Top 9 Timeless Period Piece Horror Films - Dread Central
Connect with us


Top 9 Timeless Period Piece Horror Films



The Witch

Fear is timeless. From even before we had words to describe it, man has huddled around the warm fires of our protective hovels and made monsters of the noises in the dark. For all the romanticization of frilly skirts and haughty language, people hundreds of years ago were just as afraid of the creeping terrors that lurk beyond the candlelight. Probably more so, since that rustle in the leaves could likely be a hungry pack of wolves, and good luck fighting that off with a flintlock pistol and candlelight.

Unfortunately, good period piece horror is hard to come by. It seems most people would rather watch a Mr. Darcy-type woo an Elizabeth Bennet-type over the course of a hundred misunderstandings and flowery speeches. Bleh. The fools. So, when a good horror period piece comes around to show us that the past isn’t all funny clothes and fainting over social faux pas, it’s worth celebrating.

I first saw the trailer for The Witch as a preview before the recent film adaptation of Macbeth. I saw it with a bunch of people that were super excited for Macbeth, so I was the only horror fan in the group. After the trailer, there was a tangible tense energy among my friends. The Witch looks dark, unique, and terrifying. A good period piece’s terror should both reflect the time it takes place in and be enhanced by it. The struggle of a small frontier farm mixed against the terror of an untamed forest makes The Witch a chilling snapshot of 1600’s dogmatic fear. On the border between Puritanism and Paganism, reality and superstition blend.

So to honor this release, here are 9 other Timeless Period Piece Horror Films:

9) Sauna (2008):

In 1595 and the wake of the Russo-Swedish War, two brothers are on an expedition to mark the new border between the two countries. Amidst the muddy swamp and barren trees, they come across a meager village with a mysterious sauna. Haunted by past misdeeds, the line between reality and fiction is blurred as their souls are tested.


Yes, that kind of sauna. I doubt anyone watching this film would know beforehand that A) saunas are actually hundreds of years old and B) they have ancient, spiritual traditions. With medieval Finland as the backdrop, the story of Sauna is as much about change as it is atonement. Shifting borders, beliefs, and even Eerik’s failing eyesight paint a picture of a world that is changing too fast. The friction between past and present is made tangible by the spirits of the sauna, reminding us that guilt remains even after the past has been buried.

8) The Burrowers (2008):

As if the Old West frontier wasn’t troubling enough, what with all the pillaging natives, rapey cavalrymen, bandits, dehydration, and rattlesnakes. Now, terrifying nocturnal monsters with a taste for human flesh want to bury you alive and turn you into soup. Just great. Set in 1879, a motley crew consisting of an Irishman, former slave, young teenager, and pair of Indian fighters (as in people that fight Native Americans, not Native American warriors) set off to uncover the truth behind the disappearance of a frontier family. They soon find out that it wasn’t the Sioux but rather the previously mentioned monsters called “Burrowers.”

Only the dwindling Native American tribe of the Ute know how to successfully fight the monsters. The Burrowers uses the racial tensions and environmental destruction of the time to deliver a dark message of cooperation and understanding. It isn’t a “hold hands and sing a song” story, opting instead for a “unite or die” message. Hell, the Burrowers wouldn’t even be eating us if we didn’t kill all the buffalo! It’s a classic tale of mankind destroying itself with greed but with badass monsters.

7) Crimson Peak (2015):

If I’ve learned anything from movies over the years, it’s “don’t kill a wronged Victorian woman in a mansion.” Do you want vengeful ghosts? Because that’s how you get vengeful ghosts.

Crimson Peak

Crimson Peak is a stunning and macabre look at the turn of the 20th century. The dilapidated Allerdale Hall is a vision of faded glory, rotting away in equal measures with the family’s standing. With industrialization on the rise, self-made men are replacing the nobility at the top of the food chain. The declining Sharpe family must parasitize the successful Cushings just to maintain a little while longer. This temporary act of selfish preservation gives rise to eternally tortured (and gorgeously designed) spirits. Even if you don’t care for the love story, this rendition of the industrialization meta narrative regarding the shifting hierarchy is a visual masterpiece.



