Not only is Children of the Corn a classic horror film, it is also one of the most memorable adaptations of Stephen King's stories. It follows a couple driving through Nebraska who unfortunately find themselves in a middle of a ritual where children plot to murder all the adults in town. At the time of release, it didn't too well in the box office compared to other King adaptations. But along with being about a cult, it also gathered a cult following over the years.
This psychological thriller takes a different spin on classic movies in this genre, as it actually implants investigative journalists who are looking to expose a cult inside the cult itself. The two filmmakers/couple Peter and Lorna decide to take down the charismatic cult leader Maggie who claims to be from the year 2054. While it appears like an easy feat at first, the pair quickly realize they're falling under the cult spell.
No, this isn't the panned 2006 reboot starring Nicolas Cage! The original 1973 version of the Wicker Man is a brilliant film helmed by British director Robin Hardy and stars Edward Woodward and Christopher Lee. The mystery surrounds the disappearance of a young girl named Rowan Morrison, and Sergeant Howie heads to the strange island of of Summerisle to investigate. He soon realizes this isn't your everyday missing persons case...
Not every cult has to be religion-based! This 1999 Stanley Kubrick classic digs its nails deep into intense, passionate and chilling erotica. It follows the story of Dr. Bill Harford and his wife Alice (played by former real-life couple Tom Cruise and Nicole Kidman) as they try to spruce up their love life once Alice reveals she dreams about having sex with other men. The pair then head to a mansion that houses a secret sex society who partake in ritual orgies. Aside from the dangerous cult storyline, Kubrick once again showcases his gorgeous cinematography and directorial skills.
If you have yet to watch Roman Polanski's psychological horror masterpiece, then you need to exit this list and head to your nearest streaming platform! Rosemary's Baby has been a critically acclaimed for decades as it triggers your inner fear of untrustworthy surroundings that are so close that you cannot escape it. Rosemary (Mia Farrow) and Guy Woodhouse (John Cassavetes) move into their NYC apartment and befriend their seemingly eccentric eldery neighbors...who just happen to be part of a Satanic cult. The neighbors end up drugging Rosemary, where she gets raped by a demon and literally gives birth to the Antichrist. There's a reason why it's preserved in the National Film Registry!
2011's Red State is directed by Clerks star Kevin Smith, but don't expect this to be your typical stoner movie! Instead, the film follows three teen boys whose joyride of a night quickly becomes a night of terror as they a trapped in the church sanctuary of an extremist preacher who wants to kill the boys for their sins. Do they escape alive after being held captive? You have to watch to find out...
Disregard the horrible 2015 remake of Martyrs and give the original French-Canadian horror a chance! Directed by Pascal Laugier, the controversial film will send shivers down your spine weeks after watching it. After being held and abused in a slaughterhouse for years, the delusional Lucie escapes and goes to murder an entire family while she believes she's being terrorized by a demon. Her best friend Anna finds out about the massacre and as well realizing that Lucie was a longtime victim of a cult whose motive is to torture those who they believe are "martyrs." The scenes are violent, gruesome and unforgettable.
This British period piece is set in 17th-century France and is regarded as one of the most controversial movies in Hollywood's history, thanks to its explicit sexual scenes, overt nudity and raw violence. The hunchbacked Sister Jeanne (played by Vanessa Redgrave) is sexually obsessed over priest Urbain Grandier. Once she finds out he's married, the nun goes completely insane and accuses him of witchcraft. It's chilling to know this movie was loosely based on real events.
This 2011 thriller has an all-star cast with Elizabeth Olsen, John Hawkes, Sarah Paulson and Hugh Dancy. Olsen plays the titular character to manages to escape the abusive hands of a cult in the Catskills. While she tries to re-adjust to a normal life, Martha's incessant flashbacks make it harder for her to let go of her terrifying past.
On November 18, 1978, Jim Jones infamously orchestrated a mass suicide by having his 900+ followers drink poisoned punch—which later coined the phrase "drinking the Kool-Aid." The cult leader's horrifying tale was further explored in the 2006 documentary Jonestown: The Life and Death of Peoples Temple that shows previously unreleased footage of the events leading up to the mass tragedy.
This classic Italian horror film is a saturated storytelling of pure guts and gore. It follows American ballet dancer Suzy Bannion who transfers to a dance academy in Germany. The poor thing's dreams gets crushes as she finds out the school is ran by a satanic witch coven. We'll see if the upcoming remake starring Chloe Grace Moretz, Dakota Johnson and Tilda Swinton does this classic justice!
The Oscar-nominated The Master boasts an impressive cast featuring Joaquin Phoenix, Philip Seymour Hoffman, Amy Adams and Laura Dern—so you know it's going to be good! The film follows alcoholic WWII veteran Freddie Quell (Phoenix) who joins a religious cult dubbed "The Cause," which is ran by Lancaster Dodd (Hoffman). Their growing friendship as they travel across the country is harrowing, violent and tragic.
Holy Smoke! is a twisted drama starring Kate Winslet and Harvey Keitel as Ruth Barron and P.J. Waters. After Ruth has a spiritual awakening during a trip to India, her parents devise a plan to lure her back home. Once she returns, they set her up with Waters, who is a renowed exit counselor whose speciality is deprograming members of religious cults. This film shows a different side to cult movies as it interweaves comedy, quirkiness and a strong female lead.
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