Canines have been dynamic characters on film since the silent movie era. Hero dogs like Rin Tin Tin and Lassie were the lead stars of serial dramas, and many a charming movie, particularly Disney Features, like “Lady and the Tramp” and “The Incredible Journey” have made big money at the box office. Audiences tend get more upset if a dog is killed or dies in a movie than a human. Animals are man’s best friend after all, so they must be good, right? However, like in real life, sometimes good dogs go bad or are supernatural or alien mascots that rival the biggest, maddest villain for fierceness. The thought of a dangerous or evil dog taps into our primal fears concerning this evolutionary offshoot of the big bad wolf. So here are just twenty of the scariest dogs that have appeared in movies and TV shows.
1. Damien’s Protector Dog “The Omen”
Whether you prefer the original 1976 version or the 2006 remake, the scene where Robert Thorn comes home and finds a huge black dog hired on as the nanny’s assistant is riveting. It’s the dog who makes the first nanny go a little crazy and hang herself in the iconic “Damien’s birthday party” scene. The dog is pacing, snarling metaphor for evil and represents the fact that the Thorns no longer have any control and evil has indeed set up residence in the house. Mia Farrow is splendid in the remake acting quite nonchalant about the family’s newest addition. A German Shepherd and a Rottweiler were used in the films. The big muscular canine is included in the original’s theatrical trailer, but that doesn’t say much as this trailer is spoiler rich and contains many major plot points for the entire film. Some say the dog should have gotten more screen time as he was super scary. The graveyard pack attack scene makes up for it.