Horror’s Prime 10 Morgue Scenes10 min read

An inventory that can scare you stiff.

Horror Movies Morgue Scenes
By  · Revealed on October sixth, 2023

October is outlined in Webster’s Dictionary as “31 days of horror.” Don’t trouble wanting it up; it’s true. Most individuals take that to imply highlighting one horror film a day, however right here at FSR, we’ve taken that up a spooky notch or 9 by celebrating every day with a high ten listing. This text about the perfect morgue scenes in horror films is a part of our ongoing sequence 31 Days of Horror Lists.

Should you’re a personality in a horror film, there are particular areas you actually wish to keep away from. Venturing into the basement is never a good suggestion. And a “stress-free” getaway to a cabin within the woods tends to finish in tragedy. You’re additionally in all probability going to wish to keep away from hedge mazes and cemetery plots. However at this time, we’re right here to slap on our scrubs and speak about one other of the style’s best recurring locales: the morgue.

Sandwiched between the scientific and the ghoulish, on-screen morgues are a wealthy staging floor for all method of shambling shenanigans. Whether or not they’re handled with dramatic severity or ice-cold tongue-in-cheek, any time a horror film morgue pops up on-screen, you’re in for an excellent time.

Beneath, we’ve assembled ten of the perfect horror film scenes set in a morgue. All advised, it’s attention-grabbing to notice the similarities (we have now a number of third-act blowouts) and the variations (largely in tone). Expectations abound, however morgue scenes by no means fail to maintain us on our toes (a formidable feat, contemplating the ID tag and all…). So hop off the slab and have a peek at our post-mortem of the highest ten horror film morgue scenes, as chosen by Rob Hunter, Chris Coffel, Brad Gullickson, Jacob Trussell, and yours actually.

10. Dan vs. Dobbs – Useless & Buried (1981)

Dead And Burried Morgue

As misanthropic and morose as the rest Dan O’Bannon has ever written, Useless & Buried tells the story of Potters Bluff: an enthralling little city the place a suspicious quantity of persons are being horribly murdered. When Sheriff Dan Gillis (James Farentino) realizes that a number of the townsfolk aren’t as “alive” as they need to be, he probes into the historical past of the city’s bizarre coroner-mortician, William Dobbs (Jack Albertson). Certain sufficient, Gillis discovers that Dobbs is making a hypnotized undead military out of the townsfolk. After taking pictures Dobbs and burying his spouse, Janet, Sheriff Gillis returns to the funeral residence solely to search out the mad mortician may be very a lot alive. Properly, sort of. He’s undead too. And so is Gillis, who gapes at his personal fetid flesh in horror. On this city, it’s simply undead corpses all the way in which down, child. (Meg Shields)

9. Martini, anybody? – Physique Luggage (1993)

Body Bags Morgue

Each horror anthology wants a framing gadget; a slick method to justify and contextualize the omnibus of campfire tales that make up its runtime. Within the case of Physique Luggage — the answer was easy: put co-director John Carpenter in cryptkeeper make-up and have him rattle off puns in a morgue. Sensible. Melding the darkish sensibilities of a late-night horror host with the meta-textual appeal of Carpenter doing sight gags with severed heads and intestines, Physique Luggage repositions the morgue as a comedy membership for wicked freaks such as you and me. One of the best horror anthologies function on some stage of ghoulish comedy anyway, so why not, ? — dwell a bit of! (Meg Shields)

8. Is this your corpse? – Diabolique (1955)

Diabolique Morgue

Aid washes over Nicole when she reads within the paper that Michel’s physique has been recovered. She and Christina labored so effortfully to drown and eliminate that a-hole, however his corpse refused to cooperate, preferring to sink and vanish inside the uncared for swimming pool. The cadaver’s disappearance suggests one thing inconceivable, his dwelling through pure or supernatural means.

However! The cops have his physique, and she or he’s off to the morgue, keen to place her eyes on it. Keen and scared. Severely nervous too. Simone Signoret performs all of it as she makes her method to Michel’s physique, however what she finds there’s not what she needs. Michel stays lacking and exists someplace past the morgue. The truth of this can in the end culminate in certainly one of cinema’s best scares. For now, we benefit from the morgue appetizer and put together for the tub meal. (Brad Gullickson)

7. Roll credit – Behind the Masks: The Rise of Leslie Vernon (2006)

Behind The Mask The Rise Of Leslie Vernon Morgue

It’s a testomony to Scott Glosserman’s profoundly slept-on horror comedy that even its finish credit sequence is a worthy addition to this listing. After a number of meta footwear have dropped, it might appear that newly minted slasher villain Leslie Vernon (Nathan Baesel) has given up the ghost. In any case, he’s only a man. And males don’t are likely to survive getting their skulls crushed in industrial apple cider presses. Then once more, nothing says “iconic slasher villain” like getting back from sure demise. To the tune of The Speaking Heads’ delightfully on-the-nose “Psycho Killer,” the credit roll over a morgue’s safety footage. And, certain sufficient, the ostensibly chilly corpse of Leslie Vernon lurches as much as dispatch the closest orderly. It’s the proper stinger to high off an already twisty story: Leslie Vernon had a plan for every little thing. Together with his demise. (Meg Shields)

6. Powell’s portal to Hell – The Void (2016)

The Void Morgue

Sometimes, when horror movies function a morgue scene, it’s all in regards to the proximity to the lately deceased that surfaces the creeps. Not so quick, says The Void, a sly ode to John Carpenter’s Prince of Darkness, with a heaping serving to of hooded cultists and cosmic horror vibes for added taste. Whereas there are our bodies coated by white fabric on gurneys, the corpses aren’t the horror right here — that honor goes to the flayed physique of a psychotic physician, a glowing triangle that acts as a bridge between this world and someplace past comprehension, and a hulking monster violently birthed in a gush of blood and guts. It’s these distinctive components that make this morgue scene a second you’ll be able to’t tear your eyes away from. (Jacob Trussell)

