Whatever it is, be it gory and macabre, silly and irreverent, or creepy and unsettling, the genre of horror is equally varied as the multitude of ghosts, ghosts, and homicidal maniacs that go bump in the night.
Looking for the best horror movies available to stream on Netflix, Hulu, HBO Max, and Paramount Plus? No worries, weve got the answers. Weve combbed through the libraries of each of the major streaming platforms to bring you a list of our most recommended horror movies. From old classics to new favorites, here are 26 of the best horror movies you can stream right now.
Alone, a taut spine-chiller from John Hyams, is your classic woman-on-the-run thriller. Jessica (Jules Willcox), a recent widow, is about to move. A creepy guy (Marc Menchaca) appears to be following her on the road. She crashes and wakes up in his basement, causing your heart to pound.
Alone is available for streaming on Hulu or for free with ads on Tubi.
As a kid, I missed out on a unique and haunting experience with Childs Play. Instead, I knew the franchise only by its reputation, or more accurately, by the movie's foul-mouthed lead doll (for a long time, I thought the movie was named Chucky!). When I saw it this year, I was surprised to discover a subversive black comedy with legitimate scary thrills.
If you don't know the script for this series, it's pretty straightforward. Brad Dourif plays a serial murderer who is shot by a detective at a toy store and then performs a last-second move to move his soul from his own body to the body of a nearby doll. The cursed doll finds its way into the home of a young boy, who was sold unknowingly to a murderous murderous machine.
Childs Play is frightening, funny, and a tight 87 minutes, with insightful social commentary on how goods are sold to children and an absolutely unhinged performance by Dourif. He's a horror legend and a national treasure, and his performances are breathtaking.
Childs Play is available for download on AMC+ through Prime Video and Fubo, or for digital rental or purchase.
Christine, a high school horror film about a nerd who falls in love with a haunted car, is a fantastic Stephen King adaptation, and a standout in John Carpenters consistently excellent filmography.
Arnie (Keith Gordon) is an unpopular high schooler in California who only has one friend, a well-known football player named Dennis (John Stockwell, who in many ways is the film's emotional core), and people and vehicles alike become suspicious of anyone who might interrupt their time together. He also begins to dress and act more like a greaser dirtbag from the 1950s.
Christine's practicalities deserve special mention. The automobile can heal itself, an effect that is shown on film in full, glorious glory. The special effects team created rubber molds of Christine and then imploded it, running the shot in reverse in the film to invoke the effect of a self-healing vehicle. It's stunning to behold decades later.
Christine is a popcorn 1980s horror film stuffed with fantastic high school archetypes that are subverted just enough to keep things interesting, a haunting score by Carpenter, and a brief appearance by Harry Dean Stanton.
Christine is available for streaming on AMC+ through Prime Video, or for digital rental or purchase.
Cure, a 1997 horror film by Kiyoshi Kurosawa, follows Kenichi Takabe (Koji Yakusho), who is frustrated by an unresolved string of seemingly unrelated killings that all appear to be linked, despite none of the perpetrators knowing each other or having any reason to attack them in the first place. In Cure, violence is more a disease, rather than an individual act, as it is a virus, slicing innocent people's bloodstream.
On the Criterion Channel, Cure is available for viewing.
This beautifully shot slasher is among the best and most well-known in Italys giallo genre, displaying mystery, terror, and lots and lots of murder. The purposefully complex story more or less follows a jazz musician who witnesses a murder, but also includes psychic powers for good measure. Giallo films are, by design, strange, lurid, and full of gross and grimy things both their plots and their murders. But the incredible filmmaking and stunning colors make Deep Red a
Deep Red is available for free on Shudder and AMC Plus, as well as on Hoopla and Kanopy with no advertisements.
Eyes Without a Face
Georges Franjus' 1960 film is a masterclass in supernatural fantasy horror. Eyes Without a Face is at the same time haunting and beautiful. Scob's iconic face mask was later used in her role in the equally excellent Holy Motors many decades later.
On HBO Max and The Criterion Channel, Eyes Without a Face is available.
Izzy, a teen who lives isolated in the woods with only her mother, says she cant stand up for herself. That isnt exactly true. Hellbender works as a film both about the difficulties of adolescence and about the inherent terror of raising a child well.
Hellbender is an early contender for 2022's most visually stunning horror film thanks to a filmmaking family that produces, directs, and stars. They use forests, and the film's many mystic visions, for both serene beauty and creeping terror, moving effortlessly between the two to match their characters' fears and discoveries.
Hellbender is now available for streaming on Shudder and AMC Plus.
The Cottons are a married couple who move into the house of Larry's recently deceased brother, Frank (Sean Chapman), who later lures Julia to the house in order to completely regain his mortal form. The 1987 film is a must-see for horror enthusiasts.
