15 Of The Creepiest Found Footage Videos On The Internet

Some of the most successful videos on YouTube are ones without polished production value or top-billed internet celebrities. A vast majority of the best viral hits are the ones that weren't necessarily intended to get billions of views. These videos, with their shaky camera work, poor sound quality, grainy quality and one in a million occurrences aren't anything new. They're called "found footage" videos and they've been around for decades. For some people, found footage is a passion and they spend hours scouring second-hand stores, their grandparents' basements and weekend yard sales for a chance to get their hands on a bit of odd and obscure media from another time and, thankfully for our sake, they've been kind enough to share these mysterious bits of history with the internet.

Found Footage has no set parameters and can be pretty loosely defined. Some are downright hilarious. While others are completely horrifying. Some of the best were seen once twenty years ago, thought to be extinct, and then recovered. A lot of found footage have mysterious or even scary roots and were recovered from some pretty weird and or awful locations and anybody can make one, from wannabe reporters, to would-be paranormal investigators and even mass-murderers.

Sure, movies like VHS, Cloverfield, and The Blair Witch Project have popularized the genre, but all of these are simply Hollywood make believe attempts at cashing in on the real thing. So, take a closer look at what inspired these kinds of films. Let's dust off the VCR, bust out the projector and turn out the lights to discover 15 of the creepiest found footage videos on the Internet.

15 Diver Finds Survivor In A Shipwreck

In the summer of 2013, South African scuba divers were assigned the grim task of searching a recently sunken Nigerian oil tanker for the water-logged remains of the crew. Shockingly, one member of the diving crew found more than he bargained for when he came upon an area of the ship that had somehow not become completely inundated with icy water from the depth of the Atlantic ocean. And To his surprise, he found a survivor! Thankfully, his helmet camera was rolling to catch the whole thing.

What Makes This Video Creepy?

Imagine being a part of this ship's crew and knowing the boat is going to sink, then being lucky enough to be in a part of the boat that has a pocket of air. The man was allegedly trapped in the air pocket for three days with no food or potable water. Amazingly, the man from the video, later identified as Harrison Okene, the ship's cook, was trapped 100 feet below the icy Atlantic ocean for three whole days before being rescued. The cook was in the bathroom when the boat capsized and sunk. The mixture of fear, relief and surprise when Okene sees the diver is almost overwhelming.

14 Last Known Footage Of Man Lost In French Catacombs

Let's face it, getting lost sucks. Getting lost in the dark is even worse. And, getting lost in a literal maze underneath a massive city has to be just about worst case scenario for anybody. Yes, that's right: Paris has a vast system of catacombs directly underneath most areas of the city and there are numerous stories of people getting lost and dying because curiosity and a lack of planning got the better of them. In come cases, these daring explorers are rescued. However, in many other instances they don't get as lucky and end up spending their final days walking in circles, most of the time in complete darkness, without food or water.

What Makes This Video So Creepy?

For starters, this video is flat-out terrifying because it depicts a nightmare scenario for most. However, beyond the initial creepiness, there are many off putting aspects to the footage. To this day, the man behind the camera is unknown. When the camera was later discovered, there was no body or other clues to indicate how or why this camera ended up in the catacombs. This has lead many skeptics to believe that the film is some sort of hoax. However, this doesn't explain the countless twists and turns, the rooms filled with human bones or who or what painted the arrows on the walls or made the “bone” arrows on the catacomb floor.

13 High School Murderers' Video Diary

This is like something right out of Hollywood. Brian Lee Draper and Torey Michael Adamcik were high school buddies who shared a secret interest in the macabre. Inspired by movies like Scream and horrible school shootings like Columbine, the two friends hatched a plan to murder one of their classmates, Cassie Jo Stoddart and film the whole thing.

What Makes This Video So Creepy?

Much like Stephen McDaniel and the Redwood City Arsonist, Draper and Adamcik decided to put their horrifying acts to film. The two sick friends recorded everything, including footage of one of the pair speaking with the future victim, Casey Jo, the day before they planned to stab her to death. In one chilling scene, the two explain why their classmate is a perfect victim. However, the most chilling scene shows the pair racing home after the murder. Both sound affected by their actions, but not in a bad way. The pair actually sounds exhilarated and excited by what they have done. Thankfully both murderers have been sentenced to life in jail where they will never be able to kill again.

