6 truck movies that will scare the … daylights … out of you

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Updated Oct 30, 2014

I like a good psychologically scary movie better than a gory one. One raised eyebrow by Anthony Hopkins scares me more than a sawed-off body part. Throw in a clown, birds, a shower curtain, a homicidal doll, Jack Nicholson and an adolescent girl going to her prom and you pretty much have my top list of all time scariest scary movies.

Here’s my top six scary trucking movies, best watched in the dark at a lonely rest stop in the middle of nowhere.

1. Duel (1971)
Steven Spielberg’s first full-length film pits a menacing, unseen trucker driving a 1960 Peterbilt 281 tanker truck against David Mann (Dennis Weaver) driving a red 1970 Plymouth Valiant Signet through the California desert. Lots of diesel exhaust blowing maliciously across the screen.

2. Maximum Overdrive (1986)
Written and directed by Stephen King, (based on his short story, Trucks) starring Emilio Estevez. Machines come to life when the earth passes through the tail of a comet. Chaos reigns as hairdryers, vending machines, lawnmowers and homicidal semi-trucks begin a murderous raging rampage. Scary and with a great soundtrack by AC/DC.

3. Road Games (1981)
Filmed in Australia, starring Stacey Keach and Jamie Lee Curtis. A truck driver plays cat and mouse with a serial killer who uses a young female hitchhiker as bait to lure his victims.

4. Joy Ride (2001)
Directed by John Dahl and starring LeeLee Sobieski, Steve Zahn and Paul Walker. Three young people on a road trip from Colorado to New Jersey talk to Rusty Nail, a psycho trucker on their CB radio. It’s all fun and games as they taunt him. The tables turn when he starts stalking them. “You need to get that fixed,” he says over the radio. “What?” “Your tail light,” And the chase is on.

5. Joy Ride 2: Dead Ahead (2008)
Directed by Louis Moreau, starring Nicki Aycox, Nick Zano and Laura Jordan. Four friends embark on a road trip to Vegas when their car breaks down in the middle of nowhere and they must figure out how to get back. They make a plan but unfortunately for them, it puts them at odds with Rusty Nail. The murderous, sadistic trucker is back and he will stop at nothing until he gets his revenge on them, one mutilated body part at a time.

6. Road Kill (2010)
Original title; Road Train, directed by Dean Francis, starring Bob Morley, Sophie Lowe and Georgina Haig. A group of teenagers in the Australian outback are threated by a driver-less road train determined to kill them. The maniacal truck has a mind of it’s own and is fueled by evil. “It will drive you to hell.”