Pages: 1 2 3

Continue Reading


Someone Figured Out How Many Miles the It Follows Creature Walked



It Follows

For the most part, the horror community adores David Robert Mitchell’s 2014 It Follows. In my opinion, it’s a magnificent film, one that brilliantly utilizes tension and paranoia to an extent that few other films can even hope to achieve. Telling the story of a young woman who, after a sexual encounter, is pursued by a strange supernatural force that will kill her if it reaches her. Never stopping its pursuit, it walks relentlessly towards wherever she goes, never stopping, never resting, and always following.

During the course of the film, which is set in Michigan, Jay and her friends go across the state in an effort to protect her from this strange entity. But just how far do they, and “it”, actually go in that time? Reddit user LundgrensFrontKick has put together an interesting hypothesis that aims to answer that very question. Using the film’s information, it seems that the creature, “…walked 1,017 miles while hunting Jay.” How was this number reached? Let’s give the floor over to LundgrensFrontKick.

In an effort to track the movements of the monster I searched for all the filming locations and have come up with an estimated travel total that I’m quite pleased with. Director David Robert Mitchell didn’t make it easy because there are moments during the film in which you have no idea where Jay was going or why it took about 14-hours to make a five-hour drive up North (I’m guessing sleep). However, after getting a feel for the locations and timeframe I know how far the creature traveled because the layout of the locations fit its movements.

Here are some assumptions and timeframes I’ve come up with.

1) The creature moves at a 20-minutes per mile pace and is always moving. Thus, the total for any 24 hour period is 72 miles.

2) Jay first becomes cursed around 9:00PM at night while at the abandoned Northville Psychiatric Hospital. This is when I’ve started clocking the miles of the monster

3) The film takes place over the course of 15 days. This may seem like a long time frame but the trip that our heroes take to a northern beach house in Whitefish Point in northern Michigan covers 10 of those days. I chose Whitefish Point because it is on the furthest tip of Michigan and the mileage works out almost perfectly when taking the speed of the monster into account. Also, the gang started their trip around 9:00PM and drove through the night and arrived at the beach house around 12:00PM. The total trip was around 15 hours so I’m assuming they slept, got supplies and had a long breakfast to cover the 15 hours. The total mileage is 702 miles (9.75 days walking).

4) I’m assuming that the creature always reroutes itself and follows the quickest route when its prey changes locations. Since it can’t just walk through homes I think it uses surface roads, alleys, and areas that aren’t fenced off to get to its prey.

5) The director David Robert Mitchell uses Detroit as a character so I’m going to use the filming locations as the actual locations in the story. The neat thing is they actually work really well in regards to the creature’s movements.

Below is a breakdown of the days and locations I know Jay visited. I could’ve easily just added up the hours and miles walked and called it a day, but I wanted to give you a feel for the creatures travels and show you the above assumptions make sense.

Sidenote: There is a 0% chance of actually knowing how far the creature followed Jay. However, since you won’t get an exact answer I wanted to make sure the timeline and math were correct to give you the best representation of the following.

Day One 9:00PM – 12:00AM – Jay becomes infected with the horrible curse at the abandoned Northville Psychiatric Hospital and is driven back to her house and eventually to the local hospital.

Day Two – Jay leaves the Hospital and goes home to get ready for school. She heads to the University of Detroit around 9:30AM where she first sees the creature. The timeframe works because it had about 12 hours to pinball around and make it to the school. During this time Jay covered 63 miles. However, since the creature didn’t have to walk those 63 miles due to its course correction, it makes sense that 12 hours would only be needed because the creature started towards the house/hospital and was able to course correct to the university which is only 17 miles away from the abandoned building. After Jay runs away from the creature she goes to Clark’s Ice Cream and Yogurt then drives around for a while and goes home.

Day Three – Jay is still awake late at night (for good reason) when a window is smashed in and the creature comes after her. She runs to a park and meets up with the rest of the gang. From there they drive to an abandoned house, Clawson High School, Jeff’s home in Troy and eventually head to Jay’s house to pick up supplies and clothes. The gang then starts driving overnight to Whitefish Point. The creature is pinballing all day over Detroit and surrounding areas and because of this it never catches up to Jay (must be annoying).

