Top 5 Japanese Scary Movies

2013 October 28
by SWIRLsite

With Halloween fast approaching, we thought we’d take a shot at naming the top 5 scariest Japanese movies of all time. After discussing with both our teachers and students, here’s a general list that we came up with for you to watch this coming Halloween.

Just in case your favorite isn’t here, please either post a comment on this article or you can visit our Facebook Page this week to place your vote on our choices.

NUMBER 5 – Yatsuhakamura (The Village of 8 Cemetaries) -八つ墓村

We start off our countdown with two classic movies. As compared with their contemporary peers, they’re aren’t nearly as gross or gutwrenching, but the ideas behind these movies have definitely stood the test of time.  This movie is based on a novel written in the 1950’s Japan about a village that has been haunted by ghosts of the past (fallen Samurai from the warring states period).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gwqn_MgDgVA

NUMBER 4 – Onibaba (Demon Hag) -『鬼婆

This movie is number 4 because of its classic importance. Kaneto Shinto is a highly recognized director of Japanese cinema and this movie really exemplifies his ability to captivate the audience. This movie is very realistic and paints a clear portrait of how emotions can get the best of you. Most interestingly his wife stars in the movie, she is the Onibaba!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_JWRKNU_7Tg

NUMBER 3 – Juon (The Curse) -『呪怨

We start off our countdown with one of the best known movies of Japanese cinema. A small house in a small town is “cursed” with various ghosts of terrible things that have happened in the past. These ghosts are not the traditional sheet- with-two-eye-holes  but rather images that will haunt you until well after you see this movie. Feel fortunate that people haven’t been murdered in your house.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e8R1dODSbzU

NUMBER 2 – Battle Royale -『バトル・ロワイアル

We understand that this movie is not a typical horror movie, in fact the movie’s more of a thriller, albeit a very gory one. However, the concept of the movie is probably one of the most chilling in all Japanese cinema. Imagine you wake up one morning as a school age teenager to find yourself pitted against your classmates, to the death. Your captors provide the tools of murder and destruction for you, and show you no mercy. This movie needs to be seen to be believed.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y-T7yPJVvXw – Good preview for the movie, with English subtitles.

NUMBER 1 – The RING – リング

What would Japanese Horror be without the Ring? A classic tale of how watching a video tape can seriously go wrong, the story is so simple and that’s why it makes it so terrifying. The images throughout the movie, both on the videotape and at the end (watch out for Sadoko!) make you want to forget you ever saw the movie. Just be careful when answering your phone.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ieoJEvEnqbc – This preview is not in English, but it also doesn’t give away too much of the movie.

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