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The 50 Best Movies on Shudder Right Now

Since its launch in 2015, Shudder has staked its reputation as a safe haven for society’s misunderstood castaways: Psycho killers, mad scientists, supernatural ghouls, and some really, really cranky animals. It’s become the streaming platform of choice for self-professed horror and genre enthusiasts, and we’ve scoured the depths of its library for the movies with the highest Tomatometer scores, raising to life our guide to the 50 best movies on Shudder right now!

First off, you got the classics: The original Halloween, The Texas Chansaw Massacre, Re-Animator, Deep Red, and more. Then there’s the contemporary films that have re-defined horror in recent times, including Mandy, Tigers Are Not Afraid, A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night, The Wailing, and One Cut of the Dead. And lest we discount one of Shudder’s feature attractions: Originals, some that have been making a cultural splash in the form of Host, and documentary Horror Noire: A History of Black Horror.

And Shudder offers selections beyond horror, including dark comedies (Heathers), sci-fi (Turbo Kid), dramatic thrillers (Stranger by the Lake), and gangster epics (Drug War). Whatever genre box you might want to stuff these films in, the only stipulation for consideration to this guide was that each movie crossed at least 20 critics reviews.

Now say hello to some old pals, and make a bunch of new weird ones, with our list of the 50 best movies on Shudder right now.

#50

Empathy, Inc. (2019)
85%

#50
Adjusted Score: 85.27%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Hotshot venture capitalist Joel has a multi-million-dollar deal go up in smoke, and he and his actress wife Jessica are... [More]
Directed By: Yedidya Gorsetman

#49
#49
Adjusted Score: 86.013%
Critics Consensus: Restrained but disturbing, A Tale of Two Sisters is a creepily effective, if at times confusing, horror movie.
Synopsis: This supernatural horror film from Kim Jee-woon is inspired by the ancient Korean folktale "Jangha and Hongryun." Set in an... [More]
Directed By: Kim Jee-woon

#48

Mayhem (2017)
85%

#48
Adjusted Score: 86.757%
Critics Consensus: Mayhem delivers stylish violence by the bloody bucketful -- and grounds all the titular chaos in sharp humor and surprisingly effective real-world economic angst.
Synopsis: Derek Cho (Steven Yeun) is having a really bad day. After being unjustly fired from his job, he discovers that... [More]
Directed By: Joe Lynch (V)

#47
#47
Adjusted Score: 87.73%
Critics Consensus: Though its underlying themes are familiar, House of the Devil effectively sheds the loud and gory cliches of contemporary horror to deliver a tense, slowly building throwback to the fright flicks of decades past.
Synopsis: Sam is a pretty college sophomore, so desperate to earn some cash for a deposit on an apartment that she... [More]
Directed By: Ti West

#46
#46
Adjusted Score: 87.078%
Critics Consensus: The Transfiguration tells a quieter, more deliberately paced tale than genre fans might expect, but for those with the patience to let it sink in, it offers its own rewards.
Synopsis: An official selection at the Cannes Film Festival, writer/director Michael O'Shea's debut feature The Transfiguration follows troubled teen Milo who... [More]
Directed By: Michael O'Shea

#45
#45
Adjusted Score: 88.945%
Critics Consensus: A compelling story cleverly told, We Are What We Are quenches horror buffs' thirst for gore while serving up serious-minded filmmaking and solid acting.
Synopsis: The Parkers have always kept to themselves, and for good reason. Behind closed doors, patriarch Frank rules his family with... [More]
Directed By: Jim Mickle

#44
#44
Adjusted Score: 95.06%
Critics Consensus: A welcome return for director Richard Stanley, Color Out of Space mixes tart B-movie pulp with visually alluring Lovecraftian horror and a dash of gonzo Nicolas Cage.
Synopsis: After a meteorite lands in the front yard of their farm, Nathan Gardner (Nicolas Cage) and his family find themselves... [More]
Directed By: Richard Stanley

#43
Adjusted Score: 92.649%
Critics Consensus: Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer is an effective, chilling profile of a killer that is sure to shock and disturb.
Synopsis: Although the title makes Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer seem like a cut-rate slasher flick, the movie is actually... [More]
Directed By: John McNaughton

#42

Deathgasm (2015)
88%

#42
Adjusted Score: 88.357%
Critics Consensus: Deathgasm plumbs the blood-spattered depths of grindhouse gore with enough giddy glee to satisfy genre enthusiasts looking for a thrill.
Synopsis: New kid in town Brodie and bad-boy Zakk quickly bond over their mutual admiration of heavy metal. But when these... [More]
Directed By: Jason Lei Howden

