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Stephen King’s Scariest Movie Villains Ranked


We’ve seen countless King villains, some are
utterly horrifying and others are completely laughable. But there’s a handful that are so terrifying
they’ll inspire nightmares. These are the Stephen King movie villains
who’ve kept us up at night, ranked from the worst to the very best. Warden Samuel Norton The Shawshank Redemption demonstrates how
some of the scariest movie monsters are the ones you could meet in real life. Warden Samuel Norton is a man who’s willing
to do whatever it takes to gain power over others. “Don’t you ever mention money to me again.” He claims to be a man of God, but he runs
Shawshank State Prison like a slave owner, manipulating inmates to do his bidding and
punishing anyone who doesn’t comply. Ultimately, Norton is a coward: He chooses
to take the easy way out when confronted with his own misdeeds. But cowards like Norton are capable of doing
some truly frightening and despicable things, and they shouldn’t be underestimated. Reverend Lowe We can’t say for certain whether Stephen King
has something against organized religion, but religious figures are often the villains
in his story. Take Reverend Lowe for example, a man of the
cloth with a beastly secret. 1985’s Silver Bullet tells the story of a
small town terrorized by a werewolf and the people who are brave enough to fight the ungodly
creature. The film is indicative of a lot of horror
films that came out in the 1980s, it’s more cheesy than actually scary. Honestly, the fact that Gary Busey is one
of the stars tells you everything you need to know. Still, werewolves are scary beasts, and the
fact that this werewolf is the town’s religious leader makes him all the more frightening. Isaac Chromer There’s nothing scarier than an evil child,
and the town in Children of the Corn is full of them. Some might argue that the scariest presence
in the film is He Who Walks Behind the Rows. That’s the fertility demon who dwells in the
cornfield, and these nasty kids keep sacrificing the town’s adults in order to appease him. Of course, demons are bad news on the best
of days…but there’s something about a charismatic cult leader, a child in this case, that strikes
us as even more horrifying. “In the dream, the Lord did come to me, and
he was a shape. It was He Who Walks Behind The Rows.” Actor John Franklin does an incredible job
portraying a corrupt, power-mad adolescent. Thanks to his performance, the film becomes
less about the horror of a cornfield demon and more about the dangers of charismatic
leaders with frightening ulterior motives. Christine Beep, beep! What’s worse than buying a new car only to
find out it’s pure evil? Uh…nothing, actually. Christine is a unique horror film that takes
something as mundane as a car and turns it into an unstoppable killing machine. Christine isn’t one of the most popular King
adaptations, but it’s still a pretty intense thrill ride, and the film is certainly worth
giving a whirl. “Okay. Show me.” While it’s obviously impossible for an inanimate
object to convey emotion, director John Carpenter and his star Keith Gordon are great at making
it seem like Christine has a personality all her own…however terrifying that personality
may be. Fun fact: The film’s famous resurrection scene
almost didn’t happen on screen. Carpenter added it after production wrapped
because he felt the movie needed more special effects. Cujo Stephen King is an absolute master when it
comes to turning life’s everyday comforts into total nightmares. Cujo tells the story of Donna and Tad, a mother
and son who are forced into a hot, broken-down car by a rabid St. Bernard that’s quite literally
foaming at the mouth. The film turns out to be less about a killer
dog and more about human relationships and childhood trauma, and Cujo comes to represent
all the terrible things that are happening in Donna’s family. Also, what’s more frightening than watching
a lovable creature turn into a bloodthirsty monster, and through no fault of his own? At the beginning of the film, Cujo is a sweet,
curious dog who simply winds up in the wrong place at the wrong time. Oh, and speaking of being in the wrong place
at the wrong time: Throughout the film, the audience feels a
real sense of helplessness as they watch the creature transform before their eyes…and
that sense of helplessness soon turns to utter horror. Margaret White Mothers can be monstrous, in real life, and
