40 Best Horror/Thriller Films


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As many of you know, I am a huge fan of horror movies. If asked what movie I would like to watch, I will riddle off thrillers and horrors dating back to the 1920’s. This list is composed of 40 horrors/thrillers that I personally enjoy, either for its plot or the fact I believe it’s just plain scary. If there is a movie that you thought was really good, that is not on here, either I have never watched it, which is extremely possible, or I didn’t think it was that good.

40. The Strangers (2008) – A couple stalked and victimized by total strangers in masks in their isolated vacation home, may not have been the most complex plot, but it was surely a movie that I found interesting enough to watch twice. It surely made me check that my doors were locked.

39. Alien (1979) – Before you guys think this movie is on here because I liked it or found it entertaining, I regret to inform you that is not the case. I hated this movie and felt as though my life was being slowly drawn out of me while watching it however, it is on this list because a lot of people found it entertaining and the plot about aliens was not completely terrible. I would not suggest watching it, but do what you want.

38.  Leprachaun (1993) – I never found the leprechaun movies anything more than a joke. However, I did like the fact that the movie used the childhood fable of leprechauns to try to scare people. The original leprechaun story was created to teach kids not to steal, telling kids that leprechauns were nice until their gold stolen,causing them to turn evil and look for revenge. This movie definitely capitalized on that story.

37. Let the right one in (2008) – My only problem with this movie was the fact that it was a romantic horror film. Aside from that minor issue, this movie was good overall. I would not say that it is a must see, but if you are ever bored, this movie can keep you entertained.

36. The Mummy (1932) – I loved this movie. I never found mummys scary until watching this film. It was the first black and white film I had ever watched and I thought that it was extremely well done for being so old. Definitely a classic!

35. Dracula (1931) – I absolutely love the original Dracula movie. This movie captured the myth of vampires perfectly, as the blood sucking undead that stalked their prey with no care. Without a doubt a black and white classic!

34. Silent Hill (2006) – A word of advice: If your child is sleepwalking and you’re really concerned, do not take her to the town that she keeps calling in her sleep, take her to a doctor! Also, if you end up losing the child in the town, and a woman in that creepy town tells you that a demon knows the whereabouts of said child, don’t ask her to help you locate the demon, call missing persons, get the hell out of that town and attend a church service!

33. Rosemary’s Baby (1968) – The only word I can think of to describe this movie, is creepy! After moving into a New York City apartment, a couple notices their neighbours are not what they seem. After the suicide of a young woman who was living with the elderly neighbours next door, the wife of the couple, Rosemary, becomes extremely reluctant to make friends with her neighbours. However, when her husband a struggling actor, makes a deal with them to get his wife pregnant with a demon child in return for them advancing his career, Rosemarys life is blown to hell. This movie is a wonderful addition to your DVD collection!

32. Audition (1999) – I liked this film because it messed with my psyche. After being convinced to start dating again by his 17-year-old son, a man enters a life of hell when the woman he falls for is not at all what she appears to be. Definitely a must see!

31. Child Play 2 (1990) – It might not have been as good as the original, but then again what sequel aside from Godfather is? Child Play 2 followed the plot of Child Play very well, sticking to the killer doll who is trying to possess Andy to become human again.

30. The Tenant (1976) – This movie was creepy… in a good way! We all know the plot of haunted houses, but this movie took it to a whole new level. After renting an apartment that was recently inhabited by a woman who jumped out of the window in an attempt to obviously kill herself, the new tenants quiet life is blown to hell. Lets just say, be careful the next time you think about moving!

29. Disturbia (2009) – I am aware a lot of people did not like this movie, and I admit the only reason I watched it was because Shia Lebouf was in it however, this movie way exceeded my expectations. Disturbia dealt with a troubled teen who was put on house arrest after assaulting his teacher. During his sentence, he becomes bored and starts spying on his neighbours, learning their deep dark secrets. However, there was one secret he should not have learned, the fact his next door neighbor was a serial killer. This movie was entertaining at every turn!

28. Saw (2004) – Want to play a game? Although I believe that Saw is going completely over board with the number of sequels it has, I have to admit the plot of this movie is great. Kidnapping people and making them play games to survive is interesting. Definitely a fan!

27. Childs Play (1988) – Did Chucky ruin your childhood as much as it did mine? One of my older sisters is terrified of dolls, so when I heard of a movie where the killer was a doll, I bought it quicker than you could say Chucky however, this movie caused me to lock every toy I owned in a room for months. Chucky focuses on a fictitious serial killer named Charles Lee Ray, who practiced in voodoo. When Ray is being pursued by police, he hides in a toy store and uses a spell to transfer his soul into one of the dolls. Afterwards, the doll is sold to a kid by the name of Andy, and from that day forward, havoc wreaks.