12 Killer's Peeping Tom Video Before Murdering A Victim

Nothing is more creepy than glancing toward your darkened window at night and wondering if somebody is out there, masked by shadows, trying to peek in and watch you. Stephen McDaniel made this nightmare a reality for his victim, Lauren Giddings, in 2014. This video is just part of the evidence later found to link McDaniel to this horrifying crime. As the story goes, McDaniel actually knew Giddings and they even went to the same school and attended classes together. When he wasn't attending classes, he was stalking Giddings and plotting to murder her. At the very least we can study this mad man's footage to maybe prevent future tragedies.

What Makes This Video Creepy?

Within a day of sneaking around outside her windows and around her apartment, McDaniel gained entry into Giddings' home and strangled her to death. The following day he slowly disposed of her body. There's a long history of killers taping their victims and their crimes. Ultimately, McDaniel was linked to the crime and apprehended. The footage was great for illustrating his depravity and was used against extensively during the crime.

11 Killer Being Interviewed About A Murder BEFORE He Was Caught

Stephen McDaniel makes a second appearance on this list thanks to an interview he gave about the woman he killed. McDaniel attended college classes with his victim, Lauren Giddings and slowly formed an infatuation with her. We've already seen how dangerous this obsession with his classmate became, but it was downright alarming when footage of him surfaced giving an interview about his victim shortly after the crime. It is lucky that someone had the foresight to record this seemingly random interview so it could be used again during McDaniel's trial.

What Makes This Video So Creepy?

This footage is frightening for many reasons. McDaniel's calm demeanor as he describes the classmate he just killed is very disturbing. In his calm, almost monotone account of Giddings, he illustrates just how calculated and prepared he was in order to cover his tracks. He even goes as far as to speculate what could have happened to her and pretends to be deeply moved at the prospect that she might have been injured or killed.

10 The Elisa Lam footage

In regard to creepy found surveillance footage, you can't get much more odd than the case of Elisa Lam. Lam was a college student on a solo-vacation in Los Angeles. During her stay at the notorious Cecil Hotel she vanished and was not seen or heard from again until her dead body was found in a water tank located on the roof of the hotel. The Lam case is mysterious for many reasons, but surveillance footage of her, mere hours before her death, has fuelled found footage buffs, conspiracy theorists, and even occultists for years. At least somebody eventually leaked the surveillance footage so we can continue to speculate to this day.

What Makes This Video So Creepy?

Elisa Lam's behavior is almost immediately strange as she enters the elevator. Throughout the video, her body movements and mannerisms seem unnatural. Many viewers claim that she is being followed by an assailant, maybe even an employee of the hotel, who cannot be seen. Others claim that she is being tormented and provoked by a demonic or spiritual entity. One of the most eerie points in the video is when she begins pressing elevator buttons at random. Some viewers claim she is playing the “elevator game”-- a ritual which causes participants to move between different dimensions. The official report states that Lam suffered from mental illness and simply didn't take her medication. However, we may never really know what happened to Elisa Lam and why she ended up dead.

9 Allied Liberation Of A Nazi Concentration Camp (Warning: Video Is Disturbing)

The Holocaust will go down as one of the most gruesome points in human history. Although footage of the Holocaust exists, a lot is damaged due to age or the harsh conditions in which the film was stored. Also, unlike today, cameras were not as readily available and sending camera crews and news anchors onto the front lines of war was not common until later, so it is still somewhat rare to see moving images from that time. Although graphic, it is important to preserve these sorts of films so we can study history and learn from our mistakes.

What Makes This Video Creepy?

This video begins like many others you have probably seen in history class: valiant allied soldiers marching into freshly won territory, giving the thankful inhabitants fresh food and supplies. Although, the footage shifts tones about a minute in when we begin to see the harsh realities of war. Soon we see the malnourished prisoners of the Berger-Belsen Concentration Camp being freed. Many of these men, women, and children are rail-thin and close to death. On top of all this, we're shown dozens of piles of dead and decaying bodies. This video is just another reminder of how horrible World War II, and all wars for that matter, really was.