in the movies. And as far as bad mamas go, you’d be hard
pressed to find a mother as depraved and dangerous as Carrie’s Margaret White. She’s a religious zealot who feels an overwhelming
compulsion to punish her daughter Carrie at every turn, calling her a “sinner” whenever
she gets the chance. She’s also fond of locking poor Carrie in
a prayer closet, essentially a broom closet adorned with candles and religious icons,
including the creepiest crucifix you’ve ever seen. When Carrie gets her first period, Margaret
tells her it’s because she’s had impure thoughts. “Oh Lord, help the sinning woman see the sin
of her days and ways!” At the end of the day, she’s an all-around
miserable person who thinks sex and sexuality is sinful and revolting. Of course, Margaret gets hers in the end…because
having a telekinetic daughter who throws knives with her mind isn’t without its risks. But while she’s alive? Man, Margaret is a friggin’ nightmare. Kurt Barlow Kurt Barlow from Salem’s Lot is the quintessential
boogeyman. The vampire is barely seen throughout the
two-part miniseries, which had a theatrical release in Europe, preferring to prey on the
people of Salem’s Lot under a veil of darkness and chic mystique. But when he finally does show his face, he’s
a decidedly unsexy vampire, there’s no mistaking him for Edward Cullen. “I’m going to kill you!” Barlow is more akin to Nosferatu’s central
creep, another repulsive monster who doesn’t waste time trying to charm his victims. Barlow keeps his eye on the prize and just
focuses on what he does best: Terrorizing the townspeople. “Don’t look at him!” Gage Creed When he was alive, Pet Sematary’s Gage Creed
was a real cute little kid. But after a fatal accident involving an 18-wheeler,
his father made the perfect worst choice and decided to go ahead and reanimate him. The result of all this inadvisable hocus pocus
is…not so cute. “I brought you something mommy.” Okay, maybe he’s still pretty cute. Nevertheless, he turns into a murderous zombie
with a fondness for scalpels. He sneaks. He creeps. You’ll always find him in the most unexpected
places. Basically, he’s a full-fledged menace who
must be stopped! In the end, Gage’s odd mixture of childlike
innocence and unstoppable evil adds up to pure, unadulterated nightmare fuel. As a wise man once said: “Sometimes dead is better.” Gage is the embodiment of corrupted innocence. A victim of unfortunate circumstances, his
transformation into a tiny monster is ultimately the byproduct of his father’s grief. In that regard, Pet Sematary is a terribly
sad film, on top of being absolutely terrifying. The Mist monsters Let’s face it: Most insects and arachnids
are pretty off-putting in real life. The mere sight of a creepy-crawly is a surefire
way to get the blood pumping, a fact that horror directors are all too happy to exploit. Well, the creatures in The Mist are all super-sized…and
so is your mounting sense of dread. Just take a look at this angry militia of
creepos if you don’t believe us. Most of the action in The Mist takes place
in a single location: A store that’s suddenly become enveloped in a thick, mysterious fog. Most of the people trapped inside are loath
to venture out. Those who do explore the mist end up meeting
horrible fates… The mist monsters are otherworldly creatures
that go sight unseen throughout much of the film. But when we finally do catch a glimpse, it’s
not a happy sight. Those oversized tentacles are not for the
faint of heart. And the sharp pinchers should give you pause,
too. They’re ghastly, malevolent monsters, and
it’s really best to avoid them. There’s certainly no reasoning with them. Just try talking some sense into this guy. These monsters are seemingly unstoppable,
too. The only way to save yourself from a gruesome
death is to fight back, and that’s way easier said than done. Annie Wilkes Looking for a life of fame and glory? Well, Annie Wilkes will make you think twice
about that. Misery tells the story of Paul Sheldon, a
famous writer who’s taken in by a seemingly gregarious nurse following a serious car accident. Annie is all-too willing to help Paul get
back on his feet, but she’s also happy to break his ankles. After all, she’s his Number One Fan, and she
feels things very strongly. “I’m also a nurse.” And in case you haven’t caught on yet, she’s
also a total friggin’ psychopath. “There, look there, see what you made me do?” Wilkes holds the poor writer hostage, forcing
