Smile: 10 Scariest Faces In Horror Movies, According To Reddit (2023)

A new face of horror has burst onto the scene with the recent release of Smile from Paramount Pictures. An everyday expression of joy and excitement has become a chilling image that has moviegoers scared out of their minds, joining the ever-growing pantheon of iconic horror movie imagery that will keep on scaring for decades to come.

Over the last century, there have been many defining horror films with memorable characters that have terrified millions with their haunting expressions. Whether they be from just a single scene or the way they appear throughout the entire film, Reddit users have taken to the threads and forums to give their own takes on what they consider to be the scariest faces within the horror genre.


10/10 Emma Westbrook - The Gravedancers (2006)

Smile: 10 Scariest Faces In Horror Movies, According To Reddit (1)

Considered to be an underrated horror movie with underrated scares by several Redditors, The Gravedancers from 2006 follows a trio of friends being haunted and hunted by a trio of evil wayward spirits. One of these spirits is the ghost of pianist and axe murderer Emma Westbrook, whose facial features are made up of absolute nightmare fuel.


Referring to the character as just the "female ghost from Gravedancers", Reddit user djangoman2k admitted that scariness of Emma Westbrook is "underrated" to them. User nickirobin also expressed how scary they found the character in a more detailed post, saying "Man, those ghosts were terrifying! The smiles were just too creepy."

9/10 Regan MacNeil - The Exorcist (1973)

Smile: 10 Scariest Faces In Horror Movies, According To Reddit (2)
(Video) Scariest Jump Scares from Horror Movies

William Friedkin's The Exorcist has been widely regarded as one of the scariest movies ever made, as it's also one of few horror movies that made people faint in the theater. While it contains more than a fair amount of spine-chilling moments and carries a highly intense atmosphere throughout its runtime, there's no doubt that its most iconic element is the face of the demonically possessed 12-year-old girl, Regan.

Redditor LoneRealist certainly wasn't afraid to admit that the look of Regan is "pretty damn scary looking. The smile, the eyes, everything about it is just perfect." Fellow user Deduction_power posted that Regan's possessed appearance not only scared them but said that she "Literally scarred me for life. Made me stop watching horror movies for a while."

8/10 The "Phantom" - Inland Empire (2006)

Smile: 10 Scariest Faces In Horror Movies, According To Reddit (3)

To describe the plot of David Lynch's experimental psychological horror film, Inland Empire, would be almost a complete impossibility. Its main character, Nikki Grace, wonders through several unnerving, surreal sequences with seemingly no real connection to one another. But towards the end of the film, she witnesses a disturbingly distorted image of her own face worn by the "phantom" in a dimly lit hallway.

While Reddit user DrScientist812 doesn't quite consider the film to be within the horror genre, they admitted to just how terrifying they found this one specific image, saying "that distorted face near the end of Inland Empire made me jump out of my seat." There have been many dark and surreal moments throughout his works, but this is certainly one of the darkest scenes from Lynch's movies that is sure to stick with viewers long after watching.

7/10 Kayako Saeki - The Grudge (2004)

Smile: 10 Scariest Faces In Horror Movies, According To Reddit (4)

While horror movie remakes can fade into obscurity, the American remake of Ju-On: The Grudge from Japan managed to capture a lot of what made the original so terrifying, especially with its ghoulish antagonist, Kayako Saeki. One of the film's most infamous jump scares occurs when the character Susan lifts her bedsheets to find Kayako's ghost donning a wide-eyed, open-mouthed expression before being dragged away underneath.

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This jump scare of Kayako's face managed to scare Redditor Pacocuhh so much that as a result, they "never felt safe again". Fellow user tinyywarrior replied that they were "traumatized" by it as well, saying "I still to this day sleep with a duvet tucked under my feet at the bottom because it feels safe." This is one face that is sure to rob even the bravest of a good night's sleep.

6/10 Zelda Goldman - Pet Sematary (1989)

One of Stephen King's most disturbing novels became the basis for one of the best film adaptations of his works with the release of Pet Sematary in 1989. One of the story's most terrifying elements is the flashbacks of Rachel's older sister Zelda, whose death from spiral meningitis leaves Rachel with a trauma that follows her into adulthood.

A deleted account from Reddit acknowledged that her introductory flashback is scary enough, but considers her second appearance was even more so, saying that the scene "when she is sitting in the corner and runs at the camera with the fish-eye lens was terrifying." Most may think of Pennywise and Annie Wilkes when it comes to King's scariest characters, but the movie's handling of Zelda definitely managed to move up to the top tier.

5/10 Count Orlok - Nosferatu (1922)

Smile: 10 Scariest Faces In Horror Movies, According To Reddit (6)

For a movie that has just turned 100 years old, the silent German vampire classic, Nosferatu, continues to send chills and haunt the minds of viewers around the world. Even those who have never even seen the film have no doubt come across the iconic image of actor Max Schreck as Count Orlok before.

