The only horror movie Stephen King was too afraid to finish

For Stephen King, the twisted mind behind the psychology of Jack Torrance in The brilliant and the fantastic terror of Pennywise the clown in This, you would think there would be very few horror movies that the iconic author couldn’t complete. However, there is only one.

Having already listed his ten favorite modern horror films, there are several that have certainly come close to carrying this coveted title, including the likes of Dawn of the Dead by Zack Snyder, caving movie Lowering and that of James Wong Final destination. In a somewhat surprising choice, Stephen King also announced the 2009 remake of The last house on the left as “the best horror film of the new century” before adding that the film was “the most brutal and uncompromising film to play in American theaters since Henry: Portrait of a serial killer”.

Also included on his list is the infamous Horror of Found Images, The Blair Witch Project from directors Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sánchez, a movie Stephen King described as the “worst nightmare you’ve ever had” in his non-fiction book Dance of Death.

Continuing, the author explained to Bloody disgusting that the reason the film was so effective was its ingenuity, as audiences were unfamiliar with the “pictures found” filmmaking format. Watching the film in a hospital room after being hit by a car in a crash that nearly ended his life, Stephen King asked his son halfway through the film if he could turn it off. As Stephen King recalls, “This may be the only time in my life that I stopped a horror movie in the middle because I was too scared to continue… I was just completely freaked out.”

Having since finished the film, he describes the end of the film in his book, noting, “There’s a thud when this invisible thing falls on Heather from behind. The camera drops, showing a little blur. The film ends. And if you’re like me, you watch the credits and try to escape the terrified kid you’ve regressed into ”.

Firmly deserving his place on Stephen King’s favorites list, The Blair Witch Project was, in many ways, a literal “project” that challenged the film medium as well as audience expectations, sparking a cinematic revolution that would spill over into the 21st century.

Eduardo Sánchez and Daniel Myrick’s film is straightforward and unabashedly shameless, following three young film students through the woods as they attempt to capture footage from urban legend, “The Blair Witch.” The result is a frantic race through the Maryland wilderness with rare moments of respite, as the characters lose themselves in a maze of occult mystery. It’s a paranoid chase scene with an invisible predator and horror at its simplest, resurfacing in your mind every time you take a walk at night.

Take a look at the trailer for the influential classic below.


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