The Best Horror Movies on Amazon Prime Video

For when you need a good scare.

megan fox in jennifer's body
'Jennifer's Body' | 20th Century Fox
'Jennifer's Body' | 20th Century Fox

The greatest horror movies of all time get under your skin with original conceits. They sharpen your paranoia to burrow down into your brain. They grab hold of your heart with iconic imagery—you'll never forget Freddy's claws, no matter how hard you try. Most of the major streaming services take spooky, scary dramas quite seriously, including Amazon. So switch off the lights, grab a blanket, and hold your nearest loved one—these stream-ready horror movies are here to fill your head with nightmares. Have fun!

Can't get enough horror? Make sure to check out our list of the Best Horror Movies of 2021.

beyond the black rainbow
Magnet Releasing

Beyond the Black Rainbow (2012)

If you're a Mandy fan, you'll want to check out director Panos Cosmatos' first feature, a surrealist, atmospheric sci-fi horror movie about a woman with superhuman abilities trapped in a strange facility and desperate to escape the man who captured her. There's barely any plot, but the movie's stunning visuals more than make up for the purposefully slight dialogue. 
Watch it now on Amazon

Children of the Corn (1984)

This adaptation of Stephen King's horror short story is campy and light on production value, but hell, those kids. From the opening massacre at a local diner to the several deaths at the hands of "He Who Walks Behind the Rows," this rural shlock pairs perfectly with a bucket of your own (popped) corn.
Watch it now on Amazon

coherence movie
Oscilloscope Laboratories

Coherence (2014)

Eight longtime friends gather for a dinner party in a neighborhood in Northern California on the night a comet is predicted to pass visibly overhead. When the power on the street goes out, they find themselves in the middle of a coherence of parallel universes, with strange and unsettling things happening all around them. If you're a fan of The Invitation or Primer, you won't want to miss this.
Watch it now on Amazon

The Dead Zone (1983)

This quietly harrowing Stephen King thriller is an underrated entry in both The Fly and Videodrome director David Cronenberg's and actor Christopher Walken's filmographies, and yet remains among the warmest of their respective careers as well. The Dead Zone follows a man's effort to do good with his newfound psychic abilities and delivers some suspenseful and visually exciting scenes—his visions of the gazebo killer and of a crazed politician's future are both standouts—but the movie's power comes from the tragic love story running through it that while barely spoken is repeatedly evident in Walken's pained expressions.

the descent
Pathé Distribution

The Descent (2005)

If you haven't already taken a vow to never go caving, The Descent will probably seal the deal for you. After losing her family in a horrific car accident, Sarah (Shauna Macdonald) reunites with five of her friends one year later for a spelunking adventure in the Appalachian Mountains. But, naturally, the trip rapidly descends into chaos when the ladies find themselves trapped in an unmapped cave with no exits in sight. On its own, it's a plot point that sounds like it could be anyone's worst nightmare—and that's with or without the screeching, zombie-like, humanoid creatures that the women very quickly realize they're trapped underground with.

The Fog (1980)

After terrifying audiences with 1978's Halloween, director John Carpenter and star Jamie Lee Curtis teamed up again for The Fog, an equally menacing horror film with more of a supernatural bent. (Yes, there are some gnarly, vengeful ghosts hiding in all those clouds.) As far as horror movies go, The Fog can be fairly contemplative and even slow at times, but it's all part of the masterful way Carpenter draws you into the movie's uneasy rhythms and its mood of creeping dread.

Hellraiser (1987)

Best remembered for the creepy cenobites—and all the absurd sequels they inspired—the original film in Clive Barker's long-running series is more psycho-sexual nail-biter than creature feature. Expertly directed by Barker himself, the movie has more than scares on its mind. It may have birthed Doug Bradley’s iconic Pinhead character, but it's best moments plumb the depths of a broken marriage with all the verve of a great erotic thriller.

high life
A24

High Life (2019)

French filmmaker Claire Denis makes movies that claw at the brain and activate the senses, and with High Life, she crafted a story that's equal parts heady prison thriller, psycho-sexual medical mystery, and bong-rip journey through the cosmos. Bouncing backwards and forwards in chronology, the story tracks quiet inmate Monte (Robert Pattinson) as he raises a baby in a cavernous, dorm-like shuttle in one timeline and attempts to thwart the secretive plans of an oddball scientist (Juliette Binoche) in another thread. Exactly how Monte ends up alone with the baby, playing the role of single parent in the stars, would be the central question of a more conventional sci-fi narrative, and there are surprising plot twists and shocking violent acts committed here. But Denis fills the movie with curious images and wild ideas that complicate the dystopian set-up. High Life resists the solutions of puzzle-box filmmaking, choosing instead to explore its own perilous terrain of desire.
Watch it now on Amazon

The Host (2006)

This monster movie from Bong Joon-ho, the gifted director behind Snowpiercer and Parasite, was a huge hit in South Korea, and it's easy to see why: thrilling action scenes, incredible effects, and slapstick humor make it the perfect antidote to Hollywood's self-serious blockbusters. Switching tones, moods, and even genres between scenes, it's a movie that defies easy categorization, and flits adeptly between the sentimental, the political, and the horrific. You'll never believe that a movie about a mutated killer fish can make you feel so many complicated emotions.

invasion of the body snatchers
United Artists

Invasion of the Body Snatchers (1978)

