Pregnancy is a fearful nine months for any expectant parents… and horror thriller fans! In the absorbing and intense new film Strange But True, Once Upon a Time… in Hollywood star Margaret Qualley plays a young woman, who, five years after the tragic death of her boyfriend, arrives on the doorstep of his family to tell them she is pregnant with his child. What follows is creepy, mysterious, and totally unexpected.
Here are nine more chilling tales of things that go bump in the womb…
Rosemary’s Baby (1968)
Finding out you are pregnant, and bringing a new life into the world, should be a moment for celebration – not so for Mia Farrow in this Oscar-winning horror classic, because she has inkling the father might be the Devil himself. The final scene, where Rosemary meets her baby for the first time, is absolutely shattering.
It’s Alive (1974)
Poor Lenore Davies. She has a troublesome pregnancy – with the baby kicking violently and making her sick – and then gives birth to a bouncing, baby… beast! In Larry Cohen’s cult Seventies chiller, the newborn massacres the medics in the delivery theatre then goes on the rampage across Los Angeles. While most toddlers are content to chew on a rubber dummy, this one prefers to nibble on human flesh.
In David Lynch’s masterpiece of surreal horror, Henry Spencer’s girlfriend gives birth to what can only be described as the oddest ‘baby’ ever seen on film, a bizarre looking creature that mewls and screams and drives Spencer mad. It is rumoured the mutant baby was made from an embalmed calf fetus, although Lynch has never confirmed this.
The Astronaut’s Wife (1999)
Charlize Theron is living the dream – married to a heroic, handsome astronaut, Johnny Depp, and expecting twins. The dream turns into a nightmare, when it becomes apparent her husband is not who he says he is. If, as she suspects, he is some kind of alien being, what will she be giving birth to?
Dawn of the Dead (2004)
If you’re eight months pregnant, it’s probably best to start taking things easy – no heavy lifting or strenuous excursions, and whatever you do, avoid getting bitten by a zombie. In the 2004 remake of the zombie film, Luda (played by Inna Korobkina) is attacked by an undead security guard at the mall, and infected after she gets scratched. She turns into a zombie and gives birthday to a baby only a mother could love.
You’ll need a strong stomach for this French shocker about a heavily pregnant woman being terrorised in her own home by a psychopathic Beatrice Dalle. It turns out Dalle wants the woman’s unborn child, and will do literally anything to get it. Expectant mothers should give this one a wide berth.
Devil’s Due (2014)
When a pair of newlyweds discover they are expecting their first child, they are ecstatic. But when the woman, a vegetarian, starts eating raw meat, has superhuman strength and moments of terrible rage – the husband starts to wonder what happened on that blackout night on the honeymoon neither of them can remember. Something to do with a spooky ritual…
The Gift (2015)
Simon (Jason Batemen) is surprised to become reacquainted with Gordo (Joel Edgerton), who he last saw in school. Gordo weedles his way into Simon’s life, generally making a nuisance of himself and creeping him out by leaving him presents. Things escalate when Gordon starts harassing, and ends up drugging, Simon’s wife (Rebecca Hall). When she becomes pregnant, Gordo starts to insinuate that he is responsible for the greatest gift of all.
Alice Lowe was pregnant herself when she starred in and directed this comedy horror, about an expectant mother who has cravings – to murder! She goes on a killing spree in revenge for her husband dying in a climbing accident, goaded on by her unborn child, who speaks to her from the womb, encouraging the bloodshed.
STRANGE BUT TRUE is released on digital on 27 September 2019 from Vertigo Releasing.