Sinister Movies in Order & How Many Are There?

If you’re a horror movie fan, then you have probably heard about the Sinister movies. But, did you know that the first Sinister movie ever was written by Cristopher R. Cargill, and it was actually inspired by a nightmare he had after watching The Ring released in 2002? If you think this is crazy, wait until you hear more.

After its release in October 2012, the first Sinister movie mostly received positive reviews, with the emphasis being on the movie’s cinematography and overall atmosphere. But, as much as the movies were praised for their elements of seemingly real snuff films, they were also panned by the critics for their horror cliches and jump scares. In this article, we shall explore all of the Sinister movies, and what made them so interesting. Keep on reading to find out the gory details!

How Many Sinister Movies Are There?

So far, there are only two Sinister movies. The first one was released in 2012, while the last one was theatrically leased in 2015. Despite the rumors, and the fact that the premise of the film has shown a promising future for the possible franchise, the third Sinister installment actually never came to be – and, probably ever won’t.

Sinister Movies in Order

Here are the Sinister movies in order of release:

  1. Sinister (I), from 2012
  2. Sinister (II), from 2015

With a minimal chance of the next installment being made, the list is suspected to stay pretty short. But, the first two movies (with the emphasis on the first one, though) are definitely worth watching. Keep on reading to find out more about the sequel, its fun trivia, and more.

What Is the Best Way to Watch Sinister Movies?

The best way to watch the Sinister movies is in order of release. While lots of horror movies, including these, don’t necessarily need to be watched in chronological order to be understood, we suggest that the Sinister movies be watched by the release date. Here’s why:

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According to fans on Reddit, the first Sinister movie is far better – and, this was strongly backed up by the positive reviews from film critics. To add to it, the first movie stars the Penny Dreadful sweetheart, Ethan Hawke, which by itself could be a reason to watch it, for some! Unfortunately, the sequel is thought to be less original and, overall more predictable, which is exactly why you should watch the movies by their chronological release. Some of the fans even called the sequel, Sinister II, a “franchise killer”. Moreover, the prequel explains who and what led up to the second film, all while building a mythology around the dark spirit named Bughuul.

Sinister Movies in Order by Release Date

Sinister (2012)

Directed by Scott Derrickson, and written by C. Robert Cargill, Sinister became a widely known supernatural horror film, all because of its innovative use of a film camera (Super 8 camera). The prequel introduces us to a washed-up true crime writer Ellison Oswalt who, after moving to a new house with his family, finds a box of Super 8 home movies. What seems to be sweet and innocent, actually turns out to be a tip of a murderous iceberg – the movies found are depicting families being murdered in sickening ways by a dark spirit named Bughuul. Saturated with lots of technical creativity and interesting trivia, the film was a box office success, grossing $87.7 million.

Sinister (II) (2015)

The sequel’s plot is heavily focused on an ex-deputy trying to put an end to the Bughuul’s curse, all while a new family is being tormented by both him and the entity’s previous victims. While fans and critics loved the first Sinister movie, the sequel has actually received many negative reviews, particularly for the predictable jump scares and “awful child actors”.

Interesting Sinister Trivia

Even though the plot itself is eye-catching, some of the most interesting aspects of the Sinister movies are actually the trivia and goofs behind them.

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According to Robert Cargill, the snuff films in Sinister I were especially difficult to film – the actors and actresses, along with the filmmakers, had to be extremely careful so that nobody was harmed while filming. For example, for the underwater scene, those that played the doomed family were tied down to the chairs and pulled underwater in reality! Unfortunately, some of the preparations for the hanging scene were botched, which resulted in actors legitimately being hanged and choked. Don’t worry, though – all of them survived. The coordinator was fired soon after, too.

The first movie is also often deemed as the scariest movie ever made. In 2020, a study called Science of Scare Project was conducted by Forbes Magazine, where the heart rate of the viewers was monitored while they watched a bunch of horror movies. Turns out that, out of all 35 movies, the Sinister movie won; the highest average heart rate was at 86, spiking at 131BPM.

Although Sinister II has been deemed as cheap and predictable, the rural farmhouse and cornfield is a homage to Stephen King’s Children of the Corn, which, you have to admit, is kinda cool.

And, since the story is heavily saturated with elements of domestic abuse, Courtney’s codeword between herself and her children in Sinister II (“rutabaga“) is a real-life method that has often been used by abused spouses. Establishing a seemingly silly or strange word helps that the abuser doesn’t know helps victims in unsafe situations.

Are Sinister Movies Connected?

The Sinister movies are, in fact, connected. Although it is not completely necessary to watch the first movie to understand the second, the sequel is directly connected to the prequel. Both of the stories are seen as extensions of each other, all while being centered on demonic possession and domestic drama.

Will There Be More Sinister Movies?

While there has been a rumor about Sinister 3 possibly being made, the third installment will never see the light; mainly, because the sequel wasn’t as loved as the prequel. Most of the fans dreaded the sequel, and, not because of how scary it is. Fans on Reddit stated that the sequel “cheapens the brand”, while others argued that it is, in fact, a “franchise killer”. Overall, an official statement has never been made by the creators, so we shouldn’t be expecting more Sinister movies anytime soon.

Where to Watch the Sinister Movies?

As of now, you can watch Sinister I on Hulu Plus. The movie can also be streamed by purchasing or renting on iTunes, Peacock, Amazon Instant Video, Google Play, and Vudu. Sinister II is available on Netflix, Amazon Prime, Vudu, iTunes, and Google Play. Even though there has been a poor reception to the second installment, the Sinister movies are definitely worth watching, at least because of how scary they are!

  • Nina is just another student of Cultural Studies that's slowly embracing postmodern popular culture. Her biggest interest lies in the very beginning of cinema.