him to rewrite his latest book in a way that she deems satisfying and appropriate. No profanity. No cheap endings. And when he tries to escape this horrible
predicament, she hobbles him with a sledgehammer, all the while assuring him that she’s his
“biggest fan.” Annie is easily one of Stephen King’s most
frightening villains, and part of what makes her so terrifying is Kathy Bates’ incredible
performance. She rightfully earned an Oscar for her work,
and it’s easy to see why Total Film said, “[Annie Wilkes is] one of cinema’s greatest,
friendliest, monsters.” Indeed, part of what makes Annie so awful
is the fact that she really does love Paul. But when admiration turns into obsession,
there’s no telling what a person is capable of doing, and Annie is apparently willing
to do anything, no matter how wretched it is. The Overlook Hotel The 1980 film adaptation of The Shining is
a bonafide horror masterpiece. Director Stanley Kubrick created a ghostly
and ghastly world inside The Overlook Hotel…and his utterly terrifying film is widely considered
an essential, iconic piece of horror cinema. The story revolves around a writer and family
man who loses his mind inside a haunted hotel, which sounds somewhat straightforward at first. But there’s a lot going on here. Though Kubrick’s vision is something of a
departure from Stephen King’s original novel, his take on the haunted hotel has unspeakable
horrors waiting behind every door, and just around every corner. As the story goes, The Overlook Hotel was
apparently built on an Indian burial ground, and any horror fan knows that’s never a good
sign. Throughout the film, the formidable building
establishes itself as something of a villain in its own right, it really feels like a living,
breathing entity with blood on its mind. The ghosts that seem to inhabit the property
are all deranged and diabolical in one way or another. There are elevators full of blood. Ballrooms teeming with ghostly spectres. And who the hell knows what’s going on in
Room 237? From the Grady twins to these two fine fellows,
there’s something to fear on every floor of The Overlook Hotel. You can run, but you can’t hide. Jack Torrance Though the spectral hotel guests at the Overlook
Hotel are admittedly creepy, it’s questionable whether any of them can physically harm you. Still, there’s no doubt they’ll drive you
towards madness using every trick at their disposal. Case in point: Jack Torrance, who totally
loses his mind throughout the course of the film. He starts out as a deeply frustrated husband
and father who seems to have a rather short fuse…but he slowly transforms into a genuine
monster, a monster who happens to be highly proficient with an axe. “Here’s Johnny!” Taking the job at the Overlook proves to be
Jack’s undoing. We watch helplessly as he loses his grip on
reality, and sometimes it feels like we’re losing it right along with him. He becomes more and more terrifying with every
scene…and when he finally meets his demise, there’s something truly awful in that frozen
grimace, and the vision stays with us long after the final frame of the film. Of course, that final frame is creepy in its
own right. Pennywise If you were a child in the ’90s, there’s a
good chance you caught the It miniseries starring Tim Curry as the child-eating Pennywise the
Dancing Clown. “C’mon, Bucko.” “I’m not supposed to take stuff from strangers. My dad said so.” “Very wise of your dad.” Curry’s Pennywise was a villain that made
kids afraid to turn off their bedroom lights, not just because clowns are inherently awful,
but because this clown can manifest as your greatest fear. He can also get to you quite easily…wherever
you happen to be. Although the It miniseries has arguably lost
a bit of its bite in recent years, Pennywise the Dancing Clown is still a force to be reckoned
with. In the recent It films, Bill Skarsgård takes
on the meaty role, and his interpretation is dazzlingly demented in its own right. The pancake makeup. The teeth. That hideous dance! The new Pennywise is the perfect villain for
these troubling times. At the end of the day, we all get the monsters
we deserve. Check out one of our newest videos right here! Plus, even more Looper videos about your favorite
horror movies are coming soon. Subscribe to our YouTube channel and hit the
bell so you don’t miss a single one.

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