There have been numerous horrors throughout many decades that have scared the audience to a great extent. Something is exciting about watching them and trying to figure out how to escape the evil present. But when the evil is supernatural, it might get even scarier, since most of the time no one knows who or what that evil is. This is the list of the 20 scariest supernatural horror movies of all time. It is subjective and it includes not only the scare factor but the artistic value as well.
1. ‘The Shining’ (1980)
An abandoned hotel on top of the hill, covered in snow and isolated from the rest of the world, is the setting of this extremely disturbing horror based on the novel by Stephen King and directed by Stanley Kubrick.
Jack Nicholson plays Jack Torrance, a writer who can’t find any inspiration and ideas for his new novel so he drags his wife and son to this remote hotel, hoping he would be able to come up with a new story.
What he didn’t expect is that the hotel hides a horrible secret and that he is going to have hallucinations connected to a tragedy that happened there many years ago, which will make him go insane.
2. ‘The Conjuring’ (2013)
The Conjuring is one of the most successful horror movies of the last decade, and one of the scariest ever is the first part of this intriguing story. It is about two paranormal investigators who arrive in 1971 at a house in Rhode Island where its newest tenants, Carolyn and Roger Perron, have witnessed indescribable happenings.
Ed and Lorraine Warren will discover a whole area connected to a satanic haunting, targeting the Perrons wherever they go. The Warrens will have to rely on all their wits and knowledge to try and stop this supernatural being who is threatening to destroy everyone.
3. ‘Poltergeist’ (1982)
One of the classics among supernatural horrors is this scary movie about a young family who is troubled by domestic ghosts in their home. At first, everything seemed pretty benevolent. The ghosts appeared friendly and were amusing everyone by moving objects around the house.
But very soon it all started getting pretty nasty and they wouldn’t stop terrorizing and harassing the whole family until one day they decided to kidnap the youngest daughter.
4. ‘Carrie’ (1976)
Sissy Spacek plays Carrie White, a high school outcast with superpowers who are about to be unleashed after a horrible prank her colleagues pulled on her at their school dance. Carrie is shy and doesn’t know how to behave like common teenagers, mostly due to her upbringing by her religious mother with extreme views.
The only person who seems to care about Carrie is her teacher, Miss Collins, and the one who starts feeling sorry for her is the popular girl Sue Snell, who convinces her boyfriend to take Carrie to their prom dance. But this wasn’t a good idea, since there would be deadly consequences to the outcome of the dance.
5. ‘Insidious’ (2010)
Insidious revolves around Patrick Wilson and Rose Byrne. A married couple who are afraid for their son Dalton’s health and are trying to find help for him. He fell into a coma after a mysterious incident in the attic.
Josh and Renai, Falton’s parents, will soon discover that there is so much more connected to their son’s endless sleep than they might have imagined. They will have to explore the paranormal and rediscover the past to find the key to their son’s safety.
6. ‘Suspiria’ (1977)
One of the most influential and important movies in Italian history, a role model for numerous future movies is Suspiria, a horror gem directed by the talented Dario Argento. It is weird, suspenseful, and extremely eerie, and it still frightens the ones who decide to watch it.
An American ballet dancer travels to Germany and enrolls in a ballet school to perfect her dancing skills. There are many strange things at the very beginning of her arrival. And they are only getting worse. The revelation she is going to make is going to petrify us, and many more surprises and nightmarish situations will follow it.
7. ‘Ringu’ (1998)
Ringu is a Japanese cult horror that got its Hollywood remake very soon after its release. It tells the story of Reiko Asakawa, an investigator who is doing research on a “cursed video” and is interviewing teenagers about it.
After her niece dies with a horrified expression on her face, Reiko begins to investigate even more and discovers a terrifying tale behind a tape that some teenagers watched before being found dead.
8. ‘Get Out’ (2017)
This inventive and imaginative horror is something many viewers might find confusing and difficult, but it is a story that opens numerous questions and topics to discuss, dealing with some of the most important issues of today’s society, such as racism and prejudice. But it also causes a great deal of horror in the audience.
Chris is visiting his white girl’s parents on the weekend, ready to meet them and get to know them. What he didn’t expect was the way they welcomed him. From being overly accommodating to completely weird, Rose’s parents and the group of people Chris had the opportunity to meet hide a secret so scary and dreadful, and Chris will soon realize his life is in great danger.
9. ‘Paranormal Activity’ (2007)
This is the first of many sequels in this chilling horror about a young, middle-class couple who move to their new suburban house and start experiencing strange occurrences, especially during the night.
Their whole lives will be turned upside down after becoming disturbed by this presence which is obviously something supernatural, even demonic. Soon, they will be afraid to go to sleep since are more active in the middle of the night.
10. ‘A Quiet Place’ (2018)
This John Krasinski’s post-apocalyptic sci-fi horror drama is one of the best in the genre in the past decade. It is fascinating how suspense can be built without any sound. Because in this movie, no one is allowed to make any sound, not even the slightest.
