Top 250 Horror Movies (#1-#50)

1 - The Exorcist (1973)

When a teenage girl is possessed by a mysterious entity, her mother seeks the help of two priests to save her daughter.

Directed by William Friedkin
Written by William Peter Blatty (from the novel by William Peter Blatty)
Starring Ellen Burstyn, Jason Miller and Linda Blair
Genre: Possession, Demons

2 - The Texas Chain Saw Massacre (1974)

Two siblings and three of their friends en route to visit their grandfather's grave in Texas end up falling victim to a family of cannibalistic psychopaths.

Directed by Tobe Hooper
Written by Kim Henkel and Tobe Hooper
Starring Marilyn Burns and Allen Danziger
Genre: Slasher, Cannibalism

3 - The Descent (2005)

A caving expedition goes horribly wrong, as the explorers become trapped and ultimately pursued by a strange breed of predators.

Directed by Neil Marshall
Written by Neil Marshall
Starring Shauna Macdonald and Natalie Mendoza
Genre: Survival, Creatures

4 - The Ring (2002)

A journalist must investigate a mysterious videotape which seems to cause the death of anyone in a week of viewing it.

Directed by Gore Verbinski
Written by Ehren Kruger (from the novel by Koji Suzuki)
Starring Naomi Watts and Martin Henderson
Genre: Supernatural Mystery, Curses

5 - Halloween (1978)

Fifteen years after murdering his sister on Halloween night 1963, Michael Myers escapes from a mental hospital and returns to the small town of Haddonfield to kill again.

Directed by John Carpenter
Written by John Carpenter and Debra Hill
Starring Donald Pleasence and Jamie Lee Curtis
Genre: Slasher

6 - The Shining (1980)

A family heads to an isolated hotel for the winter where an evil spiritual presence influences the father into violence, while his psychic son sees horrific forebodings from the past and of the future.

Directed by Stanley Kubrick
Written by Stanley Kubrick and Diane Johnson (from the novel by Stephen King)
Starring Jack Nicholson and Shelley Duvall
Genre: Hauntings, Paranormal

7 - The Blair Witch Project (1999)

Three film students vanish after traveling into a Maryland forest to film a documentary on the local Blair Witch legend, leaving only their footage behind.

Directed by Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sanchez
Written by Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sanchez
Starring Heather Donahue, Joshua Leonard and Michel C. Williams
Genre: Handheld, Witchcraft, Woods

8 - Black Sunday (La Maschera del demonio) (1960)

A vengeful witch and her fiendish servant return from the grave and begin a bloody campaign to possess the body of the witch's beautiful look-alike descendant, with only the girl's brother and a handsome doctor standing in her way.

Directed by Mario Bava
Written by Ennio De Concini and Mario Serandrei (from a tale by Nikolay Gogol)
Starring Barbara Steele, John Richardson and Andrea Checchi
Genre: Witchcraft

9 - The Haunting (1963)

A scientist doing research on the paranormal invites two women to a haunted mansion. One of the participants soon begins to lose her mind.

Directed by Robert Wise
Written by Nelson Gidding (from the novel by Shirley Jackson)
Starring Julie Harris, Claire Bloom and Richard Johnson
Genre: Hauntings, Ghosts

10 - Night of the Living Dead (1968)

The nation panics as the dead suddenly come back to life. A group of survivors barricade themselves in an old farmhouse in an attempt to remain safe from these bloodthirsty, flesh-eating monsters.

Directed by George A. Romero
Written by John A. Russo and George A. Romero
Starring Duane Jones and Judith O'Dea
Genre: Zombies

11 - Alien (1979)

After a space merchant vessel perceives an unknown transmission as a distress call, its landing on the source moon finds one of the crew attacked by a mysterious lifeform, and they soon realize that its life cycle has merely begun.

Directed by Ridley Scott
Written by Dan O'Bannon and Ronald Shusett
Starring Sigourney Weaver and Tom Skerritt
Genre: Aliens, Space

12 - John Carpenter's The Thing (1982)

A crew in Antarctica finds a neighboring camp destroyed and its crew dead. Whatever killed them is nowhere to be found, unless it's hidden in plain sight.

Directed by John Carpenter
Written by Bill Lancaster (from the story by John W. Campbell Jr.)
Starring Kurt Russell and Wilford Brimley
Genre: Aliens, Shape-shifters

13 - Scream (1996)

A killer known as "Ghostface" begins killing off teenagers, and as the body count begins rising, one girl and her friends find themselves contemplating the "rules" of horror films as they find themselves living in a real-life one.