#41

Bliss (2019)
88%

#41
Adjusted Score: 89.022%
Critics Consensus: Bliss may be too narratively and visually intense for less adventurous viewers, but should trigger the titular state in those with a taste for hard-hitting horror.
Synopsis: Known for her dark and macabre artwork, painter Dezzy Donahue (Dora Madison) is in a professional rut. Unable to finish... [More]
Directed By: Joe Begos

#40
Adjusted Score: 95.771%
Critics Consensus: Thanks to a smart script and documentary-style camerawork, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre achieves start-to-finish suspense, making it a classic in low-budget exploitation cinema.
Synopsis: Just as Hitchcock's Psycho was based on the life of deeply disturbed farmer Ed Gein, so is this little story... [More]
Directed By: Tobe Hooper

#39
Adjusted Score: 89.317%
Critics Consensus: Dogs Don't Wear Pants will be too intense for many viewers, but for those who can take the punishment, there's pleasure in this stark drama's pain.
Synopsis: The story follows Juha who develops an unexpected but powerful connection with a dominatrix named Mona, following a tragic event... [More]
Directed By: J.-P. Valkeapää

#38

Ginger Snaps (2001)
89%

#38
Adjusted Score: 90.195%
Critics Consensus: The strong female cast and biting satire of teenage life makes Ginger Snaps far more memorable than your average werewolf movie -- or teen flick.
Synopsis: In this modern werewolf tale, sisters Ginger and Brigitte are ostracized by their town because of their morbid inclinations. Soon... [More]
Directed By: John Fawcett

#37

Starfish (2019)
87%

#37
Adjusted Score: 88.916%
Critics Consensus: Led by a strong central performance from Virginia Gardner, Starfish is an intelligent, emotionally affecting, and uniquely expansive sci-fi/horror hybrid.
Synopsis: When a mysterious Signal triggers an event that sparks the end of the world, Aubrey Parker is trapped in her... [More]
Directed By: A.T. White, A..T. White

#36

Better Watch Out (2017)
89%

#36
Adjusted Score: 90.94%
Critics Consensus: Carried by its charismatic young cast, Better Watch Out is an adorably sinister holiday horror film.
Synopsis: This holiday season, you may be home, but you're not alone... In this fresh and gleefully twisted spin on home-invasion... [More]
Directed By: Chris Peckover

#35
Adjusted Score: 82.699%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: After being mysteriously ill for almost 3 years, mother finally passes away. Dad then leaves town for a job leaving... [More]
Directed By: Joko Anwar

#34

Blood Quantum (2020)
90%

#34
Adjusted Score: 93.643%
Critics Consensus: Blood Quantum blends bloody horror with sociopolitical subtext, taking a fresh bite out of the crowded zombie genre in the bargain.
Synopsis: The dead are coming back to life outside the isolated Mi'gMaq reserve of Red Crow, except for its Indigenous inhabitants... [More]
Directed By: Jeff Barnaby

#33

Mandy (2018)
91%

#33
Adjusted Score: 101.264%
Critics Consensus: Mandy's gonzo violence is fueled by a gripping performance by Nicolas Cage -- and anchored with palpable emotion conveyed between his volcanic outbursts.
Synopsis: Pacific Northwest. 1983 AD. Outsiders Red Miller and Mandy Bloom lead a loving and peaceful existence. When their pine-scented haven... [More]
Directed By: Panos Cosmatos

#32

Turbo Kid (2015)
91%

#32
Adjusted Score: 92.333%
Critics Consensus: A nostalgic ode to kids' movies of yesteryear, Turbo Kid eyes the past through an entertaining -- albeit surprisingly gory -- postmodern lens.
Synopsis: Set in a post apocalyptic year of 1997, this retro-futuristic and nostalgic tribute to 80's action-adventure films follows an orphaned... [More]

#31

Prevenge (2017)
91%

#31
Adjusted Score: 93.951%
Critics Consensus: As ambitious as it is daringly transgressive, Prevenge should thrill fans of pitch-black horror-comedy -- and open untold opportunities for writer/director/star Alice Lowe.
Synopsis: A pitch black, wryly British comedy from the mind of Alice Lowe, "Prevenge" follows Ruth, a pregnant woman on a... [More]
Directed By: Alice Lowe

#30

Beast (2018)
92%

#30
Adjusted Score: 97.675%
Critics Consensus: Beast plays like bleak poetry, unfurling its psychological thrills while guided by its captivating leads and mesmerizing, visceral visuals.
Synopsis: Moll is 27 and still living at home, stifled by the small island community around her and too beholden to... [More]
Directed By: Michael Pearce

#29

Demon (2016)
92%

#29
Adjusted Score: 94.049%
Critics Consensus: Ambitious and beautifully shot, Demon delivers a gripping -- and sadly final -- testament to the singular talent possessed by director/co-writer Marcin Wrona.
Synopsis: Newly arrived from England to marry his fiancee Zaneta (Agnieszka Zulewska, Chemo), Peter (Israeli actor Itay Tiran, Lebanon) has been... [More]
Directed By: Marcin Wrona

