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(Photo by Netflix. Thumbnail: Dark Sky/courtesy Everett Collection)

The Best Horror Movies on Netflix (October 2020)

Looking for the best scary movies on Netflix? After a guided map of the most terrifying dingy dungeons, creaky manors, home-invaded houses, and deeply dark woods you can find on the streaming service? Then your search has led you to your glorious streaming doom: The Best Horror Movies on Netflix!

Not only does Netflix have a strong rotating library of scary movies, they sit along their horror original efforts, like Gerald’s Game, The Platform, and Bird Box.

How did we whittle down our list of horror? We took every last scary movie on Netflix that had at least 20 reviews. What emerges is a portrait of which films unnerved and spooked out critics, have the potential to get audiences’ heart racing, and maybe even broke new ground and bones for the genre. So enough delaying the inevitable: Here are the 50 best Netflix horror movies to stream and scream right now!

#47

Velvet Buzzsaw (2019)
62%

#47
Adjusted Score: 69.548%
Critics Consensus: If you only watch one art-world satire with horror overtones this year -- or most others -- it should probably be Velvet Buzzsaw.
Synopsis: Velvet Buzzsaw is a satirical thriller set in the contemporary art world scene of Los Angeles, where big money artists... [More]
Directed By: Dan Gilroy

#46

Our House (2018)
62%

#46
Adjusted Score: 62.205%
Critics Consensus: Our House sits on a solid foundation of genuine pathos, even if the storytelling structure tends to be frustratingly rickety in spots.
Synopsis: A machine that can bring back dead loved ones seems like a great idea...until you unleash the wrong spirits. When... [More]
Directed By: Anthony Scott Burns

#45

Before I Wake (2018)
63%

#45
Adjusted Score: 63.483%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: In this intense and heart pounding supernatural thriller, Jessie (Kate Bosworth) and Mark (Thomas Jane) decide to take in a... [More]
Directed By: Mike Flanagan

#44

Bird Box (2018)
63%

#44
Adjusted Score: 69.417%
Critics Consensus: Bird Box never quite reaches its intriguing potential, but strong acting and an effectively chilly mood offer intermittently creepy compensation.
Synopsis: When a mysterious force decimates the world's population, only one thing is certain: if you see it, you take your... [More]
Directed By: Susanne Bier

#43

Session 9 (2001)
64%

#43
Adjusted Score: 65.697%
Critics Consensus: Relying more on atmosphere than gore, Session 9 is effectively creepy.
Synopsis: Writer/director Brad Anderson, known for whimsical romantic comedies like Next Stop, Wonderland, was inspired by the astonishing, creepy visage of... [More]
Directed By: Brad Anderson

#42

13 Sins (2014)
65%

#42
Adjusted Score: 65.896%
Critics Consensus: 13 Sins may be derivative of other horror films that made their moral points with more finesse, but it atones with a grim sense of humor and sleek style.
Synopsis: A cryptic phone call sets off a dangerous game of risks for Elliot, a down-on-his luck salesman. The game promises... [More]
Directed By: Daniel Stamm

#41
#41
Adjusted Score: 71.497%
Critics Consensus: We Summon the Darkness makes the most of its rather pedestrian plot with palpable affection for genre formula, an appealing cast, and a sharp sense of humor.
Synopsis: The killing spree of murderous Satanists has already led to 18 deaths throughout America's Heartland. Three best friends Alexis (Alexandra... [More]
Directed By: Marc Meyers

#40

Sleepy Hollow (1999)
69%

#40
Adjusted Score: 74.251%
Critics Consensus: It isn't Tim Burton's best work, but Sleepy Hollow entertains with its stunning visuals and creepy atmosphere.
Synopsis: Washington Irving's tale of Ichabod Crane and the Headless Horseman gets a few new twists in a screen adaptation directed... [More]
Directed By: Tim Burton

#39

The Babysitter (2017)
72%

#39
Adjusted Score: 72.332%
Critics Consensus: Enjoyable if not particularly original, The Babysitter makes the most of its familiar genre ingredients with energetic direction and a killer cast.
Synopsis: The Babysitter, directed by McG, follows Cole (Judah Lewis), who is madly in love with his babysitter Bee (Samara Weaving).... [More]
Directed By: McG

#38
Adjusted Score: 74.077%
Critics Consensus: Slow-building and atmospheric, The Blackcoat's Daughter resists girls-in-peril clichés in a supernatural thriller that serves as a strong calling card for debuting writer-director Oz Perkins.
Synopsis: A deeply atmospheric and terrifying new horror film, The Blackcoat's Daughter centers on Kat (Kiernan Shipka) and Rose (Lucy Boynton),... [More]
Directed By: Oz Perkins

