20 Irresistibly Compelling Horror Films You Need To Watch Now

Horror films are a dime a dozen, if you watch DVD releases, they are everywhere. They are easy to make but hard to perfect. Sometimes there are so many horror movies, it can feel overwhelming to find the gems hidden among the rough. But hopefully, with this list, I can simplify that process for you.

Last Shift (2014)

Last Shift movie

Plot:

A rookie cop’s 1st shift alone on the last night of a closing police station turns into a living nightmare.

IMDb Score (at time of writing): 5.8

What makes this a good horror film?

This is a psychological horror film that perfectly builds tension throughout – giving you those satisfying scares in a deeply claustrophobic environment.

The Void (2016)

The Void

Plot:

Shortly after delivering a patient to an understaffed hospital, a police officer experiences strange and violent occurrences seemingly linked to a group of mysterious hooded figures.

IMDb Score (at time of writing): 5.8

What makes this a good horror film?

This is low-budget horror with a 1980s vibe with disturbing monsters and an unpredictable plot. Think H.P Lovecraft meets John Carpenter, a perfect mix of body horror if you can handle it.

Train to Busan (2016)

Train to Busan

Plot:

While a zombie virus breaks out in South Korea, passengers struggle to survive on the train from Seoul to Busan.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 7.5

What makes this a good horror film?

Since I first watched it when it came out, loads of people have praised this South Korean zombie film, so it needs no introduction. However, if you are not one for foreign films, this definitely is worth dealing with the subtitles. Train to Busan has amazing visuals and almost perfect fight scenes. The character development is spot on and you can’t help to be fully invested in their survival. Be warned the tension is almost corporeal in its intensity.

Behind The Mask – The Rise of Leslie Vernon (2006)

Behind the Mask: The Rise of Leslie Vernon

Plot:

The next great psycho horror slasher has given a documentary crew exclusive access to his life as he plans his reign of terror over the sleepy town of Glen Echo.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.7

What makes this a good horror film?

Well, that plot is not something that is done very often, and mostly it is done in a way that glorifies the murderer or just makes it so depressing to cut it off from its horror credentials. But this is a great slasher film for those with dark humour with surprising twists and turns. Don’t let the documentary lens put you off, it works very well in this mockumentary.

Pontypool (2008)

Pontypool movie

Plot:

A radio host interprets the possible outbreak of a deadly virus which infects the small Ontario town he is stationed in.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.6

What makes this a good horror film?

This is a very unusual and original film with the way it presents the deadly virus which is transmitted by language. It is a low budget zombie film contained in the confines of a local radio station.

Splinter (2008)

Splinter movie

Plot:

Trapped in an isolated gas station by a voracious Splinter parasite that transforms its still-living victims into deadly hosts, a young couple and an escaped convict must find a way to work together to survive this primal terror.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.1

What makes this a good horror film?

If you are a fan of isolation horror films, this is the one to watch. Trapped in the gas station, with a terrifying and vicious parasite trying to gain entry, the crew of misfits must survive using only their wits and surroundings.

The Signal (2007)

The Signal 2007 movie

Plot:

A horror film told in three parts, from three perspectives, in which a mysterious transmission that turns people into killers invades every cell phone, radio, and television.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.1

What makes this a good horror film?

This is another interesting take on an overdone genre. It has similarities with Pontypool but it is not based in one location. It describes the journey and horror from three perspectives and makes a statement about society as well.

The Wailing (2006)

The Wailing

Plot:

Soon after a stranger arrives in a little village, a mysterious sickness starts spreading. A policeman, drawn into the incident, is forced to solve the mystery to save his daughter.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 7.5

What makes this a good horror film?

Imagine 28 Days later but on a smaller scale in a local village with a more atmospheric and suspenseful plotline. Combining superstition and common horror themes in a new unpredictable way.

Feast (2005)

Feast movie

Plot:

Patrons locked inside a bar are forced to fight monsters.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.3

What makes this a good horror film?

This is a horror-comedy which is the first one on this list. It is a fun action film about trying to survive monsters. This is not a film to take seriously, it won’t blow your socks off, but you will have a lot of fun watching these patrons trying to survive an attack of monsters.

As Above, So Below (2014)

As Above, So Below - Edwin Hodge

Plot:

When a team of explorers ventures into the catacombs that lie beneath the streets of Paris, they uncover the dark secret that lies within this city of the dead.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.2

What makes this a good horror film?

