Top 10 Films With Creepy Links To The Occult

A lax and rarely marvellous clarification of a mystic has been a partial of cinema given a inception. For a many part, a fear film genre has been a occult’s unaccepted home, with demon worshipers, non-believer cults, and a like populating cinema such as The Wicker Man, The Blood on Satan’s Claw, and others. Occult-themed cinema unequivocally exploded in recognition during a 1960s and 1970s, when a hippie counterculture’s cheating with Eastern suspicion and New Age practices was incited into something many darker. (The Manson family murders also helped to widespread a suspicion that “peace and love” was usually a front for hippie malevolence.)

While some of a entries here come from that time period, many are many comparison and date to a epoch of wordless films. Some of these cinema are related to a mystic by delegate and even tertiary threads. While some were created by writers looking to disturb audiences with irreverent tales, others were penned by vicious practitioners of a occult.



While infrequently erroneously called a initial vampire film or a initial instrumentation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula (a mislaid Hungarian film from 1921 called Dracula’s Death might be a loyal initial in both categories), Nosferatu is though a masterpiece. Directed by F.W. Murnau, Nosferatu is an Expressionist take on fear that tells a story in shade and chiaroscuro. As an unapproved instrumentation of Dracula, Nosferatu radically tells a same story of a Transylvanian vampire withdrawal his home and entrance to Western Europe as a amicable plague. However, in Nosferatu, a illusory German city of Wisborg replaces London, while a time duration is altered from a 1880s to a 1830s. Also, Nosferatu transforms Count Dracula’s incongruous disease into a verbatim one that decimates an whole city. The characters in Nosferatu have somewhat altered names such as Tomas Hutter instead of Jonathan Harker and Ellen Hutter instead of Mina Harker. Finally, distinct a sexy nobleman of Dracula, a vampire in Nosferatu, Count Orlok, is a rodent-faced demon that is many closer to folkloric depictions of a undead.

Because a film was done though a accede of Florence Stoker, Bram Stoker’s widow and a controller of his estate, a film was suspended until it slipped into a open domain decades later. This slip roughly killed any event to not usually see maybe a world’s biggest vampire film, though also inspect writer Albin Grau’s preference to impregnate a film with mystic symbolism. Grau, who has been described as a “lifelong occultist,” came on a suspicion of creation a vampire film after being unprotected to Serbian vampire legends while apportionment in a Balkans during World War I. Later, while behaving as a film’s writer and art designer, Grau motionless to put occult-inspired hieroglyphics into a letters mailed between Count Orlok and a Renfield-like Knock. Overall, Grau and associate writer Enrico Dieckman envisioned Nosferatu as a theosophic fear film that would incorporate Eastern mysticism into a altogether tale.

9The Cabinet Of Dr. Caligari


Released years before Nosferatu, Robert Wiene’s The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari was a initial fear film to categorically incorporate elements of Expressionism into a mise-en-scene. A psychoanalytic scrutiny of stupidity and obsession, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari concerns a immature tyro named Francis (played by Friedrich Feher) who falls chase to a machinations of a immorality playground performer and mesmerist Dr. Caligari (played by Werner Krauss). In particular, Dr. Caligari uses his sideshow attraction, a walking somnambulist named Cesare (played by Conrad Veidt), to mistreat those whom Francis loves a most. Ultimately, a whole knowledge turns Francis insane, during that indicate a assembly realizes that a whole story has been an elaborate reason for because a committed Francis detests his sanitarium’s executive (who happens to demeanour like Dr. Caligari).

Famously deliberate an story about Weimar Germany’s enterprise for a domestic strongman, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari was dictated to be a critique of authority. Specifically, screenwriter Carl Mayer (who, along with essay partner Hans Janowitz, had incited to pacifism after apportionment in World War I) was desirous to harmonise a story after traffic with a weird and violent army psychologist. The birth of Janowitz’s grant to The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari stemmed from his firsthand knowledge of saying a sex murder in Hamburg. As for a film’s tie to a occult, not usually does The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari try to visually paint psychosis by warped and abnormal theatre sets, though it also deals with a probability of intelligent suggestion, differently famous as mind control.



Subtitled “Tale of a Vampire,” 1920’s Genuine was also destined by Robert Wiene. A little-known and really foolish film, Genuine is some-more or reduction a continual dream method about one artist’s diseased mania with a portrayal that facilities a enchantress named Genuine. Like The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Genuine creates good use out of a embellished sets constructed by a Expressionist artist Cesar Klein. Narratively speaking, a priestess Genuine is decorated as smooth in Eastern sorcery and a ways of a occult.

