Gothic films are films set in a particular genre that attempt to recreate the themes and settings found in classic gothic literature. Gothic films often revolve around obsessive emotional states, family intrigue, betrayal, evil and supernatural events and can be quite varied. A common and defining feature of many gothic films is the filming atmosphere that usually develops around the protagonist and allows us to look at other characters from a third person perspective. Since the beginning of the film industry; There have been attempts to adapt classic Gothic literature from the 18th and 19th centuries into film scripts and to capture the essence of the genre in new stories set in modern times. These films; It differs from horror films in certain aspects in that it uses secrets and allusions to secrets to build tension and generally lacks gore. Let’s take a closer look at the topic and take a look at 20 gothic movies together.

Moments in gothic movies

Most gothic films are considered psychological dramas, psychological thrillers, and paranormal horror films because they do not have a main genre (film genre). One of the features of gothic literature is the depiction of the environment around the characters, and some gothic films have successfully transferred this feature to the screen. With a special emphasis on lighting, especially dark colors, and a specially chosen set, these films are able to convey the dark side and sense of mystery created by gothic literature.

Special effects in the cinema allow you to meet the viewer with dark cities and high castles, which may not exist in reality, but which reflect the emotions necessary for the plot. Space in Gothic works; He acts like an actor in many stories, isolating characters or bringing them together, and hiding some facts. For this reason, sets quickly became an important part of gothic films.

The choice of characters in the gothic film genre is also a specific aspect of the genre. Just as novels quickly create certain characters who play predictable roles in the plot, so too have the characters in the film adaptations of these novels evolved. Some actors; They are so good at portraying the hero, defenseless lover or villain that they become indispensable for such characteristic roles and portray similar characters in many films. Just like Bela Lugosi, who plays Count Dracula, the protagonist of the legendary 1931 film Dracula, becomes an unforgettable villain in classic gothic cinema…

Some gothic films have managed to create a strong sense of suspense while dealing with the supernatural elements often found in fiction. Previously, makeup and other effects were used to depict a deformed character or ghost. Further special effects; this helped make supernatural characters and events more believable to viewers. Thanks to some more complex special effects, the fantasy scenes described in some novels could be depicted as they were originally intended.

A few areas in which gothic films often fail to adapt from paper to the big screen are long-running stories and first-person narrative novels. Some romantic plots unfold in such a complex way that it can be quite difficult to make the story understandable without constant narration. There are also some gothic films that fail to capture the subtext of the story, such as the fear of sexuality, the oppression of women, or the critique of social hierarchies in Victorian gothic works. Gothic works in cinema in the 21st century have been updated frequently, assuming they are set in modern times and have lost some of the specific features of classic gothic films.

In this article, we have collected and briefly presented 20 of the most competent examples of gothic films that are about 100 years old. Enjoy reading.

You can also view this article: Best Gothic Literature with a Dark and Mysterious Nature.

1. Relic – Torment (2020) – IMDB: 6.0

When Edna, an elderly woman, inexplicably disappears, her daughter Kay and granddaughter Sam rush to their family’s abandoned vacation home and find clues to the dementia that can be seen throughout the house and that is slowly getting worse in her absence.

2. Histoires Extraordinaires / Spirits of the Dead – Victims of the Devil (1968) – IMDB: 6.4

Edgar Allan Poe’s story of a brutal countess chasing a ghost horse, a sadistic soldier chased by the same horse, and an alcoholic actor chased by the devil will be adapted for the big screen by three directors, including veteran director Federico Fellini.

3. His house (2020) – IMDB: 6.5.

An immigrant couple is forced to flee war-torn South Sudan. But then they find it hard to adjust to their new life after they move to an English city where a sinister air is hidden behind its usual exterior.

4. mother! – Mother! (2017) – IMDB: 6.6

In a flat meadow surrounded by lush but wild forest with an idyllic view, stands a secluded mansion, recently burned to the ground but faithfully restored. Relationships of a secluded couple who own this mansion will be tested by intruders, and their peaceful life will be in jeopardy.

5. Mummy – Mummy (1959) – IMDB: 6.7

In the 1890s, a team of British archaeologists discover the intact tomb of Princess Ananka; however, they accidentally bring the high priest’s mummified body back to life. Three years later in England a follower of the same Egyptian religion; The lives of many people will turn into chaos when he frees the mummy to take brutal revenge on those who robbed the sacred past.

6. The Raven – The Raven (1935) – IMDB: 6.8

Dr. Vollin is a brilliant but unstable surgeon with a morbid obsession with instruments of torture. After saving the life of a beautiful socialite, Jean Thatcher, who was injured in a car accident, he becomes increasingly attracted to her. This interest turns into an obsession.