I was a bit hesitant to watch this film, we have had a lot of found footage films that have not matched up to expectations ever since The Blair Witch Project. But I am glad I did with this one. Though it’s slow to start, this is a truly terrifying film that you will not want to watch alone.

Dark Water (2002)

Dark Water

Plot:

A mother and her 6-year-old daughter move into a creepy flat whose every surface is permeated by water.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.7

What makes this a good horror film?

As you can tell from the year, I am talking about Japanese film, as the American one is not worth considering. We always knew little girls are creepy from the days of Poltergeist, but this film takes it to a whole new level.

Devil (2010)

Devil movie

Plot:

A group of people are trapped in an elevator and the Devil is mysteriously amongst them.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.2

What makes this a good horror film?

This sounds like a premise that would be hard to keep engaging. It is possibly the most claustrophobic set you could imagine. With electrics cutting out the lights, will paranoia get the best of these strangers? Though the story is short, it delivers supernatural horror effectively.

The Autopsy of Jane Doe (2016)

The Autopsy of Jane Doe

Plot:

A father and son, both coroners, are pulled into a complex mystery while attempting to identify the body of a young woman, who was apparently harbouring dark secrets.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.8

What makes this a good horror film?

This is one of the creepiest films I may have ever watched. Picking a morgue as its setting obviously works for it. We are treated to an intriguing thriller and a scare-fest in one. Reminds me of The House of Haunted Hill if it was compacted into a film.

Frozen (2010)

Frozen 2010 movie

Plot:

Three skiers stranded on a chairlift are forced to make life-or-death choices, which prove more perilous than staying put and freezing to death.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.1

What makes this a good horror film?

Obviously, I’m not talking about the cartoon. This isn’t technically horror but I feel like I had to include it. This is a very grim film about 3 adults that have to make terrible choices to keep alive, which will honestly surprise and shock you. It is sometimes painful to watch but well worth the time.

Triangle (2009)

Triangle movie

Plot:

A group of friends suffers a yachting accident and take refuge on a cruise drifting on the open sea, but quickly realize they were better off on the upturned yacht.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.9

What makes this a good horror film?

The plot sounds pretty generic, but you are in for a treat of mind-bending fun. Things aren’t all they seem, and it is our protagonist’s job to hide and find out the truth. I don’t want to spoil it for you, but it has a very good intelligent story-telling that pays off with an emotional ending.

Coherence (2013)

Coherence movie

Plot:

Strange things begin to happen when a group of friends gathers for a dinner party on an evening when a comet is passing overhead.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 7.2

What makes this a good horror film?

This film is a blend of mind-bending scenarios and paranoia that works pretty well. Set in a house where friends are having a dinner party, it will make you question how much you can trust the person next to you.

Spring (2014)

Spring 2015 movie

Plot:

A young man in a personal tailspin flees from the US to Italy, where he sparks up a romance with a woman harbouring a dark, primordial secret.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.7

What makes this a good horror film?

This is a very unusual take on an overdone theme which I will not spoil for you. A rich atmosphere of mystery and dread are crafted beautifully in this film with Lovecraft overtones.

Afflicted (2013)

Afflicted

Plot:

Two best friends see their trip of a lifetime take a dark turn when one of them is struck by a mysterious affliction. Now, in a foreign land, they race to uncover the source before it consumes him completely.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.3

What makes this a good horror film?

Another found footage film, which I found refreshingly surprising. A friend contracts a mysterious disease that appears to make him a better, stronger version, but ends up having dire consequences for all those who come in contact with him.

Circle (2015)

Circle 2015 movie

Plot:

Held captive and faced with their imminent executions, fifty strangers are forced to choose the one person among them who deserves to live.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.0

What makes this a good horror film?

If you like people doing anything to protect themselves for as long as they can, this is the one to watch. There is no violence in this film, as they are not allowed to move from their spots. But it delves into the horror and psychology of the human survival instinct. And the ending is superb.

Exam (2009)

Exam movie

Plot:

Eight candidates for a highly desirable corporate job are locked together in an exam room and given a final test with just one seemingly simple question. However, it doesn’t take long for confusion to ensue and tensions to unravel.

IMDb Score (at the time of writing): 6.8

What makes this a good horror film?

Similar in theme to Circle mentioned above, you will like this is if you are a fan of the Cube film series. A seemingly innocent job exam turns into a threatening fight for survival and the truth about the company.

What are your unknown horror films? Share below in the comments.

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