1. Matilda. I can see it taking a Carrie route, where she kills her abusive family. And some of the stuff the principal was doing was really dark. She could end up murdering the principal and liberating the kids, only to go all power hungry or something.
2. Inside Out. Like the girl is mentally ill and the characters inside her head are insane too.
3. Home Alone would be so out there if it started off with the kid protecting his house from the intruders using these slapstick methods only to wind up murdering them. But rather than call the cops, he panics and tries to hide the bodies before his family returns. But he doesn’t do that in time and one by one as the family members come across the bodies, he kills them. The movie ends with him running away in the cold, where he dies. Yeah, that’s a disturbing downer but it’s a horror movie for sure.
4. Mrs Doubtfire. The could have divorced him cause he was crazy and they get a nanny but one by one family members go missing.
5. Coco. This time, when the skeletons find out he’s human, they try to kill him so he’ll fit in. He runs away and meets his “great-grandfather”, and agrees to die to stay with him forever. However, after discovering the truth, he’s now stuck in the afterlife. Before the Day of the Dead ends, he has a mental breakdown and travels back to the living world to kill his family so he’ll have someone to stay with. From that point on, it essentially becomes a slasher film, but his family is trying (to no avail) to convince him to stop. Eventually, only his mother is left, and she’s now desperate and insane. She attempts to convince everyone he never existed so his memory will be forgotten, but they lock her away. Next Day of the Dead, he returns, and is upset that the family he brought to be with him rejected and feared him. We end with him finally killing his mother, and the two spending their afterlife together in twisted insanity until they are finally forgotten.
6. Liar Liar. General premise would stay the same with him trying to prove he’s a good dad. However, now we see at the start that he killed a hooker and the whole film he has to not admit it. The police suspect him so he can’t trust anybody and the angle of the film would be that we see the police say they have someone close to him as an informant but we, the audience, don’t know which one of the people it is.
7. Pretty Woman. Guy stops to purchase services for a week, but the hooker turns out to be a serial killer who tortures him. In the end, he dies and she escapes because his business partner set him up so he can get full control of the company.
8. Toy Story and its sequels; instead of “faithful toys trying to get home”, play up the revenge angle against Sid, and let it be about a disturbed little boy who has to fight for his life against the toys he abused.
9. You’ve Got Mail or any of those sappy 90s movies. All is romantic until she realizes the guy has a fridge full of heads and it becomes a survival movie.
10. Passengers. I always thought the movie could’ve worked so well as an existential horror. Chris Pratt’s character wakes up, struggles for months over his isolation. Finally is driven to the point of waking another passenger up, thereby dooming them to the same fate. Jennifer Lawrence’s character falls in love with him, but when she inevitably finds out the truth, she starts hating him. Everything up until this point pretty much the same as the movie. But towards the end when Chris Pratt’s character almost dies, instead of forgiving him in the heat of the moment after he survives, she has to watch him sacrifice himself and die after all. Jennifer Lawrence’s character never quite gets the closure of forgiveness, and as the movie draws to a close, we watch her struggle with the same isolation as Chris Pratt at the beginning, eventually spiraling and finding herself having to make the same decision of whether to wake another passenger or not.
11. Twilight. Teen girl has to escape an obsessive 100 year old vampire.
12. Ghostbusters: The ghost are all demonic and possess people and force them to do unspeakable acts. The Ghostbusters are scientists and priests working together to perform exorcisms.
13. Groundhog Day. Each day ends with him dying as the result of some sort of horror. Every morning he wakes up thinking it was all a bad dream, until the events play out exactly like they did yesterday. To escape the time loop he has to defeat the horror that has him trapped.
14. Elf. Buddy is an escaped mental patient who has a fixation on Christmas due to some kind of childhood trauma at Christmas time. Typically he takes medicine to control the hallucinations, but he has abandoned his prescription. He sees everything as Christmas all the time, and as such wants to spread joy and cheer to everyone.
One day at the mall, he meets a girl who works at one of the department stores. It is Christmas time, and she is dressed like an elf. After the mall closes, he follows her to the locker room where he hears her singing Christmas songs. He is immediately obsessed and begins to imagine singing with her, and the two of them falling in love. But it’s all in his head.
Still obsessed with the store girl, and looking for a safe place to hide from being sent back to the mental institution, he returns to what was once his childhood home. He is a grown man, and both of his parents have long since passed away, but Christmas time is the happiest time of the year—and for buddy that means spending time with his family. Even if they aren’t his family at all.
The middle aged couple that bought the house when it went on the market are terrified when a large man dressed like an Elf forces his way into their home. He keeps calling them dad and mom. They fear for the safety of their actual son, as the man is clearly not sane. To keep him safe, they follow Buddy’s every word. The husband is horrified when the Elf-man gives him lingerie. What sort of sick pervert has inserted himself into their lives? What does he want from them?