26. Dawn of The Dead (1978) – Plain and simple, I enjoyed the zombie apocalypse. I thought the movie was really well done and that everyone should watch this movie at least once!

25. Scream (1996) – Revenge plots are always great! The Scream movies are definitely in my DVD collection. I loved the fact that the killers were always a big reveal, something to look forward to, and that they always voiced why they were killing. You know what they say about the “serial killers prerogative”!

24. Nosferatu (1922) – Now I am aware this movie is extremely old, but it definitely deserves to be on this list. Nosferatu started those rumors about vampires being from Transylvania. It was based on the story of Dracula and if you like Vampires, and I mean the mythical blood sucking beasts, not the love struck teenagers that sparkle in the sun, I advise you to watch this movie!

23. The Devil’s Backbone (2001) – This movie gives me chills! It is about a poor 12-year-old boy who moves into a haunted orphanage after his father dies.

21. Amityville Horror (1979) – This movie made me scared to move anywhere. The movie tells a tale of a family that moves into a house that is apparently haunted after a man shoots and kills six members of his family a year earlier. This movie is said to be based on a true story.

20. Hannibal Lecter (1981) – This is a movie that everyone who in the recent months has talked about zombies due to the unfortunate killings caused by bath salts or super ganja, should see. Hannibal Lecter loosely used the story of Ed Gein, the cannibalistic serial killer that would use body parts of his victims as household items and who would cut the skin off of his female victims to make a female body suit, in which he would walk around his farm in. I regret to inform everyone that believes there is a zombie apocalypse coming that there are people in this world that enjoy eating human flesh. They are and always have been called Cannibals, not Zombies!

19. Stephen King’s “It” (1990) – I could have found this frightening plainly off the reason I suffer from coulrophobia and will pass out, run or cry at the sight of clowns, but this is a movie that definitely gave me nightmares. I personally do not own this movie, nor will I ever buy it, but if you do not share in my irrational fear, I feel that this movie is a must see!

18. The Descent (2005) – This movie is the exact reason why I do not do things like hiking or expeditions, that and I am lazy! After a cave expedition goes awry, the six female friends become trapped and killed off by a mutant predators.

17. The Orphan (2009) – The plot of the Orphan dealt with the adoption of a “9 year old” girl by a family still grieving over the death of one of their children. This movie took unexpected twists to whole new levels. When I say I did not see the ending of this movie coming, I mean it! The orphan girl turns out to be a psychotic woman looking for love from the fathers that adopt her, and when the feelings are not reciprocated, she kills them. Isabelle Fuhrman did an excellent job playing Esther! Definitely a movie for your DVD collection.

16. The Exorcism of Emily Rose (2005) – This movie is just frightening. When a girl by the name of Emily Rose dies after a priest performs an exorcism on her, a lawyer who takes the case of negligent homicide uncovers so really freaky things. This story is apparently based on the life of Anneliese Michel.

15. The Crazies (2010) – I found this movie enjoyable. I would not necessarily call it scary, however I thought it was interesting. A small town plagued by a mysterious toxin that the government is trying to keep secret? Sounds good enough. A must see!

14. The Ring (2002) – Everyone knows about The Ring, and the mysterious video tape that will kill you in 7 days. It might have been extremely weird, but the plot was extremely unusual and the movie was scary.

13. The Orphanage (2007) – This movie made me laugh, not because it was funny, because the fact that the womans life is turned upside down after doing something so nice as opening an orphanage for handicapped kids. This movie however, is extremely scary! I always feel that movies are scarier when children are involved.

12. The Hills Have Eyes (1977) – Wes Craven really out did himself with this movie. We all know Wes Craven for having some of the scariest and creepiest movies out there, but The Hills Have Eyes was something else. This movie is the reason why I fly everywhere. On deciding to take a road trip to California, a family’s car breaks down, resulting in them being tortured and killed by violent mutant creatures.

11. Texas Chainsaw Massacre (1974) – It may have been gory, and not a movie to watch while eating, but it is definitely a movie that I will always watch if on TV. I first watched Texas Chainsaw Massacre after watching Hannibal Lecter and reading about Ed Gein, the cannibalistic serial killer. While Hannibal Lecter focused more on the fact that Ed Gein would eat part of his victims, Texas Chainsaw Massacre focused on the fact that he would use their body parts in his everyday life. Gein would use the top of his victims skulls as bowls, and have body suits made out of skin, and just take body parts and use them as if they were inanimate objects. Definitely a movie to watch if you like true stories!

