Horror movies give us the much-needed adrenaline rush in the mundane, routine-bound life. Everyone prefers a different kind of fear, and it is apparent by the critic reviews of all the English horror movies. Some people live for the jump scares, others like slow build-up of suspense. Many people search for a deep, realistic meaning underneath all the torture and gore.
Horror truly is subjective, and this subjectiveness makes it hard to choose the perfect film. Worry not, we have listed the 35 best English horror movies of all kinds. The stories and cinematography in these films will satisfy your appetite for monsters, ghosts, cults and aliens alike. We will begin with a movie adapted from real events.
1. Psycho (1960)
Loosely based on a real-life serial murderer, this English horror film will give you goosebumps with its simple, yet terrifying plot.
2. The Shining (1980)
For a truly immersive experience, watch this old classic when you are alone.
3. Alien (1979)
We have all wondered about extraterrestrial life at some point. The horrifying interactions between humans and an alien might make you abandon the thought, and that makes it one of the best English horror movies.
4. Tumbbad (2018)
Giving in to greed, deceit, and lust will eventually turn one into a monster. This movie unearths an old, classic tale from India.
5. The Blue Elephant (2014)
The movie keeps the view grounded in the third-person perspective, as both characters are equally complicated and mysterious. Unlike most horror movies, fear creeps in slowly as each layer reveals a messy side to the story.
6. The Thing (1982)
Dangerous, isolated places like the polar regions have a strange beauty to them. It is always worth researching these places unless you do not want to risk your life.
7. What Ever Happened to Baby Jane? (1962)
Hate is a strong word and a nasty emotion. This movie shows us what happens when you do not let go of it. The real-life inspiration behind this movie makes it one of the best English horror movies of its time.
8. The Exorcist (1973)
Demonic possession is a phenomenon explored in every culture, and this classic set the tone for many horror movies to come.
9. Shaun of the Dead (2004)
A little bit of laughter is crucial, even when your life is in danger. This English horror film is just scary and traumatizing despite the top-notch comedy.
10. Dawn of the Dead (2004)
We have all resorted to the quarantine life because of the coronavirus. This movie is the same, but the infection is much worse.
11. The Innocents (1961)
The Innocents is one of the English horror movies which scares us even after half a century. It is because the horror lies in the implication of the story and not the events.
12. It Follows (2015)
The best English horror movies often do not have a straight answer to the problem. A simple evening of fun can turn into a life-altering event. Once that happens, you can only cope with your new entrapped life and reminiscence of the freedom you once had.
13. Get Out (2017)
The name of the movie itself is a warning that sometimes people are out to get you.
14. Ouija Blood Ritual (2020)
If the name does not scare you, the movie will. In the age of debunking myths, a group of people find themselves wrapped in the consequences of their actions.
15. Halloween (1978)
The low-budget crime-horror will forever be scary because it shows just how messed up humans can get.
16. The Conjuring (2013)
You are probably familiar with the typical English horror film plot. However, the protagonists have a chance to win against the evil entity here.
17. The Lighthouse (2019)
The chain of real and imagined events leaves the audience feeling claustrophobic. In our quarantined state, we must protect ourselves from entering the mental state of these characters.
18. A Quiet Place (2018)
Humans are responsible for the extinction of several species, now imagine if it were the other way round. It truly is quiet and scary for the last remains of humanity.
19. The Wailing (2016)
A full package of all the creatures you would find in a horror movie, but this time the mashup is good.
20. The Orphanage (2007)
This movie has a popular horror movie trope, including the old-school, gothic premise. It is confusing how harmless and innocent things can get creepy.
21. Hereditary (2018)
Your fate is the one thing you cannot run away from because it will always catch up to you. This movie is a slow descent into fear, agony and sadness.
22. Split (2016)
Mental illnesses have been the crux of horror movies for a long time. Split has its perspective on a disorder which is already confusing for people.
23. The Conjuring 2 (2016)
The best way to solve a problem is to let the experts deal with it. However, reaching a solution is not easy when the concept is mostly unexplained, such as paranormal.
24. It (2017)
Another innocent yet frightening trope - a clown, is at the centre of all the events. It is one of the most popular English horror movies, and you have heard about this movie.
25. Scream (1996)
This English horror film came out at a time when the horror genre was dying out. The unexpected events and premise make for a very bumpy ride.
26. Don't Breathe (2016)
You are likely to switch sides in this movie because all characters have complex personalities. The frightening part is the sense of futility which appears in both parties.
27. The Invisible Man (2020)
The horrors of being in an abusive relationship may lead to insanity when taken to extreme lengths. This movie might make it difficult for you to be vulnerable to anyone again.
28. The Cabin in the Woods (2011)
Some people decide to crash in a cabin, and bad things happen. However, there is much more to this story than mere folly and carelessness.
29. The Witch (2015)
Isolation is deeply terrifying, and this movie explores it perfectly. It is not just mere hysteria in this case, but there is a larger scheme at play.
30. The Descent (2005)
This story has unfolded in real life several times. The movie has an exaggerated storyline, but the 'predator becomes prey' trope will always be relevant to humans.
31. Rec (2007)
It is hard being a reporter, more so when you are at the mercy of a monster. Rec, a Spanish supernatural zombie horror film franchise, has its title as an abbreviation of the word "record".
32. Paranormal Activity (2007)
It is one of the best English horror movies made on a low budget. The skilful recording and plot are straight out of a nightmare.
33. The Babadook (2014)
The characters of this story will remain etched in the corner of your mind for a long time. The relatability to the victims makes it all the scarier.
Among the hyper famous English horror movies is the nun. Not only because of the scary events, but also the intricate world-building and plotlines. When you think everything is fine, a deeper layer reveals itself.
An interesting twist in a regular horror movie plot helped this English horror film scare even the most resilient people. This spooky tale features an orchestral score full of shrieking violins, a comatose child and Paranormal Activity-like slamming doors. It is good enough to scare you away!
On the surface, English horror movies follow a storyline of dim-witted characters underestimating the supernatural forces. The beauty of horror lies in reading between the lines. No matter the plot, it is the execution which ultimately qualifies the status of the movie.
The victims in a horror movie often make us realize our privilege and the power of destiny. Beyond the scary makeup and eerie settings, it is the forced, defenceless victimhood of the main character that stays with us. The list we have made has films catering to all kinds of horror movie fans, from subtle horror to complete bloodbaths.
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