1. Sinister (2012)
Premise: A true-crime writer (Ethan Hawke) moves in to the home of a murdered family to help inspire his next best-selling masterpiece. He discovers a box full of Super-8 films showing a series of families being slaughtered, each more terrifying than the last, and subsequently unleashes a supernatural murderer. On the plus side, he got a really good deal on the house.
Why It’s Scary: Beyond the masterful soundtrack (industrial tools mixed with children’s rhymes), Sinister explores how a disturbing image can’t be unseen. Each reel of film shows a family being murdered in increasingly horrendous ways, and even when you want to look away, you can’t. That being said, if a six-foot Pagan demon haunted me every time I viewed said films, I probably would stop watching them. And furthermore, trying to sell your property following a demonic murder haunting, in today’s market, probably isn’t wise. Bad call, bro.