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Snowbound Horror

December 4th, 2008 by unkle lancifer · 25 Comments

I love horror movies that utilize a wintry, snowy environment. I’m a sucker for them. They just instantly put me in the proper mood for scares and they are tailor made for watching from under a blanket. Even a horrible movie like DREAMCATCHER is highly watchable to me based on this phenomenon. I’ve gathered a bunch of snow-scare movies here for you folks to peruse. They are not in any order unless you count the fact that the DVDs that were closest to my computer came first. Maybe you can get some ideas for winter watching from this collection. I’d pretty much recommend almost all of them. (Even DREAMCATCHER, which although indisputably wretched is also indisputably hilarious) . Do you have any favorites that I have forgotten? Let me know in the comments section! I’m always looking for another snow movie to chill to!

Not the best of the series, but still stunning.

MISERY (1990)
A needs-no-introduction classic.

DEAD ZONE (1983)
CRONENBERG knows cold.

Underrated haunter; part road movie, part ghost story. EMILY BLUNT‘s frigid character turns down the thermostat even further.

WHISPER (2007)
Runs icy rings around the OMEN remake.

Ludicrous and overblown, but the animal exodus scene is beautiful to behold.

WENDIGO (2001)
Low-budget thriller saved by atmosphere and interesting performances.

I’m sorry DREAMCATCHER, maybe you aren’t the worst in this grouping!

Hey look, I didn’t use a picture of the hotel OR the maze!

Grandpa is my hero in life.

Talk about atmosphere. It may have failed the brilliant novel, but the visual tone is spot on.

I’d rather take a bath with a piranha then give up my copy of this Kindertauma favorite.

Why is this not high on the remake to-do list? I want a BOOGENS upgrade!

Includes one of the best slasher death scenes EVER.

THE THING (1982)
A yet to be dethroned ultimate snowbound terror masterpiece.

I think I can blame this film alone for being the catalyst of my snowbound horror obsession. The climax is simply gorgeous.

Here is the real deal classic! This movie is so frosty I need to get another hit of hooch!

I know I’m a freak, but I totally believe in Sir Moths-a-lot.

From the director of LET’S SCARE JESSICA TO DEATH, if you ask me, he’s still got it!

A snowy little salute to HITCHCOCK, perfect for a late night watch.

Two words,… MARY WORONOV

O.K. this is a REAL tribute to the ’80s slashers, and it’s done right.

An inevitable cult classic.

I couldn’t recommend this movie more. It’s so good! My goal in life is to bring it to the stage!

It’s kind of cheating using Christmas movies, but this one is too bizarre to pass up.

Speaking of holiday horror, nobody is allowed into Kindertrauma Castle during the season without being forced to watch the OPENING SCENE to this must-have horror comedy!

30 DAYS OF NIGHT (2007)
Say what you like. Vampires? Check. Snow? Check. Lancifer in happy place? Double check!!

Is any round up on Kindertrauma complete without GREMLINS? The answer is “no.” Hey look, you can see Dorry’s tavern!

Aunt John would have my head if I didn’t mention his favorite all time television movie!

For more seasonal fun, be sure to check out:

Tags: Halloween · Holidays · Repeat Offenders · Seasons Beatings

25 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Professor Von WhiskersenNo Gravatar // Dec 4, 2008 at 8:40 am

    This may be one of the greatest countdowns of all time.  <begins “slow clap”> 

    Mickster and I caught Santa’s Slay on TV a couple of years ago.  After I overcame my natural skepticism, I really enjoyed the movie.

    She doesn’t like Ravenous as much as I do, but I enjoy most things to do with the Wendigo myth.  I think Matt Wagner’s comic book “Silverback” may have something to do with that.  Not to mention my fascination with the Donner Party.

  • 2 mamamiasweetpeachesNo Gravatar // Dec 4, 2008 at 11:27 am

    I was just thinking about this the other day – I think it was sparked because I was thinking about the end of THE SHINING – “Why dont MORE Horror movies take place in the snow? It’s so scary , it gives you that “We’re tapped” feel, whereas most summer-themed horror movies you are screaming at the “victims” “Why dont they just LEAVE? Run out the door! Jump in the car!” When there’s a snowstorm it’s like – ‘oh crap – we can’t get out!’ and then sometimes they even have the storm cause a power failure! That’s always fun!

    I was shocked to see EIGHT titles here I have not seen yet. NETFLIX here I come!