#28

Heathers (1988)
93%

#28
Adjusted Score: 96.989%
Critics Consensus: Dark, cynical, and subversive, Heathers gently applies a chainsaw to the conventions of the high school movie -- changing the game for teen comedies to follow.
Synopsis: A deliciously nasty black comedy, Heathers is set at a cliquish high school in Ohio. The most exclusive of those... [More]
Directed By: Michael Lehmann

#27

Re-Animator (1985)
93%

#27
Adjusted Score: 97.368%
Critics Consensus: Perfectly mixing humor and horror, the only thing more effective than Re-Animator's gory scares are its dry, deadpan jokes.
Synopsis: Scientist Herbert West has discovered a fluid which brings living tissue back to life. After the death of his professor,... [More]
Directed By: Stuart Gordon

#26
#26
Adjusted Score: 94.316%
Critics Consensus: It'll be too disturbing -- and meandering -- for some, but Dogtooth is as disturbing and startlingly original as modern filmmaking gets.
Synopsis: The father, the mother and their three kids live at the outskirts of a city. There is a tall fence... [More]
Directed By: Yorgos Lanthimos

#25

Revenge (2018)
93%

#25
Adjusted Score: 98.119%
Critics Consensus: Revenge slices and dices genre tropes, working within an exploitation framework while adding a timely -- yet never less than viscerally thrilling -- feminist spin.
Synopsis: Jen (fearlessly embodied by Matilda Lutz, Rings) is enjoying a romantic getaway with her wealthy boyfriend which is suddenly disrupted... [More]
Directed By: Coralie Fargeat

#24

Nina Forever (2016)
94%

#24
Adjusted Score: 94.546%
Critics Consensus: Nina Forever tests the limits of the rom-com with a decidedly unorthodox triangle that's as diabolically original as it is daringly dark.
Synopsis: Holly wants to save Rob and has fallen in love with him. She is training to be a paramedic and... [More]
Directed By: Ben Blaine, Chris Blaine

#23

Drug War (2013)
94%

#23
Adjusted Score: 95.341%
Critics Consensus: A taut, solidly constructed action thriller with uncommon intelligence, Drug War delivers exhilarating set pieces without skimping on sophisticated filmmaking.
Synopsis: Manufacturing just fifty grams of meth in China will earn you a death sentence, and Timmy Choi (Louis Koo) has... [More]
Directed By: Johnnie To

#22
#22
Adjusted Score: 97.279%
Critics Consensus: Sexy, smart, and darkly humorous, Stranger by the Lake offers rewarding viewing for adult filmgoers in search of thought-provoking drama.
Synopsis: Frank (Pierre Deladonchamps) spends his summer days hopelessly searching for companionship at a popular cruising spot on the shores of... [More]
Directed By: Alain Guiraudie

#21

Liquid Sky (1983)
95%

#21
Adjusted Score: 96.273%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: A glitzy updating of Andy Warhol's Trash with aliens, this campy, stylish, but ultimately depressing film is one of the... [More]
Directed By: Slava Tsukerman

#20
Adjusted Score: 95.909%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Perempuan Tanah Jahanam tells the story of a woman who returns to her home village, only to find out that... [More]
Directed By: Joko Anwar

#19

The Love Witch (2016)
95%

#19
Adjusted Score: 98.723%
Critics Consensus: The Love Witch offers an absorbing visual homage to a bygone era, arranged subtly in service of a thought-provoking meditation on the battle of the sexes.
Synopsis: Elaine, a beautiful young witch, is determined to find a man to love her. In her Gothic Victorian apartment she... [More]
Directed By: Anna Biller

#18
Adjusted Score: 96.018%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: An ex cop and his ex partner decide to follow up on investigation of a series of murders that ended... [More]
Directed By: Diao Yinan

#17

The Pool (2019)
96%

#17
Adjusted Score: 96.223%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Directed By: Ping Lumprapleng

#16
#16
Adjusted Score: 97.943%
Critics Consensus: The kinetic camerawork and brutal over-the-top gore that made Dario Argento famous is on full display, but the addition of a compelling, complex story makes Deep Red a masterpiece.
Synopsis: The film that has become the master work in Italian horror maestro Dario Argento's canon, Deep Red holds up brilliantly... [More]
Directed By: Dario Argento

#15
#15
Adjusted Score: 100.036%
Critics Consensus: A deft blend of well-chosen ingredients, The Old Dark House is a delightfully scary horror comedy that benefits from James Whale's suspenseful direction.
Synopsis: Frankenstein director James Whale turned J.B. Priestley's novel "Benighted" into a nerve-jangling tale (originally released in 1932) that became the... [More]
Directed By: James Whale