Hellraiser is available for free on Prime Video, Shudder, or for free with a library card on Hoopla.
The Host was a Korean film based on Bong Joon's smash hit serial killer drama Memories of Murder. After its release, it was the highest-grossing South Korean film ever and won Best Film at the Asian Film Awards and the Blue Dragon Film Awards.
A massive mutated fish monster arises and kidnaps a young girl years after chemicals are dumped into the Han River. Her father (Song Kang-ho) sets out to find and rescue her, before being kidnapped by the American scientists responsible for its existence.
The Host is available on Showtime, for free with ads on Pluto TV, and for free with a library card on Hoopla or Kanopy.
Jacobs Ladder, a 1990 psychological horror film directed by Adrian Lynes, is played by Tim Robbins as a former American infantryman who is plagued with recurring nightmares of his time serving in Vietnam. As his dreams begin to manifest, seemingly claiming the lives of all those close to him, Jacob will have to plunge into a world of horrors beyond his wildest imagination where the only path out is through.
As I mentioned earlier on our list of the best Paramount Plus films, here are three of them.
Jacobs Ladder is a hallucinatory body horror thriller that is influenced by Francis Bacon and H. R. Giger's work and employs disturbing fast-motion in-camera special effects.
When watching this one, keep your head on a swivel. TE
On Paramount Plus, Jacobs Ladder is available for viewing.
Let the Right One In
A 12-year-old Swedish boy discovers a friend in a vampire who appears to be his age, but is actually an old one trapped in the body of a young child. Each viewing of the film presents something different from the previous. After college, the children's bond reminded me of the immanence of youth, and why growing up is a mixed blessing.
The film was inspired by John Ajvide Lindqvist's 2004 novel of the same name, which also inspired a 2010 Swedish adaptation, a comic-book prequel, and two stage plays. The latter has its own legacy, and it was eventually shown at St. Anns Warehouse in 2015.
Let the Right One In is available for free on Hulu and Prime Video, or for free with a library card on Hoopla and Kanopy.
Mad God would be a feature-length journey into a Boschian hellscape of scatalogical (and eschatological) horrors stacked on top of one another like the strata of an impossible tower of Babel, each layer oozing with pus, bile, blood, ichor, and excrement, all created by legendary visual effects director and artist Phil Tippett, who directed the original Star Wars trilogy, RoboCop, and Jurassic Park.
I could go on to describe the film's narrative, but in reality, it's all about personal interpretation. What matters in Mad God, most importantly, is the animation. Tippetts' masterpiece is a clear testament to the genre of horror's inherent cathartic potential.
On Shudder, Mad God is available to stream.
James Wan could have dipped into the conjuring and insidious franchises, as well as blockbuster roles with Furious 7 and Aquaman, in a similar manner: first she encounters another killer, then she starts dealing with psychotic episodes linked to her childhood imaginary friend Gabriel, and theeeeen its revealed.
The last twists of Malignant are some of the most satisfying lunacy of the year, and the acrobatic performer Marina Mazepa brings it all home in a display of horrific ballet. Wan's dream (nightmare?) has been released for everyone to see. Matt Patches
Malignant is available on HBO Max.
Night of the Living Dead
George A. Romeros' debut film, which was shot, directed, photographed, and edited by the nascent zombie filmmaker on a shoestring budget, only adds to the frightening atmosphere and grounded terror in this film. The group, led by the level-headed Ben (Duane Jones), has to deal with internal issues related to their predicament.
Night of the Living Dead is Romeros' first example of a jaw-dropping (and stomach-churning) practical impact combined with thoughtful social commentary. This sparked a lot of controversy when children were permitted to see the quite graphic film in theaters due to an error by the original theatrical distributor.
Night of the Living Dead is available for free on HBO Max, Peacock, and Paramount Plus, or for free with ads on Tubi, Pluto TV, Plex, Vudu, and The Roku Channel.
Here's a genre mashup for the ages from Director Julius Avery. Although World War II is not exactly new ground, Dead Snow, among others, has explored the Nazi zombie sub-genre of horror. But Overlord is exceptional on both levels as a war thriller following soldiers trapped behind enemy lines, and as a zombie horror film.
Overlord has a gifted ensemble cast that includes Jovan Adepo, who plays the brave paratrooper Edward Boyce. Wyatt Russell (Lodge 49), Pilou Asbk (Game of Thrones), John Magaro (First Cow), Bokeem Woodbine (Fargo), and Iain De Caestecker (Agents of SHIELD).
On Paramount Plus, Overlord is available for watching.
