Best horror films and TV series on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video
From Stephen King to Ryan Murphy, the best horror movies and TV shows to stream this Halloween are available on Netflix and Amazon Prime Video
This series from horror director Mike Flanagan (Gerald's Game) has gripped, saddened, and terrified millions of binge-watchers. Based on the novel by Shirley Jackson, The Haunting of Hill House follows a dysfunctional family recovering from the memories of a haunted house they lived in as children. Thinking they've left Hill House behind, a tragic event draws them back…
THE PURGE (Netflix)
Yes, the premise is ridiculous. Yes, it’s become even more ridiculous with two sequels and a prequel. But the first film in the supremely popular Purge series still stands as a great horror-thriller and offers a dark, allegorical take on violence in America. It’s a fundamental horror film with an intelligent edge.
GERALD'S GAME (Netflix)
Never has a sexy attempt to spice up a marriage ended in such lethal consequences. Jessie (Carla Gugino) is handcuffed to the bed by her husband in a middle-of-nowhere house. He suddenly has a heart attack and she’s left to fend for herself, spending hours without food or water and delving into her own dark psyche.
SHAUN OF THE DEAD (Netflix and Prime)
Despite the hilarious tone, Edgar Wright’s breakthrough zombie movie is no less horrifying. Splattered with buckets of blood and bags of flesh, Shaun of the Dead isn’t light on gore and fear. One scene in particular mirrors the famous intestine-eating scene from George A Romero’s Dawn of the Dead, and even trumps it.
NOSFERATU: A SYMPHONY OF HORROR (Prime)
Travelling all the way back to 1922, the classic silent horror Nosferatu is the most chilling adaptation of Dracula ever put to screen. It’s a key film in the career of FW Murnau and the German Expressionist movement, but it’s also terrifying (if a bit dated). Max Schreck’s horrifically tall and imposing figure, wielding two sharp front teeth and devilish eyes, are enough to conjure a nightmare or two.
AMERICAN HORROR STORY, seasons 1 - 8 (Netflix)
Haunted houses, deranged asylums, venomous witches, and horrific freak shows – the horror anthology series created by Ryan Murphy and Brad Falchuk continues to shock. The season Murder House is especially terrifying, as a haunted house tortures a dysfunctional family. Sound familiar?
THE SHINING (Available to rent or buy on Prime)
Arguably the eeriest horror movie ever made, Stanley Kubrick’s adaptation of the famous Stephen King novel is an essential for any film fan. As well as giving us memorable lines such as ‘Heeeeeere’s Johnny!’ and ‘All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy’, it’s also sprouted numerous theories about the world inside the Overlook Hotel (especially in the film’s iconic closing shot). It’s more than a horror film – it’s an investigation.
You can’t escape Stephen King on any horror list, so we’ve included three options. Misery returns to King’s classic theme of writer’s block – only this time in the most dangerous circumstances imaginable. Disabled after a car crash, author Paul Sheldon (James Caan) wakes up in the secluded house of Annie Wilkes (Kathy Bates), his number one fan. After reading his latest Misery novel, she is distraught and threatens him to write a new ending… or else.
NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD (Available to rent or buy on Prime)
Returning to the walking dead, George A Romero’s classic zombie movie was the one of the first to jumpstart the genre (expanding into a trilogy with Dawn of the Dead and Day of the Dead). After visiting the graveyard with her brother, Barbra (Judith O’Dea) is assaulted by a walking corpse and must escape to safety.
SCREAM (Available to rent or buy on Prime)
‘What’s your favourite scary movie?’, they ask. This is a favourite for film-school students, as it brilliantly breaks down the horror genre in a way that later deconstructive pieces (like Cabin in the Woods) would only dream of. Wes Craven’s entrance into the 90s is scary, funny, and cuttingly clever.
AMERICAN PSYCHO (Netflix)
Based on the controversial novel by Bret Easton Ellis, American Psycho follows New York investment banker Patrick Bateman (Christian Bale) who moonlights as a serial killer. Given such cinematic force and humour by director Mary Harron, this film is often considered preferable to the original book. And you can't go wrong with Christian Bale, even when he's an unsympathetic psychopath.