Check out our new Merch Store! CLICK HERE >

6 Horror Films So Shocking that Have Been Banned

by Eve Andrews
Banned horror films

It’s safe to say that shock-factor is a staple facet of the horror genre. But is it possible to take things too far? Apparently so! Here is a list of some of the most controversial horror films that were so shocking they earned themselves an outright ban.

1) The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)

Hard to believe, given that it’s such a cult classic. Since its release in 1974, it’s had several remakes and sequels, with a brand new version having just been released on Netflix in February 2022. When Sally, Franklin and a group of their friends run out of gas on a road trip to their grandfather’s, what started as an innocent outing turns into a flat-out nightmare when the youngsters find themselves being hunted by a masked, chainsaw-wielding psychopath. Despite its critical acclaim, the movie was banned in a number of countries due to its graphic, violent nature. This includes the UK, Brazil, France, Germany, Norway, Australia, Finland, just to name a few. Little good it did, though, as it remains a fan-favourite horror classic to this day.

2) A Clockwork Orange (1971)

Quite possibly the most notorious on our list, A Clockwork Orange was banned in several countries, including Canada, Ireland, Spain, South Korea, Singapore and Brazil, and still faces repeated censorship to this day. Directed by Stanley Kubrick, the movie follows the story of Alex, an implied psychopathic teen who has repeatedly committed crimes too unspeakable to mention. These include but are not limited to: battery, torture, armed robbery, murder and sexual abuse, all of which Alex revels in. He is eventually detained and subjected to an experimental form of therapy to cure his supposed psychopathy. While it was not technically banned in the UK, it was withdrawn from circulation. Despite the film’s continued controversy, it is nevertheless regarded today as one of Kubrick’s greatest masterpieces.

3) A Serbian Film (2010)

Quite possibly the most disturbing entry on our list and unlike many of the others, one that the ban may have actually been effective on. The fact that so few people have heard of it is likely an indication that the endeavour to keep it hush-hush has been a success. However, when you hear about the content, you might start to wonder if that’s really such a bad thing. It follows the story of Miloš, an ageing adult entertainer who is out of work. Struggling to make ends meet, he agrees to star in what he believes to be an experimental art film. This turns out to be a violent snuff film with pedophilic and necrophilic themes. The film was briefly banned in the UK and remains unavailable in Norway, Australia, Spain, Malaysia and New Zealand. To be honest, it was banned for a very good reason.

4) The Exorcist (1973)

This one’s surprising as not only is it now considered a staple horror classic, but it has actually become relatively tame by today’s standards. A story of demonic possession, The Exorcist set a new standard for horror films at the time. However, this new level of fear factor proved too much for some audiences, with alleged reports coming in that the movie had caused some audience members to faint, vomit, and even have heart attacks. This eventually earned the film a ban in several cities across the UK and US. Despite this, it was nominated for10 Academy Awards in 1974 and won Best Adapted Screenplay and Best Sound Mixing.

5) The Human Centipede 2 (2011)

The first Human Centipede was quick to go viral after setting such an extreme bar for the horror genre and taking the concept of body horror to an entirely new level. A blatant paradoy of Doctor Josef Mengele, the Nazi doctor infamous for his depraved human experiments on concentration camp prisoners, the first instalment of this vile horror was already shocking enough. And yet, somehow, the sequel took it to a whole new level. Defying the fourth wall, The Human Centipede 2 follows a sick-minded young man inspired after watching the first Human Centipede movie, setting out on a grotesque spree to recreate the concept. On the grounds of graphic sexual violence, The Human Centipede 2 was banned in the UK and Australia.

6) The Evil Dead (1981)

This one is infamous as not only is it a classic but it got banned twice! The film was directed by Sam Raimi in his student years, the director who later brought us a Wizard Of Oz spinoff and Tobey Maguire’s Spider-Man trilogy – crazy, right? The Evil Dead would now be known as a typical ‘cabin in the woods’ horror, in which a demonic presence savagely hunts a group of friends after playing around with incantations. Due to its graphically gory nature, The Evil Dead was banned in the UK, Ireland, West Germany, Iceland, Sweden and Finland. The film was later remade in 2013, which, like its predecessor, was also banned in several countries, including Ukraine, Finland and Singapore.

Do you think these films should have been banned? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *