Not every horror movie has a final girl or a hero conquering the fearful monsters. Every now and then, filmmakers release horror movies that express an imaginary middle finger to those who came before them and decide that no one lives this time. In these movies, every character succumbs to their destiny to the chopping block no matter how hard they try to avoid their grizzly fate. Sometimes, they all live happily ever after… these are the times that they don’t.
5 Horror Movies Where No One Survives
Eli Roth co-wrote and directed this 2002 horror comedy film. Cabin Fever follows a group of college graduates renting a cabin in the woods. Escaping the distressing claustrophobic irritability of college life, they spent their spring break in isolation. As they enjoy their holiday of lewdness, things went bloody… and bloody fast as they began to fall victim to a flesh-eating virus from a tainted water supply. Then, one-by-one, they succumb to a nasty case of the virus.
In the finale, only one character remains as he had hidden and drank beer offscreen for the solid portion of the movie. However, the initially devastated but now-celebratory Jeff is dispatched by the corrupt sheriff. Meanwhile, the townsfolk begin to sell lemonade, and a truck filled with tainted water drives away. Even while it was just a cabin full of holidaymakers that die onscreen, everyone else will be biting the dust soon enough as the credits roll.
Based on the Spanish film REC, John Erick Dowdle co-wrote and directed this American found footage horror film. The thing with Quarantine is that it featured several differences in comparison to its originator. However, REC doesn’t kill off its main players as we find out in its sequel, REC 2. Quarantine‘s sequel, on the other hand, tells nothing with the fate of its protagonist, Angela. Her encounter at the end of the first movie serves as a final moment.
Both of these movies remain an example of harrowing found footage films that get progressively more chilling. But, for this list, Quarantine has the advantage of leaving no survivors. Both films follow a camera crew as they report at a firefighting station with the group soon called out to an emergency in an apartment building. However, they get locked inside before they can complete their job. Eventually, they learn the reason why.
Mysteriously infected residents who violently attack anything in their path ravage the building. One-by-one, the firefighters, camera crew, and remaining residents face their deaths all while Angela and her cameraman film in shocked horror. Ultimately, they found themselves cornered in the penthouse building with a spine-tingling creature that butchers the cameraman and in the film’s final shot, drags a sobbing Angela to her demise.
The Blair Witch Project
Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sanchez co-wrote, edited, and directed this supernatural horror film in found-footage format. Blair Witch Project became a well-known movie with its innovative and ingenious characteristics, making it a turn of the century. At the time, horror movies usually went down with a campy self-aware route, making this movie a unique option.
They offered the found-footage genre where the experience felt real as terror and paranoia topping the agenda. This flick follows three friends: Heather, Josh, and Mike as they hike through a creepy forest on the hunt for a local legend, the titular Blair Witch. Although it starts innocently, chaos ensued soon after.
Josh suddenly went missing with only his shirt, teeth, and tongue discoverable in the aftermath. Heather and Mike went to an abandoned house, following what sounded like Josh’s screams. However, an unseen force swiftly attacks them off-camera before credits roll.
Sure, we can’t be certain of these characters’ fates. But, considering Rustin Parr, a serial killer allegedly under the influence of the witch whose house they find themselves in murdered boys while one faced the corner and then, subsequently killed the other afterward, it’s pretty clear when the footage stops.
Dawn of the Dead
Based on George A. Romero’s 1978 film, Zach Snyder directed this action-packed zombie extravaganza of the same name and co-wrote it with James Gunn. Dawn of the Dead follows Ana, a nurse who lives in a suburban neighborhood with his husband Louis. This movie didn’t pull any punches as it started seriously straight-away, killing a small child.
She comes with a group that arrives together in a shopping mall to try and strategize against the horde outside. Eventually, the survivors realize that they can’t stay there and turned buses into death mobiles. Then, they head out to the docks to sail their escape boat into the sunset. However, things didn’t go as planned.
After plenty of explosions and secret infectious bites, the small pocket of survivors makes it to their watery freedom. As the credits roll, on the other hand, a found-footage continuation plays out showing that the survivors pulling up to an island that turns out to be crawling with zombies.
The Cabin in the Woods
Drew Goddard directed this movie and co-wrote it with Joss Whedon who produced it. On paper, The Cabin in the Woods sounds like any other slasher supernatural horror movie that would pale in comparison to its predecessors like Evil Dead and Friday the 13th. However, its execution made it so much more than your average copycat. As expected, the story follows a group of friends who rent a cabin in the woods.
They discover several cursed artifacts in the basement which also turned out to be there by design rather than coincidence. This, then, revealed that a government agency controls the cabin tasked in playing out a real-life horror movie in all of its trope-laden cliched glory. They also plan to execute their plan with deadly efficiency. However, they didn’t count on the victims discovering their secret base where they manipulated the getaway.
Dana and Marty unleash every monstrous horror movie trope encaged in the facility to fight back against their fate. The end of the film reveals that to save humanity, Dana must kill Marty but instead, she decides to share a blunt with Marty. The facility’s attempts to appease ancient gods living under the earth with their cabin sacrifices foiled and everyone on the planet will die as a result.
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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.