Moments In The ‘Ghostbusters’ Movies That Scarred Our Childhoods

Voting Rules
Vote up the 'Ghostbusters' moments that genuinely scared you.

Ghostbusters is a classic comedy film that debuted in the mid-'80s and helped establish the genre of blended horror and comedy. For most people, the movie isn't too scary; the focus is on making the audience laugh. But for audiences of young children, the film may not have been as funny as it was frightening. Scenes that may seem funny to your adult brain now probably gave you nightmares as a kid.

To be fair, Ghostbusters and Ghostbusters II were both rated PG, despite the recently created PG-13 rating. That left a whole generation of young moviegoers scared out of their minds and tucked in that evening to dream of ghosts and monsters.

If you were one of those kids, you know what that was like, but if you need a refresher on which scenes were the scariest to a young audience, these snippets from the first two films in the franchise were some of the ones that went too far.

Photo: Ghostbusters/Columbia Pictures

  • 1
    261 VOTES

    The Hands That Rip Through The Chair And Grab Dana

    When Louis is possessed by the demon dog from hell, it's scary, and Dana fares no better. While she's sitting comfortably in her chair at home, arms suddenly rip out of the fabric and hold her down. As she struggles to free herself from the monstrous arms, the chair scoots across the floor to the open door, where a hellhound eagerly awaits her.

    261 votes
  • 2
    303 VOTES

    The Ghost In The Library

    One of the most frightening scenes in any Ghostbusters film comes at the very beginning of the first movie. When the guys make their way into the New York Public Library, they find slime and some strange uses of the Dewey Decimal system, but everything appears to be benign. As they move deeper into the stacks, they stumble upon a ghostly apparition of a woman floating above the floor.

    Barring the fact that she's a ghost, the woman looks relatively pleasant. She shushes them to be quiet, as one does in a library, but when the guys persist in trying to talk to her, she turns into a hideous beast.

    303 votes
  • 3
    198 VOTES

    The Disembodied Heads On Pikes In The Pneumatic Transit Tunnel

    In Ghostbusters II, there's a scene where the guys are walking down the Pneumatic Transit Tunnel. A dark tunnel underground is a scary prospect by itself, but the fright is amplified when the ghostbursters turn to see a screaming, disembodied head on a pike. When they turn away, they find they're surrounded by more heads on pikes.

    To add insult to injury, a ghost train runs right through Winston, but the real terror is definitely the disembodied heads screaming at the living.

    198 votes
  • 4
    190 VOTES

    The Baby Crawling On The Ledge

    One of the scariest scenes in Ghostbusters II is one that still frightens adults - especially parents. Oscar is just a little baby, but he manages to get outside of his window and onto a ledge outside. This wasn't a few feet off the ground either - Dana's apartment was at least 10 floors up.

    Oscar is just standing on the ledge when a ghostly nanny shows up as the creepiest version of Mary Poppins ever conceived. 

    190 votes
  • 5
    171 VOTES

    When Vigo Takes Possession Of Ray

    Just when you think the guys have taken care of Vigo by going after his painting, Ray does something he probably shouldn't: he looks at it a little too long. This gives the ghost all the time he needs to possess him. Ray turns around, and his face is an amalgam of Vigo's and his own - which would be creepy enough without Ray turning on his buddies. Vigo is exorcised by a swift, generous application of slime, but it's scary to see how easy it was for him to corrupt a good guy like Ray.

    171 votes
  • 6
    186 VOTES

    Louis Being Ignored When He's Chased By The Hellhound

    After seeing what he first thought was a dog in his closet, Louis is quickly chased from his apartment through the streets of New York City. He's clearly frightened, and who wouldn't be if a gigantic hellhound was chasing them down? But as he runs up to a restaurant and pounds on the glass begging to be let inside, nobody pays him much attention.

    Despite the humorous manner in which everyone ignores Louis's cries for help, his fear is palpable. Granted, a deranged man running through NYC screaming that there was a bear in his apartment might trigger the "ignore the nutjob" response, but plenty of people do see the monster chasing after him. It's not unreasonable to think that somebody might have helped him.

    186 votes