leaders who hypnotize you to do things you don’t want to do.” For the film’s depictions of torture and abuse, it has been banned in Spain, Germany, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Singapore, and Norway,
Meet The Feebles Is Like The Muppets Gone All Wrong
Directed by Peter Jackson of The Lord of the Rings, Meet the Feebles is a 1989 New Zealand black comedy musical. The Feebles are animal puppets that are part of a stage troupe. They’re despicable characters involved in narcotics and deplorable acts. While the film is mostly a comedy, it’s also disturbing to watch characters who are usually meant to entertain children act so inappropriately.
Critic James Berardinelli commented on the film, saying, “The stories of these … characters are told in a disgustingly graphic, obscenely offbeat, and caustically funny manner. Meet the Feebles is for those with a strong stomach and a seriously warped sense of humor.”
Raw Will Turn You Into A Vegetarian
Raw is a French-Belgian horror drama directed by Julia Ducournau. The film follows a young girl named Justine who’s a vegetarian attending her first year at veterinarian school. There, she tastes meat for her first time and develops a taste for flesh that goes beyond just animals.
Released in the United States in 2017, the film had mixed reviews, with many people complaining about its graphic content. On one occasion at the 2016 Toronto Film Festival, some viewers required medical attention after fainting from the film’s graphic scenes. For many reasons, the film had a limited theatrical release in the United States.
Hereditary Will Make You Question Your Own Family
Hereditary is a 2018 horror film directed by Ari Aster as his directorial debut. The film managed to make a whopping $79 million against its $9 million budget while simultaneously shocking audiences and critics alike. The A.V. Club commented, “In its seriousness and hair-raising craftsmanship, Hereditary belongs to a proud genre lineage, a legacy that stretches back to the towering touchstones of American horror…”
While the film might have been successful in both the box office and among critics, that didn’t mean it wasn’t frightening. While all the jump scares and supernatural entities are horrifying on their own, what makes the film truly hard to watch is how real all of the characters’ pain appears.
mother! Will Have You Crying For Your Own
Directed by Darren Aronofsky, mother! is a 2017 psychological horror film. The film follows Mother (Jennifer Lawrence) and Him (Javier Bardem,) a couple living together in a secluded country home.
Although the film was mostly well-received by critics, the film’s biblical allusions and acts of violence sparked major controversy. While some saw mother! as a work of art, others found it to be downright disturbing with its acts of cannibalism, infanticide, and violence against women to be too much to handle.
Caligula Is Nothing More Than A Snuff Film
Released in 1979, Caligula is an erotic historical drama based on the life of Caligula, the ruler of the Roman Empire from 37 AD to 41 AD. Historically, Caligula’s reign is noted for his brutality, perversions, and desire for complete power. The film goes to great lengths to depict the kind of horrible person Caligula was, with no shortage of depravity, violence, and lust.
The film was released by the adult magazine Penthouse, who used real adult performers for unsimulated intimate scenes. This “artistic direction” turned the movie into a high-budget obscenity more than anything else. To put things in perspective, renowned critic Roger Ebert couldn’t sit through it and it’s been banned in numerous countries.
The producer of the next film couldn’t even watch it all the way through.
The Original Martyrs Is Enough To Give The Bravest People Nightmares
Martyrs is a 2008 French film that was remade in the United States in 2015, although that version was much tamer. The original film is packed full of child abuse and horrific deaths, centered around a series of girls who are locked up and tortured in a slaughterhouse.
When it premiered at the Cannes Film Festival people left the theater in masses and producer Bob Weinstein couldn’t finish watching it even though his company bought the movie rights. According to the New York Times, “When horror fans dare other horror fans to watch a movie, it’s Martyrs.”
The Woman Has Intellectual Themes At Its Core, Supposedly
According to an audience member that left the theater at the Sundance Film Festival, “This film is not humane […] This film ought to be confiscated, burned. There’s no value in showing this to everyone.” The 2011 movie centers around a dysfunctional family who attempt to civilize a wild woman by locking her up and torturing her in unspeakable ways.
