Whispering Ghosts

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There's something about horror movies and that annoying and/or creepy whispering noise in the background. It seems to simply be a soundtrack thing; seldom do the characters actually hear it. Maybe it indicates that the supernatural horror is nearby? Perhaps it's simply indicative of the characters' paranoia? Who knows, but everyone uses it.

Examples of Whispering Ghosts include:


  • The American remake of Shutter was both extremely egregious and random in its use of the whispers. Hell, the whispers were used both so often and in such strange contexts that they were more likely indicative of the ghost not being present in the scene.
  • Friday the 13 th has "ki ki ki ma ma ma". Yeah, probably the Ur Example considering how that movie predated most other uses.
  • The newer The Amityville Horror movie. Here they symbolize Ketchum messing with the husband's head.
  • Whenever a Dementor shows up in the Harry Potter movies, whispers are heard in the background.
    • Also, whispering can be heard from the arch in the Department of Mysteries.
  • Lots of this in the background noise for Black Swan, along with what sounds like fluttering wings, to symbolize the protagonist's mental state.

Live-Action TV

Video Games

  • Quake's soundtrack either used these, or had other effects to play creepy music.
  • Spirit Healers in World of Warcraft, if you're dead along with them.
    • Such whispering noises also appear in some of the haunted areas in the game, though you tend to have to have your sound settings set so that you can pick them up along with the other noises that plays.
  • Used a lot in Chzo Mythos as background music.
  • Call of Cthulhu: Dark Corners of the Earth uses these in the sewer section. Creepy as hell.
  • In X-Men Legends 2, the Madri Temple has this as part of its background music.
  • Featured in at least one level of Blood.
  • Dead Space has this by the truckload.
  • Happens every time a ghost is near in Fatal Frame.
  • In Morrowind, whispers emanate from the ash pits in Tribunal temples and ancestral tombs.
  • From time to time, you hear harsh voices from nowhere in Eternal Darkness.
    • That and a woman quietly crying in the background. Well until she starts wailing at the top of her lungs.
  • In Luigis Mansion you can hear the ghosts mumbling in the background of darkened areas.
  • Thief's undead levels. Join us. JOIN US NOW! Killing the wraith does calm down the more aggressive whispering.

Real Life

  • Employed in Ripley's Haunted Adventure by means of sound positioning so that as you walk through one the hallways, you start getting voices whispering from right behind you.