Our 10 Favorite Scary Movies to Watch in the Dark

Spooky Season is just around the corner. Cool fall days, dark, chilly nights, the re-emergence of the ubiquitous pumpkin spice latte. And that also means it’s time for cozy fall movie nights. For some reason, October is the perfect time of year for watching the most horrific movies in your movie queue.

We’ve got some fun ideas for scary-movie-lovers looking for something to scare them right out of their home theater chairs:

Sci-Fi Horror

Annihilation: One of those slow burn, what-did-I-just-watch sci-fi thrillers, this movie is set in a place where a non-terrestrial entity settles on earth in a “shimmer,” and creates an ever-expanding area of land where things aren’t what they were anymore. What happens when your DNA is changed – what are you? Can the essence of your very self be annihilated?

Dark Skies: At first, this one might come off as a ghost-story trope; but it’s way weirder than that. Something is wrong with this family’s house; something is after them. When the parents are blamed for the disappearance of their child, they do everything they can to find out what this force is and what it wants.

Psychological Thrillers

Se7en: You can’t talk about psychological thrillers without talking about Se7en. Morgan Freeman and Brad Pitt play two detectives hunting a serial killer who murders according to the seven deadly sins. As they venture further into their pursuit of the killer, the murders get a little more… personal than they were expecting.

Black Swan: You might not think a movie about ballerinas could mess you up, but that means you’ve clearly never seen black swan. A not-so-unrealistic take on the cutthroat nature of professional ballet, this movie documents the horrifying crumbling of a ballerina threatened by new blood in the water.

Supernatural Scares

The Conjuring: While classic in the sense that it’s about a middle class family who lives in a home that is not happy to have them living there, this movie will mess with your idea of reality, and it’ll also likely jumpstart your heart a time or two. Based on a true story, it features an actress from another supernatural staple – 

The Haunting: Speaking about the 1999 version of the film, a group of misfits lured to an old manor for what they think is a sleep study, overseen by a psychologist who has no time for ghosts. But as it turns out, the house has a horrific history and an angry entity that isn’t thrilled to have guests.

Apocalyptic Horror

Cloverfield: When an alien ship descends on NYC and the city becomes overrun with monstrous, bloodthirstry predators, a group of friends desperately tries to make it across the city alive to save a friend who’s trapped in a deadly situation. This movie is a great mix of action, sci-fi, thriller, doomsday, and horror. Bonus – it has a very strange, equally stress-inducing sequel: Cloverfield Lane.

28 Days Later: A virus that induces murderous rage and spreads like wildfire has decimated society. This movie follows a group of friends desperately searching for somewhere safe to land while trying not to get infected or murdered along the way.

Murder Mysteries

Gone Girl: Focused on a troubled couple where the wife goes missing and the husband looks like he’s to blame, this movie got a lot of attention when it came out. Is it a psychological thriller? Is it a murder mystery? Even people who read the book still felt the chronic unease of this movie’s ever-twisting plot.

Knives Out: A new twist on a classic murder mystery vibe, this movie is basically an updated Clue. Dark humor, a darker story, and a suicide that definitely wasn’t a suicide, this movie keeps the viewers guessing as much as the family of characters in the film.

Can’t Forget the Classics: Movies that Defined the Horror/Thriller Genre

And as a bonus, here are our Top Ten Must-See Horror Classics, which any scary movie buff should definitely watch at least once in their lives:

  • The Shining
  • Misery
  • The Exorcist
  • Rosemary’s Baby
  • Carrie
  • The Fly
  • Poltergeist
  • Aliens
  • The Evil Dead
  • And, of course, Halloween

So go curl up on that luxury media furniture you splurged on during your home theater build and find out who in the family is the biggest sucker for jump scares. Happy scary movie watching!