As horror is my favorite genre, and I've been watching them since I was seven years old, I consider myself a bit of an expert. So, if you're hoping for a cozy night in watching horror movies, then look no further. Here is the ultimate list of the greatest horror movies, ever.
20. "Rosemary's Baby" (1968).
This film directed by Roman Polanski was made at the height of America's obsession with satanic cults. This film is not your typical jump-out scary horror movie, but the overall effect will leave your skin crawling.
19. "Poltergeist" (1982).
Directed by Tobe Hooper and written by Steven Spielberg, this ghost film is not a typical ghost movie. However, the bright lights, mysterious white mist and moving clown doll with make you think twice before shutting off the lights at night.
18. "Psycho" (1960).
Although the average horror movie enthusiast of today might not appreciate the scare factor in Hitchcock's films, it's important to understand that this film revolutionized the way horror films are made. The scariest part of this movie is not the fear of monsters or things that go bump in the night, but the things that we can't control: other people.
17. "Carrie" (1976).
Based on the novel by the master of horror, Stephen King, and directed by Brian De Palma, I highly recommend seeing this version rather than the 2013 version. First off, none of the actors have been glamorized to hollywood standards, giving this version a more authentically creepy vibe. Also, Sissy Spacek scares the crap out of me. Look at those eyes.
16. "The Omen" (1976).
Director Richard Donner gave horror movie audiences a whole new fear with this movie: children. The idea that a child could be made of such pure evil is enough to make this movie one of the most terrifying ones you will ever see.
15. "Silence of the Lambs" (1991).
This movie has all of the best components of a horror film. Psychological manipulation. Creepy cannibalistic psycho killers. An intense story line that culminates in the most epic and intense fight scene.
14. "Suspiria" (1977).
By far, the creepiest part of this movie is the music. The music alone made me scared to drive home alone at night. This seriously might be the best horror movie soundtrack ever.
13. "The House of the Devil" (2009).
In general, I have become a big fan of Ti West's films, but this is by far his best. Most people don't know about this movie as it's indie, but it has a cool classic horror style that makes this film so creepy. Basically, this movie is about a girl babysitting for an old couple in the middle of absolutely nowhere with no telephone and no car. Because that always ends well.
12. "The Shining" (1980).
This movie has Jack Nicholson playing an alcoholic and deranged writer living in an isolated hotel with his family. As you can imagine, it gets crazy real quick.
11. "The Texas Chainsaw Massacre" (1974).
This is the first slasher film that I had ever seen, and it scared the hell out of me. The best part about this movie is that it doesn't just rely on gore for a scare but also provides a creepier undertone to the plot line that just enhances its scare-factor.
10. "Saw" (2004).
Although this is another addition to a long line of slasher films, "Saw" provides an intelligence and sophistication to the plot line that is not normally found in your typical slasher. So, not only is this movie gory and scary as hell, but it's also riveting and keeps you on the edge of your seat.
9. "The Ring" (2002).
The first time I watched this movie, I was home alone, it was raining and right after the tape was played, my phone rang. So, it is not recommended that you watch this movie alone.
8. "Sinister" (2012).
Although there are a lot of jump-out-of-your-seat scares in this movie, the most horrifying part of this movie is the psychological aspect of it. By that, I mean the literal snuff films that Ethan Hawke finds in his attic, yet continues to stay in the freaking house (shivers).
7. "The Conjuring" (2013).
This is, by far, the best horror film of the past 16 years. It's not overly graphic, it's plot line is not overly complicated, and the jump-out scares are perfectly arranged. Basically, I couldn't sleep after this movie. Or play hide and go seek ever again.
6. "The Exorcist" (1973).
I saw this movie when I was seven and, suffice it to say, my mom was not happy. Luckily, I was not horribly scarred after seeing this movie, but I did have a hard time sleeping for fear that my bed would start shaking.
5. "Alien" (1979).
I'm usually not a huge fan of sci-fi/alien movies, but this movie was impeccably made, especially for the time period. For people who appreciate extremely scary aliens as well as incredible special effects, this is the movie for you.
4. "Blair Witch Project" (1999).
For a film that was made on a budget under $1 million, it is truly one of the most terrifying movies I've ever seen. The best part -- you don't ever see anything. Nothing. Ninety-nine percent of what is going in the film is left up to the viewer's imagination, which makes it 10 times scarier than if they had actually showed you something.
3. "Jaws" (1975).
Although most of us can sit through this movie without the residual feeling that most horror movies leave us with, I have to say that this is a true and tried horror movie in terms of long-lasting fear. Before "Jaws," nobody feared or paid attention to sharks. Now, our culture is obsessed with them -- case in point is "Shark Week." I think all of us can safely say that "Jaws" has permanently made us afraid of the ocean water.
2. "Halloween" (1978).
After this movie, Michael Myers has become a staple for all things horror. This cult classic will have you looking over your shoulder every five minutes.
1. "The Strangers" (2008).
This, by far, is the horror movie that has scared me the most. The reason is simple: this is something that could actually happen. I know this because this movie is based on actual, true events. And the plot is so simple yet so terrifying that you will never, ever want to spend a night home alone again.