#37

The Perfection (2019)
72%

#37
Adjusted Score: 75.321%
Critics Consensus: Led by a pair of compelling performances, The Perfection is a smart, gripping thriller that barbs its wild twists with cutting wit.
Synopsis: When troubled musical prodigy Charlotte (Allison Williams) seeks out Elizabeth (Logan Browning), the new star pupil of her former school,... [More]
Directed By: Richard Shepard

#36

The Ritual (2017)
73%

#36
Adjusted Score: 76.133%
Critics Consensus: Director David Bruckner makes evocative use of the Scandinavian setting and a dedicated cast to deliver a handsome -- if familiar -- horror story.
Synopsis: Following the sudden, violent death of their best mate, four young men reunite for a hike through the Scandinavian wilderness.... [More]
Directed By: David Bruckner

#35
Adjusted Score: 76.1%
Critics Consensus: Killer Klowns from Outer Space's title promises darkly goofy fun -- and more often than not, the movie delivers.
Synopsis: This low-budget cult classic horror spoof has one of the great movie titles of all time. Mike (Grant Cramer) and... [More]
Directed By: Stephen Chiodo

#34

Splice (2010)
75%

#34
Adjusted Score: 80.704%
Critics Consensus: It doesn't take its terrific premise quite as far as it should, but Splice is a smart, well-acted treat for horror fans.
Synopsis: Superstar genetic engineers Clive and Elsa specialize in splicing DNA from different animals to create incredible hybrids. Now they want... [More]
Directed By: Vincenzo Natali

#33

Apostle (2018)
78%

#33
Adjusted Score: 80.152%
Critics Consensus: Apostle resists easy scares in favor of a steady, slow-building descent into dread led by a commanding central performance from Dan Stevens.
Synopsis: London, 1905. Prodigal son Thomas Richardson (Dan Stevens) has returned home, only to learn that his sister is being held... [More]
Directed By: Gareth Evans

#32

Cult of Chucky (2017)
79%

#32
Adjusted Score: 79.102%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: Chucky returns to prey upon Nica (Fiona Dourif), who's been confined to an asylum for four years. Chucky's nemesis from... [More]
Directed By: Don Mancini

#31
#31
Adjusted Score: 82.749%
Critics Consensus: While it may feel muddled at times, The Platform is an inventive and captivating dystopian thriller.
Synopsis: One day Goreng wakes up with his future colleague Trimagasi in the 33rd level of a prison style place, crossed... [More]

#30
Adjusted Score: 74.171%
Critics Consensus: A yuletide nightmare full of familial angst and slithering scares, Await Further Instructions is a genre treat that pretty much any horror fan will want in their stocking.
Synopsis: It's Christmas Day and the Milgram family wake to find a mysterious black substance surrounding their house. Something monumental is... [More]
Directed By: Johnny Kevorkian

#29
Adjusted Score: 91.629%
Critics Consensus: The Killing of a Sacred Deer continues director Yorgos Lanthimos' stubbornly idiosyncratic streak -- and demonstrates again that his is a talent not to be ignored.
Synopsis: Dr. Steven Murphy (Colin Farrell) is a renowned cardiovascular surgeon presiding over a spotless household with his ophthalmologist wife Anna... [More]
Directed By: Yorgos Lanthimos

#28
#28
Adjusted Score: 83.318%
Critics Consensus: Smart, stylish, and well-acted, What Keeps You Alive proves it's still possible to spin an engrossing horror yarn without fundamentally altering established formula.
Synopsis: How much can you really know about another person? The unsettling truth that even those closest to us can harbor... [More]
Directed By: Colin Minihan

#27
#27
Adjusted Score: 89.534%
Critics Consensus: Using its low-budget effects and mockumentary method to great result, Paranormal Activity turns a simple haunted house story into 90 minutes of relentless suspense.
Synopsis: A haunted house makes no secret of the fact it's not pleased with its new tenants in this independent tale... [More]
Directed By: Oren Peli

#26
#26
Adjusted Score: 84.738%
Critics Consensus: Girl on the Third Floor proves a good old-fashioned haunted house story can still be entertaining -- and put a fresh spin on established genre formula.
Synopsis: At the heart of the film is Don Koch (CM Punk), a man who is failing as a husband. For... [More]
Directed By: Travis Stevens

#25

#Alive (2020)
86%

#25
Adjusted Score: 86.148%
Critics Consensus: Well-acted, genuinely unsettling, and occasionally even funny, #alive proves the crowded zombie genre still has fresh stories to tell.
Synopsis: The rapid spread of an unknown infection has left an entire city in ungovernable chaos, but one survivor remains alive... [More]
Directed By: Il Cho

