Five Creepy Kids In Horror Cinema

Published on October 14th, 2015 in: Listicles, Movies |

By Less Lee Moore

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Cub

From The Village of the Damned to The Children of the Corn, cinema is crammed with creepy kids. Jonas Govaerts’s Cub, which came out on Blu-Ray a few weeks ago, follows a group of scouts on a camping trip in the woods. One of them, Sam, tries to convince the others that there’s a feral child stalking them but naturally, because it’s a horror movie and he’s a kid, no one believes him.

What is it about terrifying toddlers that gets us so worked up? Is it because children are considered innocents or because they’re unformed beings upon which we project our darkest fears?

Here are five movies featuring some of the scariest children in cinematic history.

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The Bad Seed (1956)

The original creepy kid movie. It shows us that The Little House On The Prairie‘s Nellie Olsen wasn’t the first evil flaxen haired girl with braids. Rhoda only kills two people in the movie, but we learn that there’s another murder in her past.

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The Brood (1979)

You know it’s bad when Oliver Reed has to lock these mutant children up in a shed so that they don’t kill people. Maybe the worst part about the kids in David Cronenberg’s movie is that they wear brightly colored hooded footy pajamas. Or that they don’t have navels. Whatever the case, they’re terrifying.

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The Children (2008)

Something is in the water and it’s making the children sick. Unfortunately, their parents don’t want to believe it until it’s too late and death and dismemberment have already taken place. After all those slashers where teenagers try to tell the authorities that some kind of monster is on the loose, haven’t the adults learned anything? Nope.

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Citadel (2012)

Influenced by The Brood, the monstrous kids in this movie wear hoodies and look like mutants but unlike The Children, in this case it’s an agoraphobic adult who’s the whistleblower. Worst of all, the “hoodies” feed on fear, which isn’t great if you’re prone to panic attacks.

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We Need To Talk About Kevin (2011)

Poor Tilda Swinton. No one believes that Kevin has serious issues until it’s too late. (Do you sense a pattern?) Most of the violence happens offscreen, so it’s Kevin’s surly behavior and vicious comments that make women everywhere clutch their birth control pills.

This article was originally published on the Toronto International Film Festival Midnight Madness programme blog.

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