When it comes to horror movies, the limit has to continually be pushed. After all, what was terrifying once upon a time won’t have the same effect now. To that end, movies have been made that don’t exactly sit well with audiences, some so much so that entire countries have banned them. These are some of those films.

1. A Serbian Film

The one we had to start with because it’s achieved a kind-of cult status among connoisseurs of the disturbing. This movie is about a porn star who’s called on to make what he thinks is an art film, but which actually mutates into a grotesque orgy of carnal violence. A Serbian Film is the movie that dudes tell each other to watch as a dare – it’s that harsh. It’s been banned in Germany, Norway, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Spain, and Singapore.


2. Saw XI and Saw 3D

The Saw series of movies have become cult classics, but for some reason, Saw XI and Saw 3D were banned in Thailand and Germany respectively. This was a surprising move as the films didn’t really exceed the violence, gore, and straight up fuckery of the first few films. 

DVD Digital

3. Hostel 1 and 2

These films were notorious during our school days for the sheer level of violence and depravity shown, as well as scaring tourists backpacking across Europe. The first film is banned in Ukraine, while the 2nd is banned in New Zealand and Germany.

Just Watch

4. Possession

This 1981 film starts off with a couple on the rocks, but quickly devolves into something much more supernatural and terrifying. It was banned in the UK and almost 40 minutes were cut from the US version, not because it was too graphic, but because it was considered extremely unsettling. 

Daily Cal

5. Grotesque

This 2009 Japanese film was an exploitation extravaganza, featuring all manner of torture and body horror courtesy a depraved doctor. The film was banned in the UK for purporting to simply show sadism for its own sake. 


6. The Human Centipede 2

The first film attained cult status for its outlandish premise, while this film took things to a whole new level. In fact, this sequel was considered so brutal, it was not allowed to screen in New Zealand. Considering its depictions of ultra-violence and gore, it’s surprising it wasn’t banned in other places.

NY Times

7. I Spit On Your Grave

This 1978 film follows the vicious revenge a woman enacts on a gang of thugs who raped her and left her for dead. It was panned by critics, and shocked viewers with depictions of brutal violence and sexual abuse. The film was banned in Norway, Iceland, Germany, and Ireland. 

The Londond Economic

8. Cannibal Holocaust

This found-footage horror film has garnered substantive controversy over the years for its depictions of death and violence. What really pushed it over the edge was that it depicted actual animals being killed, such as a tortoise. This led to the film being banned in Italy, Australia, Norway, Finland, and New Zealand. 


9. Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom

Released in 1975, this film was banned in the UK, New Zealand and Australia. The film is about a bunch of fascists who abduct and imprison a group of 9 adolescents. They are then subjected to 120 days of physical, mental, and sexual torture. It’s highly disturbing.

Senses of Cinema

10. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre

Nowadays, films like these don’t raise too many eyebrows. When it released in 1974 however, it cause a furore for its violence and general fucked-upness. At different points in time, it was banned in Brazil, Chile, Finland, France, Iceland, Ireland, Norway, Singapore, Sweden, Ukraine.

The Verge

Watch at your own risk! These are some messed up films.