Scary Movies: The 50 Best Horror Movies of All Time

The world of horror movies has many fans all over the globe. The adrenaline, thrills, and uncertainty before the next jump scare moment have captivated people for decades. Yet the diversity of the genre, in particular, has generated so many great ideas.

Haunted and creepy with ghosts are just one way to make sure viewers get chills down their spines. Over the decades, this genre has also developed many classics that fans love even without the most modern technology. What are the best 50 horror movies of all time?

1. Psycho (1960)

It’s quite a benchmark to claim that a work by Alfred Hitchcock could actually be his masterpiece. Psycho should be at the top of the list of candidates, however. The story about the small motel on the side of the road could be so simple. But so is the horror that unfolds here.

The acting, the simple effect in these closed rooms, and the lasting shock that is transmitted from the actors to the audience make it one of the best horror films of all time.

2. The Shining [1980]

Stephen King is the king of horror. If he didn’t prove it with such films as “It,” which didn’t even make the top 20, he proved it very early on with The Shining. Watching Jack Nicholson slowly lose it in his role as the walls seem to get closer and closer and everything gets lost in a spectacle of madness and speed has made The Shining arguably the most interesting and referenced horror film in history.

3. The Ring (2002)

There are questions about whether the Japanese original or the American remake is better for a horror night out. But the story is the same: Naive people watch a video about a girl climbing out of a well. Shortly after, there’s a phone call, and the viewers in question are dead just a short time later. What’s behind it? And what is it about the mysterious girl in the strange video that keeps finding its way into the hands of the unwary?

Real horror – which convinces especially in the Japanese version with the nasty subtlety, before fear and terror also strike the viewers with vigor.

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4. The Exorcist 1973

When Regan suddenly starts acting strange, her mother doesn’t suspect anything at first. Only after several mysterious incidents does she know no more help and turns to the pastor. The latter examines the young girl and comes to the suspicion that a devil might possess her. Gradually it is revealed that, in fact, a dark being has taken possession of the young spirit and the attempt to expel him becomes a horror for all involved.

Another traditional film of the genre is often copied over time but never successfully achieved.

5. The Thing (2011)

The John Carpenter films enjoy a very high reputation among fans of the genre. This is due on the one hand to the great stories, on the other hand to the excellent performances of the actors. So it’s not least the performance of Kurt Russel that carries this uniquely good film.

The mix of subtle horror, unequivocal thriller, and memorable effects make The Thing a staple of horror film collections to this day. Yet he is not known to as many people as he should be. So on your next horror movie night, this work should definitely be on the list.

6. Alien (1979)

A film that doesn’t really want to fit into the series because it is also attributed to the sci-fi genre but has fought for its place with every right. When the crew of the Nostromo was sent to an abandoned alien ship, you could have guessed that it wouldn’t be quite so easy. However, the horror that gradually reveals itself to the investigators was staged by Ridley Scott, perhaps uniquely in film history.

There are many sequels and remakes of Alien. Still, the original remains impeccable in its facets and the mood captured, not only among sci-fi films but also unmatched among many other horror films.

7. [Rec] (2007)

Another horror movie from the supposed perspective of an amateur video. Spanish firefighters are called to a location before news breaks that a woman is acting strangely in her apartment. The crew of morning shows that followed firefighters on the job smell the story of a lifetime. Shortly after they enter the apartment, however, the real horror begins for everyone involved.

Rec is a real insider tip. However, you should definitely go for the Spanish original and stay away from the remake if you consider yourself a true fan of horror.

8. Rosemary’s Baby (2014)

Until this work, the use of satanic cults in horror films was almost non-existent. Roman Polanski’s work finally brought this subgenre of horror to the screens. From the perspective of the main character, who is pregnant and begins to fear for her own life and for the life of her baby, the audience must witness how the world around her becomes a unique horror.

It is above all the subtle psycho level, which ensures here a lasting disturbance and for the fact that Rosemary Baby belongs to the absolute classics of the genre until today.

9. The Blair Witch Project (1999)

The founder of found-footage horror films was, for many adults today, the entry into the genre of horror films. In this work, you follow a film crew through an ancient forest in search of a witch mentioned in the legends of the villagers. At first, everything seems normal, then the strange signs and phenomena begin, until even individual members of the trio disappear.

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It is primarily the slow build of horror, the desperation of the actors conveyed through the manner of the film, and the ending that makes Blair Witch Project one of the best horror films of all time to this day.

10. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2003)

If you’re looking for a horror movie that focuses on emphatic horror rather than the subtle arts, look no further than Texas Chainsaw Massacre. And Jason, the second killer, was born with Jason, who, along with Freddy Kruger, became a horror genre classic.

After more than 40 years, this film is still cherished. The teenagers, who just wanted their peace and were suddenly attacked by a crazed killer, convey the fear and terror with an impressive performance. The constant feeling that the horror could resume in the next moment might make you catch your breath a little sweaty after the film.

11. The Conjuring (2013)

Who is not afraid of strange-looking dolls? The inhabitants of an old house certainly don’t. The Conjuring is the start of a whole series of horror movies that first revolve around the ghost of a vengeful old nun and later transition into the world of the horror doll, Annabelle. In the first part, the buildup of the actual story begins, and while viewers still believe they are actually sitting in a documentary about life in such a place, the horror is just waiting to strike out of nowhere and surprise them.

