The 16 Best Horror Movies to Watch This Halloween
Horror is hot right now. Thriller TV shows are creeping onto top charts (we’re looking at you, American Horror Story and Stranger Things), and movies like It are blowing up at the box office (it's now the U.S.’s highest grossing horror movie of all time, ringing in more than $236 million domestically). We’ve become obsessed with the things that scare us.
So, in honor of our blossoming affection for all things that spook (leading up to the spookiest holiday of the year), we’ve rounded up the best scary movies to watch before Halloween. And I’m talking scary—like, you may want to intersperse them with your feel-good favorites from Halloweentown to Hocus Pocus or even a Harry Potter or two to maintain your sanity.
Scroll through below and let the movie marathon begin.
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The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
Anthony Hopkins goes full sadistic psychopath as the cannibal Hannibal Lecter in this famous flick, also featuring a very talented, very young Jody Foster. The duo both won Academy Awards for their performances. Stream on Hulu.
This classic Alfred Hitchcock film follows the twisted, lonely life of Norman Bates, a taxidermist running the eerie Bates Motel. The "shower scene" from the film is one of the most well-known, influential segments in horror film history. Stream on Amazon.
Get Out (2017)
This lauded horror flick took the movie scene by storm earlier this year as Jordan Peele's directorial debut. It follows interracial couple Chris and Rose. When Chris agrees to meet Rose's family for the first time on a weekend getaway, things go from unsettling to horrifying. Peele became the first African American writer/director to make $100 million on his debut film. Stream on Amazon.
Now the highest grossing U.S. horror film of all time, 2017's It has been killing it (pun intended) at the box office. Bill Skarsgard stars as Pennywise, the sadistic clown that feeds on children and their fears. Check your local theater for showtimes.
Little Suzy gets a rude awakening when she discovers the sinister truth about her new German ballet boarding school after a series of grisly murders. With a remake said to star Chloe Moretz, Dakota Johnson, and Tilda Swinton in the works, Synapse Films has worked hard to restore Dario Argento's original and bring it back to the big screen. Check Synapse Film's website for a screening location near you.
The Shining (1980)
"Here's Johnny!" The Shining is one of the most famous horror movies of all time, and with good reason. Actor Jack Nicholson transforms from a writer into a psychopath terrorizing his own family in this film. Stream on Netflix.
Fifteen years after 6-year-old Michael Myers brutally murders his sister, he escapes from a mental hospital and returns to his small town to continue killing. Stream on Amazon.
An American Werewolf in London (1981)
Two American college students visiting Britain are brutally attacked by a large wolf. The surviving friend has to deal with the truth of the encounter as he begins to heal and transform into no ordinary wolf. Stream on Amazon.
The Omen (1976)
Gregory Peck stars in this horror flick centered on his character's little, evil adopted son, Damien. As people close to the boy start to perish, Peck's character begins to dig deeper into his son's sketchy background. Stream on Amazon.
The Others (2001)
Nicole Kidman stars in this period horror film set during World War II. Kidman's character slowly begins to uncover something quite supernatural has occurred in the new home where she's moved herself and her children. The flick won eight Goya awards (Spain's main annual film awards). Stream on Amazon.
The Babadook (2014)
This Australian thriller follows a widowed mother who slowly begins to believe her young son when he claims the sinister monster from a children's book is lurking in their home. This was Jennifer Kent's directorial debut film for which she won two Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts awards. Stream on Amazon.
Trick 'r Treat (2007)
Breaking age-old Halloween traditions have dire consequences for the small town in this flick, thanks to one terrifying trick-or-treater. Stream on Amazon.
Saoirse Ronan stars in this Indie vampire movie about a mother-daughter duo of vampires who take refuge in a small British seaside town while on the run from a larger group of vampires. Stream on Amazon.
Steven Spielberg's Poltergeist follows three young kids who are able to interact with ghosts through a TV set in their new home. When the youngest goes missing, the older kids suspect the increasingly eerie ghosts. Stream on Amazon.
Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)
In Wes Craven's classic slasher film, a disfigured murderer called Freddie Krueger preys on Midwestern teens in their dreams and kills them in reality. Stream on Amazon.
Darren Aronofsky showcases Jennifer Lawrence in his latest psychological thriller, in which a couple's relationship is strained when strange guests begin to arrive at their home. Check your local theater for showtimes.