A horror movie works best when it takes you by surprise. After all, the fear of the unknown drives the scariest of stories. Dumping a big fat plot twist into a horror movie will surely frighten the audience at their very core. A good twist will either break or make a film that could commit it to eternal adoration. The sudden narrative turns that come out of nowhere and actually stick the landing transforms the casual into awesome.
Horror Movie Twists You Never Saw Coming
In the horror movie Orphan, the Coleman family welcomes a nine-year-old Esther. Adopting a sweet girl into your family would require a settling-in period. Being well-adjusted makes her too good to be true. While their 5-year-old dead daughter embraces Esther almost immediately, their 12-year-old son has his reservations. The newly adopted Esther fits in perfectly with Kate and John’s little family. She a keen eye for art, a good sibling to Max and Daniel, and pretty mature for her age.
Not everything is what it seems. The horror film’s twist comes when Esther begins wiping makeup from her face and popping out her grotty fake teeth. Then, she undresses to show herself as a fully-grown woman rather than the preteen she was posing as. It turns out that Esther is a 33-year-old psychopath who escaped from a psychiatric facility, intending to kill the whole family and burning down their house for good measure.
Don’t Breathe remains one of the horror movies that play with sensory deprivation as a key theme. Focusing on a group of petty criminals targeting a blind old man’s house rumored to be sitting on a $300-thousand cash settlement from losing his daughter in a car accident. They break in to grab the prize. However, they find themselves trapped in the house when the man turns out to be a highly-trained killer from his days in the Special Forces.
Able to hunt them down, the man sets to murder them with surprising capability. The twist, on the other hand, comes in the middle of the narrative. Protagonists Rocky and Alex managed to find themselves in the basement where they found a woman chained up. It turns out that the man has taken his settlement but also the woman that hit his daughter in the accident. The man has chained her up and forcibly impregnating her with a turkey baster full of semen to create a replacement child.
It wasn’t unheard of to have characters be dead all along in a horror movie. But, it has never been shown with this much conviction from every character in the movie. The Others tells the story of a lonely woman living with her two children as she waits for her husband’s return from the aftermath of World War II. Both of her kids suffer from a rare photosensitivity disorder that makes them need constant darkness.
Of course, an old spooky dimly-lit home in the 40s makes it right for haunting from all sorts of earthly creatures. It turns out that the woman and her family have been dead all along. They find this out due to a seance from newcomers, attempting to reconcile their home with the long-dead family that just won’t leave. It elevates the film to new heights because of it.
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Angela Grace P. Baltan is a Communication graduate from Colegio de San Juan de Letran. She doesn’t hesitate to be opinionated in analyzing movies and television series. As a writer, she uses her articles to advocate for feminism, gender equality, and mental health among others.