A weird small film, Genuine was a wave during a day and has not perceived vicious reappraisal since. That being said, Genuine offers a glance not usually of a high grade of change Freudian psychoanalysis had over German filmmaking during a early 1920s, though also during how severely Weimar filmmakers complicated mystic practices. Wiene, along with directors Murnau and Paul Wegener, injected such things as theosophy, Kabbalah, and a aestheticism of mystic practitioners such as Paul Klee, Max Ernst, and others into their early fear films.



Although filmed as a documentary, Danish executive Benjamin Christensen’s 1922 film Haxan is widely deliberate one of a fear genre’s biggest and maybe many unfortunate films. Christensen was desirous to make a film examining sorcery after study a Malleus Maleficarum, a barbarous 15th-century wizard sport beam created by dual German Catholic monks. As a result, Haxan is full of intolerable images that exaggerate such things as Walpurgis Night celebrations and Gothic black magic. Indeed, a vital apportionment of a film’s initial half is dedicated to behaving scenes of profanity and demon worship.

Despite a sensationalism, Haxan eventually argues that a anti-witch violence of a Middle Ages and a Early Modern duration was a outcome of misjudging mental illnesses and mass hallucinations as wicked possessions. When a film was released, a judicious conclusions were ignored. Seen as a sardonic critique of Catholicism, some 8,000 Catholic women took to a streets of Paris in method to criticism a French premiere. In a United States, Haxan was criminialized outright.

6The Magician


Released in 1926, Rex Ingram’s The Magician, that stars a German actor and executive Paul Wegener as a sinful sorceress Oliver Haddo, is one of a mislaid classics of a wordless film era. Barring some alterations, Ingram’s screenplay is true to W. Somerset Maugham’s strange novel. Published in 1908, Maugham wrote The Magician as a asocial try to acquire a healthy payday. A potboiler about Haddo’s try to scapegoat a life of a pleasing Margaret in method to emanate unusual homunculi, The Magician was desirous by one of Maugham’s acquaintances in Paris—the English occultist Aleister Crowley. In fact, Crowley suspicion The Magician gimlet such a tighten similarity to his possess work that he publicly indicted Maugham of plagiarism.

In a film version, Wegener’s spin as Haddo is certainly menacing. Bolstering this opening is Ingram’s initial use of camera work. In particular, The Magician facilities a terrifying and innovative dream method that shows Haddo regulating black sorcery in method to emanate a horrible prophesy of a protocol dedicated to a Greek God Pan. Coincidentally, a widely reported story about Crowley claims that a occultist attempted to serve Pan during a protocol that took place in Paris someday during a early 20th century.



Rather than Dracula, Carl Theodor Dreyer’s 1932 film Vampyr is a lax instrumentation of another vampire classic—J. Sheridan Le Fanu’s romance Carmilla. Although expelled during a early days of sound, Vampyr is an roughly wordless film about a vampire-haunted encampment of Courtempierre. Allan Gray (played by a film’s financial devotee Nicolas de Gunzburg), a film’s protagonist, is a vicious tyro of a mystic who starts to remove his hold on reason once he enters Courtempierre. As a result, Vampyr mostly presents an strange account that drips with psychoanalysis, dream logic, and mystic symbolism.

The movement in Vampyr might take place in an choice dimension wherein Gray has already died and is left usually to observe a delayed decrease of Courtempierre’s residents. A some-more verbatim reading of film posits that Gray’s peculiar use are a outcome of a vampire’s abuse on a village, that is usually stopped once Gray and his adore seductiveness Gisele (played by Rena Mandel) expostulate an iron spike by a heart of a aged crone Marguerite Chopin (played by Henriette Gerard). In a final act, a span shun a encampment while a immorality encampment alloy (played by Maurice Schutz) incidentally kills himself inside an deserted mill.

According to Dreyer himself, his lifelong seductiveness in a abnormal began when, as a small boy, he review certain books concerning a mystic that he found in his grandmother’s library.

4Lucifer Rising


An initial brief film, Kenneth Anger’s Lucifer Rising was done as a arrange of paper to San Francisco’s counterculture of a late 1960s. The film is also a unusual musing on Anger’s hunt for a complicated Lucifer, a dispatcher of light who will chaperon in a new age of freedom. Anger’s prophesy of Lucifer was mostly desirous by a papers of Aleister Crowley, who believed that Lucifer would be a God of a entrance age of Horus. Anger’s other good change was Church of Satan owner Anton LaVey, who appears as a Devil in Anger’s other mystic ode, Invocation of My Demon Brother. Also in Invocation of My Demon Brother, that was done from footage taken from a strange cut of Lucifer Rising, is Bobby Beausoleil, a convicted killer and Manson Family associate. Beausoleil also available a soundtrack for Lucifer Rising. Another Lucifer Rising soundtrack was available by Led Zeppelin guitarist and Aleister Crowley fan Jimmy Page.