Pulse, a 2001 Japanese horror classic, is one of the most terrifying films I have ever seen. Set near the turn of the century, the film follows a group of Japanese teenagers who begin to notice strange visions and disturbing encounters related to a mysterious floppy disk their friend was investigating prior to his death. (I promise you will)
Pulse is available for free on Prime Video, on AMC+, and with a library card on Kanopy and Hoopla.
Rampant, a classic genre mashup for the age, combines a 17th-century Korean period drama (with all the political intrigue that those stories tend to include) with a fast-paced, bloody zombie apocalypse. When the arrogant young prince to the throne of the Joseon dynasty is called to return home after his older brothers' death, he uncovers an imminent zombie apocalypse and attempts to per
Rampant is available to watch on Hi-Yah!, or for free with ads on Plex, Tubi, PlutoTV, and FreeVee.
Rigor Mortis is a cool, bizarre Hong Kong film that falls somewhere between action and horror. Two spirits attempt to hold him captive before he can actually die, and a vampire hunter opens the entryway and performs an exorcism.
With Tubi and Vudu's ads, Rigor Mortis is available to watch for free on Peacock.
The early 2000s were a magical era when studios spent billions on horror films. Among the most famous is the American remake of Ringu, a Japanese film about a haunted videotape that kills the viewer seven days after they see it in a strange sequence of scenes. It is quite different from the original horror films of any other era because to its excellent sense of haunting fear.
On Paramount Plus, The Ring is available to watch.
Saint Maud is a type of reverse possession story. After her patient passes away, Maud becomes a dedicated Roman Catholic and seeks to save the womans soul. While the majority of the film is a shambles, it is one of the finest horror endings of the last decade.
Saint Maud is available on Prime Video and Paramount Plus.
This genre-bending amalgamation of influences and styles, all combining into an unforgettable 80-minute thriller with stunning characterization, remarkable set-pieces, and a whirlwind conclusion, is one of the most memorable new films of the year.
From my plea for you to see Saloum, here's what I'm saying.
The evocative costuming choices in Saloums introduce you to each of the three main characters: When you first meet them, the three main leads are wearing identical ponchos, but the camera stays focused on their footwear (one wears Versace, one wears sneakers, one goes barefoot) to let you know everything you need to know about this diverse group of friends and colleagues. [...] There's a reason this film is available on a horror-focused streaming service.
It's a good thing this movie is on this list. PV
Saloum is available for purchase on Shudder and AMC+.
Sinister, a true-crime thriller, follows Ellison Oswalt and his family as they move into a new house that may or may not be haunted by a demon. Rather than the well-meaning guy of the house that is usually at the center of this genre, Oswalt spends the whole film chasing his monster down and is only surpassed by his superbly nightmarish portrayals of the film's monster.
Peacock has a live stream of Sinister.
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre
Tobe Hoopers' 1974 film, which was on a budget of roughly $140,000, grossed more than $30 million at the box office, and is a terrifying, horrible fever dream that is forever lodged in the minds of those who see it.
The original Texas Chain Saw Massacre is well worth the little time invested to catch up on one of the most influential horror films ever made. PV
With free ad campaigns on Tubi and Freevee, the Texas Chain Saw Massacre is available on Shudder and Showtime.
Train to Busan
Imagine if passengers on the Snowpiercer train ate zombies instead of warding off ax-wielding thugs on their way to the one-percenter front carriage. It's a father-daughter story. It's a husband-wife tale. It's a people's story engulfed in a high-speed train, which only hope can be saved by a carefully placed jump into the baggage shelf.
Train to Busan is available for free on Prime Video, Peacock, and Shudder, as well as free with ads on Tubi, Pluto TV, and The Roku Channel, as well as free with a library card on Kanopy and Hoopla.
There arent that many things that you cant leave if you dont have a video call, as many people have learned over the past few years.
Unfriended is a tense teen horror film that takes place entirely on a characters laptop screen, and check out the excellent sequel Unfriended: Dark Web if you like it.
From our list of the best Netflix horror films:
Unfriended, a 2014 supernatural horror film, is filmed entirely from the perspective of a computer desktop. What initially appears to be a prank quickly blossoms into something much more horrific, as the mysterious stranger begins to reveal terrifying secrets about each of the group of friends before killing them off one by one.
Unfriended is available on Netflix.
Youre Next, a home invasion horror film, was a smash hit for filmmaker Adam Wingard (Netflixs Death Note, Godzilla vs. Kong) and writer Simon Barrett, who later teamed up for The Guest. When members of a wealthy family are invited to commemorate their wedding anniversary at a remote estate, things turn in a deadly direction when violent attackers wearing animal masks and using crossbows start killing them one by one.
PV is a slasher film with a touch of Agatha Christie mystery and a touch of family drama. The film also features acclaimed horror directors Ti West, Amy Seimetz, and Larry Fessenden in their roles.
Peacock is available to watch on Youre Next.
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