For the sake of transparency I’ll admit that I’m not big on kids. While every parent seems to think their kid is the best kid that ever kidded in the history of kids, most of us can admit that some kids aren’t great, some aren’t even good, and a select few are downright terrifying. That’s why I put together this list of 10 of the most terrifying kids from movie history. There have been a lot of creepy kids over the years, but this list is focused on the ones that will really make young adults rethink the whole child rearing thing. If you do have kids, it might be a good idea to call a sitter and put a few counties between you and your little one before looking over this. That being said, let’s get this list of tiny terrors going!
10. The Grady Twins (The Shining)
What’s worse than one creepy, ghost girl? How about two! Coming in at No. 10 on this list are the classic Grady twins, who you might know better as those two little girls from The Shining who want Danny to come and play with them forever. True, they didn’t actually do anything terrifying in the film, but just standing there and holding hands like that gives me the willies. Kids always know just how to do the creepiest things. Personally, I blame these two for ruining twins for me.
9. Isaac Chroner (Children Of The Corn)
Religion can be a terrifying thing in the wrong hands, and there probably aren’t any hands worse than Isaac Chroner's (well, unless you count his muscle, Malachai). He’s a terrifying preacher who manages to turn an entire town's children against their parents, which is pretty surprising since he’s about as charismatic as the Quaker Oats guy. Honestly, I think it’s the hat that really gives him the menacing presence. Oh, and the fact that he worships something called He Who Walks Behind the Rows. If they ever remade the movie, he’d probably be a televangelist.
8. Henry Evans (The Good Son)
Before Frodo set off to destroy the One Ring, he was terrorized by a young Kevin McCallister. The Good Son features probably a more believable version of what a Kevin might have been like deep down, because Henry is a total sociopath. It’s revealed early on that he has a dark obsession with death and killed his younger brother in a bathtub. His unquenchable thirst for killing didn’t stop there, and Henry has his sights set on the rest of his family. Luckily Elijah Wood is there to defeat the evil Macaulay Culkin.
- For more on what Mac's been up to, check out I Bet You Can't Guess What Macaulay Culkin's Been Up To Recently.
7. Kevin Katchadourian (We Need To Talk About Kevin)
This entry is a little too real for comfort. Kevin isn’t like most of the other kids on this list, because he’s grown out of that tiny stage. Ezra Miller plays the disturbed high schooler who commits a truly horrifying act in the film's opener when he massacres his fellow students. The rest of the movie is spent looking at the character and trying to figure out what went wrong. Audiences get a disturbing look at a budding young psychopath as he grows from tiny terror to mass murderer.
- Want more Ezra Miller? Then check out A Look Back At The Career Of DCEU's Flash!
6. Samara Morgan (The Ring)
After seeing The Ring, I have to wonder how successful actress Daveigh Chase’s love-life was after she starred as vengeful spirit Samara. She was about 12 when she acted in the role that scared so many of us, and that’s right around the time when people start passing notes that ask for you to “check yes or no” if you like them. Just thinking about her climbing out of the television set almost makes me want to turn off the TV… almost. The whole look and feel to the character was exquisitely executed, and that makes her one of the creepiest kids in movie history.
5. Samuel (The Babadook)
While Mister Babadook is an incredibly creepy character, he’s got nothing on the kid he was tormenting. Even though it’s clear Sam is a victim to the supernatural hold of this boogeyman, he probably managed to make a few people rethink having kids. After all, I don’t know how I would react to a crazed, tiny person screaming, “Do you want to die?” right before shoving me. He spends most of the movie acting like a kid hopped up on speed, mouth breathing and grunting his way right to the middle of this list. Seriously, this is one incredibly upsetting kid.
4. Damien Thorn (The Omen)
I would be remiss not to include this kid on the top 10 list, mostly because he is the son of the devil. Damien is an evil child who does an amazing job climbing the political ladder by killing those who get in his way. It’s not his murderous tendencies that really get me, though; it’s that creepy smirk he seems to break out into whenever he gets away with it. Plus, dressing children up in tiny suits is always asking for trouble. Damien is terrifying because he may actually be the antichrist. Who am I kidding? It’s the whole tiny suit and smile thing.
3. Claudia (Interview With The Vampire)
Back before vampires sparkled and had hard times dealing with their feelings, they used to be, well, a bit more flamboyant. Sure, it was a different time, but it managed to undercut their ability to inspire fear. That’s not the case with little Claudia. She was a small dying girl who was “generously” saved from death by Louis. The thing is that giving a child eternal youth is kind of a living hell. I mean, she couldn’t even buy cigarettes without getting flak. The really terrifying part was that her mind was getting older, but her body stayed about age 10. This led to a lot of really inappropriate situations popping up, and she didn’t really handle rejection well.
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2. Regan MacNeil (The Exorcist)
It wouldn’t be a proper list without this little hellion. Regan starts off as such a well-behaved girl, before all that public urination and spider-walking down the stairs. In the '70s, they knew that stuff was caused by a demon; these days they would just blame it on the MTV and write her a prescription for Prozac. Regan manages to get more and more terrifying as the demon Pazuzu gains control over her, and pretty soon she’s projectile vomiting, floating and even using foul language. Personally, I find Regan absolutely terrifying because she reminds me of so many preteen kids.
1. Gage Creed (Pet Sematary)
Coming in at No. 1 is a kid that causes me extreme terror on a visceral level. Gage starts off as a perfectly adorable child until his untimely death, when his dear old dad decides to bury him on an ancient Indian burial ground. Well, as Jud Crandall said, “Sometimes dead is better.” Gage returns and is the very definition of terror, sporting that creepy little black burial dress and stumbling around like a tiny drunk person. It might all seem harmless, until he gets his hands on a scalpel and really goes to town. Gage perfectly sums up the quote from animated classic Cowboy Bebop: “There's nothing as pure and as cruel as a child.“
So, there you have it. Ten terrifying reasons why I try to keep my distance from children. There are tons of creepy kids from the movies, though, so make sure you tell me below who you think is the absolute scariest.