All told, Lucifer Rising, that stars British cocktail thespian Marianne Faithful as a demon Lilith, represents Anger’s particular take on a new sacrament of a counterculture.

3Simon, King Of The Witches


A aspect reading of Bruce Kessler’s 1971 film Simon, King of a Witches would call it a campy take on a many Satan-themed fear films that were afterwards impossibly popular. Featuring a story about a Los Angeles wizard who tries to abuse a “Establishment” by several Satanic rituals (most of that engage his sorcery mirror), Simon, King of a Witches does seem to have a tongue placed resolutely in cheek. In one scene, Simon and his associate Turk (played by George Paulsin) control a drug-fueled protocol involving a goat and Ultra Violet (one of Andy Warhol’s muses and a after modify to Mormonism).

However, many authors have forked out that Simon, King of a Witches displays laxity with tangible mystic practices. While a impression of Simon Sinestrari (played by Andrew Prine), a rite mage who lives in a charge drain, presents a hoax of a counterculture archetype, his far-out adventures might indeed be formed on a genuine life practices of California occultist Poke Runyon.

2The Holy Mountain


Like many of his other creations, Alejandro Jodorowsky’s The Holy Mountain is a mind-bending use in surrealism. Its treacherous account presents a reduction of Christian mysticism, mystic symbolism, and unusual stream-of-consciousness. The film also presents a portrayal of a Tarot deck, with characters representing such cards as a Thief, a Hermit, and a Devil. The film’s many famous character, a Alchemist (played by Jodorowsky himself), spends many of a film behaving several sorcery ceremonies, many of that are accompanied by exposed women, Tarot characters, and goats.

The Holy Mountain is distant from Jodorowsky’s usually incursion into a occult. His whole oeuvre mostly mixes mystic symbolism with stupidity and depictions of altered consciousness. Because of this, he has infrequently been described as a Gnostic filmmaker. Along with his 1970 film El Topo, The Holy Mountain has also been indicted of compelling a whims of a Illuminati by certain swindling theorists.



Fritz Lang’s 1927 film Metropolis is a manifest masterpiece about a unconventional city neatly divided by class. While a city’s abounding live aboveground in skyscrapers that mix complicated amenities with bucolic pleasure gardens, a workers live subterraneous in close vital quarters. Work in a city presents an impassioned chronicle of Taylorization, with all from basic tasks to walking atomized and choreographed. After descending in adore with a bad lady named Maria (played by Brigitte Helm), Freder (played by Gustav Frohlich), a abounding son of Metropolis’s designer, decides to follow her down into a appurtenance areas where a workers are employed in soul-crushing tasks. While posing as a worker, Freder use not usually how dehumanizing a city’s labor can be (in a famous scene, Freder replaces an tired workman and takes primer control of a vast clock), though he also witnesses a large-scale collision that kills and maims several workers. While witnessing this tragedy, Freder dreams that a bureau transforms into a church dedicated to a demon Moloch, a Phoenician, Canaanite, and/or Assyrian demon mentioned in a Old Testament in tie with a use of child sacrifice.

Realizing that his son is starting to sympathize with a city’s subjugated workforce, Joh Fredersen (played by Alfred Abel) contacts a insane contriver Rotwang. Rotwang creates a womanlike drudge in a picture of his mislaid love, Hel, in method to stir displeasure among a workers. In a stage where Hel is brought to life, several pentagrams are manifest in Rotwang’s laboratory. Apparently, Lang was meddlesome in a deeper scrutiny of record vs. magic, though cuts to Metropolis radically canceled this account stream.

After effectively instigating a teenager polite fight among a workers, Hel is brought behind above in method to perform a erotic dance for a celebration of Metropolis’s chosen men. In this sequence, Hel is categorically compared to a Whore of Babylon from Revelation. This is not a film’s usually anxiety to a Bible. The story of a Tower of Babylon is recounted and juxtaposed with a landscape of Metropolis, that was designed to demeanour like Gothic depictions of a legendary structure. Those assured that a film alludes to a Illuminati swindling mostly indicate to this mystic anxiety as proof.

Without question, Lang and wife/co-creator Thea von Harbou (who wrote a novel Metropolis and a screenplay adaptation) were meddlesome in mystic matters. Von Harbou’s after support for National Socialism might have been partially desirous by her seductiveness in Eastern mysticism and a occult.

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