Now that it is officially October, it's time to go full Halloween.
Decorations, costumes, snacks...and, of course, movies. There are so many great horror movies (and a lot of bad ones), but some things only feel right if you watch them around Halloween, like Hocus Pocus. Other movies like, Psycho, can be watched year round, but the season only makes them scarier.
Think of this list as the ultimate list: iconic movies that defined—and changed—the genre, psychological thrillers and scary comedies, kid-friendly classics, and movies you can't watch any other time.
Can you watch them all?
Though not the best of the Alien movies—that title is held by its 1986 sequel, Aliens—the Xenomorph's unforgettable introduction makes this a must-see.
American Psycho (2000)
You'll never listen to Huey Lewis and the News the same way.
Michael Keaton proved he's the ghost with the most in this classic Tim Burton film.
Bram Stoker's Dracula (1992)
The famous story gets a cinematically beautiful retelling.
Carrie is one of the best movie adaptations of Stephen King's work. While the hair and clothes are definitely dated, the film still terrifies viewers.
The Conjuring (2013)
Based on real events, The Conjuring is one of the decade's scariest movies. Instead of relying on gratuitous gore and cheap scares, it builds suspense and connections with the characters.
"Ghostbusters. Whaddaya want?"
John Carpenter created a new sub-genre of horror movie: the slasher film.
Though "dark comedy" is a far cry from horror or Halloween, we'll use just about any excuse to watch Winona Ryder and Christian Slater.
If you're looking for gross and gory, this is the movie for you.
Hocus Pocus (1993)
Watch with children or on your own. The Sanderson sisters are suitable for all ages.
While the 2017/2019 IT films are definitely scarier, Tim Curry's iconic performance in this TV miniseries made people everywhere fear clowns.
It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown (1966)
This classic, kid-friendly movie is a must-have!
The Lost Boys (1987)
"You don't need to beat me. You just need to keep up."
Kathy Bates proves psychological horror is scarier than gore any day.
Night of the Living Dead (1968)
This is a cult classic, and a must-see for all zombie lovers.
The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993)
You can watch this movie as much as you want from September to January (though no one will judge you for watching it year round).
The Orphanage (2007)
It's creepy and psychologically thrilling, but this Spanish film is also extremely emotional.
Paranormal Activity (2007)
Filmed in mockumentary style, the wildly popular series is terrifying.
"They're heeeeere." So is Halloween.
Practical Magic (1998)
Midnight margaritas, anyone?
Alfred Hitchcock changed the game with Psycho, which tested the strict censorship of the day with its shocking depictions of violence and sex.
A Quiet Place (2018)
Your own breathing will sound too loud while you're watching this movie.
Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975)
Another iconic Tim Curry performance.
Scooby Doo and the Witch's Ghost (1999)
90's kids will definitely remember this one.
The Shining (1980)
The Silence of the Lambs (1991)
With less than twenty minutes of screen time, Anthony Hopkins still managed to make Hannibal Lecter one of pop culture's scariest villains.
Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007)
If you're squeamish, you might want to skip this one...
Considered one of the greatest vampire films of all time, Vampyr should be watched every year.
What We Do in the Shadows (2014)
Who says horror can't be funny?
AKA, Tallahassee's Search for the Last Twinkie.