What makes a good horror movie? For some film buffs, psychology is essential in creating tension, while a bloody slasher fic makes great viewing for others. Whatever your taste, for many of the quintessential horror films, there is often a murder weapon involved.

Iconic horror weapons vary, but a good murder weapon is immediately identifiable, terrifying to behold, and has the potential for gory mayhem. Here are 8 iconic horror movie weapons that will send a chill down your spine.

8 Iconic Horror Murder Weapons

The Shining’s axe

iconic horror murder weapons

Image via OP-dEaD

One of the most iconic scenes in movie history, Jack Nicholson’s swinging of this clumsy weapon is a terrifying sight, with the splintering wood from the door a hugely evocative image. What makes this weapon so good is the chase, and the visual destruction it causes.

The Ring’s cursed videotape

iconic horror murder weapons

Image via movieweb.com

Far from the gory bludgeoning of other murder weapons, this innocuous tape is so chilling due to the psychological terror it brings. That a tatty piece of vintage hardware can cause such destruction is a truly terrifying prospect.

The Texas Chainsaw Massacre’s chainsaw

horror movie weapons

Image via horrorpedia.com

The sights, the sounds – the chainsaw is so recognizable in horror folklore because of its grisly aesthetic. Its blood-curdling sound is almost as gory as the weapon itself, and such is the impact of this weapon, that a franchise has been built around it. Not bad going.

Scream’s knife

horror movie weapons

Image via propstore.com

Simple, but effective, a knife is a great weapon because it emphasizes the character behind it. A knife-wielding maniac like Ghostface has to have strength, stamina, and a real drive for evil, because unlike a chainsaw, the murderer has to do all the work.

Sweeney Todd’s razor

horror movie weapon

Image via USA Today

An elegant weapon, the razor is so scary because it promises slow torturous pain. As with other great weapons, Sweeney Todd’s razor highlights the character so well and is a perfect accompaniment to his intentions and sweet-ass style.

A Nightmare on Elm Street’s glove

horror weapon

Image via ifc.com

Referring to it as a ‘glove’ doesn’t quite do this weapon justice, but the originality of Freddy Krueger’s weapon of choice makes it a movie icon. A true slasher flick, the terror of this weapon is in its low-tech brutality, helping the film create a wicked tension between supernatural and real.

Friday the 13th’s machete

horror weapon

Image via fridaythe13thfranchise.com

Like Freddy Krueger, Jason Vorhees is such a memorable character due to his look. While this aesthetic develops across the many installments of the Friday the 13th franchise, Jason’s machete remains the true icon, due to its size and simplicity.

Alien’s chest-bursting alien

Image via complex.com

Okay, while this is not strictly a weapon, the idea of a phallic alien bursting forth from your chest like an extraterrestrial murderous boner is so horrific it belongs on any list.

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