Now that Spooky season is rolling around again, it’s time to get cosy with popcorn and hot chocolate and…watch some horror movies! What’s better than an excellent psychological thriller on a cold, creepy night? Luckily for us, Netflix has a ton of options when it comes to horror movies. As we all know, Netflix tends to have different movies and content available depending on the region that you are in, and the same goes for horror movies, so we can’t promise that you will have all of them. Still, I can guarantee something for everyone on this list. Here are the 26 best horror movies on Netflix this Halloween, perfect for every horror fan.
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1. 1922 (1922)
This Netflix Originals horror film is based on the Stephen King novella of the same name, telling the story of a proud farmer named Wilfred James (Thomas Jane). Life isn’t as simple as it seems at first, as he conspires with his reluctant teenage son Henry (Dylan Schmid) to murder his wife, Arlette (Molly Parker), so that he can take ownership of her land.
Strange things happen around the farm once the deed is done and his wife is buried. Wilfred and his son experience odd occurrences and bad luck…or is something more sinister at play? Watch this Zak Hilditch-directed story to discover what will happen to the James family and unleash the suspense that easily makes it one of the best horror movies on Netflix to watch this Halloween.
2. Annihilation (2018)
This Alex Garland-directed adventure drama is often considered a Lovecraftian Horror film, and for good reason, as a biologist (Natalie Portman) joins the expedition of Dr. Ventress (Jennifer Jason Leigh) looking for her husband, joined by an anthropologist, a psychologist, a surveyor and a linguist as they venture into a strange zone.
The zone is known as “The Shimmer”, an area slowly growing, mutating the plants and animals around it as it expands. The expedition plans to study The Shimmer zone and possibly discover its origin. The biologist’s husband’s team was the first to venture into The Shimmer. While looking for her husband, Lena might find more than she bargained for.
3. Apostle (2018)
Written by director Gareth Evans, Apostle is a mystery thriller folk horror movie about a religious cult on an isolated island. Set in 1905, a drifter named Thomas Richardson (Dan Stevens) travels to a remote island looking for his sister, who has been kidnapped by a mysterious religious cult.
While he goes to help his sister, Richardson vows to make the cult regret the day they took his sister and crossed him, uncovering all the skeletons in the commune’s closet and digging into and revealing their dark secrets.
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4. Army of the Dead (2021)
Many might not consider this Zack Snyder crime drama a horror film, but as one of the best examples of a zombie apocalypse, and with enough action and drama to keep Snyder fans satisfied, Army of the Dead tells the story of a group of mercenaries who go after the most incredible score ever.
A zombie outbreak in Las Vegas has led to the area being quarantined. The mercenary group must enter the zombie-infested zone to pull off the ultimate heist. The film stars Ana de la Reguera as Maria Cruz, Dave Bautista as Scott Ward, Ella Purnell as Kate Ward and Omari Hardwick in an epic and gory action adventure, creating a terrific addition to the zombie genre. Some of the movies on this list are just horror movies, but this zombie flick has to do with zombies, a fan favourite for Halloween costumes, making it one of the best horror movies on Netflix to watch this Halloween.
5. Bird Box (2018)
Another Lovecraftian horror film that rocked the world when it first hit Netflix in 2018, Bird Box, was directed by Susanne Bier and written by Eric Heisserer and Josh Malerman, telling the story of a sudden onset of terror that completely changed the world.
One day, people started seeing something that created unknown global terror. People were either driven insane or committed suicide because of what they had seen. A pregnant young woman, Malorie (Sandra Bullock), finds another pregnant woman, and the two manage to make it out alive to protect their unborn child until they each go into labour. When someone on the inside betrays them, Malorie must raise the children alone. When her only option is to travel down a dangerous river to safety, a difficult decision lies ahead.
6. Cam (2018)
This unexpected mystery horror film came out in 2018. It was directed and written by Daniel Goldhaber with the help of writers Isa Mazzei and Isabelle Link-Levy. The movie is described as a paranoid horror thriller, that follows an erotic webcam performer, or a cam girl, named Alice (Madeline Brewer).
All seems to be going fine until she notices her account has been hacked. She has been replaced on her own channel with someone who looks exactly like her, except her doppelganger doesn’t seem to have the same inhibitions. This new Alice seems determined to ruin her life when things escalate further.
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7. Cargo (2017)
Cargo was directed and written by Yolanda Ramke with the help of director Ben Howling and stars Martin Freeman in the lead role. Freeman stars as Andy, father to Rosie, his precious cargo. The two have been caught in an epidemic that has spread across Australia, turning people into zombies.
Unfortunately, Andy has been infected. Suddenly, he has to come to terms with the fact that he needs to get her to safety before Andy turns, all while knowing that he is a ticking time bomb that could turn around and hurt his little one at any moment.
