10 Horror Movies That Looked So Good, But Were So Bad

Filmmakers love Jordan Pele, James Wan, Andy Muschiettiand Nia Da Costa established themselves as the masters of horror. Creating the perfect blend of intrigue, chilling execution and invigorating “monsters”, their films satisfy audiences’ itch to be terrified. They proved that great cinema doesn’t need to be sacrificed or taken a step back because of genre. movies like This, get out, candy man, and Conspiracy let horror fans savor the excellence and expect more from the genre.

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Meanwhile, every year dozens of low-budget and horror B-movies disappoint viewers to the point where horror becomes comedy. When mainstream horror movies release their trailers, audiences expect to see some worthy scares and well-crafted demons. More often than not, these films tease a terrifying experience but leave audiences feeling deprived of the true horror experience.

Devil (2010)


Not only displaying claustrophobia on screen, audiences felt trapped by the acting quality and low budget of this horror film. Five strangers in an office building are trapped in an elevator and believe the devil is potentially among them.

With M.Night Shyamalan’s name attached to this project, the public expected thrills and a much better twist. To critics and the public, Devil is as stuck as the scareless elevator and disappointing premise. 2010’s horror fans would turn to the likes of Crazypeople and Insidious for good fear and gain.


The boy (2016)


With just one finishing touch to revitalize the viewer’s attention, The boy is the one who tried to ride in the wake of annabelle unsuccessful movies. After working as a nanny in an English family, a young woman (Lauren Cohan) discovers that the child in need is a doll, causing strange events to torment her during her stay.

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Filled with typical horror tropes like cinematic buildups with no payoff to get viewers’ hearts racing, there’s a little directional payoff for this plot. With minimal praise from critics and fans, this 2016 release teased a potential new franchise that just wasn’t worth it.

Winchester (2018)


Attract viewers with a name like Helen Mirren, Winchester lacked the firepower to attract viewers and critics. Heir to the gun fortune, Sarah Winchester (Mirren) builds an elaborate mansion to trap the evil spirits that haunt her. A reasonable hour and thirty-nine minute runtime and proven cast failed to bring this film to life.

While the plot is based on true stories and a maze of a mansion in San Jose, California, audiences were disappointed with the legend’s execution of Sarah Winchester. With any film inspired by real life, viewers set higher expectations that weren’t met with this 2018 horror episode.

The purge (2013)


An original concept with poor execution, the first installment and subsequent franchise films for The purge had audiences intrigued at first and disappointed at the end. A family struggles to fend off invaders during the annual twelve-hour period when all crime is legal.

A victim of the clichés that often plague horror and statement movies, this franchise has yet to find tangible success with audiences and critics for one of five Purge movies and one TV series. Where the original teased an intriguing plot, the successors tease a tired concept that looks so good but is ultimately so bad.

Pet sematary (2019)

Image via Paramount Pictures

Not all remakes produce better gain than the original. The 2019 adaptation of Stephen King’s horror novel failed to impress audiences any more than the original 1989 film. When a sudden death devastates a rural Maine family, father Dr. Louis Creed (Jason Clark) uses a mysterious graveyard creating an evil presence to terrorize his family.

The recent success of Gerald’s game, This, and stone castle did not translate into Pet sematary. The film offers the usual scares and intensity, but felt outdated for most critics and viewers.

A cure of well-being (2016)


Director by Gore Verbinsky The second attempt at taking the helm of horror failed with this 2016 film. Sent for the CEO of his company, a young businessman discovers that the health resort where his boss resides is not what he wants. Apparently, his own sanity is in question when he is admitted there.

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Long with mediocre rhythm, A cure of well-being bored viewers with repetition and a weird ending. The visuals failed to blend into an over-the-top plot, causing disappointment for Verbinski fans who expected his high caliber of storytelling from past films like the ring and the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise. Even with established names like Jason Isaac and Dane DeHaanthe best medicine for the public was not this film.

As above, so below (2014)

movie as above-as-below
Picture via Universal Pictures

Providing another example of a found sequence failing, As above, so below viewers exhausted with shots and limited scares. A team of young explorers takes their cameras through the catacombs beneath Paris in search of the philosopher’s stone. Trying to tap into success with the critics’ favorite in 1999 The Blair Witch Project, this 2014 film lacks scares and logistics to imitate a good movie found.

Writer/director John Erick Dowdle (also responsible for Devil) failed to scare, as the whipping of cameras prevents audiences from getting a foothold with visuals. Viewers were disappointed with a tantalizing setup without satisfying conclusions.

Gretel and Hansel (2020)

Image via United Artists Releasing

High cinematography and production design weren’t enough to rescue this film from the clutches of poor reviews. Audiences were unimpressed with the classic fairy tale narrative. Featuring Sophie Lillis like Gretel, Samuel Leak like Hansel, and Alice Krige as a witch, the trailer for this adaptation bewitched audiences to watch with little reward.

While critics favored the film for the visuals, allowing it to trump the poor storytelling. The speedy one hour and twenty-seven minute runtime delivers a horror medley that, for many viewers, proves there are better fantasy horror movies out there.

Shut in (2016)


Critics and audiences have found no redeeming qualities in by Farren Blackburn 2016 winter horror film. Widow Mary (Naomi Watts) welcomes a young boy named Tom (Jacob Tremblay) to fill the void left by her now bedridden husband and son (Charlie Heaton). When Tom disappears in a snowstorm, Mary becomes convinced that he has come back to haunt her.

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With Oscar nominees attached like Watts and Tremblay, Shut in failed to utilize the potential of its cast. With viewers finding the film’s scares and plot so bad, it became laughable to most over the hour and a half runtime. Watts would not meet the gender expectations of critics she set with her performance in the ring.

escape room (2019)

Image via Columbia Pictures

Viewers couldn’t escape the disappointment of this 2019 film. A group of strangers gather to compete for $10,000 by solving a series of puzzles that escalate into a game of life or death. With real-life escape rooms beckoning family and friends to spend an evening working together, this film promised a gruesome twist on the fun weekend activity.

Drawing inspiration from other horror franchises like Saw, this competitive gaming movie missed the mark in reaching its full potential. The lackluster response from critics and audiences hasn’t deterred filmmakers and cast from returning for a second installment in 2021, Escape Room: Tournament of Championsbetter received a second time by the public.

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