10 Scary Horror Movies About Getting Lost in the Woods
In 2022, Idris Elba starred in a new action film called Beast, in which he and his children are trapped in the jungle while a lion chases them. While he wasn’t technically lost in the woods, he was trapped in a similar situation and played out the familiar story of man versus nature, one in which humans rarely emerge in one piece.
Horror films should both put people in danger and create a reason to scare the audience back home. While most people never get lost in the woods, it’s still a mythic hazard played out enough times in movies to make anyone shy away from going on that camping trip with their friends because it often results in death and destruction.
The Blair Witch Project (1999)
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One of the most famous movies about getting lost in the woods is the 1999 hit The Blair Witch Project. Shot on a low budget, it was the film that launched the popular horror film genre, although imitators rarely reached the level of terror in this groundbreaking film.
The film follows a group of young independent filmmakers who travel into the woods to investigate local legends of the Blair Witch. But the result was that the group got lost in the forest and then realized that something was following them.
Lake Eden (2008)
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Eden Lake was a 2008 British horror film about a kindergarten teacher traveling with her boyfriend to a secluded lake in the English countryside. When they get there, they find that a new development is being built and signs are posted not to enter, but they do it anyway, and it’s their biggest mistake.
They find themselves in mortal danger when they confront unruly teenagers. Their car disappears and soon someone starts chasing the young couple. The film is scary and conveys a little too much juvenile fear, but despite having one of the most brutal and unnerving endings in recent horror films, it does its job well.
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In 1972, Burt Reynolds’ classic survival film Deliverance was a hit. The film saw friends from the city go on a canoe trip through the Georgia wilderness. But they made the mistake of treating the local population with contempt, and this was almost their last mistake.
Four friends meet some locals on a canoe trip and find their canoes in a fight to the death after they crash. The film also featured one of cinema’s most iconic moments with Dueling Banjos.
Willow Creek (2013)
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Willow Creek was a 2013 found footage horror film written and directed by comedian Bobcat Goldthwait. For anyone expecting something funny, this is not what Goldthwait has done in his film career. It’s as disturbing as anything he does in this area.
In the film, a guy travels to a national forest in California with his girlfriend in hopes of getting video footage of Bigfoot. They start in Willow Creek, which is considered the Bigfoot Capital of the world, but when they set up camp, someone or something destroys the camp and sticks their belongings in a tree. What they encounter next is pure terror, and probably not what all viewers expected. Unlike many found footage movies, this one actually shows what happened and the creatures involved.
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Rituals is a little-known horror thriller from 1977 starring Hal Holbrook. This film saw a group of surgeons decide to go on a weekend getaway in the Canadian wilderness. They are dropped by plane, which leaves them without access until the scheduled pickup.
But after their first night camping, they realize that their boots have been stolen and look for someone who can help them. The group then begins to see more ominous things and soon find themselves fighting for their lives with no escape. The film works so well because it hides the identity of the attacker until the very end.
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Ritual was a 2017 Netflix release, and a group of men embark on a trip to a Swedish forest after a friend is murdered in a robbery. However, they realize that something might be stalking them while they’re out there, and they realize that they’re all in danger.
What makes the ritual so interesting is that the forest seems to change while they are there. Although they seem to be going in the right direction, they always backfire. Lost in the Woods adds a twist to the genre, as it seems as if the woods themselves are looking for them.
Night Comes (2017)
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It Comes at Night is a post-apocalyptic horror film about a disease that has wiped out most of the world. The film was interesting, with critics lovingly praising it, while audiences generally rejected it when it first came out. It was a slow-motion horror film with a family living deep in the woods, hiding from the sick.
Things go awry when other survivors find them and eventually take the disease with them. It was a short-lived film before The Real Sickness made it hard to watch. However, as a story of people tormented by strangers deep in the woods, it works well and is a terrifying survival story.
The Edge (1997)
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In 1997, a survival film about getting lost in the woods starring Anthony Hopkins and Alec Baldwin was released theatrically. The film follows a billionaire photographer and photographer’s assistant in a plane crash in the remote forests of Alaska.
The film does a lot with this lost-in-the-woods setup. First, the men have problems from the beginning because there was an antagonistic relationship between the billionaire and the photographer. Things take a turn for the worse when the bear starts chasing them and kills the assistant before targeting the two survivors. This movie had a lot going for it, and it was a perfect example of how people can be deadly even in the harshest of circumstances.
Soldier Dogs (2002)
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What makes Dog Soldiers so impressive is that it takes the idea of being lost in the woods and then adds it to the werewolf movie genre. It is also recognized as one of the best monster movies ever made. A group of soldiers led by Neil Marshall are found stranded in the woods for a training exercise.
However, while in the forest with no way out, they come across a house where a wolf family lives. While the film takes the idea of these trained soldiers being stuck in the forest, it also adds that they are no match for the mighty lycans.
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Released in 2014, Backcountry is a Canadian survival horror film based on a true story. In the true story, a man-eating black bear terrorized people in the backcountry of an Ontario national park. As for the movie, the couple goes on a hike and the man refuses the map, believing he knows his way around.
It’s always a mistake that causes these movies to get lost in the woods. Because he doesn’t have a map, they turn back, eventually they get lost and then find a man-eating bear following them. Critics praised the film, with a 92% rating on Rotten Tomatoes calling it intense and moving.