We all have different answers as to what the films we consider scariest are. Obviously, this is because we’re all frightened by different things. Some are scared of gore or ghosts, while others get caught up in found footage flicks. Some people can’t handle movies about the Devil and possession, while others find psychological torments more terrifying. In honor of Halloween and the whole month of October, I figured I’d tell you my fears, and reveal to you the 10 horror films that frightened me the most!
V/H/S – V/H/S 2
I’m cheating and grouping these 2 films as a collective #10 because they both scared me for the same reason… I went in blind. I had no clue what V/H/S was about, or that it was even an anthology horror. But when I watched it, the result was genuine fun, suspense, and scares. I repeated this process, staying away from reviews and such for V/H/S 2, and the result was the same. The best segments? Amateur Night, 10/31/98, and Safe Haven.
The Hills Have Eyes 2006
This movie was a swift, thrilling survival horror that kept me tense throughout. The plot itself hails from B-movie territory, but director Alexandre Aja was able to pull away from the silliness of that land and the result was one of the best, and one of the scariest, horror remakes there’s been.
The Sixth Sense
Revisited as an adult, this movie still gave me the chills. The girl under the bed still terrifies and I call bluff on anyone who wasn’t at least surprised by she or any other of the ghosts who pop in and out of the flick.
Night of the Living Dead
The original zombie film is a classic for a million reason, but in my book it’s great because it’s still scary even today. I remember the first time I watched it as a kid alone, I had to turn it off half way through because I couldn’t handle the fear. Today, I still respect the uneasy feeling the film can give me.
The film that makes the Halloween season complete for horror fans! The music, the atmosphere, and the genuine creepiness of Michael make this a true classic and, like NOTLD, the film is still capable of being eerie.
Maybe surprising, because this isn’t a horror movie at all, but rather a documentary about a series of child abductions and murders still unsolved. But I’m including it here because of how chilling it was! A creepy forest, an abandoned mental institution, accounts of the urban legend boogeyman Cropsey? How could you watch this and not feel uneasy?
28 Days Later
I don’t consider it a zombie film myself, but I feel like the only reason this movie was made was because someone heard how scared I was by NOTLD and decided to push that to the extreme. I was on the edge of my seat for pretty much the entirety of this film and it took me a while after it ended to shake my feeling of hopelessness.
A horror mockumentary that actually succeeds in coming across like a real doc! I watched it in the middle of the day on a whim and found myself to unnerved and captivated. The story may burn too slowly for some, but for me, and as far as ghost stories go, I thought it a great balance of modern mystery and classic creepiness.
The Blair Witch Project
Love it or hate it, everyone knows it and can’t deny its impact on the genre. Personally, I love it. It was scary and set the bar for the wave of found footage horror still flooding out after it. The movie effectively made what was unseen terrifying enough that I secretly didn’t want to see anything at all.
Tense and unnerving, The Strangers is one of the best home invasion horrors to date. Based off notes from several true stories, including the Cielo Drive and Keddie Cabin Murders, it was a cleverly paced thriller that led to a grim ending most horror fans weren’t used to seeing. I recall that in the theater, as the end credits ran, I felt cold and unsettled. As far as my own tastes go, The Strangers is one of the absolute scariest films I’ve ever seen.
Honorable mentions: Funny Games, Poltergeist, and Ju-On.