Earth is devastated by predators of possible extraterrestrial origin who have wiped out the majority of Earth’s population. The Abbots are one of the survivors, and they have to get used to living in utter silence. They are moving through upstate New York, trying to find shelter for themselves and their children. But it won’t always be this easy to remain completely silent, and this is when the monsters attack.
11. ‘A Nightmare On Elm Street’ (1984)
A Nightmare On Elm Street is one of the most famous horror movies ever, and it gained cult status. It is one of Wes Craven’s most famous movies, with Freddy Krueger as one of the most terrifying horror villains ever. Robert Englund plays Freddy, literally a villain from nightmares.
He is a monster who begins to haunt teenagers in their dreams, and if he is successful, they die in real life, too. Nancy Thompson is the one who will have to uncover a secret her parents refuse to tell her if she wants to save her friends and herself from the hands of this lunatic.
12. ‘A Tale of Two Sisters’ (2003)
Japanese horrors tend to be very frightening, which is definitely one of them, with its sinister and disturbing theme. It is the story of two sisters returning home after being locked in a mental institution.
They are now living with their father and cruel stepmother, which is not satisfying their return. While dealing with her obsessive ways, the girls are also fighting an interfering ghost, threatening to affect their recovery.
13. ‘The Exorcist’ (1973)
The Exorcist is one of the scariest and most influential of all time. William Friedkin’s Exorcist scared many people when it was out almost 40 years ago. But it still hasn’t stopped since its topic is more than disturbing. The story is set in Washington, D.C., where a visiting actress notices strange behavior and mental and physical changes in her 12-year-old daughter.
At the same time, a young priest at nearby Georgetown University is starting to doubt his faith while dealing with her mother’s terminal illness. And finally, there is an elderly priest who will have to deal with the demonic presence around the actress and her daughter.
14. ‘Dawn of the Dead’ (1978)
What’s a supernatural horror list without zombies? And the ones from the mind of the talented George A. Romero are the ones that must be mentioned since he started the era of these flesh-eating undead.
Zombies attack Earth, and the population is seriously threatened when they begin to invade every corner of the world. Everyone must find a place to hide, and we follow two policemen, a traffic reporter, and his girlfriend, who try to find refuge in a remote and secluded shopping mall.
15. ‘REC’ (2007)
This Spanish horror is the one that makes you shiver from its very beginning. The way it was filmed makes it even more frightening since the camera is constantly moving, and everyone feels they are somehow in the middle of everything.
A young TV reporter and her cameraman are covering the night shift at the local fire station. Soon, they receive a shocking call from an old lady who is trapped in her house, and when they arrive, the screams they will hear will be only the beginning of this nightmarish night. And a unique TV report.
16. ‘The Evil Dead’ (1981)
Sam Raimi is the master of horrors, and ‘The Evil Dead’ is one of his most outstanding works. It all starts idyllic, with five friends who drive to a peaceful weekend in a remote cabin in the woods. But immediately upon their arrival, they discover a book and an audio tape that will start the unimaginable.
Completely unaware of everything, they will read the incantations inside the book and release the powerful evil hidden inside. One by one, the students will lose their lives, and the one left alive will have to try and fight the evil dead that arose and try and stay alive until morning.
17. ‘The Others’ (2001)
This Alejandro Amenabar movie is one of those that gives you a strange feeling from its first minute. It is dark, slow, and extremely atmospheric, set in an old remote house far from the rest of the village. And with only a few protagonists who will have to face the horror inside it. Grace retires with her two children in a big mansion in Jersey and waits for her husband to come back from the Second World War.
Her children suffer from high sensitivity to sunlight and can’t be exposed to it directly. They live alone and follow their strict rules, but when Grace has to hire help, which comes in the form of three servants, her little cocoon of rules will slowly start falling apart, and she will start believing her house is haunted.
18. ‘The Omen’ (1976)
The Omen is another horror classic that inspired many future movies on the same or similar topics. It is the story of Robert and Katherine Thorn, who are living an idyllic life but missing one thing they desperately want: a child.
When Katherine gives birth to a stillborn, Robert is approached by a priest at the hospital who suggests they take a newborn whose mother has just died in childbirth. Robert accepts but doesn’t tell Katherine, and after their relocation to London, strange events begin to happen, all connected to the child he took that day.
19. ‘Rosemary’s Baby’ (1968)
This Polanski classic is one of those movies without frightening scenes or creatures to make it scary. Its atmosphere and the story, with a combination of music, make it one of the scariest ever.
Rosemary Woodhouse and her husband Guy are desperate to have a baby and after moving to The Bramford, a New York City building, they befriend a next-door couple, and Rosemary soon gets pregnant. But very soon, Rosemary is cut off from her circle of friends and starts dreading that something is happening with her and her baby, connected to her strange neighbors. But the weirdest thing is that her husband is allowing all of that.
20. ‘Hereditary’ (2018)
One of the most shocking and dreadful horrors in the last decade is this horror drama about Annie and her family’s struggle after the death of her mentally ill mother. Annie, her husband, and their children all mourn her loss in their own way.
Annie and her daughter are starting to flirt with the supernatural, and soon, they are going to become involved in disturbing and otherworldly experiences that are closely connected to the weird secrets and emotional drama that have existed in their family through generations.