    Submitted for your approval – YOU’LL LIKE MY MOTHER with Patty Duke as a pregnant woman being chased through a house during a snowstorm by a crazy old lady and John Boy Walton!

    And – what was that movie? I think Jack Palance was in it? There was a power-outage and the lunatics escaped the asylum and broke into the guys house? The movie with “The Bleeder”? Anyone remember that one? THAT took place in the snow, didn’t it?

  • 3 mamamiasweetpeachesNo Gravatar // Dec 4, 2008 at 11:39 am

    ALONE IN THE DARK was the Jack Palance movie. I’m not sure if they had snow. I’m thinking “snow” cuz they had a power outage and I’m trying to remember what caused it. But I COULD be wrong here.

    And I meant to say snow caused a “we’re trapped” feeling, not a “we’re tapped ” feeling. D’oh!

  • 4 Professor Von WhiskersenNo Gravatar // Dec 4, 2008 at 12:38 pm

    Now that I’m fully awake, I just thought of another one:

    THE ABOMINABLE SNOWMAN – 1957 – Peter Cushing and Forrest Tucker.  I love what I’ve seen of this Hammer film, but I have yet to see the entire thing.  My only issue is that, as much as I love b&w films, they are not the best format for movies about snow.

    I’ve got ONE more in mind, but I want to wait and see if anyone else mentions it!

  • 5 unkle lanciferNo Gravatar // Dec 4, 2008 at 2:06 pm


    Abominable snowman is perfect and you just reminded me of “the crawling eye” aka  “TheTrollenberg terror” I have to add that one too!

  • 6 Amanda By NightNo Gravatar // Dec 4, 2008 at 4:45 pm

    Snowbeast! YAY! That’s an awesome movie.

    The only movie I could think to add is a really bad Euro slasher called Blood Tracks. Think Hills Have Eyes with the band Poison as the lead actors! It’s hard to watch, but kind of worth it!

    And maybe She’s Dressed to Kill… I am having an old person moment.

    This is awesome. There are quite a few titles on here I haven’t seen. I’m with Mama, Netflix… here I come!

  • 7 sbdNo Gravatar // Dec 4, 2008 at 5:00 pm

    Great list!  One that should at least get an honorable mention though is SNOW WHITE: A TALE OF TERROR, at least for its opening scene – unforgettable!

  • 8 jaymazingNo Gravatar // Dec 4, 2008 at 5:22 pm

    Good call on “You’ll Like My Mother!”  I’ll need to add “The Beast from Haunted Cave” to that as well.

  • 9 Joey DeadcatNo Gravatar // Dec 4, 2008 at 7:49 pm

    Good one! As I was scrolling down I wondered if Wendigo and Dead Of Winter were gonna be on the list!
    BTW, wondering if Whoever Slew Auntie Roo would count but then,if I can recall, the snow wasn’t too heavy in that film.

  • 10 micksterNo Gravatar // Dec 4, 2008 at 10:21 pm

    I think the movie Prof.V.W. was referring to is The Fearless Vampire Killers. I had the pleasure of introducing him to this movie. To copy Unkle L. Vampires? Check. Snow? Check. Mickster in a happy place? Double check!

  • 11 bluerosekillerNo Gravatar // Dec 4, 2008 at 10:26 pm

    It’s really great to see that I’m far from being the only one that has a great love for horror that takes place in the dead of winter. Whether it be in film or fiction.

    The frigid temperatures, the ice & snow, the long, dark nights, the general bleakness of winter  all add to the sense of isolation which compounds the fear.

    And it can’t go without saying that this year brought us a terrific addition to this particular sub-genre in LET THE RIGHT ONE IN. A film that I believe stands out as one of the the very best of it’s kind & will go down as a classic.

  • 12 aunt johnNo Gravatar // Dec 5, 2008 at 12:22 am

    @Mickster: Thanks for clearing that one up… I did spend a better part of my work day today racking my brain, trying to figure out the Prof’s enigmatic challenge. I was thinking NIGHT OF THE HUNTER (Doesn’t it snow at the end? It is an X-Mas movie… of sorts), but I knew that wasn’t it.

    PS, by the way: I L-O-V-E Polanski’s THE FEARLESS VAMPIRE KILLERS! It’s super atmospheric & it features that tragic saucepot SHARON TATE. It’s so good!

  • 13 micksterNo Gravatar // Dec 5, 2008 at 8:26 am

    @Aunt John: I remember Prof. being excited to discover the sample source of several Skinny Puppy songs. I first watched the movie because I became interested in Sharon Tate after reading Helter Skelter in high school. I think we are definitely going to watch this one again soon.

