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15 Best Horror Movie Taglines
Some of the greatest Horror Movie taglines ever.
By Tim Janson
October 26, 2010
The 15 Best Horror Movie Taglines
© Bob Trate
Appearing on posters or in film trailers, movie taglines are designed to give film fans that one catchphrase that producer’s hope will stick in their memories. The best ones can go down in pop culture history and the worst ones can make a bad picture even more laughable. In honor of Halloween, we have put together our list of the 15 best and worst taglines in horror film history. We’ve culled 80 years of history to come up with our list. We’ll start with the best today and finish with the worst tomorrow. Be sure to leave a comment on some of your best and worst picks as well.
15. The good news is your dates are here. The bad news is...they're dead. Night of the Creeps (1986)
Some of the best taglines for horror films are those that can be humorous and effective at the same time. This 1986 film about teenagers infected with creepy crawlies that turn them into zombies has become a cult favorite. The tagline lets you know you’re dealing with the undead but also that it’s tongue-in-cheek.
14. Where shopping can cost you an arm and a leg. Chopping Mall (1986)
Most of our best taglines come from films that are generally regarded as good films. Chopping Mall, a dreadful film about mall security robots that go berserk killing customers, has a great tagline. It’s funny--a great pun--but still lets you know it’s a horror movie.
13. Warning! The Monster Demands a Mate! The Bride of Frankenstein (1935)
James Whale’s sequel is one of those rare films that improves upon the original. The tagline tells us that the monster that we believed destroyed in the 1931 original film is back…and now he’s aching for some female companionship. A great tagline in an era where they were mostly superfluous and silly.
12. Get a Load of Chucky! Seed of Chucky (2004)
Admittedly the tagline to the fifth film in the Child’s Play horror series could just as easily have shown up on our worst tagline list. But it’s a fun play on a common phrase with a sexual double entendre at that.
11. The Lucky Ones Died First. The Hills Have Eyes (1977)
Another Wes Craven film makes the list. Short and sweet and incredibly powerful. It tells you that there is a fate worse than death coming to some unfortunate people. And if you’ve seen the original film about a family of inbred cannibals, you know the tagline is also 100% accurate.
10. The Night HE Came Home! Halloween (1978)
Straightforward and to the point. Putting HE in all caps serves to emphasize how significant and menacing HE (Michael Myers) is. This tagline for John Carpenter’s seminal slasher film is magnificent in its simplicity.
9. Man is The Warmest Place to Hide. The Thing (1982)
John Carpenter’s remake of the 1951 sci-fi classic played up the horror aspect of the alien organism that can imitate other life forms. This tagline is terrifying as it lets us know that this creature can invade our bodies and is the perfect hiding place.
8. Trapped in time. Surrounded by evil. Low on gas...Army of Darkness (1993)
Again, here is an example of a tagline that tells you everything you need to know about the film and does so with a wry grin. A fitting tagline for the third part of the gory and often hilarious Evil Dead Trilogy starring Bruce Campbell.
7. To avoid fainting, keep on repeating...it's only a movie, it's only a movie. The Last House on the Left (1972)
In some cases, a horror film tagline may actually be as scary as the movie. That’s certainly the case with Wes Craven’s gruesome shocker of revenge. This tagline is one of the most foreboding ever written and played a huge role in enticing people to see the film.
6. Just When You Thought it Was Safe to Go Back Into the Water Jaws 2 (1978)
Wow! Talk about nailing it with one simple line. Jaws (1975) caused millions of people all over the world to avoid water…even if it was their local lake or pond. And yes, after three years when we had finally got the nerve to dip our feet in the ocean again, along comes the sequel with another man-eating great white shark. The movie was awful. The tagline, immortal.
5. When There’s No More Room in Hell the Dead Will Walk the Earth Dawn of the Dead (1978)
This tagline says it all. It conveys the idea that zombies have taken over the entire world and this is no longer just a tiny outbreak in a rural town. It also hypothesizes that the plague is truly something made of evil rather than caused by a meteorite or something man made. It’s the perfect tagline for George A. Romero’s second, and greatest, zombie film.
4. Be Afraid…Be Very Afraid! The Fly (1986)
Truly one of the great taglines of all time. This simple five word phrase has become part of American culture lexicon, uttered over and over again in films, TV shows, and by the average guy on the street who may never have even seen the David Cronenberg Sci-fi/horror film where Jeff Goldblum has his DNA crossed with a housefly to create one of the most famous creature images in history.
3. Herbert West has a very good head on his shoulders...and another one in a dish on his desk. Re-animator (1985)
This tagline tells you so much about the film based on H.P. Lovecraft’s short story. We have the main character’s name, we know he’s very smart, we know he likes to remove body parts, we know it has a sense of humor, and we can surmise it’s going to be a gore-fest.
2. They’re here! Poltergeist (1982)
The shortest tagline on this list and one of the best. Those two words have become staples in pop culture. Say those two words and people immediately know you are referring to Tobe Hooper’s 1982 chiller about a suburban family terrorized by spirits. Beyond that it has become the phrase we commonly use when any unwanted guests arrive.
1. In Space, No One Can Here you Scream. Alien (1979)
This tagline not only tells us that the film is set in space, but also conveys the sense of utter fear and helplessness. No one can hear you scream so no one is going to come to save you. Ridley Scott’s 1979 is the yardstick by which all other sci-fi horror films are judged.
Stay tuned tomorrow when we break down the Worst Horror Movie Taglines.