Day Four – The crew posts up at a sweet Beach house.

Day Five – Beach

Day Six – Beach

Day Seven – Beach

Day Eight – Beach

Day Nine – Beach – The creature finally gets to the beach after a 352-mile walk and it gets its hands on Jay. However, Jay escapes and the creature has to walk all the way back to Detroit.

Day Ten – Hospital – She passes the curse over to Greg

Day Eleven – Hospital

Day Twelve– Hospital

Day Thirteen – Hospital – We know she has been in the hospital for three days because Greg mentions that “it’s been three days and there is nothing following me.”

Day Fourteen – Jay finally goes home and watches Greg get killed by the creature. She drives away and spends the night in some woods.

Day Fifteen – Jay wakes up and walks toward a boat with some dudes in it. She then drives home and concocts a plan with her friends to kill the creature at a swimming pool that night around 11:45PM (the exterior for the pool is a different location than the interior. I’m sticking with the exterior location). I don’t want to spoil the rest because I’m not a jerk and there is some ambiguity.

The creature walked 1,017 miles while hunting Jay. I think this is a solid guess and the timeframe works if the following monster moves at the assumed pace. I think this total makes it more frightening because the dang thing never stops and is always moving towards you at a leisurely pace in hopes of bending you up like a pretzel.

72 x 14 = 1,008 (14 full days). 3 x 3 = 9 (first day 9:00PM – 12:00AM). 1,008 + 9 = 1,017.

WHEW! That’s one helluva project to take on and I’m impressed by the amount of work put into it! Whether or not it’s accurate, I think we can all agree that LundgrensFrontKick definitely put a lot of care and thought into this riddle.

What other random questions like this have you always had about other horror movies? Let us know in the comments!


Continue Reading


Contest: Find Bigfoot With a Primal Rage Double-Sided Mini-Poster!



On February 27th, Fathom Events will be hosting a one-night theater event for Primal Rage, the Bigfoot horror film based on Native American mythology! Tickets for the event are already on sale through Fathom and we’re here to spice up the screening a little more by offering five lucky readers the chance to win a double-sided mini-poster! The back side includes behind-the-scenes images.

To enter, all you have to do is fill out the form below! If you want to see what the poster looks like, here are some images:

Lost deep in the forest of the Pacific Northwest, Ashley and Max Carr are stalked by a terrifying creature that might be Bigfoot. Soon they find themselves embroiled in a strange land of Native American myth and legend turned real. Hopelessly trying to survive, with a handful of unsavory locals, they must fight back against this monster in a desperate battle of life or death.

Directed by Patrick Magee, who co-wrote the film with Jay Lee, Primal Rage stars Andrew Joseph Montgomery, Casey Gagliardi, Eloy Casados, Justin Rain and Marshal Hilton.


Continue Reading


All The Creatures Were Stirring Poster Will Make Fear Decorating Your Christmas Tree



Later this year, the holidays will run red when FallBack Plan Productions and Evil Squared’s Christmas horror film All The Creatures Were Stirring is released! In anticipation of the feature, a poster illustrated by Devon Whitehead has made its way online and you can see it in all its glory by giving it a cheeky little click!

When an awkward date on Christmas Eve leads a couple into a strange theater, they’re treated to a bizarre and frightening collection of Christmas stories, featuring a wide ensemble of characters doing their best to avoid the horrors of the holidays. From boring office parties and last-minute shopping, to vengeful stalkers and immortal demons, there’s plenty out there to fear this holiday season.

Written and directed by Rebekah and David Ian McKendry, All The Creatures Were Stirring stars Constance Wu, Jonathan Kite, Jocelin Donahue, Graham Skipper, Mark Kelly, Megan Duffy, Ashley Clements, Morgan Peter Brown, Matt Long, Stephanie Drake, Catherine Parker and Amanda Fuller.

All The Creatures Were Stirring has a planned release date of late 2018.


Continue Reading

Go Ad Free!

Support Dread Central on Patreon!

Recent Comments


Join the Box of Dread Mailing List

* indicates required


Copyright © 2017 Dread Central Media LLC