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As Above, So Below (2014) | Universal

The Devil’s Doorknob: 10 Horror Movies That Take You to the Gates of Hell

Delve into the terrifying world of horror cinema with our guide to 10 horror movies about the ‘Gates of Hell’, offering a chilling journey to the other side.

Horror movies have a long-standing fascination with the concept of the ‘Gates of Hell’—portals to the underworld that unleash unspeakable horrors upon the world. This theme taps into deep-seated fears and religious beliefs about hell and the afterlife, making it a rich source of terror for filmmakers and audiences alike. From classic films of the 70s and 80s to modern cinematic offerings, the ‘Gates of Hell’ remain a horrifyingly enticing subject for horror enthusiasts. Here, we explore 10 horror movies that delve into this dark theme, each bringing its unique interpretation and contributing to the genre’s evolution.

The Concept of the Gates of Hell

The ‘Gates of Hell’ are often depicted as physical or supernatural portals through which demonic entities and the torments of hell can enter our world. Rooted in various religious and mythological traditions, these gates are both a metaphor for ultimate evil and a literal place of transition between realms. Horror movies exploit this concept to create narratives filled with suspense, dread, and the anticipation of the unknown.



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Universal Pictures

1. The Sentinel (1977)

The Sentinel stands out as a classic in horror cinema, where a young model moves into a Brooklyn apartment, only to find herself in a battle for her soul. The building’s dark history as a gateway to hell brings forth a tale of terror, sin, and redemption that is as unsettling today as it was at its release.


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Entertainment Film Distributors

2. Hellraiser (1987)

Clive Barker’s Hellraiser is synonymous with the ‘Gates of Hell’, introducing audiences to the Cenobites, led by the iconic Pinhead. The opening of a mysterious puzzle box serves as a gate to another dimension, blending pain and pleasure into a terrifying narrative that has captivated audiences for decades.


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Medusa Distribuzione

3. The Beyond (1981)

Lucio Fulci’s The Beyond is a masterpiece of Italian horror, set in a cursed hotel that stands upon one of the seven gates of hell. The film’s eerie atmosphere, combined with its graphic depiction of the undead and supernatural, cements its place as a cult classic.


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Paramount

4. Event Horizon (1997)

Event Horizon merges the ‘Gates of Hell’ theme with science fiction, presenting a spaceship that inadvertently crosses dimensions, touching upon the realms of hell. The film explores the psychological and physical torment of its crew, trapped in a nightmare of their own making.


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prince of darkness 1987
Universal

5. Prince of Darkness (1987)

John Carpenter’s Prince of Darkness combines science and religion in a chilling story about a group of scientists and religious scholars facing an ancient evil. The film explores the concept of a liquid portal to hell, offering a unique take on the gates of hell trope.


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