Although the film was relatively well-received for its clever nuances and social commentary, many people find it hard to look past the sheer brutality. Supposedly, there’s a lesson to be learned if you can make it all the way through.
When the star of a film can’t watch it, you know it’s a brutal one
Irreversible Attacks All Of Your Senses
Irreversible proved to be such a traumatic and graphic film that even the film’s star, Monica Bellucci, can’t watch it herself. There’s no lack of incest, abuse, and death, which led over 250 people to run from the theater or even pass out during the film’s Cane’s premiere.
On top of the visually graphic sequences, the film also relies on low-frequency sound waves. These sounds can’t be heard but the body can register them lead to feelings of anxiety, depression, unease, and nausea. Apparently, most people don’t even last until the scene that makes even the biggest gorehounds turn off the film.
The Angel’s Melancholy Is Too Disturbing To Be Discussed In Detail
The 2009 German film Melancholie der Engel, or The Angel’s Melancholy, was not well-received upon its release. While some were able to look past its sickening content and praise its cinematography, most saw the movie as nothing more than depraved and vile, especially regarding the use of real animal cruelty.
The acts of cruel physical violence are too disturbing to be discussed in detail, most of which would bring even the most hardcore gore-lovers to their knees. Regarding the brutality of the film, a critic for Severed Cinema wrote, “If anyone can sit through it all… I think that’s pretty impressive by any standards.”
There’s Nothing Ecstatic About The Great Ecstacy Of Robert Carmichael
The Great Ecstasy of Robert Carmichael is a British independent film directed by Thomas Clay in 2006. It tells the story of Robert Carmichael, a teenager living in Newhaven who finds himself involved with an unsavory group of individuals who introduce him to a life of hard narcotics and violence.
During a screening at Cannes Film Festival, numerous audience members walked out of the theater with the film’s rape scenes being described as “[making] A Clockwork Orange look like a Britney Spears music video.” Director Clay defended the film’s violence by claiming that it was a statement on the Iraq War, although that doesn’t make it any easier to watch.
The House That Jack Built Wasn’t Allowed To Run For Any Awards
Lars von Trier is well-known for his ability to deeply disturb his audience as seen in his works Antichrist, the Nymphomaniac films, and more. After a several year ban for claiming he sympathized with Adolf Hitler, Cannes allowed him to show his new film The House that Jack Built in 2018. The film is about a serial killer, played by Matt Dillon, who has been on a spree for the past 12 years.
During that time, he commits all kinds of abhorrent acts, which resulted in over 100 people leaving from the screening at the 2018 festival. The film is so appalling that it wasn’t allowed to compete for any prizes or awards.
Coming up, viewers were given vomit bags before seeing one film
Goodbye Uncle Tom Has Been Condemned By Just About Everyone
Goodbye Uncle Tom’s directors, Gualtiero Jacopetti and Franco Prosperi, are best known for their “shockumentary” films, with Goodbye Uncle Tom being no different. The 1971 Italian film is an exploitation documentary film based on true events during the era of slavery in the United States. The filmmakers used real documents from the period to demonstrate the unspeakable horrors faced by the Africans sold into slavery.
The film has been condemned as being both appalling and unforgivably racist. Roger Ebert claimed that it’s the “most disgusting, contemptuous insult to decency ever to masquerade as a documentary.”
Bite Will Take Away Your Appetite
Released in 2015, Bite is about a young woman who is bitten by a waterborne insect while in Costa Rica. This results in her undergoing some horrifying changes and a complete bodily transformation. The film is considered to be a body horror flick as the woman begins regurgitating pus, laying eggs around her apartment, and turning into the unthinkable.
At its showing at Fantasia Fest in 2015, audiences were given Bite-themed vomit bags and the film resulted in two people requiring medical attention during the showing. If the director gives you a bag to get sick into, you should probably prepare for the worst.
