We scoured the dark and endless halls of Netflix’s horror films to bring you the very best cult classics, modern nightmares, and straight-up genre inventions streaming right now. So cancel your plans. Tonight—and tomorrow night, and maybe even the next night—we Netflix and chill(er).
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Mike Flanagan became a film festival favorite with his mindbender Oculus, which is also streaming on Netflix. The filmmaker upped his game with Hush, a home invasion nail-biter about a woman stalked through her house by a man in a mask. Turns out, the woman is deaf—and her attacker has no idea how keen her senses are. It all makes for one sweaty-palmed watch.
2. The Snowtown Murders
More of a film you can’t unsee than a suspenseful screamer, this true crime drama about South Australia’s bodies-in-barrels murders squeezed its way into Netflix’s slasher category. Perhaps that’s due to the copious amounts of blood spilled by the film’s John Bunting—or from the disturbing ways in which Bunting manipulates others into joining in on his murder spree.
3. The Taking of Deborah Logan
You know the tropes of possession movies: a woman acts weird; someone calls a priest; be gone, evil spirit. But this debut from director Adam Robitel is so much more. What begins as a harmless flick about a film crew interviewing an Alzheimer’s patient transforms into a chilling account of witchcraft and a grown woman burying snakes in the backyard. It’s all anchored by one terrifying performance from lead actress Jill Larson.
4. The Exorcist
William Friedkin’s horror classic is based on the novel by William Peter Blatty, which itself drew inspiration from the real-life exorcism of a 14-year-old Maryland boy known as Roland Doe. Friedkin’s pea soup-spewing version of a little girl, her demon, and the vomit scene heard round the world, remains an unsettling watch. And if it captures just one iota of what Doe actually experienced, then may we say, Lord, bless that child.
Centered on a just-married couple seeking a romantic getaway in the sticks, Honeymoon just may make you rethink that camping trip. Game of Throne’s Rose Leslie and Penny Dreadful’s Harry Treadway carry writer/director Leigh Janiak’s directorial debut as Bea and Paul. The newlyweds head to a lakefront property to unwind after their nuptials, but only one of them will make it out alive. Well, kind of.
6. The Nightmare
Take a break from fiction and dive into one of the freakiest documentary films ever made. From the mind behind Room 237, Rodney Ascher’s Nightmare focuses on individuals who suffer from sleep paralysis—which is essentially the sensation of being awake but unable to move. What’s more, many sufferers report seeing evil shadows and night creatures to go along with their stupor. Talk about being frozen in fear.
We all know about Stephen King’s beastly canine creation. But any night’s a good night to pay man’s not-so best friend another visit. King penned his tale about a deadly pooch covered in human blood after an intimidating doggy encounter at a body shop. According to IMDb, the author cites the film as the scariest movie adaptation of any of his works.
8. A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night
In case you were wondering if there’s an Iranian vampire western romance in this world, well, there is. And it’s this award-winning film festival favorite, which follows a girl as she walks home alone at night. More specifically, it follows a girl wielding a pair of fangs that she uses to devour unsuspecting victims once the sun goes down. Shot in black and white and oozing with more pulp than a Tarantino flick, it’s a brilliant film that takes conventional elements and blends them into something vibrantly original.
So Mark Duplass looks like someone we’d like to movie-marathon with on a puffy chair—he is the king of mumblecore after all. But after viewing Patrick Brice’s found-footage nightmare, we’ll pass. Duplass plays Josef, a mountain-dwelling weirdo with no respect for personal space who becomes obsessed with a filmmaker he meets through a classified ad. One terrifying wolf mask later, and you’ll never trust anything you see online again.
10. Starry Eyes
If you’ve seen Cronenberg’s The Fly, then you’re primed for this freaky metamorphosis tale that mixes body horror with a whole lotta WTF. The film currently boasts a mater scale of 74 percent fresh, and that—like the nightmare audition endured by aspiring actress Sarah—is no joke when it comes to the horror genre.
11. The Babadook
Aussie filmmaker Jennifer Kent wowed critics with her award-winning fairy tale nightmare of a mother’s love gone berserk. It took us a minute to appreciate its wow factor, however, as we had to decompress from the film’s many disturbing moments. Cockroaches, monsters in the closet, a mother with an axe to grind. You may need a nap after watching this flick—but hell if you’ll take one.
We would like to interrupt this message to bring you one of the brainiest zombie movies ever made. Blending humor, gore, and taut suspense, writer Tony Burgess and director Bruce McDonald craft a smart art-house indie about a radio crew who are trapped inside their studio while a deadly virus rages outside. The virus is spread through language, and it isn’t long before it makes its way inside.
6 Demonic Possession Movies and Shows You Can Stream Now
By DeAnna Janes
Personally, we couldn’t be more excited, especially after screening the upcoming series Outcast. Cinemax is currently streaming the pilot for free until the series premiers on Friday, June 3 at 10 p.m. This devilish morsel led us on a hunt for more unholy horror movies available for immediate consumption. From the devilry lurking in rural West Virginia to the granddaddy of all exorcism movies, we’ve got the cruci-fix for your demonic film watching right here.
So go ahead; get your movie night started. And may the lord be with you.
Still from "Hush" via Intrepid Pictures; Still from "Hush" via Intrepid Pictures; Still from "The Exorcist" via Warner Bros.; Still from "The Babadook" via Causeway Films; Still from “Honeymoon” via Fewlas Entertainment; Still from "The Nightmare" via Zipper Bros Films; Still from "Cujo" via Warner Bros.; Still from "Creep" via Blumhouse Productions; Still from "The Taking of Deborah Logan" via Casadelic Pictures; Still from "Starry Eyes" via Dark Sky Films; Still from "Pontypool" via IFC Films; Still from "The Snowtown Murders" via IFC Midnight