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The Scariest Films Top 100 Horror Movies of All Time (2018 Edition)


ATMOSfx! Woo!
Behold, THE BIG LIST. In 2018, we summoned a jury of our fans and horror insider contacts, to develop a weighted list of our favorite horror movies of all time. This doesn’t necessarily mean these are the BEST movies, in a technical sense, but these are the films we love the most.

Our jury was given the task of picking their top 25 favorite horror movies, with their #1 film being worth 25 points, #2 being worth 24 points, all the way down to their 25th film being worth a single point.

The results at the top of the list are not surprising. All of these movies would be considered essential classics, both critically and commercially successful. The further down the list you go, the more interesting it gets. You also get a read on the age and preferences of the voting jury. If you would like to see some graphs of the data, we have sorted by decade, country, and genre. There are large groupings of films in the ’80s and ’00s. (Recency bias and age of jury certainly come into play.)

We are exceedingly proud of our list, and we believe our jury was very fair and open-minded. A lot of good smaller independent features really broke through. The Babadook (38), The Autopsy of Jane Doe (50), The Witch (33), Kill List (81) fared very well.

Surprising omissions? How about Dracula? Friday the 13th? The Conjuring? Frankenstein? The Last House on the Left? The Howling? Nope. Didn’t make it. Needless to say, they all received votes, but just not enough.

Some interesting take-aways:

  • Only four women directors made the list in 2018. Mary Lambert (Pet Semetary), Jennifer Kent (The Babadook), Julia Ducarenau (Raw), and Veronika Franz (Goodnight Mommy).
  • Asian films are well represented with both J-Horror and K-Horror getting multiple nods.
  • Giallo had a surprisingly small contingent of films (Two).
  • John Carpenter shows up a whopping five times on the list.
  • Blue Velvet finishes high on the list because it is the #1 film on two of our jury voter lists. Is it really horror? We respect all votes, and if you say it’s horror… it’s in.
  • No films from the 1940s cracked the list: Cat People (1941) JUST missed out finishing at 101.

These trends will be interesting to follow, as we have planned a new BIG LIST, with a heavily expanded jury pool. We have invited Directors, Actors, Festival Coordinators, Authors, Public Relations, fellow Podcasters, Trivia specialists, and of course our loyal horror junkie fans to bolster and develop our list.

  1. Alien (Scott, 1979)
  2. The Shining (Kubrick, 1981)
  3. The Thing (Carpenter, 1982)
  4. The Exorcist (Friedkin, 1972)
  5. Halloween (Carpenter, 1978)
  6. An American Werewolf in London (Landis, 1981)
  7. Jaws (Spielberg, 1975)
  8. The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (Hooper, 1974)
  9. Rosemary’s Baby (Polanski, 1968)
  10. The Blair Witch Project (Myrick and Sánchez, 1999)
  11. Dawn of the Dead (Romero, 1978)
  12. The Silence of the Lambs (Demme, 1971)
  13. Suspiria (Argento, 1977)
  14. A Nightmare on Elm Street (Craven, 1984)
  15. Get Out (Peele, 2017)
  16. Poltergeist (Hooper, 1982)
  17. Psycho (Hitchcock, 1960)
  18. Audition (Miike, 1999)
  19. The Cabin in the Woods (Goddard, 2011)
  20. The Evil Dead II: Dead by Dawn (Raimi, 1987)
  21. The Ring (Verbinski, 2002)
  22. The Exorcist III: Legion (Blatty, 1990)
  23. The Fly (Cronenberg, 1986)
  24. 28 Days Later (Boyle, 2002)
  25. Hereditary (Aster, 2018)
  26. Martyrs (Laugier, 2008)
  27. In The Mouth of Madness (Carpenter, 1994)
  28. Paranormal Activity (Peli, 2007)
  29. Invasion of the Body Snatchers (Kaufman, 1978)
  30. It Follows (Mitchell, 2014)
  31. Curse of the Demon (Tourneur, 1957)
  32. Night of the Living Dead (Romero, 1968)
  33. The Witch (Eggers, 2015)
  34. Let the Right One In (Alfredson, 2008)
  35. Shaun of the Dead (Wright, 2004)
  36. Blue Velvet (Lynch, 1986)
  37. Pet Semetary (Lambert, 1989)
  38. The Babadook (Kent, 2014)
  39. The Lost Boys (Schumacher, 1987)
  40. The Omen (Donner, 1976)
  41. Hellraiser (Barker, 1987)
  42. The Amityville Horror (Rosenberg, 1979)
  43. Scream (Craven, 1996)
  44. You’re Next (Wingard, 2011)
  45. Return of the Living Dead (O’Bannon, 1985)
  46. A Quiet Place (Krasinski, 2018)
  47. Ringu (Nakata, 1998)
  48. Godzilla (Honda, 1954)
  49. Creature from the Black Lagoon (Arnold, 1954)
  50. The Autopsy of Jane Doe (Øvredal, 2016)
  51. The Evil Dead (Raimi, 1981)
  52. The Haunting (Wise, 1963)
  53. Session 9 (Anderson, 2001)
  54. Army of Darkness (Raimi, 1992)
  55. [REC] (Balagueró, 2007)
  56. Se7en (Fincher, 1995)
  57. Hostel (Roth, 2005)
  58. Re-Animator (Gordon, 1985)
  59. Aliens (Cameron, 1987)
  60. Don’t Look Now (Roeg, 1973)
  61. What We Do in the Shadows (Clement and Waititi, 2014)
  62. The Wicker Man (Hardy, 1973)
  63. Black Christmas (Clark, 1974)
  64. The Bride of Frankenstein (Whale, 1935)
  65. Phantasm (Coscarelli, 1979)
  66. The Fog (Carpenter, 1980)
  67. Ju-On: The Grudge (Shimizu, 2002)
  68. Nosferatu (Murnau, 1922)
  69. Gremlins (Dante, 1984)
  70. Monster Squad (Dekker, 1987)
  71. The Descent (Marshall, 2005)
  72. Creepshow (Romero, 1984)
  73. Train to Busan (Yeon, 2016)
  74. Goodnight Mommy (Fiala and Franz, 2014)
  75. Coraline (Selick, 2009)
  76. Saw (Wan, 2004)
  77. The Legend of Hell House (Hough, 1973)
  78. The Birds (Hitchcock, 1965)
  79. The Strangers (Bertino, 2008)
  80. A Tale of Two Sisters (Kim, 2003)
  81. Kill List (Wheatley, 2011)
  82. Raw (Ducarneau, 2016)
  83. Young Frankenstein (Brooks, 1975)
  84. Prince of Darkness (Carpenter, 1987)
  85. Zombieland (Fleischer, 2009)
  86. It (Muschietti, 2017)
  87. Candyman (Rose, 1992)
  88. Ichi the Killer (Miike, 2001)
  89. Salem’s Lot (Hooper, 1979)
  90. Suicide Circle (Suicide Club) (Sono, 2001)
  91. King Kong (Cooper, 1933)
  92. Final Destination (Wong, 2000)
  93. Event Horizon (Anderson, 1997)
  94. Friday the 13th Part VI: Jason Lives (McLoughlin, 1986)
  95. Santa Sangre (Jodorowski, 1989)
  96. Black Sunday (Bava, 1960)
  97. Race With the Devil (Starrett, 1975)
  98. Spooky Encounters (Hung, 1980)
  99. Satan’s Triangle (Roley, 1975)
  100. The Changeling (Medak, 1980)
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