The Bunny Game Is Far Too Real
The Bunny Game is 2010 low-budget co-created and written by Rodleen Gestic and Adam Rehmeier. It tells the story of an adult worker who is abducted by a truck driver and subjected to nauseating forms of torture. What makes The Bunny Game so sickening is that none of it is fake.
Besides the narcotic and alcohol use, all of the atrocities committed to the protagonist (played by co-creator Roldeen Gestic) are real, down to the branding on her back. Rodleen volunteered to do this as a way to purge her of similar experiences from her past. Of the film, Rehmeier stated, “I do not like the film […] It’s not a film you should like. If you say you do, then you’re really weird.”
Baskin Will Make You Want To Repent For Your Sins
Baskin is a 2015 Turkish art-house horror film that is best summed up as an all-around disgusting, frightening, supernatural, torture fest. The film follows a group of police officers who unintentionally wander into a portal to the underworld. From there, the men find themselves in a grotesque walkthrough of some of the most sickening and repulsive acts of violence that most people can’t even imagine.
While the film is deemed as one of the most disturbing films in recent memory, it wasn’t rejected by all critics. Some even praised it for its underlying themes. Many others couldn’t see past the horrors experienced by the main characters.
Requiem For A Dream (Or Just Say No?)
Released in 2000, Darren Aronofsky’s Requiem for a Dream follows four characters’ downward spiral into addiction as a result of attempts to find shortcuts to reaching their individual goals. The audience is alternately inside each person’s head, experiencing the delusional highs and lows in an increasingly fast and nightmarish whirlwind of jump cuts, and objectively outside, watching the characters’ unfortunate real-world actions.
As with most addiction-based storylines, everything does not turn out all right. Everyone’s dreams are crushed, all experience a treasure trove of horrible fates, and in the end will leave you feeling empty and sad. As reddit user KJB1000 said, “if I ever have to scare kids away from drugs, I’m not going to show them some stupid true life stories or documentaries, I’m gonna show them Requiem for a Dream.”
Gummo Was Named ‘The Worst Film Of The Year’
When Gummo was released in 1997, the New York Times had some strong feelings about it, calling the flick the “worst film of the year.” This was Harmony Korine’s directorial debut and he and held nothing back.
Gummo follows a group of kids in a squalid Ohio town. Some of its most disturbing, disgusting scenes include satanic rituals, racism, a realistic depiction of a cat being drowned, and a cast of characters that will make your skin crawl. This photo is from just one of the movie’s most memorable scenes.
The Holy Mountain Delivers Some Unsettling Spectacles
One online reviewer said that the 1973 flick The Holy Mountain left him with a “feeling of despair.” In this bizarro arthouse movie, filmmaker Alejandro Jodorowsky presents viewers with seemingly countless scenes of derangement. He reportedly took LSD and gave psychedelic mushrooms to the actors before certain scenes.
Mutilation, human excrement, alchemy, a creepy-crawly spider scene, and sexual assault — The Holy Mountain delivers plenty of shudders. It’s not technically a horror film but will haunt most viewers anyway.
The Girl Next Door Was Based On Real Events
Horror films based on true events tend be more disturbing than ones that are purely fictional. Such is the case with The Girl Next Door, which focuses loosely around the 1965 torture and murder of a girl named Syliva Likens. She was tortured and then killed by her neighbor over three months that summer in Indianapolis, Indiana.
The graphic and upsetting film features unthinkable scenes of horror. Its Motion Picture Rating is R “for sadistic torture and sexual abuse, nudity, language, and strong sexual dialogue – all involving children.”
You Won’t Be Happy After Seeing Happiness
Released in theaters in 1998, Happiness was written and directed by Todd Solondz who is known for his dark style. The film is controversial because of its sexual themes and was even rejected by The Sundance Film Festival due to its depictions of pedophilia.
However, Happiness is a black comedy so some critics and fans are able to overlook its highly-upsetting and seedy underbelly. “The film’s most hilarious moments all have poignant undercurrents, while the saddest–and most disturbing–are frequently sidesplitting at the same time,” wrote reviewer Andrew Johnston in Time Out New York.