Directed by Wes Craven
Written by Kevin Williamson
Starring Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox and David Arquette
Genre: Slasher, Parody

14 - Hellraiser (1987)

An unfaithful wife encounters the zombie of her dead lover; the demonic cenobites are pursuing him after he escaped their sadomasochistic underworld.

Directed by Clive Barker
Written by Clive Barker
Starring Ashley Laurence, Andrew Robinson and Clare Higgins
Genre: Demons, Gore

15 - The Phantom of the Opera (1925)

A mad, disfigured composer seeks love with a lovely young opera singer.

Directed by Rupert Julian
Written by Frank M. McCormack, Elliot J. Clawson and Raymond L. Schrock (from the novel by Gaston Leroux)
Starring Lon Chaney, Mary Philbin and Norman Kerry
Genre: Hauntings, Madmen, Silent Film, Gothic

16 - A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

The monstrous spirit of a slain janitor seeks revenge by invading the dreams of teenagers whose parents were responsible for his untimely death.

Directed by Wes Craven
Written by Wes Craven
Starring Heather Langenkamp, Robert Englund and Johnny Depp
Genre: Nightmares, Demons

17 - Night of the Demons (1988)

Ten teenagers party at an abandoned funeral parlor on Halloween night. When an evil force awakens, demonic spirits keep them from leaving and turn their gathering into a living Hell.

Directed by Kevin S. Tenney
Written by Joe Augustyn
Starring Cathy Podewell, Amelia Kinkade, Linnea Quigley and Alvin Alexis
Genre: Demons, Hauntings, Possession

18 - Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1956)

A small-town doctor learns that the population of his community is being replaced by emotionless alien duplicates.

Director: Don Siegel
Written by Daniel Mainwaring (from the serial by Jack Finney)
Starring Kevin McCarthy and Dana Wynter
Genre: Aliens, Doppelgangers, Conspiracies

19 - Aliens (1986)

Ellen Ripley is rescued by a deep salvage team after being in hypersleep for 57 years. The moon that the Nostromo visited has been colonized, but contact is lost. This time, colonial marines have impressive firepower, but will that be enough?

Directed by James Cameron
Written by James Cameron, David Giler and Walter Hill
Starring Sigourney Weaver, Carrie Henn and Michael Biehn
Genre: Aliens, Space, Sequel

20 - It Follows (2014)

A young woman is followed by an unknown supernatural force after a sexual encounter.

Directed by David Robert Mitchell
Written by David Robert Mitchell
Starring Maika Monroe, Keir Gilchrist and Olivia Luccardi
Genre: Supernatural

21 - An American Werewolf in London (1981)

Two American college students on a walking tour of Britain are attacked by a werewolf that none of the locals will admit exists.

Directed by John Landis
Written by John Landis
Starring David Naughton, Jenny Agutter and Joe Belcher
Genre: Werewolves

22 - Jaws (1975)

A local sheriff, a marine biologist and an old seafarer team up to hunt down a great white shark wreaking havoc in a beach resort.

Directed by Steven Spielberg
Written by Peter Benchley and Carl Gottlieb (from the novel by Peter Benchley)
Starring Roy Scheider, Robert Shaw and Richard Dreyfuss
Genre: Sharks

23 - I Walked With a Zombie (1943)

A Canadian nurse is hired to care for the wife of a sugar plantation owner, who has been acting strangely, on a Caribbean island.

Directed by Jacques Tourneur
Written by Curt Siodmak and Ardel Wray (from a story by Inez Wallace)
Starring Frances Dee, James Ellison and Tom Conway
Genre: Zombies, Voodoo

24 - Evil Dead II (1987)

The lone survivor of an onslaught of flesh-possessing spirits holes up in a cabin with a group of strangers while the demons continue their attack.

Directed by Sam Raimi
Written by Sam Raimi and Scott Spiegel
Starring Bruce Campbell and Sarah Berry
Genre: Demons, Possession, Horror Comedy, Gore, Woods

25 - Dracula (1931)

The ancient vampire Count Dracula arrives in England and begins to prey upon the virtuous young Mina.

Directed by Tod Browning
Written by Hamilton Deane and John L. Balderston (from the play by Garrett Fort, from the novel by Bram Stoker)
Starring Bela Lugosi, Helen Chandler and David Manners
Genre: Vampires, Gothic

26 - The Serpent and the Rainbow (1987)

An anthropologist goes to Haiti after hearing rumors about a drug used by black magic practitioners to turn people into zombies.

Directed by Wes Craven
Written by Richard Maxwell and A.R. Simoun (from the book by Wade Davis)
Starring Bill Pullman, Cathy Tyson and Zakes Mokae
Genre: Zombies, Voodoo

27 - Bride of Frankenstein (1935)

Mary Shelley reveals the main characters of her novel survived: Dr. Frankenstein, goaded by an even madder scientist, builds his monster a mate.