8 The Max Headroom Pirating Incident

On the night of November 22nd, 1987 television viewers in Chicago got more than they bargained for when an episode of Dr. Who was interrupted by high-tech hijackers broadcasting a strange video of a guy in a Halloween mask. Anybody alive in the 80s will recognize that the mask worn by the hijacker on screen is of Max Headroom, who at the time was an iconic character on TV, in commercials and even in movies. At the time, this incident made a lot of people scratch their heads. Thankfully, at least a few people were taping the show so we still have evidence of one of the creepiest hijackings in television history.

What Makes This Video So Creepy?

Just viewing the video sends chills down the spines of most viewers. The odd movements and sounds of the man behind the mask are, no doubt, extremely strange. However, the oddest part of this video is the fact that to this day, thirty years later, experts still have no idea who was behind the hijacking event or even how they pulled it off!

7 Last Known Footage Of John Wheeler

John Wheeler III was a presidential aide to both George W. Bush and Ronald Reagan. He was also a lawyer and consultant in Washington DC and the CEO of Mother's Against Drunk Driving. By all accounts Wheeler was, by all accounts, successful and respected among friends, coworkers, and peers. So it was very strange that in December of 2010 Wheeler's body was found in a Wilmington Delaware landfill. What's even stranger is the security camera footage that was found shortly before Wheeler's mysterious death. While this mystery continues to fuel speculations, at least we have this security footage to try and connect the dots.

What Makes This Video So Creepy?

Much like the Elisa Lam case, it is immediately clear that Wheeler's behavior is not normal. In the first part of the video, Wheeler's movements seem very indecisive. It's almost like he is intoxicated-- which would be sort of ironic considering his position with Mother's Against Drunk Driving. The video gets even weirder when it changes views. His movement is very unstable and he even uses the wall to steady himself. This is perhaps because he was only wearing one shoe and carrying the other. Strangely, the shoe he was carrying appeared to be ripped to shreds. As the video ends, Wheeler abruptly turns and uses the elevator instead of exiting through the door. About a week later Wheeler's body was discovered. But what happened to him on that brisk day at the end of the year 2010? Conspiracy theorists think he was just another victim of political assassination. Some reports say he was murdered by an angry neighbor. Unfortunately, we may never know the true reasons for his behavior or death.

6 Home Video Of 9/11 From An NYU Student

Video footage of September 11th, 2001 are pretty common on the internet these days. The vast majority of these videos come from news casts the day of the tragedy. Most of the amateur and accidentally captured footage has never made it to the surface for public viewing. That's why this video shot by former NYU student Caroline Dries is so valuable and interesting. Rather than something produced by a mainstream news organization and presented by a stoic anchor, here we have first hand footage of the terrorist attack and all of the confusion, fear and raw emotion that comes with it. Today, Dries is a notable television producer. Even before entering the industry, she did a great job of capturing this awful moment in history.

What Makes This Video So Creepy?

Beyond the eeriness of any 9/11 footage, this video is especially powerful because it is so raw. We can hear Dries and her roommate speculating what might have caused the sudden explosion and thick black smoke pouring out of the first tower. We can hear one of the girls talking to her mother on the phone and describing what she thinks are either chairs or people falling from the damaged building. The most intense moment of this found footage has to be about half way through the video with the second plane's impact. Out of all the footage shot that day, Caroline Dries' has to be some of the most high quality and terrifying ever released to the public.

5 Bjork Stalker, Ricardo Lopez's Video Diaries

It's very rare that we get to see intimate footage of a deranged mind with as much clarity and intimacy as we do with the video diary of the obsessed Bjork fan, Ricardo Lopez. Bjork herself, a widely known Icelandic musician, had probably never heard of Lopez before the fall of 1996 when his series of videos depicting his madness were released after he sent her an acid-spraying letter-bomb. Authorities were able to prevent the bomb from ever making it to Bjork after his body and collection of tapes were discovered.

What Makes This Video So Creepy?