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Orlok's very appearance has certainly had an effect on Reddit user delfux, who claims, "The imagery combined with that makeup is super creepy." The film may have been a loose (albeit unauthorized) adaptation of Bram Stoker's Dracula, but Count Orlok is one vampire scary enough to make Count Dracula look like a teddy bear in comparison.

4/10 Lip-Stick Face Demon - Insidious (2010)

Smile: 10 Scariest Faces In Horror Movies, According To Reddit (7)

Before Patrick Wilson exorcised demonic entities in The Conjuring films, he encountered another terrifying face in 2010 that became an unexpected internet over the years. The first film of the Insidious franchise features a scene with Wilson's character, Josh, having a conversation with his mother when suddenly, a black and red-faced demon with yellow eyes and sharp teeth appears behind him, frightening his mother.

The demon's face in this particular scene was enough to scare Redditors like bottomsupfellas so much they claimed that it "terrifies me still to even look at a still image". Despite the humorous memes generated from this image, many can still agree that they don't take anything away from its scariness when it's set in motion.

3/10 Katie Embry - The Ring (2002)

Smile: 10 Scariest Faces In Horror Movies, According To Reddit (8)

For most people who have seen The Ring, they might initially think of its antagonist, Samara Morgan, when considering the film's scariest elements, but it turns out that Reddit users have a different face in mind. The first 10 minutes of the film sets its terrifying tone with the death of the character Katie Embry, but the quick flashback of her mother discovering her corpse in the closet, with her face hideously deformed, is the stuff of nightmares.

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It seems that Katie's deformed face had haunted Redditor leon-blank ever since the film first premiered, saying that it "scared the crap out of me for years." In fact, they found it so scary that they "Couldn't even look at a picture of the face."

2/10 The Babadook - The Babadook (2014)

Smile: 10 Scariest Faces In Horror Movies, According To Reddit (9)

The Australian horror film, The Babadook, wasn't just a hit with critics, it also made quite an impression on audiences, partially due to the popularity and intrigue of its titular monster, who's one of those great horror villains with almost no screentime. The film revolves around a single mother whose paranoia erupts when the character of her son's creepy children's book manifests itself in their home.

Redditor AmazingJole did not hold back in expressing their fear of the Babadook, saying "that little f***er creeps me out." The internet has dubbed the Babadook as a gay pride icon (via The New Yorker), but from his haunting appearance, this is one icon to be feared rather than celebrated.

1/10 Bughuul - Sinister (2012)

Smile: 10 Scariest Faces In Horror Movies, According To Reddit (10)

According to SlashFilm, recent scientific studies have declared Sinister to be the scariest movie of all-time, and it's not at all hard to see why. With the eerie super 8 found footage snuff films shown throughout, and especially the appearance of the Pagan demon Bughuul, it's become horror classic perfectly suitable for the Halloween season.

An unknown user with a now deleted account had apparently been exposed to Bughuul's image at a young age, saying that he "used to scare me when I was a kid." Redditor driedsponge also posted their fear of the character's look and design, saying that they "Hate hate hate it".

(Video) Smile | Official Trailer (2022 Movie)

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Who is the scariest movie? ›

These are the scariest movies according to science
  • Host (2020)
  • Sinister (2012)
  • Insidious (2011)
  • The Conjuring (2013)
  • Hereditary (2018)
  • Terrified (2017)
  • It Follows (2014)
  • Dashcam (2021)
4 days ago

What is the scariest true horror movie? ›

Best scary movies based on true stories
  1. Zodiac (2007) Film. ...
  2. The Amityville Horror (1979) ...
  3. The Conjuring (2013) ...
  4. Poltergeist (1982) ...
  5. Compliance (2012) ...
  6. 10 Rillington Place (1971) ...
  7. Open Water (2003) ...
  8. Snowtown (2011)
4 Oct 2022

What is the most disturbing horror movie Reddit? ›

  • A Serbian Film.
  • I Spit on Your Grave (1978)
  • The Last House on the Left (1972)
  • Cannibal Holocaust.
  • The Flower of Flesh and Blood.

What is rated the number 1 scariest movie ever made? ›

Updated July 2022: If you love horror movies, you'll be pleased to know we've updated this article with additional content and entries.
  • 7/15 The Exorcist (1973)
  • 6/15 Dawn of the Dead (1978)
  • 5/15 Halloween (1978)
  • 4/15 The Shining (1980)
  • 3/15 Alien (1979)
  • 2/15 Psycho (1960)
  • 1/15 The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974)
5 Jul 2022

What scary movie is based on a true story? ›

The Amityville Horror (1979) Arguably the most famous horror film based on horrifying, allegedly real events, The Amityville Horror has spent more than four decades giving audiences a permanent case of night terrors with the story of a young couple and their house in Amityville, New York haunted by violent spirits.

Which conjuring is the scariest? ›

1. "

The original “The Conjuring” is still the classiest, spookiest, most satisfying film in the franchise.


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