#24

The Golem (2019)
86%

#24
Adjusted Score: 86.315%
Critics Consensus: A chillingly effective horror story rooted in rich folklore, The Golem blends centuries-old stories with timely themes to powerful effect.
Synopsis: During an outbreak of a deadly plague, a mystical woman must save her tight-knit Jewish community from foreign invaders, but... [More]
Directed By: Doron Paz, Yoav Paz

#23

Poltergeist (1982)
86%

#23
Adjusted Score: 91.633%
Critics Consensus: Smartly filmed, tightly scripted, and -- most importantly -- consistently frightening, Poltergeist is a modern horror classic.
Synopsis: With Poltergeist, directed by Tobe Hooper, Steven Spielberg had his first great success as a producer. Released around the same... [More]
Directed By: Tobe Hooper

#22

1BR (2020)
86%

#22
Adjusted Score: 88.705%
Critics Consensus: 1BR's occasionally ordinary storytelling is more than outweighed by tight direction, interesting ideas, and an effective blend of horror and thoughtful drama.
Synopsis: After leaving behind a painful past to follow her dreams, Sarah scores the perfect Hollywood apartment. But something is not... [More]
Directed By: David Marmor

#21
#21
Adjusted Score: 87.437%
Critics Consensus: Uncommonly restrained for a movie about a flesh-eating menace, Ravenous offers a satisfyingly nuanced entry in the crowded zombie apocalypse subgenre.
Synopsis: A group of people transform into zombies in a small Canadian town. Labeled the "hungry," they feast upon their loved... [More]
Directed By: Robin Aubert

#20
#20
Adjusted Score: 90.462%
Critics Consensus: The Autopsy of Jane Doe subverts the gruesome expectations triggered by its title to deliver a smart, suggestively creepy thriller that bolsters director André Ovredal's growing reputation.
Synopsis: It's just another night at the morgue for a father (Brian Cox) and son (Emile Hirsch) team of coroners, until... [More]
Directed By: André Øvredal

#19
#19
Adjusted Score: 97.527%
Critics Consensus: It Comes at Night makes lethally effective use of its bare-bones trappings while proving once again that what's left unseen can be just as horrifying as anything on the screen.
Synopsis: Imagine the end of the world. Now imagine something worse. Award-winning filmmaker Trey Edward Shults follows his incredible debut feature... [More]
Directed By: Trey Edward Shults

#18

Emelie (2016)
88%

#18
Adjusted Score: 88.459%
Critics Consensus: No consensus yet.
Synopsis: As their parents head out for a date in the city, the three young Thompson children immediately take to their... [More]
Directed By: Michael Thelin

#17

Cargo (2018)
88%

#17
Adjusted Score: 90.477%
Critics Consensus: Cargo takes a refreshingly character-driven approach to the zombie genre that's further distinguished by its Australian setting and Martin Freeman's terrific lead performance.
Synopsis: Stranded in rural Australia in the aftermath of a violent pandemic, an infected father desperately seeks a new home for... [More]
Directed By: Yolanda Ramke, Ben Howling

#16

Freaks (2019)
88%

#16
Adjusted Score: 90.851%
Critics Consensus: Stocked with solid performances, Freaks is a clever sci-fi/horror hybrid that suggests a bright future for co-writers/co-directors Zach Lipovsky and Adam Stein.
Synopsis: Kept locked inside the house by her father, 7-year-old Chloe lives in fear and fascination of the outside world, where... [More]
Directed By: Zach Lipovsky

#15

The Invitation (2016)
89%

#15
Adjusted Score: 92.505%
Critics Consensus: The Invitation makes brilliant use of its tension-rich premise to deliver a uniquely effective -- and surprisingly clever -- slow-building thriller.
Synopsis: In this taut psychological thriller by Karyn Kusama (Girlfight, Jennifer's Body), the tension is palpable when Will (Logan Marshall-Green, Prometheus)... [More]
Directed By: Karyn Kusama

#14

Creep (2015)
89%

#14
Adjusted Score: 89.145%
Critics Consensus: A smart, odball take on found-footage horror, Creep is clever and well-acted enough to keep viewers on the edges of their seats.
Synopsis: Looking for work, Aaron (Patrick Brice) comes across a cryptic online ad: "$1,000 for the day. Filming service. Discretion is... [More]
Directed By: Patrick Brice

#13

1922 (2017)
91%

#13
Adjusted Score: 91.975%
Critics Consensus: Thanks to director Zak Hilditch's patient storytelling and strong work from lead Thomas Jane, 1922 ranks among the more satisfying Stephen King adaptations.
Synopsis: 1922 is based on Stephen King's 131-page story telling of a man's confession of his wife's murder. The tale is... [More]
Directed By: Zak Hilditch