8. Creep (2014)
Creep was written and directed by Patrick Brice with the help of Mark Duplass, and ironically two of the only three cast members, the other being Katie Aselton as the voice of Angela. Brice stars as Aaron, and Duplass stars as Josef. The strange thriller follows Aaron, a young videographer hired through an online ad.
One day, in a remote town, the job is to record the last messages of a dying man, Josef, who claims to have terminal brain cancer. The day seems to go pretty usually, despite Josef’s increasingly odd behaviour, but when Aaron is ready to leave…Josef won’t let him.
The terrifying story also continues with the second film, Creep 2, which debuted in 2017, with a slightly larger cast and even more twists and turns than the first film, if that was even possible, as it follows someone who claims to be a serial killer.
9. Crimson Peak (2015)
It wouldn’t be the perfect Halloween list without one of the cult classic films for the spooky season, and that is none other than Guillermo del Toro and Matthew Robbins’ Crimson Peak. With unique talents like Charlie Hunnam as Dr Alan McMichael, Mia Wasikowska as Edith Cushing, Jessica Chastain as Lucille Sharpe, and even Tom Hiddleston as Thomas Sharpe.
The story follows Edith after the death of her mother. She is whisked away to a place that has more secrets and skeletons in the closet than they would initially like to admit. The film also stars del Toro’s favourite prosthetics actor, making it a masterpiece in and of its own right. With ghosts, suspense, and set in a stunning time period, Crimson Peak is easily one of the best horror movies on Netflix, and the perfect film to give you the spooky vibes this Halloween.
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10. Day Shift (2022)
I wouldn’t blame you if you didn’t initially consider Day Shift a horror movie, but it technically is. Although it stars Jamie Foxx and Dave Franco which are a pair that definitely creates more of a comedy than a horror feel, this one really skirts the lines, making it a horror comedy.
Both parts of the duo work for an undercover company that hunts vampires for a living, an entire business that goes after the underground monsters that have infiltrated society and now wants to do much more as they take over the real-estate business of all things.
11. Doctor Sleep (2019)
I’m not going to lie; it’s a struggle not just filling this list up with Stephen King novel adaptations because there are so many good ones on the streaming service. Still, we have tried keeping them to a minimum. Of course, there is always The Shining (1980), but if you are looking for the scariest movies to watch, you have probably seen that classic film.
Doctor Sleep, directed by horror genius Mike Flanagan, follows the young boy from The Shining all grown up, played by Ewan McGregor, as he protects a young girl with the same powers he did when he was younger.
12. Fear Street Part One: 1994 (2021)
Written by R.L. Stine, Kyle Killen and Phil Graziadei and directed by Leigh Janiak, it is the perfect way to start your Halloween spirit. Fear Street Part One: 1994 is actually the first movie in “A Film Trilogy Event”, all telling the story of Shadyside, the murder capital of the United States and a town that has been plagued by a dark secret for over 300 years.
Now, a teenage group of friends has accidentally stumbled across the ancient evil that has caused the series of brutal murders, causing the dark cloud that is hanging over their small town.
Each instalment of the Fear Street trilogy travels a little further back in time, with Part Two taking us back to 1978 and Part Three taking us even further back to where the curse all started, in 1666. Fear Street is a great trilogy to get you into the spooky mood for this Halloween, and the three films are some of the best horror movies that Netflix has to offer.
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13. Gerald’s Game (2017)
I’m sorry. Another Stephen King novel adapted into a film. Sue me. He is one of the greatest horror writers of our time. The irony of the situation is that Mike Flanagan is one of the greatest horror directors of our generation. Mike Flanagan loves working with particular actors in his cast, like Bruce Greenwood as Gerald, Carla Gugino as Jessie, Henry Thomas as Tom, and Kate Siegel as Sally. You might recognise Some names and faces from some of Mike Flanagan’s other works like The Haunting of Hill House and Midnight Mass.
Gerald’s Game is a story you wouldn’t think would be likely, but it is an absolute horror story. What happens when a married couple tries to take some time away to spice up their life a little bit, and during said spicing up, the husband has a heart attack while the wife is handcuffed to the bed? Alone, with no way to get free or help, Jessie must survive…somehow.
14. His House (2020)
This brilliant thriller focuses on many challenging topics, like being a refugee in an entirely new world you don’t understand and where you feel isolated. The film is written and directed by Remi Weekes with the help of writers Felicity Evans and Toby Venables. Together with the help of talents like Malaika Wakoli-Abigaba as Nyagak, Matt Smith as Mark Essworth, Sope Dirisu as Bol Majur, and Wunmi Mosaku as Rial Majur.
