By Scott Ward

Horror movies and Halloween go together like peanut butter and jelly. Oh come on! Who doesn’t enjoy a good scare when it’s all in fun and merely the product of cinema magic?

Scary movies have equaled big business for studios so it is likely that you can find a fright flick playing in a theater any time during the year. All of the movies on this list are available to scare you this Halloween right in the comfort of your own home.

The Exorcist

Perhaps the most disturbing and frightening movie of all time. There’s something inherently unsettling about the idea of evil spirits making children do awful things. Some of the special effects look a wee bit dated but The Exorcist still haunts and disturbs people 40 years later.


An evil kid, quiet and timid little Michael Myers, brutally murders his own sister. 15 years later, he returns home and starts slashing his way through the town’s population. The 1978 original launched a franchise and is a must-watch-at-least-once for Oct. 31.

The Conjuring

Based on a true story, this film makes good use of classic scare tactics like clowns, dolls, and ghosts in sheets. It’s never predictable, genuinely suspenseful, and will leave viewers guessing right up until the end.

Paranormal Activity

The found footage genre got a boost when the original P.A. movie was released in 2009. The low budget frightener blends normal, everyday life in the suburbs with ancient forms of terror. Paranormal Activity brought one genuine surprise to moviegoers: It was gore-free and still scary!

Silent Night, Bloody Night

This 1972 film is considered a classic and the beginning of the modern day slasher genre. Was anyone else shocked to learn the true identity of Marianne?

The Silence Of The Lambs

A true psychological thriller, it made a star of Anthony Hopkins and swept the Academy Awards. It is the only horror movie that has ever won the Best Picture honor from the Academy. It is still just as creepy as it is scary.

The Shining

Fans of the Stephen King book hated this adaptation. Stephen King HIMSELF hated this adaptation. Even so, The Shining found an audience and is still regarded as a groundbreaking horror classic. The effects of isolation on the human mind are often scarier than outlandish monsters.

A Nightmare On Elm Street

Legendary horror director Wes Craven tapped into the unpredictable world of dreams and teen angst all at the same time. This one film launched a movie franchise, an upswing in the sale of striped sweaters, and a generation of insomniacs.

The Others

This movie is like a crash course in creating tension with spooky settings, sound, and camera work instead of graphic violence and nutjobs with sharp objects. This one gave new meaning to the idea that they’re just as afraid of you as you are of them.

When A Stranger Calls

A bit slow-moving, but it still sends chills down the spine of anyone who has ever put the kids to bed and anxiously awaited the return of the parents. Skip the 2006 remake, rent the original, and DON’T ANSWER THE PHONE!

A little scare might be fun for you but don’t ever force your friends or significant other to sit through a movie that makes them uncomfortable. If everyone agrees on a little cinematic adrenaline rush, then go for it!


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