7. House of Usher – Scary House (1960) – IMDB: 6.9

Philip Winthropie is invited to the family home by his fiancĂ©e, Madeleine Asher. His presence is not particularly welcomed by Madeleine’s brother, Roderick. Roderick explains to Philip that the Ushers suffer from inherited physical defects and are cursed. It is said that Madeleine’s marriage to Winthrop would perpetuate this curse. It will soon become clear that something sinister is going on in the House of Usher.

8. The Curse of Frankenstein – The Curse of Frankenstein (1957) – IMDB: 7.0

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Baron Victor Frankenstein; As she awaits execution for murder, she tells the nun the story of the creature she brings back to life. The creator of this creature, who is not behaving as he planned, got into big trouble because of what he did. It claimed the lives of dozens of people.

9. Obsession – Obsession (1981) – IMDB: 7.3

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The young woman left the family for an unknown reason. His wife decides to find out the truth about this unknown situation and goes after her estranged husband. At first, she suspects that she was abandoned for someone else. But gradually, about the wife; He begins to discover strange events outside of their relationship.

10. Tenant: A London Mist Story – Tenant: A Foggy London Story (1927) – IMDB: 7.3

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A serial killer known as “The Avenger” who kills blondes is roaming London. Meanwhile, a mysterious man arrives at the home of Mr. and Mrs. Bunting, who are looking for a room to rent. Buntings’ daughter is a blonde model who is dating one of the detectives assigned to the case. The detective becomes jealous of the tenant and begins to suspect that he may be an “avenger”.

11. El Espinazo del Diablo – The Devil’s Backbone (2001) – IMDB: 7.4

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After 12-year-old Carlos, whose father died in the Spanish Civil War, is transferred to an orphanage, he discovers that the mansion has a dark past, but also many dark secrets to uncover.

12. Dracula – Dracula (1931) – IMDB: 7.4

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Transylvanian vampire Count Dracula takes up residence in a mansion in London, subjugating a naive real estate agent. Here, Dracula sleeps in his coffin during the day and searches for potential victims at night to feed on their blood. But the victim’s friends won’t go out of their way to tell him to stop.

13. Orphanage – Orphanage (2007) – IMDB: 7.4

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Laura, an orphan woman, returns her family to her childhood home, which used to be an orphanage for disabled children. Soon, his son begins to communicate with a new imaginary friend. Meanwhile, Laura decides to reopen an orphanage for children with disabilities and throws a party in her honor.

14. Page of Madness – In the Service of Madness (1926) – IMDB: 7.4

A young man takes a job as a janitor in a psychiatric hospital, but he has more serious reasons for starting this job. His goal is to be close to his wife, who is in this psychiatric hospital, and save her from this institution, in which she recently tried to commit suicide. However, this man, who witnessed events that he did not expect, slowly comes to the brink of insanity.

15. Jacob’s Ladder – Breath of Terror (1990) – IMDB: 7.4

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Jacob Singer, a New York City postal worker, struggles to hold on to life so his broken life doesn’t crumble. days; He spends his life reminiscing about his first marriage, his recently deceased son, and what he saw during his military service during the Vietnam War. As his new wife tries to help Jacob keep his sanity, the line between reality and fantasy becomes increasingly blurred for Jacob.

16. American Werewolf in London – Werewolf in London (1981) – IMDB: 7.5

Two American college students, David and Jack, were traveling around Britain with their backpacks until they were attacked by a big wolf. David survives with the bite, but Jack is brutally killed. As David recuperates in the hospital, he wakes up with violent nightmares that haunt Jack, who warns him each time that he will turn into a werewolf. When David is convinced of this terrifying idea, he sets out to commit suicide before transforming into a deadly monster on the next full moon.

17. Omen – Prophecy (1976) – IMDB: 7.5

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Robert, the American ambassador, is surrounded by mysterious murders and deaths. Reality becomes very difficult for Robert, who realizes that the child he raised with his own hands may actually be the Antichrist. Is his adopted son really the son of the devil?

18. Anything Money Can Buy / The Devil and Daniel Webster (1941) – IMDB: 7.6

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A nineteenth-century New Hampshire farmer makes a pact with Satan for his economic interests; He is then tasked with removing famed clergyman Daniel Webster from his contract with God.

19. Doctor’s office. Caligari / Doctor’s office. Caligari – The Practice of Dr. Caligari (1920) – IMDB: 8.0

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A successful hypnotist, D. Caligari begins using Cesare, a sleepwalker, to commit murder. Is there really no one to oppose their dirty interests?

20. Rebecca (1940) – IMDB: 8.1

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When a confident woman marries an aristocrat, she tries to adjust to that role in her new life; She begins to suspect that the first wife of the man she married has an imaginary presence roaming the house.

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