Set in war-torn Iran back in 1988, the critically acclaimed horror thriller Under the Shadow (in select theaters October 7) watches as a woman and her young daughter must deal with terrifying nightly bombings that shake the house and their souls. But that may not be the greatest danger they face.
Whether on the battlefield or at home, wartime is horrific enough without supernatural scares layered in. Filmmakers who have explored wartime horrors have found a vast, unsettling territory to mine; their approaches have varied widely. As you keep Under the Shadow on your radar, check out these other horror movies set during war you may have forgotten about.
The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death
Daniel Radcliffe starred in the original, while this sequel takes place several decades later. The horror continues in a spooky old mansion where a large group of children has relocated during World War II. Separated from their families for the sake of safety, the kids encounter a whole other set of ghostly terrors.
Guillermo del Toro’s horror-fantasy takes place in a corner of Spain that should be a refuge from the war still raging throughout Europe in 1944. Of course it’s not, in large part because of a military officer who treats his new, young stepdaughter in brutal fashion. To survive, she retreats increasingly into a fantasy world that may (or may not) have a basis in reality.
Although it takes place just after the conclusion of World War II, this low-key thriller captures well the type of atmospheric wartime horror that marks The Woman in Black 2: Angel of Death. Nicole Kidman stars as a woman with two young children who are allergic to sunlight, living in a spooky old mansion while awaiting word on the status of her husband, a British soldier. After three new servants are hired, something wicked is on its way.
Nazis invade a tiny town in Romanian mountain country, where they are warned about a nearby sinister force that is promptly unleashed against them. Jurgen Prochnow, Gabriel Byrne, Scott Glenn and Ian McKellen star.
An American submarine on patrol in the Atlantic Ocean during World War II picks up a trio of survivors (including Olivia Williams) after their ship sinks, and then suffers all kinds of spooky scares. Bruce Greenwood is a beleagured officer in charge of the boat and its baffled, embattled crew.
The Devil’s Rock
Just before D-day in 1944, two soldiers in the British force are sent on a mission to an island between England and France, where they run afoul of a German officer who serves Hitler in the paranormal division of the SS. Making matters worse, the German claims he has captured a supernatural creature in the form of a woman.
Bloodrayne: The Third Reich
The third installment of this unlikely horror franchise from renegade director Uwe Boll finds its heroine, a centuries-old warrior woman, in battle alongside resistance fighters against the German army during World War II. Vampires are her sworn enemy, so when the Nazis create one from her own blood, it ups the stakes.