  • 14 mamamiasweetpeachesNo Gravatar // Dec 5, 2008 at 9:23 am

    Did we say OMEN II yet? I think we refrenced it. Well, anyway, I never seem to make it to the end of that movie…but that ice rink scene stays with me, as does the one in DEAD ZONE. I think thats a REALLY scary image…being stuck under the ice and being to see the people who are TRYING to rescue panic and freak out and -most of the time – fail!

  • 15 unkle lanciferNo Gravatar // Dec 5, 2008 at 10:57 am

    I’ve yet to get my paws on this one, “Ghostkeeper” from 1981….

  • 16 Jeff AllardNo Gravatar // Dec 5, 2008 at 11:32 am

    Awesome list – thanks for giving a shout-out to Snowbeast! The only film not here that I’d include is the 1999 TV miniseries Storm of the Century. For my money, that’s the last really good made-for-TV Stephen King film. Colm Feore was just so creepy in that. And I love the bleak, bitter ending.

  • 17 PenhNo Gravatar // Dec 5, 2008 at 4:27 pm

    Wowsers. The only one here I hadn’t seen is The Dark Hours, which is now next on my Netflix queue.  What about Larry “Wendigo” Fessenden’s The Last Winter?  Another snow-filled romp about very strange things happening at an isolated drilling base.  Tim Lebbon’s novella “White” is supposed to be getting the movie treatment, so if that ever materializes, it’ll make a fine addition to the list.  Assuming, of course, they don’t screw it up.

  • 18 Vince LiagunoNo Gravatar // Dec 8, 2008 at 3:33 pm

    Um…TERROR TRAIN? What kind of snow queens forget Jamie Lee Curtis ridin’ the bloody rails? (Feigns mock indignation, throws his faux-fur wrap over his shoulder with a dramatic flourish, and exits abruptly, stage right.)

  • 19 unkle lanciferNo Gravatar // Dec 8, 2008 at 4:34 pm

    Terror Train!!!!!!!!!! Vince, we purposely left that one off the list in order to lure you to stop by the castle and reprimand us!!!! Don’t leave in such a huff. We have egg nog!!!!!

  • 20 Vince LiagunoNo Gravatar // Dec 8, 2008 at 5:43 pm

    Egg nog, you say? (Stops and unwraps the faux-fur from around his neck and drops in on a nearby chaise.)
    Well, I suppose I could stay for a spell and sample the Christmas pudding. You do have Christmas pudding, don’t you? (Raises eyebrows suspiciously, purses lips…thoughts of Jamie Lee’s flagrant TERROR TRAIN oversight quickly fading like the lights on Spottiswoode’s locomotive in the distant snowy Canadian tundra…)

  • 21 gonzo72No Gravatar // Dec 9, 2008 at 4:19 pm

    Only one glaring omission I can think of offhand. Deranged, the seventies Ed Gein inspired classic that features a tour-de-force performance by Roberts Blossom and enough atmosphere to impress a Port Coquitlam pig farmer. Oops, I thought of another, Cold Comfort. Maury Chaykin as a fat, sweaty recluse who enjoys firing shotguns and watching his daughter strip for company. Indelible stuff.

  • 22 unkle lanciferNo Gravatar // Dec 9, 2008 at 5:45 pm


    Those are two great additions and “Cold comfort” reminded me of yet another one, 1988’s “Blood Relations”

  • 23 aunt johnNo Gravatar // Dec 12, 2008 at 6:44 pm

    Reader dalljoe emailed this:

    Let’s not forget:

    THE CHANGELING (1980) very good ghost story w/ George C. Scott.

    HORROR EXPRESS (1972) Christopher Lee and Peter Cushing in the 1972 Euro-thriller. Watch for Telly Savalas in an over-the-top, eye-rolling performance. Who loves ya baby ? We Do !

  • 24 Caleb HolmquistNo Gravatar // Dec 12, 2010 at 11:14 pm

    Don’t forget about the Norwegian soon to be classics; Dead Snow, and Cold Prey. To equally awesome foriegn snoworrors.

    Oh, and the Swedish vampire film; Let The Right One In.

  • 25 unkle lanciferNo Gravatar // Dec 13, 2010 at 6:07 pm


    I don’t think those movies were made yet when we did this post but GREAT picks!!!!!

    we’ve gotta do a part 2 so I can add all three of those!

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