The story follows a refugee couple from South Sudan, the Majurs, who have escaped the war-torn city and made it to an English town to try and start a new life. As they struggle to adjust to their new life, they learn that their new home is infested with evil lurking just below the surface.
15. Horse Girl (2020)
Directed and written by Jeff Baena, with writing help from Alison Brie (who also plays the main character, Sarah), Horse Girl is a bit odd, but it definitely counts as a thriller. In this film, Sarah is a socially isolated woman well known for her fondness for arts and crafts and horses, hence the name. Being more comfortable with supernatural crime shows and animals is relatable in this day and age.
However, Sarah starts having a series of increasingly strange and lucid dreams, and she struggles to distinguish her waking hours from her sleeping. Watch along with this psychological thriller as we go along with Sarah and try to understand if what’s happening to her is purely psychological or if there are different supernatural forces possibility at play.
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16. Lights Out (2016)
This one is widely considered an oldy but a goody as it was all the rage back in 2016 when the David F. Sandberg-directed film first aired. The film plays on the fear of the dark that resides in all of us for some reason, providing a good scare. The film stars talented actors like Alexander DiPersia as Bret, Billy Burke as Paul, Gabriel Bateman as Martin, Maria Bello as Sophie, and Teresa Palmer as Rebecca.
The film follows Rebecca and her family, as she and her younger brother seem to be plagued with a fear of the dark since they were young, an unlikely thing considering they aren’t really related. The two must figure out how to stay in the light while also trying to figure out what got them into that mess in the first place. With a terrifying creature that can only appear in the dark, Lights Out is one of the best Netflix horror movies to watch this Halloween, but don’t blame us if you want to sleep with the lights on afterwards.
17. Ouija: Origin of Evil (2016)
If there is one universal truth we have learned about the horror genre, it is that you want to avoid messing around with an Ouija board. Well, this widowed mother and her daughters living in Los Angeles in the 1960s didn’t have the knowledge that we do now and did just that.
A young widow, Alice Zander (Elizabeth Reaser), her eldest daughter Lina and her young daughter Doris are all working together out of their suburban home to make ends meet while running an act of being a spiritual medium. Lina suggests that Alice incorporate a Ouija board into their act, unknowingly inviting an actual evil spirit into their lives and their home.
What do you know, we have yet another Mike Flanagan adventure, including some of his favourite stars like Henry Thomas and the stunning Kate Siegel, among other talents. All worked together to bring the story to life.
18. Paranormal Activity (2007)
Paranormal Activity is one of the most terrifying and best horror films if you don’t get bored of all the jump scares. The film is done in a found footage style and tells the story of a young couple, Katie (Katie Featherston) and Micah (Micah Sloat) as they move into a new home. When the two are having problems sleeping and experiencing strange events around the home that they can’t explain or quite put their finger on, they decide to set up cameras in the home to watch them as they sleep, and what they discover when they do is chilling.
Oren Peli and his crew started a genre when they created their film, choosing to act as characters that shared their first names to make the events of the film feel like they could have been confirmed and pushing the narrative that the film was found footage.
Not only was this the start of a movie franchise that could take up a good few hours on its own if you wanted to do a marathon, but it was a massive bolster in the found footage genre that has made the style increasingly popular in movies and video games to this day, all of which will try their best to convince you that it is a true story.
Poltergeists, found footage, and the idea of a true story? Sounds like the perfect horror movie to watch for this upcoming Halloween, and one of the best horror movies that Netflix has to offer.
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19. Separation (2021)
Writers Nick Amadeus and Josh Braun, as well as director William Brent Bell, weave together the story of a young girl, Jenny Vahn (Violet McGraw) trying to do as best as she can while her lawyer mother and artistic father try to make things work.
Her mother, Maggie (Mamie Gummer), is tragically killed in a hit-and-run, leaving her father (Rupert Friend) to look after her alone for the first time. Things become increasingly difficult in the aftermath of the loss as the Babysitter, Samantha (Madeline Brewer), tries to become the new woman of the house. Jenny’s grandfather (Brian Cox) tries to sue for custody, and it becomes increasingly clear that something else is happening in the house around Jenny. It has to do with the puppets inspired by her father’s art.
20. Texas Chainsaw Massacre (2022)
If the original films weren’t gory enough for you, Netflix brought back the legend of Leatherface in 2022 “After 48 years of hiding.” Director David Blue Garcia and writers Chris Thomas Devlin, Fede Alvarez and Rodo Sayagues tell the story of a carefully crafted private world of Leatherface in a remote town in Texas that a group of naïve children happen to accidentally stumble upon.
What follows are the usual horror and thriller antics that have made Leatherface one of the most famous fictional killers of all time, with scare after scare and thrill after thrill.