Directed by James Whale
Written by William Hurlbut and John L. Balderston (from the novel by Mary Shelley)
Starring Boris Karloff, Elsa Lanchester and Colin Clive
Genre: Frankenstein, Madmen, Gothic, Sequel

28 - Diabolique (1955)

The wife and mistress of a loathed school principal hatch a plan to murder him while having the perfect alibi. They carry out the plan...but then his body disappears.

Directed by Henri-Georges Clouzot
Written by Henri-Georges Clouzot, Jerome Geronimi, Rene Masson and Frederic Grendel (from the novel by Pierre Boileau and Thomas Narcejak)
Starring Simone Signoret and Vera Clouzot
Genre: Psychological Horror, Mystery

29 - Psycho (1960)

A Phoenix secretary embezzles $40,000 from her employer's client, goes on the run, and checks into a remote motel run by a young man under the domination of his mother.

Directed by Alfred Hitchcock
Written by Joseph Stefano (from the novel by Robert Bloch)
Starring Anthony Perkins, Vera Miles and Janet Leigh
Genre: Slasher, Madmen

30 - The Creature From the Black Lagoon (1954)

A strange prehistoric beast lurks in the depths of the Amazonian jungle. A group of scientists try to capture the animal and bring it back to civilization for study.

Directed by Jack Arnold
Written by Harry Essex, Arthur A. Ross and Maurice Zimm
Starring Richard Carlson, Julie Adams and Richard Denning
Genre: Creatures

31 - The Wolf Man (1941)

A practical man returns to his homeland, is attacked by a creature of folklore, and infected with a horrific disease his disciplined mind tells him can not possibly exist.

Directed by George Waggner
Written by Curt Siodmak
Starring Lon Chaney Jr., Claude Rains, Warren William and Evelyn Ankers
Genre: Werewolves, Curses

32 - Scream 2 (1997)

Two years after the first series of murders, a new psychopath dons the Ghostface costume and a new string of killings begins.

Directed by Wes Craven
Written by Kevin Williamson
Starring Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox and David Arquette
Genre: Slasher, Parody, Sequel

33 - Inferno (1980)

An American college student in Rome and his sister in New York investigate a series of killings in both locations where their resident addresses are the domain of two covens of witches.

Directed by Dario Argento
Written by Dario Argento
Starring Leigh McCloskey, Irene Miracle and Eleonora Giorgi
Genre: Witches, Slasher, Paranormal

34 - Village of the Damned (1960)

In the English village of Midwich, the blonde-haired, glowing-eyed children of uncertain paternity prove to have frightening powers.

Directed by Wolf Rilla
Written by Wolf Rilla, Stirling Silliphant and Ronald Kinnoch (based on the novel by John Wyndham)
Starring George Sanders, Barbara Shelley, Michael Gwynn and Laurence Naismith
Genre: Psychics, Mystery

35 - The Hunchback of Notre Dame (1923)

In fifteenth century Paris, the brother of the archdeacon plots with the gypsy king to foment a peasant revolt. Meanwhile, a freakish hunchback falls in love with the gypsy queen.

Directed by Wallace Worsley
Written by Perley Poore Sheehan and Edward T. Lowe Jr. (from the novel by Victor Hugo)
Starring Lon Chaney and Patsy Ruth Miller
Genre: Madmen, Silent Film, Gothic

36 - Rosemary's Baby (1968)

A young couple moves in to an apartment only to be surrounded by peculiar neighbors and occurrences. When the wife becomes mysteriously pregnant, paranoia over the safety of her unborn child begins to control her life.

Directed by Roman Polanski
Written by Roman Polanski (from the novel by Ira Levin)
Starring Mia Farrow and John Cassavetes
Genre: Psychological Horror, Witchcraft

37 - The Cat and the Canary (1927)

Relatives of an eccentric millionaire gather in his spooky mansion on the twentieth anniversary of his death for the reading of his will.

Directed by Paul Leni
Written by Robert F. Hill and Alfred A. Cohn (from the play by John Willard)
Starring Annabelle West and Paul Jones
Genre: Haunted House, Mystery, Silent Film

38 - Frankenstein (1931)

Henry Frankenstein is a doctor who is trying to discover a way to make the dead walk. He succeeds and creates a monster that has to deal with living again.

