By The Nerdling
Horror movies are full of strange kids which give you the creeps, leaving you thinking long and hard about never having children, or keeping a close eye on the ones you already have. Some of them hold a special power or are burgeoning sociopaths. Others are just out right terrifying little monsters. Some of the best horror movies which have stuck with us over the years feature a child that scared the ever-living daylights out of us. Here are some of my…well…not favorites…just the ones that freaked me out the most.
There are some spoilers. Complainers will receive a visit from one of these children.
Danny Torrance (Danny Lloyd) – The Shinning (1980)
Danny is a nice kid living in The Overlook Hotel for the winter with his timid mother and recovering alcoholic father, who’s job is taking care of the hotel during its off season. Danny has telepathy and being stuck in a haunted hotel with nowhere to go may not be the best place for him.
Was there anything creepier than hearing Danny say “Redrum” in that spine-chilling voice while moving his index finger as if it was the one talking? Or the way his eyes would roll into the back of his head when he was seeing something?
Henry Evans (Macaulay Culkin) – The Good Son (1993)
On the surface, Henry seems like a nice enough kid. Then he shows his fascination with death and starts to display some psychopathic tendencies to his cousin Mark (pre-pre-pre-Frodo Elijah Wood), who has come to live with the family after his mother dies and his father is sent out of the country for work.
Culkin was already kind of a weird kid back in the early 90s with his massive box office success in the Home Alone franchise and his ongoing feud with his parents. This movie only seemed to heighten that strangeness.
Joshua Cairn (Jacob Kogan) – Joshua (2007)
Another film featuring a budding sociopath. Joshua is born to an affluent family and is a prodigy who dresses like a banker. After his sister is born, he becomes jealous and attempts to murder her by pushing her carriage down a flight of stairs. When his grandmother stops him, he pushes her down the same staircase and stages it as an accident. Eventually, Joshua decides he no longer wants to live with his family.
Joshua is textbook creepy. He is thinks well beyond his years and manipulates everyone around him to create chaos and eventually getting what he wants. This film is almost more about affluenza and how children are no longer allowed to be disciplined than straight horror, but sometimes the scariest thing out there is reality.
Isaac Chroner (John Franklin) – Children of the Corn (1984)
Isaac is a young preacher for He Who Walks Among the Rows, a mysterious god residing in the corn fields. One year in the small town of Gatlin, Nebraska, the corn harvest is not doing too good. The adults turn to church and prayer while the children turn to Isaac who preaches to them the ways of his god. Isaac with his second in command, Malachai (Courtney Gains), lead the brainwashed children in the slaughter of all the adults in town as a sacrifice to He Who Walks Among the Rows.
This freaky kid is every parent’s worst nightmare. A child who can sway their children into killing them and has no parents to complain about his behavior to.
Regan MacNeil (Linda Blair) – The Exorcist (1973)
Two words. Pea. Soup.
Damien Thorn (Harvey Stephens) – The Omen (1976)
Do I really need to explain why this kid is on this list?
(Daveigh Chase) and Aidan Keller (David Dorfman) – The Ring (2001)
Samara was an evil child, dropped into a well by her mother after the kid caused numerous and horrible accidents. Now she possesses a videotape. Anyone who watches the video dies horribly seven days later when Samara comes out of their TV and sucks the life out of them. I’m still paranoid of my TV to this day. Seriously, nearly 20 years later and I don’t trust that she is not going to crawl out of my TV.
Aidan is the son of Rachel Keller, a reporter who is investigating the death of her niece after watching the video. Aidan is kind of on the weird side even before he forms a connection with Samara. He possesses those big black eyes which look at everything with a blank coldness and his monotone voice makes my skin crawl. Seriously, never having children.
I know there is a whole horde of freaky kids I don’t have on this list. Like I said, these are the ones that have stuck with me over the years. Which ones had you weirded out long after the movie was over? Let me know in the comments section below.
The Nerdling was born in the majestic land known as Texas and currently resides there after several years of journeying through Middle Earth in a failed attempt to steal the one Ring from that annoying hobbit, serving the Galactic Empire for a time, and then a short stint as a crew member on the Serenity. Since moving back to her homeland, Nerdling flirted with a hero reputation. Saving children from the dangers of adoring domineering, sparkly vampires (champions with souls are the only vampires worth loving) and teaching normals the value of nerdom, all while rooting for her beloved Dallas Stars. Then came the Sokovia Accords and her short spell of saving others came to an end. With Darth Vader’s reputation rightfully returning to badass status, Nerdling is making her way back to the Empire. They do have cookies, you know. You can find her on Twitter and Instagram.