#14
Adjusted Score: 96.223%
Critics Consensus: Hagazussa: A Heathen's Curse weaves a spooky supernatural story that should satisfy horror fans with more adventurous inclinations.
Synopsis: In a remote Alpine village in the 15th century, the orphan Albrun grows up to become a marked woman. The... [More]
Directed By: Lukas Feigelfeld

#13

Halloween (1978)
96%

#13
Adjusted Score: 103.692%
Critics Consensus: Scary, suspenseful, and viscerally thrilling, Halloween set the standard for modern horror films.
Synopsis: A young boy kills his sister on Halloween of 1963, and is sent to a mental hospital. 15 years later... [More]
Directed By: John Carpenter

#12
Adjusted Score: 100.868%
Critics Consensus: A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night blends conventional elements into something brilliantly original -- and serves as a striking calling card for writer-director Ana Lily Amirpour.
Synopsis: The first Iranian Vampire Western ever made, Ana Lily Amirpour's debut basks in the sheer pleasure of pulp. A joyful... [More]
Directed By: Ana Lily Amirpour

#11

Ringu (Ring) (1998)
97%

#11
Adjusted Score: 98.516%
Critics Consensus: Ringu combines supernatural elements with anxieties about modern technology in a truly frightening and unnerving way.
Synopsis: In this psychological horror story from Japan, a legend circulates among teenagers that if one watches a certain video at... [More]
Directed By: Hideo Nakata

#10
#10
Adjusted Score: 104.334%
Critics Consensus: George A. Romero's debut set the template for the zombie film, and features tight editing, realistic gore, and a sly political undercurrent.
Synopsis: One can only imagine the impact that Night on the Living Dead had on unprepared audiences of 1968. Here was... [More]
Directed By: George A. Romero

#9

La Llorona (2020)
97%

#9
Adjusted Score: 99.711%
Critics Consensus: La Llorona puts a fresh spin on the familiar legend by blending the supernatural and the political to resolutely chilling effect.
Synopsis: Indignant retired general Enrique finally faces trial for the genocidal massacre of thousands of Mayans decades ago. As a horde... [More]
Directed By: Jayro Bustamante

#8
Adjusted Score: 101.22%
Critics Consensus: Tigers Are Not Afraid draws on childhood trauma for a story that deftly blends magical fantasy and hard-hitting realism - and leaves a lingering impact.
Synopsis: A haunting horror fairytale set against the backdrop of Mexico's devastating drug wars, TIGERS ARE NOT AFRAID follows a group... [More]
Directed By: Issa López

#7
#7
Adjusted Score: 101.521%
Critics Consensus: The Wailing delivers an atmospheric, cleverly constructed mystery whose supernatural thrills more than justify its imposing length.
Synopsis: The arrival of a mysterious stranger in a quiet rural village causes suspicion amongst the villagers- but as they begin... [More]
Directed By: Na Hong-jin

#6

Seoul Station (2016)
100%

#6
Adjusted Score: 98.76%
Critics Consensus: Thrilling and relentless from start to finish, Yeon Sang-ho's Seoul Station is a layered and vicious entry into the zombie genre.
Synopsis: A man living in the train station in Seoul spreads the zombie virus infesting the entire city.... [More]
Directed By: Yeon Sang-ho

#5
Adjusted Score: 100.317%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Scream Queen! My Nightmare on Elm Street sets the records straight about the controversial sequel to A Nightmare on Elm... [More]

#4
Adjusted Score: 100.458%
Critics Consensus: Horror Noire: A History of Black Horror more than lives up to its title, offering a smart and entertaining overview of American film history through an overlooked lens.
Synopsis: Horror Noire features interviews with filmmakers and scholars, showcasing a who's who of black horror cinema, from those who survived... [More]
Starring: Ashlee Blackwell
Directed By: Xavier Burgin

#3
Adjusted Score: 100.576%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Buckle up for the true story of writer, producer, director, creator and all-around maverick, Larry Cohen (BLACK CAESAR, GOD TOLD... [More]
Directed By: Steve Mitchell

#2

Host (2020)
100%

#2
Adjusted Score: 102.247%
Critics Consensus: Lean, suspenseful, and scary, Host uses its timely premise to deliver a nastily effective treat for horror enthusiasts.
Synopsis: Six friends hire a medium to hold a séance over Zoom during lockdown but get far more than they bargain... [More]
Directed By: Rob Savage

#1
Adjusted Score: 103.045%
Critics Consensus: Brainy and bloody in equal measure, One Cut of the Dead reanimates the moribund zombie genre with a refreshing blend of formal daring and clever satire.
Synopsis: A cast of relative unknowns, a brilliantly disguised low budget and an epic, 37-minute opening single take makes Shin'ichirô Ueda's... [More]
Directed By: Shin'ichirô Ueda

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