Many jump scares are guaranteed in this movie. The other parts are not as impressive, but The Conjuring has become a modern classic.

12. Jeepers Creepers (2001)

Above all, the song matches the title of the film and has burned itself into the heads of many viewers to this day. Whenever it is heard, you know that something is going to happen that will not end well for the actors on the screen. The sceneries are not so much made to be scary, but they are full of action and leave the viewer with some uncertainty until the end.

The ending is a bit predictable, but the film’s overall mood has made Jeepers Creepers one of the horror films that can still be found in many good collections today.

13. The Hills Have Eyes (2006)

Actually, the actors in this movie just want to spend a vacation in their small village somewhere in the American pampas. You quickly realize, however, that you’re not alone. The people, the stalkers who seem to be watching them 24/7, are not only hard to catch, they are apparently the followers of a cult as well. A fight for life and death quickly begins.

The Hills Have Eyes has the right mix of action and horror, a consistent approach to creepy moments, and thoroughly good acting for a horror film.

14. Silent Hill (2006)

The film and its accompanying video game develop a world of horror all their own. In search of her daughter, a woman goes to a small village that doesn’t seem to fit in very well. As the first fog rolls in and sirens can be heard in the distance, she doesn’t yet know the drama she’s gotten into.

Silent Hill also works with a good alternation of action and subtle horror, ensuring that viewers are always on the edge of their seats, dreading what might come in the next cut. An often underrated but very good horror movie.

15. A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

One, two, Freddy comes along. Three, four, lock your door. A little song that has made a lasting impression on the minds of many horror fans from the 80s and 90s. The myth of Freddy Kruger remains to this day and even though many remakes and sequels have been made, arguably no part comes close to the original.

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By the time the characters realize that the horror is waiting in their dreams, there is complete confusion in the film. And Freddy remains to this day one of the most popular and well-known creatures in the entire world of horror.

16. Paranormal Activity (2009)

What makes this work so special is the subtlety that can be found behind the horror. The entire film appears as if it actually came from the protagonist’s amateur camera. Only the shots at night bring the full horror to the audience in a slow build-up and finally in a dynamic and brutal finale. You can watch a demon’s possession of a house become a trap for the inhabitants.

Paranormal Activity created a new hype with this film and successfully followed the pseudo-amateur films like Blair Witch Project. In the meantime, there are several spin-offs of the series in other countries and various sequels, in which the story is told further.

17. Scream (1996)

Scream is a classic of the modern genre of horror thrillers and has had a lasting impact on the development of psychological thrillers in modern times. The story of a serial killer who, for no apparent reason, ravages a small American town has thrilled millions of fans around the world and spawned several sequels.

More than anything, the uncertainty keeps viewers spellbound until the end. Who is the killer? Who is his next victim? And why is he committing all these brutal crimes that are brought to the screen with more than one jump scare moment? Scream spreads fear and remains a classic.

18. Poltergeist (1982)

Another classic of horror history and one of the first works by Steven Spielberg to get international attention. The story of the house haunted by a strange and malevolent being has become an eternal source of pop culture in this horror film. Many of the upcoming movies have referenced Poltergeist in some way or another.

The film is still a masterpiece of horror with the simplest means. The many quiet pauses, the uncertainty of what will happen in the next moment, and the steady buildup of subtle horror without much action set a standard for the genre.

19. 28 Days Later (2002)

The genre of horror includes not only movies that are scary but also zombie movies. While these don’t include the classic haunting, they are absolutely fitting for the genre with their particular atmosphere. Cillian Murphy’s performance in 28 Days Later is a great example of this.

Shortly after a virus broke out in the United Kingdom, a large part of the population disappeared. The surviving population has to struggle to survive the zombie invasion, and more than once, only a hair’s breadth saves the players. Sometimes it is not enough.

20. Cabin in the Woods (2012 Movie)

Five friends go on a trip to a mountain cabin and just want to have a good time. Shortly after their arrival, they notice that something is wrong. By the time they decide to leave the place.

A wacky story in which not only the most diverse creatures from the world of horror appear but also ancient gods play their role, and actors, as well as viewers, drive the adrenaline into the veins. A really good horror film that is a little more complex in structure and storyline.

21. Jaws (1975)

22. Hereditary (2018)

23. Us (2019)

24. Saw

25. The Strangers (2008)

26. Get Out (2017)

27. Evil Dead (2013)

28. Candyman (1992)

29. Halloween – The night of horror

30. Bird Box (2018)

31. A Quiet Place (2018)

32. Carrie (2013)

33. Suspiria (2018)

34. The Woman In Black (2012)

35. The Mist (2007)

36. It Follows (2015)

37. The Purge (2013)

38. The Descent (2005)

39. The Ritual (2017)

40. The Others

41. The Babadook (2014)

42. Hostel (2005)

43. Sinister (2012)

44. The Witch (2015)

45. Hellraiser (1987)

46. The Invitation (2016)

47. Knock Knock (2015)

48. Friday the 13th (2009)

49. Final Destination

50. The House That Jack Built (2018)

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