From road trips that go wrong to cars that are literally evil, there are many horror movies about vehicles, and Redditors are sharing the best ones.
Split image of the car in Christine and Venna and Lewis in Joy Ride
Cars are staples of the horror genre, as they suggest adventure, the ability to get out on the open road, and sometimes, the false promise of escape. There are several scary movies about characters having car trouble that leaves them in an isolated area and fighting for their lives, or perhaps the car itself is evil. The 2021 film Titane made an impression with a protagonist who becomes intimate with a car in one unforgettable scene.
From a film based on a Stephen King book that has become a classic to some 1970s flicks about cars gone wrong, Redditors are recommending their favorite car horror movies that are always entertaining.
Black Cadillac (2003)
One Redditor recommended “Black Cadillac” and Redditor gimmefuelgimmefire replied, “I thought the Cadillac itself and the snowy mountain road setting were great!”
The three main characters Robbie, CJ and Scott are trying to have a fun evening in Wisconsin in the wintertime. Instead of being stalked by a killer, they are followed by a 1957 Cadillac limo that wants them dead but first, really wants them to suffer. While this is definitely a campy plotline, it’s still unnerving enough to keep the interest of horror fans. The movie has an interesting conclusion and it’s structured as if the car is a person.
Joy Ride (2001)
Redditor marctheshark10 posted that they wanted horror movie recommendations “where the car breaks down in a remote place with psychos/killers. Or similar sort of movies about road trips gone wrong” and mentioned Joy Ride.
The film has one of the best 2000s horror movie premises, as brothers Fuller and Lewis Thomas head out to give Lewis’s love interest Venna Wilcox a ride. Instead of having fun and listening to music and joking around, they encounter a killer named Rusty Nail. This is a corny, fun horror movie that doesn’t offer up anything too different or creative but is still an entertaining time. The villain is also memorable.
When it comes to classic car horror movies, there’s one Stephen King adaptation that always comes up. Redditor gimmefuelgimmefire posted “I’ve seen Christine” and mentioned a few others that they enjoy watching.
John Carpenter directed Christine, which follows Arnie Cunningham as he buys a 1958 Plymouth Fury that turns out to be evil. The car experiences emotions like envy and wants Arnie all to themselves. While it sounds hard to be genuinely terrified by a film about a car, Christine does feel chilling and dangerous.
Tourist Trap (1979)
Redditor JaffaCakeLad said, “If you’re into really weird movies, Tourist Trap is definitely one-of-a-kind and fits what you’re looking for.” Mr. Slausen owns a store that is considered a perfect place for people driving by to stop and look around. Unfortunately for travelers, he’s a brutal killer.
Tourist Trap does follow the typical slasher movie formula with a twist ending, and it’s interesting watching the film and seeing if there will be a final girl or any survivors. Mr. Slausen is a powerful villain.
One Redditor suggested Breakdown, describing it as “A couple drives cross-country, their car breaksdown in a desolate region, a truck driver helps them and says he’ll take the women to the dinner in next town to call for help.”
It’s creepy watching Jeff Taylor hang out at a gas station with no idea where his wife Amy is, and the characters look out for each other and use their perception and intelligence to attempt to survive. It’s a realistic enough premise, and after watching Breakdown, going on a road trip will feel eerie.
Maximum Overdrive (1986)
Redditor gimmefuelgimmefire mentioned that they had watched “Maximum Overdrive,” which Stephen King both wrote and directed. When Earth is affected by a comet, all the machines such as cars are changed, too. The movie is based on a short story that King wrote called “Trucks.”
The film isn’t the most critically acclaimed, but it’s a fun story, and fans of King will definitely want to see it. Emilio Estevez plays one of the main characters.
Redditor Tea-and-Horror said “There’s also Rubber (about a killer wheel if that counts)” and Redditor noraandmonster replied, “I saw Rubber and loved it” as it’s a “so bad it’s good” kind of film.
There are many good scenes in bad horror movies and that is also true of Rubber, which is incredibly campy. The tire on a car is dangerous and has telekenetic powers, which is how it murders people. While the movie might not hold up when compared to many others in the genre, there are some visually interesting scenes with the tire.
Redditor naudski said “How about Highwaymen,” which isn’t about an evil car who kills people but about a serial killer who uses a 1972 Cadillac Eldorado to get around and stalk his victims. The main character, Rennie, wants to find the killer who ended his wife’s life.
Highwaymen isn’t a very popular or well-known horror movie and might not stand up to others in the car horror subgenre, at least not in terms of character development or even plot. But the car scenes will appeal to fans.
Wolf Creek (2005)
Redditor Lukan_N7 posted that “The Wolf Creek movies are pretty good” and the first film from 2005 is considered one of the best horror movies from Australia. Kristy Earl, Ben Mitchell and Liz Hunter are backpacking when their car won’t work anymore and they meet Mick Taylor, who says he’ll help them but who, of course, is the villain of the story.
Mick is one of the most horrifying killers in any horror film, as he is gruesome, violent, and diabolical. He waits in these woods for people who are hiking and camping and running into car problems so he can murder them.
Dead End (2003)
One Redditor recommended “Dead End,” a 2003 horror movie about a family driving through the country on December 24th, with their trip becoming stranger and more terrifying.
The family sees a woman with a baby, so they try to help, but that just might end up being a terrible decision. Dead End is the kind of story that plays with reality, as the main character Marion isn’t sure if she’s dreaming or if the horrors before her are true.