The fingernail had to be broken off for the most part to be fit for this list, so needles and other objects in the fingernails don't count.
Top 13 Broken Fingernail Scenes In Horror
13. Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me (1992)
In the 'Twin Peaks' universe there were a couple of times where tiny, square pieces of paper with letters written on them ended up under the fingernails of corpses. The theatrical movie was more graphic than the tv show in the way they chose to let us see this visual. In the gif above, a removed nail is exposed with the letter "T" being shown.
12. District 9 (2009)
I've seen this once. It's one of those movies I like, but its tone bums me out at the same time.
It's a well done Horror flick; creative, well acted, eye-gawking cinematography and a lot more. This removable fingernail... believe it or not, is one of the easier things to digest from this film.
11. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)
Not a huge of fan of whatever this movie is. It's not a remake, I'd say it's more of a sequel considering it did the same thing parts 3 and 4 did; brought back Leatherface with a different family. Anyfookinway, the film does have its moments. The first half to me, is the stronger part, and just at about what feels like the halfway mark, we get a payoff from the beginning of the film's "documentary" footage.
10. The Fly (1986)
'The Fly' is mutilation... pure and simple. You want gross out gore - go watch the 1986 version. I say that with the utmost respect as I've had this movie on many of my lists.
This fingernail scene takes the slow route of nail removal, but rewards us with a little bit of pus under the nail.
9. The Descent (2005)
Some movies just have every bit of gore one needs to make a list. But, 'The Descent' makes you forget how much gore it does in fact have by having so many other good qualities. This nail-break happens right before (Spoiler) the victim gets their stomach ripped out, which is equal to or even stronger than the broken nail.
8. The Orphanage (2007)
I always think of Zack Snyder's 'Dawn Of The Dead' (2004) when I watch this part of 'The Orphanage.' The overhead shot of Belén Rueda falling backwards into the bathtub is very similar to Sarah Polley's character in the opening of 'Dawn.' In this scene here, though, our character has a busted fingernail that must be removed. No more itching with that finger.
7. P2 (2007)
Before directing the 'Maniac' remake, Franck Khalfoun directed a little film titled 'P2.' It's a good movie, I just think it needed something more. But even with it's minimal gore, we get some squirmy moments like this one. Our protagonist reaches for her phone after she escapes and fucks up her nail. She then proceeds to finish off what is now a half-dangling fingernail.
6. Black Swan (2010)
Ouch, motha fuckin ouch! This one makes me wince the most, but I still feel the entries that made it further on this list are bloodier, or more visceral. Still, needless to say, this is some foul hangnail play. It reminds me of a story a dear friend told me once; his father fell off his motorcycle and when he came to, all the skin on the front of his fingers were peeled like banana skins. Ahhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!
5. Vile (2011)
'Vile' rode the torture porn craze a little late, but at least it did it right. Apparently when a human feels pain, some super juice can be extracted. They all have vials (get it?) in the back of their necks that need to be filled or else poison will be pumped into their bodies, killing them. As far as torture movies go, this one has a pretty good idea. The name is clever, too. I can fucks with a torture movie, but I'm kinda glad the trend ended.
4. Inhuman Resources (2012)
I guess this can be considered a torture movie, as well. There are some heinous and gratuitous acts of violence in this film. I can't be shocked too easily nowadays, but there is a death in this movie that is just plain cruel. But now on to our topic of this list - broken nails. I think it says something about this movie when a nail being ripped off in a close-up shot is less brutal than other scenes in this flick.
3. Cabin Fever 2: Spring Fever (2009)
I've heard Ti West disowns this film. I'm not sure if it's true or not, but I do know this; it's violent as fuck! The first movie is special to me and the remake has to be some of the biggest bullshit to date. Not because of the remake's content, because the idea of remaking a movie only 14 years old just shouldn't be in anyone's head in my opinion. I had to vent, I apologize. Back to ‘Cabin Fever 2’, the gross-out gore is stomach-bubbling to say the least. I can feel this fingernail being wiggled around as if it were my own finger. Good job on behalf of the special FX department.
2. The Ring (2002)
This nail being broken through force of a different type of nail is hard as fuck for a PG-13 movie. The filmmakers were able to get this visual in the vhs tape that the characters in the movie watch that guarantees their death in 7 days. I've said many times that I'm not the biggest fan of this film, but I respect it because of little things like this sprinkled throughout.
1. Stir Of Echoes (1999)
This was a big flick around 'The Sixth Sense' stage of Horror. I've been wanting to watch this movie again and this list gave me the chance to do that. There's this one scene that stands out for it's brutality; a tooth, along with a fingernail get knocked out and broken on behalf of a piece of shit rapist. Upon re-watching this scene, I was just as disgusted as the first time I saw it AND I forgot how hardcore the nail part is. After viewing it again, I can say 'Stir Of Echoes' has the #1 broken fingernail scene in my book.
W Delta Z AKA The Killing Gene (2007)
Honorable Non Horror Mentions
American Assassin (2007)
The Wind That Shakes The Barley (2006) Please excuse the quality of this gif.
I'm Dr.LoveGore begging you all to be careful with those nail clippers of yours!
Looking for a new HORROR Podcast? This week on Beyond The Void Horror Podcast They talk about two movies featuring sleazy beasties w/ Cherokee Creek (2018) & Beasties (1991). They break down both with humor this week. So get your ear muffs out. It’s glorious! Listen/Subscribe on iTunes here!