Mysterious Skin Will Make Yours Crawl
Mysterious Skin is a 2006 film based on Scott Heim’s novel of the same name. Directed by Greg Araki, the movie follows two eight-year-old Kansas boys and the aftermath of being molested by a trusting adult.
Confused, the boys deal with their abuse in different ways. Mysterious Skin doesn’t flinch away from the real nature of pedophilia, even seeming to glorify it in some ways. Despite its cringe-worthy subject matter, the film received many positive reviews, with a New York Post writer saying, “Not for the squeamish, but it is a beautifully crafted and thoughtful film that genuinely provokes.”
I Spit On Your Grave Didn’t Sit Well With All Viewers
Not surprisingly, a film called I Spit on Your Grave is one that many consider too disturbing for most viewers. Critic Roger Ebert called it “a vile bag of garbage” and said viewing it was “one of the most depressing experiences of my life.” I Spit on Your Grave had a limited release in 1978 and a wider release two years later.
In the feminist film, there are plenty of graphic scenes involving a sexual assault victim exacting revenge on her tormentors. Film producer Meir Zarchi wrote the screenplay after rescuing the young victim of a gang attack in a park.
Audition Is A Favorite Among Horror Fans
Audition is a Japanese horror film directed by Takashi Miike, based on a novel by Ryu Murakami. Film critic Robin Wood had this to say about the 1999 film: “[it] is authentically disturbing… and horrifying,” adding that “the first time I watched it – on DVD, at home, after warnings I had received – I was repeatedly tempted, through the last half hour, to turn it off.”
The movie starts out innocently enough but slowly devolves into a terrifying tale of disgustingness, violence, torture, and abuse. Bravo named one of Audition’s scenes in its “100 Scariest Movie Moments” of all times list.
Attack Of The Adult Babies Is Wrong On So Many Levels
A British comedy horror, Attack of the Adult Babies is exactly what it sounds like. A group of politicians, judges, and other important individuals go on a weekend retreat in the countryside.
There, debauchery ensues with everyone wearing diapers while pretending to be babies, hiring nurses to change and coddle them as they slowly evolve into pig-like creatures. The story is told from the perspective of a family trying to break in to steal documents, who find themselves in a violent encounter with the nurses and the adult babies.
Goodnight Mommy Will Make You Look At Your Mother Differently
An incredibly uneasy film, Goodnight Mommy is full of shocking sequences and twists that most audiences would never see coming. After receiving facial cosmetic surgery, a woman’s two sons, Elias and Lukas, become suspicious that the woman who comes home with her face wrapped in bandages isn’t really their mother.
After being convinced the woman is an impostor, the young boys hold her against her will and put her through a series of horrifying tests to prove she’s who she says she is. It keeps the viewer on the edge of their seat, causing most to look away at numerous points.
A Field In England Will Make You Feel Under The Influence
Considered to be British director Ben Wheatley’s most disturbing film, A Field In England takes place in the 17th century, following a group of English Civil War deserters. They are eventually caught by a psychotic alchemist who forces them to eat hallucinogenic mushrooms to bind them to him as he continues his search for buried treasure.
Of course, it doesn’t take long for the characters to meet their ends one-by-one in violent ways. However, one of the most disturbing aspects of the film is how it is shot, leading the viewer to think they’re also on a bad trip they’ll never escape.
Antichrist Is The Essence Of Grief
Unsurprisingly the work of director Lars von Trier, Antichrist focuses on a married couple who are grieving the death of their baby son. To work through their grief together, they decide to go to an isolated cabin, where things begin to spiral out of control.
Their situation drives them to the brink of insanity, where they begin to commit horrific acts to both each other and themselves, many of which are burned into the viewer’s mind. This is all paired with Satanism, witchcraft, and shocking cinematography.
Valhalla Rising Will Make You Grateful You Live In This Time
Released in 2009, Valhalla Rising takes place in the 11th century, following a Norse warrior named One-Eyed, who is a skilled and brutal fighter. After escaping captivity, he travels with a boy, as well as Christian Crusaders, on a mission to find the Holy Land. They accidentally end up in North America where they must fight against the indigenous people and are plagued dark visions.