10. 28 Days Later (2002) – After a mysterious disease spreads throughout the UK killing the majority of the area, the movie focuses on 4 survivors trying to cope with the disaster and avoid the flesh-eating zombies that are trying to kill them.

09. Friday the 13th (1980) – Pamela and Jason Vorhees had to have been the weirdest Mother-Son couple in the history of horror films. Friday the 13th screams Jason, but what we as the viewers must remember, is that Jason’s mother Pamela was the killer in the original 1980 Friday the 13th. Now I know that when their child is hurt, parents will go to any length to protect them or avenge them, but I do believe that Ms. Vorhees took it extremely overboard. However, it was her psychotic behavior that made the movie Friday the 13th popular enough for the 11 movies that followed. Friday the 13th will forever be a fan favorite!

08. Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) – The Infamous Freddy Krueger! Nightmare on Elm Street was the movie that had everyone scared to go to sleep. With the story of a pedophile burned to death, only to come back with burned skin, razor-sharp claws, a striped sweater and a fedora that kills you in your dreams, one was unsure whether to laugh, or go and sleep in the same bed as your parents. I personally found the plot of Nightmare on Elm Street fantastically unique. The original 1984 version, is one that is a must see!

07. Halloween (1978) – I was never sure who freaked me out more, Jason Vorhees or Freddy Krueger, until the faithful day I watched Halloween. Now I do not remember why I thought watching Halloween was a good idea, but what I do remember is that after seeing the 1978 original, I was absolutely positive that no one creeped me out more that Micheal Myers. I don’t know why I found Michael so crazy, probably because I was not sure why he was killing. I knew Jason wanted revenge for being bullied and “drowned” at camp, and Freddy wanted revenge for being burned alive but, what did Michael want?

06. The Grudge (2004) – “An American nurse living and working in Tokyo is exposed to a mysterious supernatural curse, one that locks a person in a powerful rage before claiming their life and spreading to another victim”. This movie was far scarier than I had originally anticipated. It was kind of like The Exorcist and The Ring mixed up into one.

05. Insidious (2011) – The next time someone tells you that no good horror movies have been made lately, you can hand them this DVD. I found the plot of Insidious extremely interesting, because it was not your basic demon plot. The plot went much deeper than your average family curse plot, making the story intriguing. Not only was the plot good, but the movie was genuinely scary. I’m not sure if it was because we weren’t sure what the demons wanted at first or why they were targeting that family or really, who was the main character? However, James Wan did an excellent job in making sure that we were scared right up to the very last moment of the movie, even after we thought things were okay.

04. The Shining (1980) – Jack Nicholson blew me away in this movie. After arriving to a hotel for the winter with his family, an unknown forces turn the father crazy and violent.

03. The Exorcist (1973) – Name is self-explanatory. When a girl is said to be possessed by a demon, her mother enlists the help of priests. This movie was one the scariest movies ever made, and is not a movie you should watch if you believe in ghosts and demons.

02. 13 Ghosts (2001) – By far one of the scariest movie I have ever watched, probably because I watched it when I was 10 years old, and ever since then, anything having to do with ghosts has terrified me to no end. This film focuses on a man and his family, who after his uncle dies, inherits his beautiful mansion that comes completely furnished with couches, beds and ghosts. Definitely not a movie to watch by yourself!

01. Psycho (1960) – Now I know this is probably not what you guys expected as the number one choice, but before you get mad at me, let me explain why Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho is number one on this list. In my opinion, this movie is without a doubt, the best thriller ever created! I know the sound of a black and white thriller may not sound enticing, especially because we are in the 21st century however, I assure you that Alfred Hitchcock did a fantastic job with the plot of this movie. Psycho was partly based on the crimes of Ed Gein, a cannibalistic serial killer who went crazy after his Mother died. Hitchcock used Gein’s obsession with his mother to create the character Norman Bates, a disturbed hotel owner who has DID (Dissociative Identity Disorder), meaning he has two personality’s, one being himself and the other being his overbearing, psychotic mother. This movie is a classic!

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Comments

  1. great information and a heads up

  2. 13 ghosts above exorcist pff glad you’re not a film critic

    • femiolurin@live.com says:

      Guess so ! I explained why though, and The Exorcist is 3rd. Still a great movie. This is not only on what is scary, its also about the plot and my opinion

  3. Was there a movie in ’81 called Hannibal Lecter? I looked it up and couldn’t find one. The first novel was written in ’81 (The Red Dragon) and the movie of it (Manhunter, which was not as popular as its sequel Silence of the Lambs) came out in 1986. Were you simply referring to the character? I’d like more info; if there is in fact a movie in the series I have not seen, I’d want to watch it.

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