#12

Gerald's Game (2017)
91%

#12
Adjusted Score: 93.49%
Critics Consensus: Carla Gugino carries Gerald's Game's small-scale suspense with a career-defining performance.
Synopsis: When her husband's sex game goes wrong, Jessie (Carla Gugino) -- handcuffed to a bed in a remote lake house... [More]
Directed By: Mike Flanagan

#11

Green Room (2016)
91%

#11
Adjusted Score: 100.168%
Critics Consensus: Green Room delivers unapologetic genre thrills with uncommon intelligence and powerfully acted élan.
Synopsis: GREEN ROOM is a brilliantly crafted and wickedly fun horror-thriller starring Patrick Stewart as a diabolical club owner who squares... [More]
Directed By: Jeremy Saulnier

#10
#10
Adjusted Score: 90.618%
Critics Consensus: In the sharp, socially conscious battle of Vampires vs. the Bronx, comedy and horror blend brilliantly -- and the audience is the winner.
Synopsis: A group of young friends from the Bronx fight to save their neighborhood from a band of vampires.... [More]
Directed By: Osmany Rodriguez

#9

The Endless (2018)
92%

#9
Adjusted Score: 96.934%
Critics Consensus: The Endless benefits from its grounded approach to an increasingly bizarre story, elevated by believable performances by filmmakers Justin Benson and Aaron Moorhead.
Synopsis: Following their Lovecraftian modern cult classic SPRING, acclaimed filmmakers Moorhead and Benson return with this mind-bending thriller that follows two... [More]

#8

Hush (2016)
93%

#8
Adjusted Score: 93.716%
Critics Consensus: Hush navigates the bloody waters of home invasion thrillers and incisive slashers for a contemporary horror puree.
Synopsis: In this heart-pounding thriller from acclaimed writer and director Mike Flanagan (Oculus, Before I Wake), silence takes on a terrifying... [More]
Directed By: Mike Flanagan

#7

CAM (2018)
93%

#7
Adjusted Score: 96.543%
Critics Consensus: Smart and suspenseful, CAM is a techno-thriller that's far more than the sum of its salacious parts -- and an outstanding showcase for Madeline Brewer in the leading role.
Synopsis: CAM is a technology driven psychological thriller set in the world of webcam porn. It follows Alice, an ambitious camgirl,... [More]
Directed By: Daniel Goldhaber

#6

Sweetheart (2019)
95%

#6
Adjusted Score: 95.785%
Critics Consensus: Carried by Kiersey Clemons' performance, Sweetheart balances smart subtext and social commentary against effective genre thrills.
Synopsis: Jenn has washed ashore a small tropical island and it doesn't take her long to realize she's completely alone. She... [More]
Directed By: J.D. Dillard

#5

The Evil Dead (1981)
95%

#5
Adjusted Score: 99.758%
Critics Consensus: This classic low budget horror film combines just the right amount of gore and black humor, giving The Evil Dead an equal amount of thrills and laughs.
Synopsis: This auspicious feature debut from Sam Raimi -- shot on 16mm in the woods of Tennesse for around $350,000 --... [More]
Directed By: Sam Raimi

#4

Pan's Labyrinth (2006)
95%

#4
Adjusted Score: 103.202%
Critics Consensus: Pan's Labyrinth is Alice in Wonderland for grown-ups, with the horrors of both reality and fantasy blended together into an extraordinary, spellbinding fable.
Synopsis: Mexican filmmaker Guillermo del Toro returns to the phantasmagorical cinema that defined such early fare as Cronos and The Devil's... [More]
Directed By: Guillermo del Toro

#3
#3
Adjusted Score: 103.839%
Critics Consensus: Director Jonathan Demme's smart, taut thriller teeters on the edge between psychological study and all-out horror, and benefits greatly from stellar performances by Anthony Hopkins and Jodie Foster.
Synopsis: In this multiple Oscar-winning thriller, Jodie Foster stars as Clarice Starling, a top student at the FBI's training academy whose... [More]
Directed By: Jonathan Demme

#2

Under The Shadow (2016)
99%

#2
Adjusted Score: 101.861%
Critics Consensus: Under the Shadow deftly blends seemingly disparate genres to deliver an effective chiller with timely themes and thought-provoking social subtext.
Synopsis: Shideh (Narges Rashidi) and her family live amid the chaos of the Iran-Iraq war, a period known as The War... [More]
Directed By: Babak Anvari

#1

Creep 2 (2017)
100%

#1
Adjusted Score: 100.056%
Critics Consensus: Creep 2 has everything that made the original work and more -- more laughs, more awkwardness, more unsettling terror.
Synopsis: Desiree Akhavan ("Girls", APPROPRIATE BEHAVIOR) stars as Sara, a video artist whose primary focus is creating intimacy with lonely men.... [More]
Directed By: Patrick Brice


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