At its core, it may not seem like much more than a Viking film, but in reality, the level of violence and gore top some of the most gruesome war films. Stay away if you don’t think you can handle decapitations or disembowelment.
Snowtown Is All Too Real
Between 1992 and 1999, John Bunting and his accomplices murdered twelve people in South Australia. Known as the Snowtown Murders, it is one of the most infamous cases in Australia, which Justin Kurzel turned into a film in 2011.
The story is told from the perspective of an abused teenage boy who teams up with Bunting and participates in the murders. Incredibly suspenseful, the film also shows the killings in an unapologetic manner, only being worsened by the fact that it all actually happened.
The Act Of Killing Puts You Inside The Mind Of A Mass Murderer
The Act of Killing is a 2012 documentary that focuses on the people who participated in the Indonesian mass killings between 1965-66 in which over one million people were massacred. In 1965, gangsters Anwar Congo and Adi Zulkadry were put in charge of leading the biggest death squad during the conflict. Today, Anwar is revered by the right wing, regardless that he is responsible for so many people’s deaths.
Director Joshua Oppenheimer invited Anwar to describe his experiences during the killings and to recreate many of the scenes in front of the camera. It’s highly disturbing and impactful, a documentary that is not for those with a weak stomach or the faint of heart.
Pig Has Only Been Shown To The Public Twice
Pig proved itself to be so violent, depraved, and disturbing that the producers made an effort to erase the film from existence. The movie was almost banned from being played at the 2017 SXSW festival.
However, director Adam Mason agreed that it would only be shown twice and would be the only public showings of the film ever. With countless instances of sexual assault, torture, cannibalism, and worse, the film was described as, “The most unpleasant, nasty, violent and sadistically cruel movie I’ve ever seen. It should be banned.”
Natural Born Killers Is Heavily Debated To This Day
Debated as one of the most controversial films ever made, Oliver Stone’s Natural Born Killers follows a deeply disturbed couple as they make their way across the country while on a mass-killing spree.
Aside from the horrific acts of violence in the film, what makes it even more disturbing is that the couple is glamorized by the public for their horrendous acts. This is something that hits a little too close for home, especially in the United States. It’s gruesome, intense, and understandable why so many people can’t sit through it.
Funny Games Is Far From Funny
Funny Games is a 1997 Austrian psychological horror film that tells the story of two young men who hold a family hostage in their vacation home. They then go about playing “games” with the family, torturing and murdering them at their own pleasure.
It’s a roller coaster of intensity packed full of violence Rotten Tomatoes described as “Violent images and blunt audience provocation make up this nihilistic experiment from one of cinema’s more difficult filmmakers.” The film was remade by the same director in 2007 although it featured mostly known American actors.
Salò or 120 Days of Sodom Is As Awful As It Gets
Salò, sometimes referred to as 120 Days of Sodom, is a film packed to the brim with countless amounts of meaningless torture. Essentially, four powerful and rich Italian men kidnap nine teenage boys and nine teenage girls whom they commit unspeakable acts against for the following four months.
Nobody is safe, and director Pier Paolo Pasolini goes to great lengths to ensure that every act of torture, mutilation, and sexual assault is front and center for the audience to see. Although Pasolini claims to be making a statement about fascism, viewers are focused on holding down their lunch.
The Director Of Cannibal Holocaust Was Arrested For The Film’s Content
With a title like Cannibal Holocaust, audiences should know what they’re getting themselves into. Claiming to be a found-footage film, it follows a missing team who are lost in the Amazon jungle. Although their original intent was to document the everyday lives of a tribe of cannibals, they eventually become victims of the tribe’s brutal practices.
The graphic nature of the film sparked lots of controversies, with it being so realistic some viewers thought it was an actual found-footage film. Director Ruggero Deodato was even arrested on obscenity charges and later for murder because the footage was so convincing. The charges were later dropped but the film is currently banned in numerous countries.