The Six Scariest Horror Movies of ALL TIME (according to me)

October 27, 2018

Do you love horror as much as I do?  Horror was one of the things my mother and I had in common.  We loved a great horror movie!  Now before you cast any judgement she, like many parents, tried to shield my young and impressionable eyes from anything scary for as long as she could until one day my sister and I wore her down.  She decided if we insisted on watching a scary movie she would show us THE scariest movie ever made! The movie that caused many adults endless nights filled with nightmares after its release in theaters, The Exorcist!  Have you heard of it, of course you have! They have made a million versions of The Exorcist but I am referring to the Linda Blair version released in 1973.  We all sat down in the living room in the middle of a Saturday afternoon when my mother pressed play on the VCR but not before she said to us(she loves building up the drama, something else we have in common), " I warned you, this is the scariest movie ever made! Remember you asked for this so if you have nightmares it isn't my fault!"  (I might be making some of that up, I mean I was a kid but you get the gist.)  My sister and I sat on the sofa together, nervous about what we were about to watch, my mother watched for our reactions with pressed lips.  Well, I don't want to build too much drama here but lets just say we pissed my mother off when we started laughing our butts off as Linda Blair's head turned a full 360 degrees.  After my mother got over her initial anger at our silliness she and I became horror movie buddies.  My sister dropped out of the horror movie club after The Exorcist so it was something my mother and I would do together, just the two of us.  My mother and I followed The Exorcist with one of my all time favorite horror films, A Nightmare on Elm Street, the 1984 version of course!

I am prefacing this post with that story to set my credentials.  I have been watching horror for years, so I know a good one from a bad one.  I don't think horror should be reserved for fall or halloween but I understand we gravitate to the genre as the days get shorter, the nights grow longer, the temperature drops, and the trees are barren, its time to get cozy.  We all know the "classics" some I have already mentioned, Halloween, Friday the 13th, and The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, so I am not going to bore you with listing movies that are on everyone's "scariest horror movies" list.  Now this list might include one or two movies you have heard of but I am positive you will find at least one or two you have never heard of cause I have been doing my research!  So without further adieu and in no particular order, my TOP 6 Scariest Horror Movies of ALL TIME:

1. The Babadook

 This movie explores the pain and frustration of a recently widowed single mother with a very unique and strange son with a vivid imagination.  The mother's loneliness is palpable and although this is a horror movie where horrible things happen to this small family, the real horror is the pain and utter loneliness of raising a "difficult" child as a poor working class woman. Trust me when I tell you this movie will haunt you for days and YOU will recommend it to your friends and family around the Thanksgiving table. Available on Netflix.  

2. The Strangers 

 The Strangers is based on a true story and stars Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman as a doomed couple staying at a remote family home in the woods after a failed proposal {awkward}.  The location itself is enough to create tension and anxiety but the tension between these two people throws viewers over the edge.  With all this tension cooked into the plot, there is a knock at the door.  A young woman stands on the other side of the door and asks, "Is Tamara home?" weird, but nothing to run for the hills, at least not yet.  I will say this, I have watched this movie several times and every single time I do I have asked myself the same question, "Why do you do this to yourself, Erica?"  Available on Netflix. 

3. The Shining 

Ok, I know what you are thinking, but I told you you would know at least two of the movies on my list!  Also, the last three movies have "the" in the title which I didn't notice until I hyperlinked this last title,  but I digress.  A writer named Jack Torrence, agrees to take care of a resort tucked away in the mountains with his wife and step son for the long, cold winter months.  They are all alone and well really bizarre things happen as Jack begins to have a mental breakdown.  I couldn't leave The Shining off of this list, why you might ask? Simple.  I underrated this movie for most of my life.  I didn't understand the power and the sheer horror of it all, I just thought it was a really long movie that didn't go anywhere until the last 30 minutes.  That might still be true, but director Stanley Kubrick is playing with the audience, he is building the tension and anticipation like few others could.  Side note: This is a blended family, Danny is not Jack's biological son and that complicates the story in ways my younger self couldn't understand or fully appreciate.  Also available on Netflix. 

4. Veronica

This was dubbed Spain's answer to The Conjuring, sure I can see that but the comparison shortchanges this film.  This Spanish film is said to have been inspired by true events and follows a young high school student who is the oldest sister of two siblings she is basically left to raise.  She becomes possessed with an unholy spirit she has conjured up after taking a spin of a ouija board.  This film is emotionally charged and full of horror as she tries her very best to protect her siblings and warn her mother of what is happening.  Most of the film is shot in daylight which can be odd for a horror movie but it adds an eerie quality and reminds us all that bad things can happen at any time.  This movie is subtitled and so worth the work.  It has a fresh take on a old hat trick.  Also available on Netflix.  

5. Inside 

I will admit that I hesitated adding this to my list but my husband insisted it should have a place on my list of "scariest horror movies of ALL TIME" so here it is.  This movie is disturbing on many, many levels.  It is not often that a movie centers around a woman currently in her third trimester and very, very pregnant.  The things this woman endures are horrific, this is a true horror film because the horror isn't perpetrated by a boogey man, it is by another woman.  Proceed with caution on this one, I promise you it isn't for everybody.  

6. Martyrs 

We have come to the end of my list and probably the most depraved film I have ever watched. I know I said in the opening I was listing the movies in no particular order, turns out I lied.   This French psychological thriller is EXTREMELY disturbing and was controversial when it was released in 2008.  The plot goes something like this, there are a group of rich sickos who pay others to kidnap and torture victims to the brink of death in order to find a Martyr, it is hard to explain but it is basically the moment of peace after much suffering and right before your death.  Ugh, it is so disturbing on so many levels, American film makers can't hold a candle to the depravity of French film makers and that isn't an insult.  I love a horror but this film dips its toes in really gruesome, sadistic territory I would prefer never to see the likes of again. 

And there you have it kids, the six scariest horror movies of ALL TIME (according to me).  Tell me what you think in the comments below.  Did I miss a movie you think should have been on this list, drop it in the comments below.  

I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed putting it together.  

Until next time. 



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