5. Rise and grind – Friday the thirteenth: The Ultimate Chapter (1984)

Friday The Th Part Morgue

Few horror villains have died as many instances as Jason Voorhees. And whereas his physique tends to “by no means be recovered,” from time to time, he winds up on the morgue. Top-of-the-line cases of this takes place within the not-so-final Friday the thirteenth: The Ultimate Chapter, which kicks issues off with the goalie-masked slasher villain all however six toes underneath. Fortunately for him (and unluckily for all current), the morgue Jason’s dropped at is operated by nymphomaniacs whose horniness rouses the sleeping large sooner than any lightning bolt or infernal curse ever might. Simply the goofiest entry within the franchise, Ultimate Chapter makes its tonal intent recognized by instantly having two orderlies make out underneath the shadow of Jason’s corpse. The element that this massive boy is just too large to suit inside a physique fridge is the icing on the cake. (Meg Shields)

4. Ginger headshot – The Past (1981)

The Beyond More

Lucio Fulci was by no means a filmmaker preoccupied with logic or narrative sense. And nowhere is that extra evident than in his free “Gates of Hell” trilogy. Bookended by Metropolis of the Residing Useless (1980) and The Home By the Cemetery (1981), The Past incorporates a scene in a morgue that’s as grimly nonsensical as the rest within the grasp’s filmography. A younger redhead lady waits whereas her mom pays her respects to a deceased liked one, however she runs in after listening to her mom scream.

What occurs subsequent? Properly, a large jar of acid (generally present in morgues, we guess?) spills on her mom’s face, clearly, overlaying the ground with mom-flavored goo. Afterward, it’s the ginger’s flip to creep others out within the morgue as she and the movie’s protagonists run and gun whereas dodging zombies… solely to see her dispatched with a wonderful shot to the face that blows half her head off. In a film crammed with undead corpses, bloody squibs, spiders consuming a person for dinner, and extra, this, my mates, is the cash shot. (Rob Hunter)

3. Peeling again the layers – The Post-mortem of Jane Doe (2016)

Autopsy Of Jane Doe Morgue

Should you’re a fan of horror film morgues (you’re in good firm), you doubtlessly noticed this listing entry coming a mile away. Pat your self on the again, however be aware of the formaldehyde. It tends to stain. Whereas this under-sung gem of the mid-2010s is, admittedly, all morgue scene on a regular basis, one second is very etched into our minds, so to talk.

As our father-son mortician duo progress with their post-mortem, issues get much more complicated after they begin to (actually) peel again the layers. To their horror, they discover the underside of the deceased’s flesh is riddled with arcane symbols; esoteric spells that match the tooth-wrapped fabric they discovered moments in the past in her abdomen. How is that this attainable when she exhibits no exterior trauma? Who put the sigils there? And what on god’s inexperienced earth are they for? Why the boys didn’t instantly ship for a priest at this level is past me. Then once more, you attempt to inform Brian Cox that he’s in over his head. (Meg Shields)

2. Ice to fulfill you! – Jason X (2001)

Jason X Morgue

A professor and his college students discover the frozen physique of Jason Voorhees (Kane Hodder) on a area journey to Earth. They take the Jason-sicle again to their spaceship with plans to dissect and examine his physique as a result of he’s positively lifeless. After poking round his eyes and pulling off his masks, intern Adrienne (Kristi Angus) correctly turns her again on the rotting corpse to run some assessments. To the shock of everybody, Jason awakens and shortly remembers what it’s wish to trip a motorcycle. He grabs Adrienne by the hair and dunks her face into liquid nitrogen. Our hockey-loving killer then proceeds to smash her frozen face into one million bloody items, delivering one of many franchise’s best kills. The true kicker although? Jason ends the scene by buying an area machete. Cinema. (Chris Coffel)

1. Everybody and their intestines getting reanimated – Re-Animator (1985)

Re Animator Morgue

On the one hand, Re-Animator is actually spoiled for alternative so far as nice morgue scenes go. Then again, Stuart Gordon’s magnum opus actually ends with some of the bombastically bloody finales to grace a horror movie. So the selection was a little bit of a no brainer. Or wait, that’s Dean Halsey’s job, isn’t it?

Anyway: Till its last moments, our two heroes have been kind of considered about when to make use of their “brings the lifeless again to life, however unsuitable” serum. However when the intestines lastly hit the fan, so to talk, it’s an all-syringes-on-deck state of affairs. Whereas the nefarious pervert professor unleashes his hypnotized undead military (he has a quasi-magical potential that acquired misplaced within the edit, don’t fear about it), our heroes do every little thing they’ll to make the chaotic tide flip of their favor. By which I imply Herbert West (Jeffrey Combs) yells “overdose” and shoves two fistfuls of syringes into an already re-animated torso. The outcome, for these of you questioning, is pissed-off organs. Magnifico. (Meg Shields)

Hopefully, that listing despatched shivers down your backbone (don’t thoughts the embalming fluid — that’s regular). However earlier than you climb into the closest physique bag, take a look at the remainder of our 31 Days of Horror Lists!

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Based mostly within the Pacific North West, Meg enjoys lengthy scrambles on cliff faces and cozying up with an excellent piece of Sixties eurotrash. As a senior contributor at FSR, Meg’s goal is to unfold the great phrase about the perfect of sleaze, style, and sensible results.

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