Holding the family hostage in their own home, Buddy forces the family to put up a Christmas tree. He eats so much sugar that he doesn’t have to sleep. The barrage of Christmas cheer lasts until the next morning when he leaves to return to the mall to stalk the store girl. They then call the police; and a manhunt begins for Buddy the dangerous escaped mental patient.
At the mall, the store girl notices that the same odd man from the day before has returned. He is fixated on her. Staring hard, barely blinking. She is uncomfortable and the man puts her on edge. Something isn’t right about him. Quietly, she alerts a manager to contact security. Having received a brief message from the local police department to be on the lookout for a 6’3 adult man dressed as an Elf. They see buddy and contact the actual police department.
The police arrive, and a chase ensues. Buddy steals a red car from the parking lot. To him it looks like a sleigh. Insert Dramatic Police Chase.
The chase ends with Buddy being surrounded by cops on all sides. His therapist from the mental institution arrives. Buddy calls him Santa. “Sure Buddy.” He says. “Its time to go back to the North Pole, okay?”
Arrested and returned to the psychiatric hospital, Buddy is happy to be back to his normal. The North Pole is safe and comfortable and he is happy here. “I’m happy here, so what do I need to take these pills for?” He thinks to himself as he tosses his new prescription in the trash.
“Time to go spread some Christmas cheer.”
15. Stuart Little. Imagine that the Mr and Mrs Little had so much trauma over a miscarriage they decide to take their unborn fetus home and pretend it’s still alive.
Over the course of time, the fetus begins to form white mold over all its body, and it’s uncut umbilical cord looks like a tail, giving it the appearance of a mouse.
Mr. and Mrs. Little are so lost and can’t comprehend that their child is festering they actually believe the fetus has transformed into a mouse by God himself.
During all this time George is being neglected and cannot stand the idea of a dead thing getting special treatment. So he acts out and gets himself in trouble, making his parents begin to resent him for not accepting his brother.
Somewhere throughout the movie, George thinks it’s about time to get rid of Stuart so he feeds the deteriorating fetus to his cat Snowball.
16. The Hangover. Basically keep the same plot except they slowly find out that one of the group was behind it. Or Ken Jeong’s character. They slowly start to have the gaps filled in. Feels like you could get pretty twisted with it.
17. Star Wars. I remember someone posting a while back about a movie idea for a slasher type film like Jason or Michael Myers but with Darth Vader. Basically like him chasing down a bunch of innocent crew members of like an abandoned cargo ship or something. Maybe he toys with them knowing how weak they are and is something similar to Alien as well.
18. Wedding Crashers, two guys who no one know show up to a wedding and at the end of the night end up kidnapping a bridesmaid and now the police have to piece together the night and try and work out who the men are and what happened to the woman they kidnapped.
19. The Little Mermaid. Mermaids are already supposed to be dangerous creatures. The story was originally supposed to be dark. Ariel’s obsession with Prince Eric, and the royal family feud are begging for a horror depiction.
20. The Wizard of Oz. It wasn’t a dream, Dorothy simply has a psychotic break blamed on trauma from the tornado. In a slowly-unfolding, psychological horror. I think it would do well in the hands of the right people.
21. Wayne’s World. The real movie plays. Then, after the alternative endings, Rob Lowe’s character appears on screen and says, “Let me show you what really happened.” An entirely separate movie, mirroring the original plays, revealing that Wayne and Garth are delusional, and kidnap local homeless people to interview them for their “talk show” which is all in their heads, and then kill them. Rob Lowe is in fact an FBI agent who was tasked with bringing them to justice, which is why they perceived him as “evil” in the original.
22. Coraline. It’s already scary… adding just a couple of things would put it right over the top into something unforgettably horrifying. Live action.
23. The Santa Clause (the Tim Allen children’s film) the plot to that movie is a man accidentally kills Santa and then slowly transforms into him. That’s a fantastic premise for a Cronenberg body horror film, I’m not entirely convinced that script wasn’t originally written to be a horror movie.
24. Truman Show. People inexplicably go missing in Truman’s neighborhood. It’s been happening for as long as he can remember. Only Truman seems to notice or care. Is the town being stalked by a serial killer? Are the police in on it, or is Truman losing his mind? Or, could the truth be even darker?
25. Open Season, follow a group of hunters who slowly find out that the regular prey animals are hunting them.
26. Charlotte’s Web. The little girl, Fern, runs away from home when Wilbur is sold to Zuckerman. She lives in the barn, and hides from everyone, but can’t figure out how to save Wilbur. She tries poisoning Zuckerman, but only succeeds on making him hallucinate that the spiderwebs have secret messages.
As Fern continues to poison him, the hallucinations become more and more real to him, culminating in him having a total breakdown at the fair, screaming about his special pig.
Wilbur is slaughtered, as are the other animals at the farm, fearing some nasty disease. In the end Fern is found in the pig wallow, insisting that she’s Wilbur the pig. She tried to kill herself with the same poison that she’d been giving Zuckerman.
There you go. Dark, horror version of Charlotte’s Web.