Entertainment

The 12 Most Terrifying True Crime Documentaries

HBO

For some people, horror movies just aren't that scary. Regardless of what's happening on the screen, these people are able to separate the fiction from reality, and they never fall under the spell of even the best horror films. But scary documentaries, especially those dealing with true crime, are a different story. The most terrifying true crime documentaries will scare even the most-hardened of horror movie fans, because everything that happens on screen actually happened in real life.

With true crime documentaries, there is no separating fact from fiction because there is no fiction, only facts. There's no telling yourself that "it's just a movie" because that's not true. It's not just a movie, it's documentation of something horrific that really happened to someone... and that could potentially happen to you. The 12 movies on this list are all horrifying in different ways, but most of them deal with killers. Not only that, but some of the crimes depicted in these films are so horrendous that it's almost impossible to believe that humans are capable of such behavior, and yet, they are. So if you're feeling brave and thinking that no movie can scare you, take a look at these 12 terrifying true crime documentaries.

2
‘The Imposter’

Without a doubt the strangest crime out of any on this list.

3
‘Amanda Knox’

A cautionary tale about what can happen when mob mentality takes over a murder investigation.

4
‘Dear Zachary’

Notorious for its horrifying twist, this one will both sadden and terrify you.

5
‘Cropsey’

Urban legends have got to start somewhere.

6
‘Interview With A Serial Killer’

The way this admitted serial killer calmly describes his crimes will chill you to the bone.

7
‘Josef Fritzl: Story Of A Monster’

I still have a hard time believing that the bizarre crimes of Fritzl actually happened and weren't something out of a horror movie.

8
‘The Cheshire Murders’

A truly gruesome murder story, this one's not for the faint of heart.

9
‘The Central Park Five’

Two crimes in one are featured in this doc: The rape of a woman in Central Park, and the wrongful conviction of five teens who were innocent of the crime.

10
‘Who Took Johnny’

Few things are more frightening than the thought of someone taking your child.

11
‘The Staircase’

Not your average "did the husband really kill his wife?" tale.

12
‘Albert Fish: In Sin He Found Salvation’

A man who not only raped and killed children, but ate them as well. Humans don't get anymore evil than this.