10 of the Greatest Horror Movie Chase Scenes

In no particular order.

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Movie: I Know What You Did Last Summer (1997)

The Scene: The chase scene between Ben Willis and Helen– starting when Helen escapes from the police car after the officer is hooked and killed. She runs to her sister’s store where she at the last second is let in. Helen then plays a game of cat and mouse inside the store when she makes it to the top story. She then jumps out of a third story window into a dumpster below. Helen could hear the nearby crowd and almost makes it to safety when at the last second she is killed by Ben.

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Movie: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)

The Scene: I am actually just going to say the last twenty minutes or so are the best and scariest. It pretty much starts after Erin escapes from Leatherface’s basement lair. When she runs and makes it to the abandoned house where Morgan meets his untimely death. Erin then makes it to the slaughterhouse where there are a bunch of tension filled scenes packed in. She successfully defeats Leatherface by chopping off his arm.

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Movie: The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

The Scene: Sally and Franklin are chased in the darkness of the night by Leatherface. Franklin is killed and Sally flees to a nearby house where she discovers a dead elderly couple. Leatherface makes his way inside and Sally runs upstairs where she jumps out of a second story window. Sally makes her way to a gas station, only to find herself in more trouble than any safety.

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Movie: Urban Legend (1998)

The Scene: Sasha is working solo DJing on the campus radio station when she realizes she’s not really alone. The killer chases her throughout the darkened campus building. At one point, she falls off a stairway making it more difficult for her to run. Sasha makes it back to her DJing room when the killer corners her. To make it all the more frightening, the entire chase was airing live on the radio for all her friends to hear.

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Movie: Halloween (2007)

The Scene: Laurie finds her friend Annie stabbed multiple times by Michael, and notices he’s still in the house. Laurie breaks open the back door and runs back to the kids she was babysitting. She screams in the middle of the street yet no one seems to hear her. Finally, the kids let her in only to be taken by Michael a few minutes later. Michael carries her to his old abandoned house where she awakes and is chased throughout it. Dr. Loomis intervenes only to have his plan backfire when Michael once again takes Laurie. She tries to hide in the attic but it collapses, Michael then charges her and they fall out of the second story window.

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Movie: The Shining (1980)

The Scene: Danny is chased by his crazy dad Jack through the giant maze outside the hotel. Danny realizes that his footprints are leading his dad to him, so he begins to erase them in an effort to trick his dad. It seemingly works, and Danny remembers how to escape the maze and finds his way back to his mom. Jack however is not so lucky, and freezes to death being lost in the maze.

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Movie: Halloween 4: The Return of Michael Myers

The Scene: Jamie and Rachel are chased onto the rooftop by Michael. Rachel lets Jamie go down the side of the house first in an effort to save her. Rachel is tossed down the roof and hangs on to for dear life by gripping onto the gutter. Michael tries to stab her fingers and Rachel lets go falling to the ground where she is knocked unconscious. 

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MovieHalloween (1978)

The Scene: After finding her friends dead Laurie runs back to Tommy’s house with Michael not far behind. She knocks and pleeds at the locked door for Tommy to let her inside. Tommy takes his sweet time when finally Laurie is let in. Safety however it shortlived for Laurie as Michael finds a way inside via a window. Laurie hides in the darkened living room and stabs Michael with a needle. Laurie makes her ways upstairs and hides in a closet only to have Michael find her.

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Movie: I Still Know What You Did Last Summer (1998)

The Scene: Karla is targeted by Ben Willis and runs to a dead end where she has to jump onto a glass ceiling of the hotel’s greenhouse. Ben follows her, taunting her making the glass start to crack. The glass suddenly breaks and Karla finds herself injured on the ground below. Karla quickly gets up and goes to the door to find it locked on the other side. Julie and Nancy try to break the lock with an axe but seemingly fails. Instead, Julie breaks the door’s window and Karla barely makes it through.

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Movie: Friday the 13th Part 2 (1981)

The Scene: Ginny is chased throughout the camp by Jason who is never that far behind. She tries to get a car to start but of course, it fails. Ginny makes her way to what appears to be Jason’s shack where she finds his mother’s mummified head. Ginny also discovers her friends dead bodies. In an effort to defeat and trick Jason, she puts on his mother’s sweater and it momentarily works.

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2 Comments on this post.

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  • Evan A. Baker
    23 November 2014 at 4:55 pm - Reply

    Some very good picks here! Can’t imagine anyone arguing about the original TCM or Halloween; those are definitive classics. Totally on board with F13 part 2, as well; that’s my favorite movie in the series, and has a real sense of tension throughout. I Know What You Did Last Summer isn’t a movie I find holds up very well in general, but that chase scene is definitely a highlight. And before I read the article, I was thinking, “If she didn’t mention Halloween 4, I’m totally gonna bring it up in the comments.”

    For favorites of mine that didn’t make your list, I’d include:

    Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956) – Basically, everything from the moment Miles and Becky get away from the transformed Jack and Dr. Kauffman until the ending is one long, suspenseful thrill-ride.

    Night of the Living Dead (1968) – Barbara’s escape from the Cemetery Zombie is just about perfect. Following the atmospheric, character-building intro with Barbara dn Johnny, the explosion of action really establishes the movie’s fast-slow-fast rhythm, and the compositions and cutting are utterly inspired.

    Baron Blood (1972) – The Baron pursuing Eva through the streets at night. Bava lifted the basic look and pace of the infamous chase scene from House of Was (1953), but applied his more masterful sense of lighting and composition to create a work of almost transcendental beauty.

  • Josh Millican
    24 November 2014 at 6:41 pm - Reply

    The chase at the end of the first Wolf Creek film is pretty epic.

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