Best Scary Movies to Watch This Halloween

If you haven’t caught on just yet, I love Halloween! And, while my mom, sister, and I watch horror movies all year, there’s something extra spooky about watching them this time of year. Today, I’m sharing some of the best scary movies to watch this Halloween (in my humble opinion)!

For a few of these, I use the word “scary” lightly. So many older films are a lot less creepy to a modern audience! Still, there are some greats that just had to join the list regardless, and weren’t quite family-friendly enough for our other upcoming movie list. Some use literal ghosts and monsters, while others take a more psychological spin on the horror/thriller genres.

I also tried to strike up a pretty good balance between classics and lesser-known films, though I’ll admit that a few names (Jordan Peele, Patrick Wilson, and Stephen King, most notably) do make quite a few appearances.

The Conjuring

The Conjuring 2 is actually my personal favourite–if only for Patrick Wilson’s rendition of “Can’t Help Falling in Love.” That being said, this whole series is great; I’ve always been fascinated by the Warrens, so I was thrilled to initially discover this fictionalised adaptation of some of their most famous moments.

Pet Sematary

The original film has always been one of my favourites, and I was more impressed than I anticipated with the newer adaptation. That ending!!

Insidious

This is another series that I’ve truly enjoyed!  I won’t often turn down a Patrick Wilson movie, but Elise (Lin Shaye) is really what makes this series.  The first film in this series only came out in 2010, yet it’s a rare occurrence where I can say I’ve seen each of the movies (Insidious, Insidious: Chapter 2, Insidious: Chapter 3, and Insidious: The Last Key) and enjoyed them.

The Birds

It’s been a very long time since I’ve seen this movie, but it’s always been a favourite! It’s hard not to enjoy Hitchcock, and this movie is no exception.  It may not be the most scary movie for modern viewers, but it’s a classic for good reason!

The Babadook

The Babadook is another that’s stayed with me despite only one viewing.

The Amityville Horror

Believe it or not, I only saw the original Amityville Horror for the first time just a few weeks ago!  I’m staunchly refusing to watch the remake because *spoiler alert* DoestheDogDie.com warned me, but the 1979 version still has its creepy moments (mostly involving flies).

A Quiet Place

I’ll admit that this film wasn’t my absolute favourite.  I adore John Krasinski, so it was a must-watch and, while I did enjoy it, I didn’t love it as much as so many seemed to. Still, it’s certainly good enough to have earned a place on this list!

The Shining

Another classic!  Long before I first saw the movie (only a short time ago!), I was moderately terrified of the twin girls.  Once I saw the movie, it all made more sense.

It’s also worth noting that Bob’s Burgers does a fantastic parody of The Shining in S1E2, Crawl Space, in which Bob locks himself in the wall to avoid his in-laws and hallucinates a speakeasy tended by his youngest daughter’s Kuchi Kopi nightlight.  

The Sixth Sense

The Sixth Sense certainly isn’t the scariest film on this list, but it’s a fantastic movie nevertheless.  I’m not sure there are many people left who don’t know its twist in advance, but that doesn’t make it any less enjoyable a watch!

Get Out

This movie is a definite favourite!  I first saw it with some while I was still living in the UK, and made my family watch it as soon as possible when I was in the States again.  It’s that good!

El Orfanato

I enjoy a good foreign film more than most, so I was excited to find that The Orphanage was a Spanish film subtitled in English (not to mention my excitement when I could understand a decent chunk of the movie with my sub-par Spanish!).  I was so impressed by this one, to the point that I spent days afterwards commenting to anyone and everyone that it was “a really good movie.”

Hush

This Netflix film features a deaf writer (notably not portrayed by a deaf actress, which, despite Kate Siegel being a phenomenal actress, is hardly a selling point) and the masked killer who’s out to get her.  Beyond its problematic casting, the movie echoes those like A Quiet Place and Bird Box in making you think: how does a scary situation become scary without one of your senses?

Drag Me to Hell

I watched this movie with some friends in college and it’s stayed with me since.  It’s a reimagining of the classic “watch what happens when you’re mean to a stranger” trope (à la Beauty and the Beast) in such a creative way!

The Bye-Bye Man

For me, this one is firmly in the “more funny than scary” camp, but my family and I echo, “Don’t think it, don’t say it,” to each other so frequently that I couldn’t skip mentioning it!

Truth or Dare

We first picked up this movie for one reason–I adore Lucy Hale.  But we were pleasantly surprised by a great film that left us thinking for some time afterwards, “What if…?”

Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street

Don’t let the music fool you–Sweeney Todd still has plenty for the horror fans in the audience.  With a stellar cast and a well-known story, it’s a definite must-see.

Bird Box

Like A Quiet PlaceBird Box takes away one of its characters’ senses in the name of survival; this time, sight.  If you were on the internet around the time of this film’s launch, you likely remember the memes!

Us

After enjoying Get Out so much, I knew Us was another must-see and was far from disappointed!  At first, I was a bit thrown by Elizabeth Moss; despite her numerous roles, I struggle to see her as anyone but June Osborne! But she played her role brilliantly, as did the cast as a whole.

The Possession of Hannah Grace

Apparently, my enjoyment of Pretty Little Liars has trickled into some of my favourite films! Shay Mitchell does an amazing job in this role.  I wasn’t expecting to like this movie as much as I did, but I really enjoyed it!

They Come Knocking

I haven’t watched much of Hulu’s Into the Dark just yet, but They Come Knocking gave me chills.  I love a good urban legend, so tales of the black-eyed children were already familiar.  It’s got its share of cliche, but it’s a solid film nevertheless.

What scary movies will you be watching this Halloween?

Best Scary Movies to Watch This Halloween

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