10 Horror Movies That Will Make You Rethink Attempting Any Winter Sports

10 Horror Movies That Will Make You Rethink Attempting Any Winter Sports

Learn some valuable lessons from these chillers before you skate a frozen pond or visit a ski lodge.

We may earn a commission from links on this page.
A figure waves from a snowmobile, holding an axe
Let It Snow demonstrates a worst-case scenario out on the slopes.
Screenshot: Grindstone Entertainment Group

Cold-weather horror is a much-loved genre, with sub-categories that include holiday horror, “trapped in this weather with killers and/or ghosts” horror (think The Shining), and even—as this list explores—horror movies that work winter sports into their plots. Exercise can be deadly, so proceed with caution!

Advertisement

2 / 12

Damien: Omen II

Damien: Omen II

The Omen Collection: Damien: Omen II (1978) - Official Trailer

The 1976 original Omen is a classic, but don’t turn your back on its unsettling 1978 sequel, in which the Antichrist (Jonathan Scott-Taylor) is now a tween who’s assimilated convincingly into upper-crust life, despite the tragedies constantly unfolding in his orbit. Case in point: an extremely distressing outdoor ice-hockey scene in which a Thorn Industries employee who’s spoken out against the company’s grand (secretly Satanic) plan falls through thin ice... and then is whisked away by the current, drifting just below the surface and frantically hammering on now-very-thick ice from below as his equally frantic would-be rescuers try (and fail) to break through and save him.

Advertisement

3 / 12

Frozen

Frozen

Frozen (2010) - Official® Trailer [HD]

Not the Disney movie, obviously. This is the 2010 movie about a trio of skiiers (including, probably coincidentally, Shawn Ashmore, who played Iceman in the X-Men movies) who get trapped sky-high on a chair lift before the resort shuts down for the week. That would be perilous enough, but then the kids realize there are hungry wolves lurking in the snowy forest below.

Advertisement

4 / 12

Cold Prey

Cold Prey

‘’ cold prey ‘’ - official trailer 2006.

Norwegian director Roar Uthaug (2018's Tomb Raider, current Netflix film Troll) made his feature debut with this 2006 slasher about snowboarders who get lost in the backwoods and run afoul of a mountain man who doesn’t at all take kindly to outsiders. Who needs a mask when your face is already swaddled in cold-weather gear?

Advertisement

5 / 12

Dead Snow

Dead Snow

Dead Snow - Official Trailer [HD]

The second Norwegian film to make this list comes from Tommy Wirkola (Violent Night); it arrived in 2009 and more than lived up to its premise, which is “snowy weekend party time gruesomely disrupted by unfrozen Nazi zombies.”

Advertisement

6 / 12

Curtains

Curtains

Curtains (1983) - Trailer HD 1080p

This 1983 slasher has become a cult classic for a few reasons. One is that its troubled production meant multiple directors were involved in its creation—resulting in what’s very clearly a patchwork of dissonant footage hastily edited together, rendering a plot that makes zero sense. But the other big reason people talk about Curtains is the figure-skating scene: a character out practicing her jumps on an icy pond suddenly beholds the unholy sight of a person in an hag mask skating toward her very deliberately, very steadily, very much holding a scythe in slashing position. There’s so much going on here—the disguise, the weapon, the element of surprise, the fact that there’s also somehow a creepy doll in this scene—that you can see why it’s sparked so many nightmares.

Advertisement

7 / 12

Ice Spiders

Ice Spiders

Ice Spiders - Trailer (2007)

This 2007 straight-to-Syfy film (and yes, it has the production values that designation suggests) follows a group of young skiiers and a former Olympian (Starship Troopers’ Patrick Muldoon), whose time on the slopes is suddenly interrupted by... giant mutated spiders, genetically altered to be impervious to the cold and freshly escaped from the secret lab that happens to be on the other side of the mountain! Noooo!

Advertisement

8 / 12

The Chill Factor

The Chill Factor

Demon Possessed (aka The Chill Factor, 1989) - VHS Trailer

If there’s anything to be learned from this 1989 horror flick, it’s that you should carefully research the area you’re going to be snowmobiling through on a weekend romp with your pals. That way, when you inevitably get stranded, you won’t have to take shelter in an abandoned camp last occupied by a Satanic cult that left a murderous stray demon behind.

Advertisement

9 / 12

Snowbeast

Snowbeast

Snowbeast (1977) Trailer

A former Olympian returns to his Colorado hometown, hoping to find a job at the local ski lodge. Too bad there’s another (much larger, hairier, and angrier) visitor lurking around town! Come on, you knew there was going to be at least one Abominable Snowman on this list. Sylvia Sidney—who played Juno in Beetlejuice a decade later—plays the resort owner who’d just as soon keep any and all monster sightings under wraps.

Advertisement

10 / 12

Let It Snow

Let It Snow

LET IT SNOW | TRAILER | 2021 | THRILLER/HORROR

Snowboarders again! A masked killer again! This warning against risking your neck and possibly also your soul just to shred some powder came out in 2020, from Ukranian director Stanislav Kapralov.

Advertisement

11 / 12

Jason Voorhees

Jason Voorhees

Jason rocking his new look in Part III.
Jason rocking his new look in Part III.
Screenshot: Paramount Pictures

He doesn’t don his signature mask until Friday the 13th Part III, and truth be told we never do see Jason play hockey. But when you think “winter sports” and “horror,” he is, visually at least, the ultimate blend of the two. Make your own “sudden death” joke here.


Want more io9 news? Check out when to expect the latest Marvel, Star Wars, and Star Trek releases, what’s next for the DC Universe on film and TV, and everything you need to know about James Cameron’s Avatar: The Way of Water.

Advertisement

12 / 12