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Dread X: THE PRODIGY’s Nicholas McCarthy’s 10 Creepy Horror Kids

TheProdigy Poster2 203x300 - Dread X: THE PRODIGY's Nicholas McCarthy's 10 Creepy Horror Kids

Hitting theaters today is Orion Pictures’ The Prodigy, which follows a family that becomes convinced that their child is possessed by a supernatural force. And to celebrate the release, we managed to corral director Nicholas McCarthy into telling us his Top 10 creepiest kids in horror! It’s a pretty damn solid list that features some of the most iconic titles that we’ve all come to know and love but still manages to inject a few films that may have slipped past your radar. You can see the full list below!

Sarah is a mother whose young son Miles’ disturbing behavior signals that an evil, possibly supernatural force has overtaken him. Fearing for her family’s safety, Sarah must grapple with her maternal instinct to love and protect Miles in favor of investigating what – or who – is causing his dark turn. She is forced to look for answers in the past, taking the audience on a wild ride; one where the line between perception and reality remains blurry.

Written by Jeff Buhler and directed by Nicholas McCarthy, The Prodigy stars Taylor Schilling, Jackson Robert Scott, Peter Mooney, and Colm Feore.

The Village of the Damned kids

The design of the blonde wigs, the glowing eyes, the way they were directed to move in unison, the little British school kid outfits – just amazing. And the movie is one of the all time great sci-fi/horror films.

Samara from The Ring

Samara rules, just simplicity personified in a horror character design. Anyone who has a daughter knows that at some point she will brush her hair in front of her face and scare the shit out of you.

The brood in The Brood

Those snowsuits, half-formed faces, penchant for beating adults to death – just surreal and upsetting. My favorite Cronenberg movie next to Videodrome and one that brought me to tears after I had kids of my own.

Melissa Graps in Kill, Baby, Kill

One of two unforgettable horror kids on my list from master director Mario Bava, and I’m excluding a number of others he conjured up. Melissa Graps’ appearances in Kill, Baby, Kill are some of the coolest set pieces in Italian horror and it was a revelation to learn that Bava cast a little boy in drag for this part.

Marco from Shock

I paid homage to this movie in The Prodigy by stealing one of Bava’s great scares. Little Marco in this movie has a number of unsettling scenes, in particular some fun and games with Daria Nicolodi on their lawn in a truly disturbing moment.



The Who Can Kill a Child? kids

One of the towering achievements of Spanish horror, like an overpowering siege version of Village of the Damned. The sun-baked kids who inhabit this island all seem to have fascinatingly blank stares, and are carefully directed and blocked so that you never are sure what they are up to until it’s too late.

The Children kids

This 1980 horror movie is a wild, unpredictable, regionally-made head spinner with an identical score to Friday the 13th. The small group of kids who attack are clearly amateur actors and it adds to the surrealism. A favorite.

Nicoletta Elmi in Deep Red

There is a lot that’s unforgettable in Dario Argento’s other masterpiece besides Suspiria; the appearance of the striking red haired child actress Nicoletta Elmi torturing a lizard is one of those moments that leaves it’s mark on you. She was also great in The Cursed Medallion which I’m a fan of.

Ralphie Glick in Salem’s Lot

Next to Texas Chainsaw, this TV miniseries is my favorite Tobe Hooper movie and the scene when Ralphie floats outside his brother’s window is one of my favorite scenes in all of horror.

The “It’s A Good Life” episode of The Twilight Zone

It’s not a movie, but this episode of The Twilight Zone is one of the greatest and most upsetting pieces of horror ever to appear on TV. The six-year-old menace is truly an original concoction and the directing of actors is fantastic – everything is sold by just how scared everyone is of little Anthony. A masterclass.

Written by Jonathan Barkan

Lifelong horror fan with a love of music on the side.

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