5 Terrifying Real Life Scenarios In Movies


5 Terrifying Real-Life Film Scenarios (That Aren’t Horror)

Horror movies terrorize viewers with tales of ghosts, monsters, and sometimes a goblin or two, but films don’t necessarily have to have one of those elements in order to be scary. Throughout history, there have been plenty of examples of filmmakers using real-life fears to create premises in a movie that are as frightening as your average paranormal pest. Here are Screen Rant’s 5 Terrifying Real-Life Film Scenarios (That Aren’t Horror).

Apollo 13

Many kids dream of becoming an astronaut one day, but one viewing of Apollo 13 might be all its takes to turn those dreams into nightmares. The film is based on the true story of the NASA’s Apollo 13 mission. It depicts the darker side of the profession, as three astronauts are left floating in space in a broken module. Among the many obstacles they face are freezing temperatures, rising carbon dioxide levels, and malfunctioning systems – all of which could prove fatal. Even though NASA is aware of the situation, that doesn’t exactly make it bearable, since the worst could happen at any given moment. Jim Lovell and his crew displayed true bravery and courage by never folding under the immense pressure and finding a way to return home safely. Meanwhile, we were happy to be on solid ground.

127 Hours

Before setting off on a weekend excursion to the mountain, Aron Ralston doesn’t bother to tell anyone where he’s heading. That lapse in judgment comes back to haunt him. Ralston has an accident and gets his arm trapped under a boulder for a period of 5 days. Director Danny Boyle’s shot selection is unnerving because it illustrates Ralston’s loneliness as he endures a slow march, seemingly to his death.

The video messages he records for his loved ones are especially gut wrenching, and the infamous “cutting off the arm” sequence is a gruesome scene to watch. Seeing this movie may encourage you to become a homebody – and who could blame you…

Cast Away

We’ve all fantasized about having our own desert island, but Chuck Noland would recommend you to rethink that. After surviving a plane crash (which is scary enough), he spends four years on an isolated piece of land with almost no hope of reaching the outside world. Despite the company of his faithful companion Wilson, Chuck is very much alone (a concept that taps into one of our basic emotional fears). He deals with scorching heat, fierce rainstorms, and unbearable hunger; he’s even driven to attempt suicide. As fascinating as it is to watch Tom Hanks work his magic, there’s no denying that this is one horrifying experience for anyone to consider.

The Grey

Forget the marketing lie that promised us Liam Neeson vs. wolves. The Grey is still a solid work of horror. First and foremost it’s a “man vs. nature” piece, since the greatest enemy Ottway and his crew must face are freezing temperatures in the harsh Alaskan wilderness. That’s not to say that territorial wolves are easy to deal with. They presented their own challenges as the group struggled to survive, trying to hunt them down whenever they got a chance. Director Joe Carnahan gave audiences some really tense and nail-biting sequences that illustrated the relentlessness of the environment and how there was so little humans could do against it.


The greatest fear of any parent is having their child mysteriously go missing, so Prisoners is nightmare fuel for anyone with a kid. The film is so effective because even those without any offspring can instantly feel sympathetic for the characters. As Keller Dover, Hugh Jackman portrayed a man consumed by helplessness and grief. He’s driven to the point of insanity struggling to find information about where his daughter went off to. For anyone trying to see themselves in the protagonist, Prisoners asks a horrifying version of the question “what would you do?” and forces us to consider some shocking answers.