These Are The 10 Scariest Movies Of All Time

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With the releases of two of the creepiest movies to hit the big screen, “A Quiet Place” and “Truth or Dare” coinciding with Friday the 13th, it’s feeling a lot more like October than April. Although these latest blockbusters have caused more than a few sleepless nights, they don’t come close to some of the best spine-chilling flicks ever. We’ve put together a list of the top ten scariest movies of all time ranging from classic horror films to twisted and sinister thrillers that are sure to give you plenty of nightmare fuel. Read on at your own risk!


10. Pyscho (1960)

Alfred Hitchcock is often referred to as the “Master of Suspense,” and for good reason. His 1960 hit “Pyscho” scared audiences for generations, becoming a household name in horror movie collections and inspiring countless spin-offs, including the hit show, “Bates Motel” on Netflix. The iconic bloody shower scene combined with the crazy antics of Norman Bates makes for an unforgettable viewing experience. This movie is a must-see on the list of aspiring horror movie buffs.


9. The Ring (2002)

The simple and effective concept of this movie is one of the reasons why it remains chilling to this day. By watching a tape, an unsuspecting viewer is found dead a week later by unknown yet sinister causes. The original 1998 version of “Ring” appeared as Japan’s No. 1 draft pick in its growing horror lineup, which inspired the Dreamworks remake in 2002 titled “The Ring”. Between the haunting imagery and growing sense of tension throughout the film, it’s no wonder that “The Ring” earns a spot on our top ten list.

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8. The Babadook (2014)

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“The Babadook” is a great psychological horror film, that manages to terrify audiences without relying heavily on the appearance of the monster itself. The true scariness of the film stems from the aura of suspense, which continues to escalate quickly through a series of strange occurrences that Amelia and Sam experience. Paranoia sets in as the unseen threat continue to close in, truly making this movie one of the scariest on the list.

7. The Conjuring (2013)

This supernatural thriller directed by James Wan combines old-school ghoulish scares with an almost modern day setting, making the film’s sense of danger eerily real. The slow and subtle reveal of the monster that’s ultimately haunting the family escalates into full-scale attacks and possession, leading to an unforgettable showdown between the Warrens and the spirit of Bathsheba. Although their exorcism initially appears to be a success, the final scene only emphasizes the feeling of unease and lack of closure that contributes to this movie’s rank.

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6. A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984)

This 1984 cult classic set the standard for slasher films. Although there have been a number of movies with masked killers (“Halloween“, “Friday the 13th” and “Scream” to name a few), “A Nightmare on Elm Street” is able to stand out through Freddy Krueger’s horrific features and terrible abilities. His domain, the dream world, became the source of nightmares for audiences everywhere since there’s no way to stay awake forever. This movie caused many sleepless nights and earned it’s No. 6 spot on our list.


5. Alien (1979)

This sci-fi horror classic gave audiences an idea of how dark, dirty and scary the depths of space could be. Crew members fall left and right to a terrifying creature who hunts in the shadows, causing claustrophobia to set in as it seems impossible to survive the alien onslaught. Director Ridley Scott’s “less is more” approach to filming only enhances the terror of the setting and monster itself, earning “Alien” a high spot on our list.

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4. The Shining (1980)

Based on Stephen King’s chilling classic, “The Shining” movie adaption brought the terror of the novel to life. Jack Nicholson’s portrayal of Jack Torrence was haunting, leaving the phrase, “Here’s Johnny!” ringing in our ears long after the credits. Hallways full of blood, deadly hedge mazes and the dreaded Room 237 set the tone for one of the most terrifying movies of all time. This film is required viewing for any horror movie fan, although don’t expect to get any sleep after it.


3. The Exorcist (1973)

The premise of “The Exorcist” alone is enough to send shivers down your spine, for there’s not a lot creepier than a little girl who’s being possessed by a demon. The movie’s scare factor is so effective because the demon is representative of an entity more powerful than the likes of Freddy and Jason combined. Despite the movie’s slow buildup, the final battle between Fathers Karras and Merrin against the Devil himself is terrifying. Although sequels and spin-offs have been made, none manage to live up to the third scariest movie of all time.

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2. The Silence of the Lambs (1991)

The name Hannibal Lecter alone is enough to send anyone running for cover, which is a testament to the terror struck by the mere mention of the legendary serial killer and cannibal. Although Lecter is pure evil, his actions are never too outlandish, making him believable enough to strike raw fear into the hearts of even seasoned movie veterans. The combination of psychology and deduction along with the gruesome nature of Buffalo Bill and Hannibal Lecter’s crimes make “The Silence of the Lambs” a true masterpiece.


1. Insidious (2010)

There’s nothing insidious about the scare factor of our number one pick. This movie has everything from shrieking violins, comatose children, and demons too grotesque to describe. The quiet moments of suspense punctuated by increasingly sharp scares leave you on the edge of your seat, right up until the twist ending which leaves no room for closure. The fact that this movie can instill the same level of terror on second and third viewings is a testament to its unbelievable horror, leaving no doubt that “Insidious” is the scariest movie of all time.

COLLEGECANDY Writer
COLLEGECANDY Writer
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