Investigating the Spectral Encounters collection on Shudder

Impetigore: A Shudder Original. Image Courtesy Shudder
Impetigore: A Shudder Original. Image Courtesy Shudder /

Welcome back to another in-depth exploration of Shudder’s collections. This time around, we are taking a close look at the Spectral Encounters collection. My own personal top picks are marked with an asterisk.

*The Autopsy of Jane Doe – Authorities are mystified when they discover the body of a young woman is discovered at a multiple murder scene. The body is taken to the coroner (Brian Cox), and his son (Emile Hirsch) stays to help his father with the autopsy. Although the woman’s body shows no outward signs of trauma, multiple bones are shattered, her tongue has been removed, and her internal organs show cuts both old and new. As the night goes on, the two begin to hear noises and see things. This is one of my favorite films, and it's my go-to recommendation when people ask for film titles that are genuinely scary.

*Skinamarink – Honestly, if you haven’t at least heard about Skinamarink, you must have been living under a rock for the past year. It was one of the most polarizing horror movies of 2023, with most fans of the genre either despising it, or adoring it. I happened to love it, though I admit it is really difficult to explain to others. Basically, it plays out like a nightmare as seen through the eyes of two young children who wake up during the night to find their father is gone, and all of the doors and windows have disappeared. If you plan to watch it, I highly recommend doing so in complete darkness, wearing headphones, and turning on closed captions. That last step is really a necessity; there is little dialogue, and that dialogue is very, very quiet. If you don’t have closed captions on, you are going to miss some of that creepy conversation.

Triangle – People aboard a luxurious yacht have to abandon ship due to a bad storm, and end up on an abandoned ocean liner. The scene on board the yacht is mysterious; though it appears to have been abandoned long ago, there is food in the dining room that appears fresh, and the group sees the figure of at least one person .

They Live in the Grey – In this Shudder Original, “While investigating a child abuse case, a clairvoyant social worker discovers that the family is being tormented by a supernatural entity. In order to save the parents from losing the custody of their child, she must confront her own fears and use her ability to stop the malevolent force.

Still from Skinamarink. Photo Credit: Shudder /

Witchboard – In this 1980s fave, Tawny Kitaen plays a woman who connects with an evil presence when she makes the mistake of using a Ouija board. As the bloody body count rises, Linda’s boyfriend and ex team up to prevent the entity from possessing her and killing even more people.

Deadhouse Dark – This is a horror anthology series in which most of the six stories revolve around different aspects of modern technology. We get a story filmed through a dashcam, and others involve online dating, social media challenges…you get the drift.

*The Power – This is one of my favorite Shudder Originals, and one that I don’t see mentioned very often. Let me just say that I found it to be genuinely creepy, perfect to watch alone on a dark and stormy night. Set in 1974, it introduces us to trainee nurse Val, who is on her first shift at the falling-apart East London Royal Infirmary. With the power out due to a miner’s strike, Val is working more or less on her own when she starts to see and hear some disturbing things.

Rose Williams as Val - The Power - Photo Credit: Laura Radford/Shudder /

*Spiral – Malik and Aaron have decided to move to a small town with their teenage daughter, thinking it will be a more nurturing and safer environment for their family. Although the neighborhood is picturesque and the neighbors seem very friendly and welcoming, they soon find out that things are not quite as they seem.

Ring – In this Japanese film, a strange videotape is making the rounds. When a group of teens watch it, they are later found dead, with their faces reflecting abject terror. A journalist decides to investigate the story, and finds out that watching the tape is supposed to cause the viewers to die within seven days unless they can pass it on for others to watch.

Ring 2 – Set two weeks after the events in Ring, Ring 2 “finds Mai on the trail of the missing reiko, Ring’s heroine, following a string of deaths in which she appears to be implicated.” Mai works with Reiko’s former co-worker and they end up investigating the legend behind the cursed videotape. Doing so causes the vengeful spirit of Sadako to reappear.

*Impetigore – Another favorite of mine, Impetigore is an Indonesian Shudder Original that tells us the story of the very likeable Maya. After a stranger tries to kill her, Maya and her best friend Dini set out to visit the home she recently inherited in a remote village. As it turns out, the village is cursed, causing all of the babies to die upon birth, and somehow, Maya’s family is wrapped up in the whys and wherefores.

The Nightshifter – Stenio works in the local morgue, always on the late night shift. Although he does his work solo, he is never truly alone, because he can communicate with the dead bodies he attends to. When one of those bodies tells him his wife is cheating on him, Stenio embarks on a dark path that endangers himself and his children.

Found Footage 3D (2D Version) – Found footage fans, this one is for you. A filmmaker is enlisted to document the filming of “the first 3D found footage horror film”, and decides to take the job. As the cast and crew work in a remote cabin in the woods, the fictional entity becomes non-fictional, and starts to appear in the behind the scenes film footage.

That's it for the Spectral Encounters collection, keep your eyes on 1428 Elm for our next article, when we will take a look at yet another Shudder collection.

Next. Get the chills with Shudder's Scariest Movie Moments collection. Get the chills with Shudder's Scariest Movie Moments collection. dark