It can be hard to find a good, quality horror movie. Most scary movie fans get to the point where a pretty good horror movie is an amazing find because there’s so much garbage out there. To help you on your quest to find the next great scare, here are 20 underrated horror movies you might not have seen that are worth checking out. There’s a little something for everyone, so if one of them isn’t up your alley, don’t worry because I’m sure the next one will be a better fit. Enjoy!
1. Honeymoon (2014)
What starts out as a simple story of a couple on their honeymoon takes a bizarre turn when the new husband finds his wife wandering alone in the middle of the night. The ending isn’t exactly what I was hoping for, but the performances are great and there’s a genuine feel of dread throughout.
2. Coherence (2013)
If you think you need a big budget to make a fantastic movie, “Coherence” definitely proves that theory wrong. A group of friends get together for a dinner party, but everything gets weird when a rare comet passes over. It’s not what you’d traditionally consider horror, but it’s definitely worth checking out.
3. Eden Lake (2008)
Michael Fassbender and Kelly Reilly play a couple that just wants to have a nice, relaxing weekend together. Unfortunately, there are some local unruly kids that keep trying to ruin that for them. Doesn’t sound that frightening, right? It’s absolutely terrifying and the ending will haunt you for weeks after you watch it.
4. The Loved Ones (2009)
What do you do if your potential prom date rejected you? Speaking for Lola, you kidnap him and torture him with your deranged family until he realizes how much he truly loves you. “The Loved Ones” is gruesome and relentless, which is exactly what you want from a movie like this. It definitely delivers.
5. Dead Silence (2007)
Before James Wan made box office darlings like “Furious 7,” “The Conjuring” and “Insidious,” he directed a little gem called “Dead Silence.” It’s the perfect mix of scary and fun, plus it has Donnie Wahlberg! As a bonus, you should also check out Wan’s other amazing film “Death Sentence.” It may be the greatest performance of Kevin Bacon’s career.
6. Seventh Moon (2008)
I am absolutely an Eduardo Sánchez fanboy, but it’s totally deserved because of the always spectacular and original films he creates. “Seventh Moon” follows a couple on their honeymoon in China who end up becoming part of an ancient ritual to appease evil spirits. It’s legitimately scary and never lets up.
7. Time Lapse (2014)
“Time Lapse” may fall closer into the thriller category than horror, but it’s original, intriguing and completely captivating. In it, three friends find a camera at their deceased neighbor’s home that takes a photo 24 hours in the future. Once the group starts trying to exploit it, everything goes completely to hell. Even if you’re not the biggest scary movie fan, you’ll enjoy this one.
8. Drag Me to Hell (2009)
If you haven’t seen “Drag Me to Hell,” stop reading this, go watch it, and then come back to finish the rest of this article. I know the word “epic” gets thrown around WAY too much on the Internet, but there is truly no better word to describe Sam Raimi’s modern day classic that you still aren’t watching! What are you doing? Go!
9. Lovely Molly (2011)
In “Lovely Molly,” a newlywed couple moves into the wife’s father’s house after he passes away. To say things get a little weird after this is an understatement. It’s atmospheric and gets under your skin on many levels. Gretchen Lodge is marvelous as Molly and finds a way to be both charming and terrifying at the same time.
10. Contracted (2013)
You probably think the worst thing that could happen from a random hookup is a baby or herpes (or a herpes baby). “Contracted” proves that there’s actually much, much worse. It’s not scary in the sense of a guy running around with a machete killing teenagers, but once the mid-coital maggots start falling out, you’ll be plenty horrified.
11. Contracted: Phase II (2015)
The sequel may not coincide with the original in any way whatsoever, but there are still plenty of gross out moments and notable performances to make it into a fun, indie zombie movie that any horror fan wouldn’t regret watching. You will never sleep in your contact lenses ever again.
12. Dude Bro Party Massacre III (2015)
If anyone told you this wasn’t a good movie, it’s because they watched it thinking it was supposed to be a legitimate, serious film. Just to be clear, it is not serious in any way. It’s part homage and part spoof, but in the most enjoyable way possible. Don’t view the trailer or read anything else about it. Just go watch it and take it all in.
13. The Possession (2012)
I will defend this movie forever because it is criminally underrated. Sure, it could’ve done without Matisyahu as the awkward priest, but there are so many genuine scares from beginning to end that it doesn’t matter. Plus, there’s a giant twist where you find out that the guy starring in it isn’t actually the villain from “No Country For Old Men.” Unbelievable!
14. Unfriended (2014)
I went to see “Unfriended” expecting to sit through another mindless teen horror movie that tries to tie technology with horror and fails miserably. By no means does it reinvent the genre, but playing out the entire movie on a laptop screen is surprisingly effective and makes for some great scares on a small budget. I could’ve done without the last 30 seconds of the film, but other than that it’s definitely worth checking out.
15. You’re Next (2011)
The fact that you probably haven’t seen “You’re Next” is an absolute tragedy. It’s one of the most entertaining horror films of the last several years without a doubt. Home invasion movies can quickly lose their excitement, but this one stays fresh throughout largely due to the incredible performance of Sharni Vinson, who should be in all the movies. Everything. Put her in all of them.
16. Detention (2011)
On the surface, “Detention” looks like a movie about a slasher hunting a bunch of high school teenagers, but it’s so much more. There’s a bear that can time travel, body snatchers, murders and so many little Easter eggs that you’ll want to watch it again as soon as it’s over just to try and catch everything. It’s like if a teen slasher movie took mushrooms and Adderall.
17. House of Wax (2005)
If you thought about tossing yourself off a bridge when considering a horror remake that replaces Vincent Price with Paris Hilton, don’t. “House of Wax” is actually not that bad, and has some really memorable scenes including (SPOILER ALERT) Paris Hilton getting a pole tossed through her skull. That is not a euphemism, by the way.
18. Triangle (2009)
The reason you probably didn’t see “Triangle” is because there’s really no way to properly advertise this movie. It twists and turns in so many different directions that, just when you think you’ve figured it out, everything changes. I don’t want to spoil anything for you, but honestly, even if I tried to explain what happens, it still wouldn’t totally make sense until you see for yourself.
19. The Mothman Prophecies (2002)
The ’90s were a rough decade for horror, so a scary ’90s movie starring Richard Gere probably won’t exactly work you into a frenzy. Loosely based on actual events, “The Mothman Prophecies” follows a reporter obsessed with finding out what happened to his wife before she died. The film plays to its strengths well and leaves just enough to the imagination to be creepy without being heavy-handed.
20. The Babadook (2014)
OK, it’s not underrated at all, but I just wanted to put it here to make absolutely, positively sure you saw this film. You’ll never look at Babadooks the same way ever again!