Lopez was an extremely lonely and sick individual. His videos show a person completely cut off from society and left alone to his own anger, depression, and insanity. Although mentally unhinged, Lopez is also eerily methodical and calculated. His videos go from bad to worse as he documents himself creating the bomb, shaving his head and finally painting the upper half of his body with bizarre red and black stripes before putting a gun in his mouth and pulling the trigger.

4 Pilot Captures Final Few Moments Before Fatal Plane Crash

The moments before impact during a freak plane crash have to be some of the most horrifying. Such is the case in this video of a sudden plane crash back in the mid 1980s in rural Colorado. Pilot James “Jeb” Caddell and his passenger Ronald Wilmond were out for an afternoon flight near Tabernash, Colorado. Seemingly out of nowhere, the plane appears to be taking a sharp turn and then begins a rapid plunge into the lush forest below.

What Makes this Video So Creepy?

Besides the obvious reasons, this video is both shocking and sad because of the pilot's final warning of “Hang on, Ronnie!” right before impact. The remnants of the crash site were discovered over three years later by some hikers and the video was handed over to the FAA where it was analyzed by experts. The cause of the crash was determined to be a lack of lift under the aircraft and this video is now shown to beginner pilots and flight instructors as an educational tool.

3 The Redwood City Arsonist Videos

Just like the mind of sick and twisted Stephen McDaniel, the guys in this video were foolish enough to document their crimes for later use. We may never know why the two individuals in the video filmed their acts of vandalism and destruction, but authorities were thankful when one of them was dumb enough to leave a video, along with other evidence, near a crime scene at the height of the arson investigation.

What Makes This Video So Creepy?

The majority of the grainy footage shot on a shaky handheld camera shows a raging fire. However there is also slight commentary by the camera man and he seems quite taken by the work he has done. Later in the video, the arsonist is revealed...well, sort of. We see what looks like a teen in a creepy Halloween mask discussing his crimes. Thankfully, this was enough evidence to make arrests. Two teens, who apparently had a thing for fires and the Devil, were caught. One was sent to juvenile detention and the other was shipped off to a mental institution.

2 Pennhurst Footage

Alone, Pennhurst Asylum is creepy enough. Located in Southeastern Pennsylvania, close to Philadelphia, the facility was first opened to treat many of the state's mentally ill. Unfortunately, due to multiple reports of mistreatment and abuse, the facility was closed permanently. Thankfully, for urban explorers, the grounds and many of the buildings that made up the facility still exist today. Which is most likely why a group of college students ventured out to the dormant former psych-ward with a video camera.

What Makes This Video So Creepy?

The two parts of the video found on YouTube show a group of curious college coeds moving throughout the grounds of the defunct mental hospital. Initially, things in the video don't seem all that strange. Nobody disappears nor do items begin to move on their own. But around the 8:31 mark of the second video, the footage suddenly cuts from interior to exterior shots. The time of the video jumps from “4:14:05pm” to “4:14:42pm”. What happened in those almost 40 seconds and how and why did the camera person go back outside so quick? Even stranger, we only see the outside clip for a few seconds and then the footage goes black. The creepiness doesn't end there, though. After a few moments of darkness, the camera kicks back on at “8:07:44pm” on May 5th, 2008, a day after the video started. Who or what shot the last few minutes of seemingly nothingness? There is no real information on this video available. This had led some skeptics to believe the video is a fake. Still, others defend the video's credibility because nothing too unbelievable happens. The mysterious nature is enough to make the video very creepy indeed.

1 The “Genocide School” Video

Jared Lee Loughner made national and international headlines in 2011 when he severely injured a US Senator and killed an Arizona judge during his deadly shooting rampage. Additionally, he injured and murdered numerous bystanders. Leading up to this attack, months before Loughner created a series of bizarre and disturbing videos where he ranted extensively about his strange views on religion, education, currency, and conspiracy theories. Most of his view points are nearly incomprehensible, but eerily alarming nonetheless.

What Makes This Video So Creepy?

This particular video is a like a precursor to what would come of the violent killer. You can tell by his voice that he is extremely bothered and enraged by something. He goes into strange details about how colleges are illegal and against the United States Constitution. Loughner makes very little sense in his video and seems almost paranoid. After this video was discovered, Loughner was kicked out of the school. Little did authorities know that this wouldn't be the last time they would be dealing with him.

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