Although from one kind of a perspective, it might seem that watching horror films is an unusual way of self-torture, in reality, it is much more than that. We all get bored, in fact, more quickly than the previous generations that have led similar lives and had no complaints. And that’s where the horror genre comes to play. Watching more and more of this genre is one of the smartest ways to pass your time. Horror films not only allow us to test the extremities of horrors and personal limits in a completely safe and regulated surrounding.
The truth about most of us humans is that we are never freed from the anxiety and fear that revolves around darkness and being alone, despite the more common disbelief of this generation in the supernatural and evil. There is a lurking curiosity engraved in us that yet despite all the fear, sought to indulge in horror films. It’s weird human psychology that we don’t really have any concrete explanation for; all we know is that this unknown force pulls us towards horror film quite often.
And by the pull and influence of the same unknown forces today, we are bound to list you the best horror short films to help you regulate your emotions with an occasional dose of fright.
1. How to be alone
“Stranger Things” writer Kate Trefry’’s first attempt in short film brings you part psychological thriller part horror film called “How to be alone” that was released in 2019. Starring Maika Monroe and the sensational Joe Keery who also starred in “Stranger Things,” both play the characters of a lovely couple. This short film highlights mental illness from a different perspective; it portrays how anxiety takes over a person’s sanity lurking around deep into the night when they are all alone. The narrative of this short is absolutely mesmerizing. The screenplay by Maika as the person with mental illness is flawlessly executed.
Despite the criticism, this short film is one of the best horror short films owing to its ability to keep you at an edge throughout the film. The visuals and representation of this film are done flawlessly to displaying only the necessary components. The viewers being oblivious about the back story of the lead character does not hamper the flow of this film, I think that is precisely what keeps one hooked to this short film. It might not be scary, particularly, but it is creepy for sure. A must watch for all those seeking light horror!
2. Tuck me in
A 1-minute horror short film, Tuck me in poses a wide range of questions to what the film could mean. Directed by Ignazio Rodo, this short is born to amuse. As the title suggests, a father tucks his son for bed and checks under the bed as per his son’s request and does so casually. Unlikely enough he discovers a doppelganger of his son under the bed. With that being the closing scene, the viewers are left with contemplating a vast number of thoughts and possibilities, each one coming up with a unique theory. This thought-provoking short film not only makes you wonder what would you have done if you were to face the same situation, but it also throws down a chill through your spine, all in one minute, truly a powerful film. I don’t see a reason why this must be left out from one of the best horror short films.
3. The offering
Deep into the night, an old truck drives in a lonely snowy road, inside are two men gathering a handsome amount of things wrapped in a cornucopia to make an offering to an unknown deity when suddenly one of them realizes that they have missed out on one major significant item. The offering an American horror-survival short film directed by Ryan Patch was released in 2013. Using inspiration from biblical stories, mainly the story of Abraham-Isaac and also a little bit fascination of traditional ways that Hindus worship their god, Ryan incorporated all his pre-existing knowledge into this short film.
Ryan successfully maneuvers this film into captivating his audiences by some edgy genius components of the film. Making good use of the dark lighting, as well as snowy conditions Ryan, has created a thrilling atmosphere to shoot the film in added to that is the climatic music which in the final cut delivers an excellent horror experience. By keeping the limited time available to them as a deadline, The offering creates anticipation and tension among its viewers that is easily terrifying for anyone watching. This short film is an absolute recommend for any horror film lover.
Check out these best Thriller short films which will blow your mind.
4. Special Day
Directed by Teal Greyhavens and produced by Rachel Greenwald, Special Day is a 2018 twisted horror short film that you can’t take your mind off. As clock ticks closer to the hour of Emily’s birth, the cheerful and merry atmosphere of celebration slowly gradually transform into creepy tense air of suspense. Emily’s family has some twisted secret to tell her as a revelation on her birthday. As creepy as that sounds the cinematography and shots that are tormenting stay vividly engraved into your memories for a few days after watching this short film.
I didn’t mean to scare you now, but this horror film is something to look forward to while experimenting with horror. The uncomfortable atmosphere created by Emily’s family is definitely a nightmare that I would never want to be a part of, but as long as it’s in the film, it’s safe to watch right? Within a span of 6-minutes, “Special Day” delivers quality story along with an eerie concept that gives you a sense of dome that awaits Emily, that too on her birthday. We highly recommend you to watch this short film if you think you know your horror.
5. The sermon
A 12-minute long English horror-romantic short film released in 2018 that is directed and written by Dean Puckett. Following a folklore story of a preacher and his daughter, this film brings about disputes between church and love. Each shot of this film has some deep meaning if you watch it close enough. This film has it all- be it an excellent plot, great cinematography or terrific narratives. A cold story about revenge, The Sermon can be interpreted in several different ways. You could even watch this whole film on mute and still understand the story; it is only possible because Dean Puckett used silent films as an inspiration to create The Sermon.
6. The Dollmaker
Belonging to the genre of horror and mystery, this 10-minute long short film is about a mother grieving over her lost child, helpless, she takes uncalculated decisions. Directed by Alan Lougher and written by Matias Caruso, The Dollmaker got its initial release in February 2017. Although this film gets over way too soon, I think that the writer could have extended this film in lots of ways. Regardless it is still a splendid story about the wonders of a second chance.
7. The Herd
A 21-minute long thriller short film directed by Melanie Light and written by Ed Pope, The Herd, is an excellent short film with a deep message for the world. In this film, women are shown as captives in a dark prison-like place from which escape seems hopeless. But that’s not it, The women are portrayed as a metaphor to cattle and the way we treat them in farms which mostly included torture and violence. Extensively promoting veganism, this short film is openly challenging critics to oppose their views on dark reality that animals face. With great visuals and cinematography, this film puts forward an important message by employing horror to convey the message.
8. The Blue Door
Directed by Paul Taylor, The Blue Door is a 9-minute fantasy horror short film that got its release in December 2017. The film is about a home care nurse who realizes the true face of the woman she has been taking care of since a long time. This short is realistic in its own world, being shot at one location, the story has to be one of the creepiest one to be ever told. You get to experience the splendid terrific performance of Gemma Whalen, who was also a cast member of Game of Thrones. Even though rumors have it that this film will be made into a full-length feature film, I do not support that and would prefer it be the way it is right now, simple as a best horror short film to indulge in.
A 13-minute long Halloween horror/sci-fi short film, directed and written by Steve Desmond, Monsters was released in 2015. Portraying the story of Jenn, who lives away from the monsters present in the world, in an underground bunker, the short film opens up to the scene where she gets out to explore the world. A must watch for its incredible storyline and screenplay.
10. Right Place Wrong Tim
Starring the talented Asa Butterfield, Right Place Wrong Tim is a take on 90’s sitcom in which the lead role simultaneously clones himself and everything is utter chaos. Directed and written by Eros Vlahos, this short film is quality in its own for which despite the bland ending it is still enjoyable.
With that being said, our take on the best horror short films is as I assure you, bound to impress. Hoping you enjoy the scare!