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Thanksgiving.  It’s a time to get together with family, eat until we can’t move, and in general, be thankful for the things we have.  Right?


Okay, well, maybe that’s how it happens on Hallmark Channel, but we’re horror movie fans, and I like to think that makes us a little more realistic about these things.

We know that family get-togethers aren’t always what they’re cracked up to be.  We know that mom resents dad just a little for leaving her alone in the kitchen all day cooking while he sat in the living room watching football.  We know that Aunt Marge is going to spend most of her day telling you what you’ve done wrong with your life in the most passive aggressive manner possible.  And we know that Uncle Joe is going to get plastered and pass out in a corner after making inappropriate comments to everyone in the family.  At some point, in all of that, at least three of your cousins are going to hit the boiling point and throw a couple of punches.

Okay, so maybe all of that doesn’t happen, but it’s not all sunshine, rainbows, and being thankful and we know it.  It’s drama and pain and desperately trying to find something to be thankful for.something…anything.

With that in mind, I put this little list together.  Some of these horror movie families are just the worst, and maybe, just maybe, when your own family is getting you down, these will help you get through.

And hey, maybe if you’re lucky, you can actually throw one in the DVD player and watch together!

#1 The Man, The Woman, & The Children in The People Under the Stairs

Back in 1991, Wes Craven blessed and confused us us with The People Under the Stairs.  The Man and the Woman were brother and sister, but there was something else going on there.  I mean, that Gimp suit?!  And then all the children they had living in their walls…yeah, if anything is going to make you feel better about your family, this would be it.

#2 The Sawyer Family in The Texas Chain Saw Massacre

They’re psychopaths…cannibals…and big brother Leatherface literally wears masks made from human faces.  This is a perfect movie to remember when your relatives start yelling at one another over Thanksgiving dinner  I mean, at least there isn’t a screaming woman tied up and bloody at the end of the table.  I hope you don’t…

#3 The Davison Family in You’re Next

OK, so at first glance, this family is ridiculously perfect.  Wealthy…good looking…they’ve got it all.  Then you find out one of the brothers has hired assassins to take everyone out at a family gather.  What?!  Yeah, that’s why it made the list.

#4  The Family in The Hills Have Eyes

OK, so lets start by clarifying that I’m not talking about the traveling family.  I’m talking about the actual “family” of deformed, cannibalistic people who attack the traveling family.  And I don’t think I need to explain why that particular family made this list.

#5 The Sharpes in Crimson Peak

Whereas the implication was there that the Man and Woman in The People Under the Stairs were involved in some sort of incestuous relationship, Crimson Peak didn’t play around.  Jessica Chastain and Tom Hiddleston play a sister and brother with a creepy old house and a history of sexy relations.  It’s a hell of a ghost story with a dysfunctional family front and center.

#6 The Torrances in The Shining

Doesn’t matter which version you pick, the Gods and Stephen King came together to create the perfect storm of dysfunctional families in The Shining.  Domestic violence, abuse, alcoholism, you name it.  It’s all there.  Just imagine your family gathering at the Overlook and things might be just a little better.

#7 Every single family in IT

I mean, was there a single family in the film IT that was just normal?  Bill’s family ignoring the death of their son Georgie; Beverly Marsh’s pedophile father; Eddie’s overbearing mother?  These kids had some messed up families and they all lived in the same place!

Well, there you are!  Seven completely messed up families that ought to at least take some of the pressure off your Thanksgiving!  They’re some of my favorites.  What are some of your?  Let us know in the comments!