21. The Babysitter (2017)
Young Cole thinks he is living the life. He is young, and he has a hot babysitter. Unfortunately, he breaks the rules one night and stays up past his bedtime. He discovers the Babysitter’s secret satanic cult. None of this would be an issue if they were still set on keeping their activities a secret.
The cast stars Andrew Bachelor as John, Bella Thorne as Allison, Doug Haley as Samuel, Emily Alyn Lind as Melanie, Hana Mae Lee as Sonya, Judah Lewis as Cole, Robbie Amell as Max, and Samara Weaving as Bee, while Brian Duffield writes the story and McG stands in as director.
Suppose that one isn’t enough for you. In that case, you can always watch The Babysitter: Killer Queen (2020), which features many of the same faces as Cole tries to survive high school while also dealing with his past demons that just won’t rest. While most of the cast returns, it also included Jenna Ortega as Pheobe.
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22. The Perfection (2018)
This stunning story about two musicians but director and writer Richard Shepard has a series of thrills you wouldn’t expect of a story about music. The premise follows Charlotte (Allison Williams), a star music prodigy who is troubled. To deal with her troubles, she decides to look for Elizabeth (Logan Browning), the star pupil of her former school.
When they find each other, what follows is a series of twists and turns that neither of them could have expected and a chilling adventure that will leave you wondering what is real and what isn’t. Some other faces on the cast include Alaina Huffman as Paloma, Graeme Duffy as Geoffrey, Marie Maskell and Charlotte’ Mother, Mark Kandborg as Theis, and Steven Weber as Anton.
23. The Pope’s Exorcist (2023)
One thing that seems to enchant horror genre lovers throughout history is the demonic and exorcism. From The Nun and The Conjuring, we all like an excellent exorcist story because of the terrifying prospect. This year, Russell Crowe came to Netflix to show us a terrifying story in The Pope’s Exorcist.
Director Julius Avery and writers Michael Petroni, Evan Spiliotopoulos and R. Dean McCreary weave together the story of Father Gabriele Amorth (Crowe), the leading exorcist at the Vatican. When investigating the case of a possessed child, he uncovers a terrifying conspiracy that the Vatican has been trying to keep a secret from the rest of the world.
24. The Ritual (2017)
The Ritual has been a fan favourite of horror movie lists since it hit Netflix on the 9th of February, 2017. Director David Bruckner and writers Joe Barton and Adam Bevill came together to create a stunning story about a group of old friends who reunite on a trip to Sweden to deal with the loss of one of the group members.
While there, Luke (Rafe Spall), Phil (Arsher Ali), Hutch (Robert James-Collier) and Dom (Sam Troughton) go on a hike to lay the memory of their friend to rest, but while there, they get hurt, causing them to have to hike through the woods. While in the woods, they discover that there is a real danger to be found in the forest.
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25. Till Death (2021)
Megan Fox has long been a queen in the horror movie world thanks to her escapade with Jennifer’s Body, but in 2021 she returned to the horror genre for Till Death. This terrifying thriller tells the story of Emma (Fox), married to Mark (Eoin Macken). However, their marriage has become stale.
Suddenly, Mark invites Emma for a surprise getaway to their secluded lake house for a romantic, candle-lit anniversary in the dead of winter. What seemed like a romantic surprise from her husband soon turns out to be a terrifying plot that leaves Emma handcuffed to her dead husband while trying to evade two killers he hired to finish the job.
Director S.K. Dale and writer Jason Carvey work together to bring this terrifying story to life along with other cast members like Callan Malvey as Bobby Ray and Jack Roth as Jimmy.
26. Vivarium (2019)
Vivarium tells the tale of a young couple, Gemma (Imogen Poots) and Tom (Jesse Eisenberg), searching for the perfect home. Their search has brought them to an “ideal” labyrinthine suburban neighbourhood. Still, when the two decide that the home isn’t for them and try to leave, each road, no matter which they take, takes them right back to where they started.
Trapped in a surreal, maze-like nightmare, Imogen Poots and Jesse Eisenberg star alongside talents like Danielle Ryan, Jonathan Aris, Molly McCann, and Senan Jennings, all directed by Lorcan Finnegan using a screenplay written by Garret Shanley and the director, all work together to bring this fantastic, unnerving tale to life for us to enjoy.
These might not be the best horror movies of all time or the best scary movies you can watch throughout history. Still, they are the best Netflix horror movies you can watch this Halloween. There is, of course, also the entire Conjuring universe, made famous by director James Wan, but that deserves a list all on its own. Let us know if there are any other good horror movies on Netflix that you think should be added to the list!
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What is your favourite horror movie on Netflix that you will watch this Halloween?