3. The Orphanage (2007)

Masked child in The Orphanage 2007

The Orphanage is possibly the most harrowing movie of the entire ’00s. A gothic supernatural horror that (obviously) involves an orphanage, the Spanish-language film is a truly brilliant and terrifying watch. The combination of its place in the horror genre and its orphanage setting means that The Orphanage was always bound to feature creepy children – something that has proven to elevate any horror story.

After being adopted from an orphanage as a girl, Laura grows up and decides to purchase the same orphanage. Laura’s plan is to reopen it as a facility for disabled children, and moves in with her husband and their seven-year-old son, Simón. Simón soon begins talking about his imaginary friend (another element that always ups the creep factor), who is a young boy who wears a sack mask (even creepier). From there, The Orphanage‘s story is filled with deeply unsettled twists and turns, all of which are compounded by the whole creepy child sack mask thing.

Sadly, The Orphanage flew a little under the radar with English-speaking audiences upon its release. However, it does boast something of a cult following, largely because it consistently delivers such an outstanding atmosphere of terror. Though the premise may sound somewhat predictable, The Orphanage is a film that keeps its audience at the edge of their seats, and it’s one of the most unforgettable horror movies of the ’00s.