Some horror movies, like Halloween and Friday the 13th are classics to watch during the Halloween season. However, some of the best horror movies are the ones most people have never seen or heard of. If you’re looking to watch something new this fall, check out these incredible and underrated horror movies.
1. The Babadook
This movie had a cult following for a while after it was released on Netflix, but the fanbase generally seemed to enjoy the movie ironically. There were a lot of jokes about the Babadook being a gay icon and the child protagonist being kind of frightening himself.
Yet, this movie is actually unique, terrifying, and deep. Following a troubled child and his single mother after they stumble upon a children’s book titled “The Babadook”, the small Australian family begins to spiral into darkness and terror as the Babadook becomes a reality.
The visually dark cinematography and bland color palette set an off-putting tone from the beginning, and the unease only mounts as the Babadook’s presence increases. However, the movie isn’t all scares and unhappiness and it also has a few poignant comments to make about the process of grief.
All in all, The Babadook is an extremely well-made movie whose horror goes beyond jump scares and has some valuable commentary on life thrown in as well.
2. The Perfect Host
While this movie is more of a psychological thriller meets an extremely dark comedy, it’s a must-see for a Halloween movie night.
With a plot twist around every corner and starring David Hyde Pierce, the actor who plays Niles Crane on Frasier, the hit spin-off of Cheers, this movie is nothing you’d ever expect.
On the run after a partially-successful bank robbery, a young man seeks shelter from the police in an upper class suburban neighborhood. On the surface, this seems like it’s going to be a predictably unfortunate evening for the ill-fated man who lets him into his home, but this couldn’t be farther from what happens next.
The gracious host who welcomes in this robber has plenty a trick of his sleeve, and something says this isn’t the first stranger he’s ushered in.
To avoid spoilers, all I can say is: watch this movie. It’s as fun and surprising as it is unsettling and eerie, and it’s guaranteed to make your Halloween an interesting night.
Despite being a well-known children’s movie, Coraline doesn’t get nearly enough credit as being a spooky movie for all ages.
I don’t think there’s an age where the thought of having buttons sewn into your eyes or coming home to find your entire family missing isn’t utterly terrifying. The perspective of childish innocence and hope only serves to make these themes all the more scary.
This movie is a tale full of imagination and wonder, and the parts that aren’t putting fear in the back of your mind are wildly entertaining. Visually, Coraline is a work of art, and the stop motion art style sets this movie apart from similar children’s scares.
One of the few movies that can safely be described as better than the book, Coraline encapsulates the idea that eccentricity is good and family comes first. And it does all of this with eerie button eyed people and doors that go to nowhere.
A great movie to watch after trick-or-treating with younger siblings or in your dorm with your other adult friends, Coraline will add a little Halloween magic to your fall.
4. The Human Centipede
This movie is easily the one on this list that is the most up front about its scares. You don’t really need any more information than the title to know it’s going to be unpleasant.
The Human Centipede isn’t for squeamish viewers as it doesn’t shy away from the medical feats that make a human centipede possible, or the reality of living as one. There’s no mystery with this movie, but that means it doesn’t hold back. When there’s an idea scary enough, sometimes showing the audience exactly what that looks like is the most horrifying approach.
There isn’t much to say about character or plot with this one, but if you’re looking for a twisted take on the classic horror movie, The Human Centipede is it.
There’s been countless sequels or adjacent movies in the Human Centipede saga by now, which must mean it’s been doing something right in the scare department. So if you’re up all night with the chills this movie gives you, you can pass the time by watching even more Human Centipede.
5. 47 Meters Down
Shark movies are always a fun way to get a scare, and this one doesn’t get nearly enough credit. Starring Mandy Moore of mega-hit This Is Us and a bunch of sharks, what’s not to like?
The premise of this movie is simple: what if the cable attaching a shark cage to the boat broke, sending it, and everyone in it, to the bottom of the ocean?
This obviously raises several immediate problems, like the lack of oxygen left in the scuba tanks, the possibility of getting the bends (a severe complication caused from the rapid change in pressure when swimming up too quickly), and, of course, the shark-infested waters that they have just created.
This movie is fun and exciting and even has some interesting twists for what could otherwise be a relatively run-of-the-mill shark movie. This is also a great movie to see if you saw 47 Meters Down: Uncaged in theaters this summer.
The movie is titled as if it’s a sequel, but other than the premise, the two movies have little connection. That said, if you liked one, you’ll most likely enjoy the other!
If you’re looking for some thrills that won’t force you to sleep with the light on, shark movies are always the way to go, and 47 Meters Down is one that doesn’t get nearly enough credit.
Have you seen any of these movies? Let us know what your Halloween favorites are in the comments below!
Featured image via IndieWire
Casey is a junior at Emerson College majoring in screenwriting. She's extremely passionate about petting dogs, writing, and being outside, but if she's not doing one of those things, she's probably napping!