Directed by James Whale
Written by Garrett Fort, Francis Edward Faragoh and John L. Balderston (from the play by Peggy Webling, from the novel by Mary Shelley)
Starring Colin Clive, Mae Clarke and Boris Karloff
Genre: Frankenstein, Gothic

39 - Gerald's Game (2017)

While trying to spice up their marriage in their remote lake house, Jessie must fight to survive when her husband dies unexpectedly, leaving her handcuffed to their bed frame.

Directed by Mike Flanagan
Written by Mike Flanagan and Jeff Howard (from the novel by Stephen King)
Starring Carla Gugina and Bruce Greenwood
Genre: Survival Horror, Psychological Horror

40 - Tales From the Crypt: Demon Knight (1995)

A sinister but charming demon desires an ancient key whose guardian has taken refuge in a boarding house in New Mexico.

Directed by Ernest R. Dickerson
Written by Ethan Reiff, Cyrus Voris and Mark Bishop
Starring Billy Zane, William Sadler and Jada Pinkett Smith
Genre: Demons, Horror Comedy, Gore

41 - Creepshow (1982)

An anthology which tells five terrifying tales based on the E.C. horror comic books of the 1950s.

Directed by George A. Romero
Written by Stephen King
Starring Hal Halbrook, Leslie Nielsen, Adrienne Barbeau, Ed Harris Carrie Nye, Ted Danson and Stephen King
Genre: Anthology, Zombies, Body Horror

42 - Nosferatu (eine Symphonie des Grauens) (1922)

Wisbourg, Germany based estate agent Knock dispatches his associate, Hutter, to Count Orlok's castle in Transylvania as the Count wants to purchase an isolated house in Wisbourg.

Directed by F.W. Murnau
Written by Henrik Galeen (from the novel by Bram Stoker)
Starring Max Schreck, Alexander Granach and Gustav von Wangenheim
Genre: Vampires, Gothic, Silent Film

43 - Hostel (2006)

Three backpackers head to a Slovak city that promises to meet their hedonistic expectations, with no idea of the hell that awaits them.

Directed by Eli Roth
Written by Eli Roth
Starring Jay Hernandez, Derek Richardson and Eythor Gudjonsson
Genre: Torture, Body Horror

44 - Annihilation (2018)

A biologist signs up for a dangerous, secret expedition into a mysterious zone where the laws of nature don't apply.

Directed by Alex Garland
Written by Alex Garland (from the novel by Jeff VanderMeer)
Starring Natalie Portman, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Tessa Thompson, Gina Rodriguez and Oscar Isaac
Genre: Creatures, Science Fiction

45 - Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me (1992)

Laura Palmer's harrowing final days are chronicled one year after the murder of Teresa Banks, a resident of Twin Peaks' neighboring town.

Directed by David Lynch
Written by David Lynch and Robert Engels (from the television series by David Lynch and Mark Frost)
Starring Sheryl Lee, Ray Wise, Madchen Amick and Dana Ashbrook
Genre: Mystery, Supernatural

46 - The Fly (1958)

A scientist has a horrific accident when he tries to use his newly invented teleportation device.

Directed by Kurt Neumann

Written by James Clavell (from the story by George Langelaan)
Starring David Hedison, Patricia Owens and Vincent Price
Genre: Body Horror

47 - Suspiria (1977)

An American newcomer to a prestigious German ballet academy comes to realize that the school is a front for something sinister amid a series of grisly murders.

Directed by Dario Argento
Written by Dario Argento and Daria Nicolodi
Starring Jessica Harper, Stefania Casini and Flavio Bucci
Genre: Slasher, Witches, Paranormal

48 - Eyes Without a Face (1960)

A surgeon causes an accident which leaves his daughter disfigured, and goes to extremes to give her a new face.

Directed by Georges Franju
Written by Pierre Boileau, Thomas Narcejac, Jean Redon and Clause Stautet (from the novel by Jean Redon)
Starring Pierre Brasseur, Alida Valli and Juliette Mayniel
Genre: Madmen

49 - Wes Craven's New Nightmare (1994)

A demonic force has chosen Freddy Krueger as its portal to the real world. Can Heather Langenkamp play the part of Nancy one last time and trap the evil trying to enter our world?

Directed by Wes Craven
Written by Wes Craven
Starring Heather Langenkamp and Robert Englund
Genre: Nightmares, Demons, Sequels, Horror Comedy

50 - Martyrs (2008)

A young woman's quest for revenge against the people who kidnapped and tormented her as a child leads her and a friend, who is also a victim of child abuse, on a terrifying journey into a living hell of depravity.

Directed by Pascal Laugier
Written by Pascal Laugier
Starring Morjana Alaoui, Mylene Jampanoi and Catherine Begin
Genre: Torture, Home Invasion, Revenge


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