The 1978 remake of the 1956 horror classic about plant-aliens taking over the bodies of everyday humans is one of the weirdest and most frightening movies you will ever watch. With an eclectic "HE'S in this???" cast led by Donald Sutherland, Jeff Goldblum, and Leonard Nimoy, the film has all the trappings of that classic sense of '70s paranoia, still just as scary to this day.
Watch it now on Amazon

Jennifer's Body (2009)

If you've heard any talk recently about director Karyn Kusama and writer Diablo Cody's horror-comedy masterpiece Jennifer's Body, it's probably due to the recent resurgence of praise for the movie, crowning it a feminist cult classic of the modern era, tragically underappreciated in its time. The movie stars Megan Fox as a demonically possessed high school student whose spirit is driving her to murder her male classmates, while her best friend, played by Amanda Seyfried in nerd glasses, tries everything she can to stop her.

ju-on the grudge
Lions Gate Films

Ju-on: The Grudge (2002)

Ju-On: The Grudge is an unabashed haunted-house horror story through and through. Writer/director Takashi Shimizu doesn't set out to reinvent the wheel with this tale of numerous tenants and two tenacious ghosts, but he does manage to wring several great scares out of a potentially over-familiar premise. This one went on to spawn all sorts of remakes, sequels, and spinoffs, including an American version of the film (which finds virtually nothing changed) starring Sarah Michelle Gellar. Also available on Prime, the pair together would make for a nice late-night double feature, given that they're both directed by Shimuzu. 
Watch it now on Amazon

The Lighthouse (2019)

In The Witch director Robert Eggers' The Lighthouse, two colorfully rotten men played by Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson are tasked with keeping an isolated lighthouse running, but they quickly succumb to boredom, animosity, and frequently amusing madness. Visually striking and oddly compelling, this bizarre combination of dark comedy and offbeat thriller may go to some unexpected places (including one wild sex scene with a mermaid), but it's certainly never boring.
Watch it now on Amazon

midsommar
A24

Midsommar (2019)

Have you ever found yourself on a vacation trip you immediately regretted? Weird people, freaky food, uncomfortable lodgings, and your boyfriend is acting like a real piece of shit, and all you can do is try your best to grin and bear it until you can finally return home? We've all been there, and the supremely creepy "folk horror" story from horror auteur Ari Aster (Hereditary) captures that discomfort perfectly. In a nutshell, four college friends, plus one of the group's grieving girlfriends (Florence Pugh), visit an obscure Swedish summer solstice festival deep in the Scandinavian forest—and things go from odd to uncomfortable to downright horrific. To say much more would ruin the dreadful fun.
Watch it now on Amazon

My Friend Dahmer (2017)

Most true-crime fans can rattle off the DSM's characteristics of a psychopathic killer: antisocial, a history of mental illness, and a fascination with killing or dissecting animals, on top of a handful of other eerie benchmarks. My Friend Dahmer puts that textbook definition onto screen to illustrate who exactly infamous, 17-time-murderer Jeffrey Dahmer (Ross Lynch) was before his horrific killing spree began. Adapted from real-life former classmate John Backderf's graphic novel and memoir, the thriller is as close a look as ever at Dahmer's psychology. While not entirely hesitant to prescribe empathy to the serial killer who did grow up as an isolated, lonely young man, the film never strays from being utterly chilling as it cautiously evaluates the subject's psyche.
Watch it now on Amazon

tilda swinton and tom hiddleston in only lovers left alive
Sony Pictures Classics

Only Lovers Left Alive (2013)

Jim Jarmusch directs this languid, beautiful tale of two centuries-old vampires played by Tilda Swinton and Tom Hiddleston who reconnect after years apart after one suffers from artistic depression that makes him mildly suicidal. The two feast on blood popsicles and delight in the bohemian nightlife on the streets before the precarious world they've built comes crashing down around them.
Watch it now on Amazon

Phantasm (1979)

A mortician known as the Tall Man works in a cemetery and secretly murders people, transforming their corpses into horrifying dwarf creatures he sends to work as slaves on his home planet. Don Coscarelli's independent horror-fantasy film wasn't a big hit in theaters, but has since become a cult classic, the Tall Man's stature and his floating spherical weapons now considered nothing short of iconic in the realm of horror cinema.
Watch it now on Amazon

Slither (2006)

Before he became the blockbuster superhero director of films like Guardians of the Galaxy and The Suicide Squad, spiky-haired filmmaker James Gunn worked for Troma, the low-budget splatter horror production company co-founded by Lloyd Kauffman. Slither, Gunn's gross-out take on the horror monster comedy starring Firefly's Nathan Fillion as the put-upon police chief of a town besieged by alien slugs, is not a Troma film, but it's got a goofy, freewheeling sensibility that's clearly informed by Gunn's past life as the co-writer of Tromeo and Juliet. At the same time, it delivers some real scares, too. 

suspiria
Amazon Studios

Suspiria (2019) 

It takes a lot of bravery to remake what is arguably the finest horror film of Dario Argento's career—and fans of the original film should be deeply grateful that a new rendition was handed to director Luca Guadagnino (Call Me By Your Name) who clearly knows and loves the original. What we have here is an epic horror film that follows the quiet but very ominous activities of an elite Berlin dance school faculty, and the unfortunate young women who begin to suspect the truth about the school. Even given the original movie's place in the horror hall of fame, there's something truly, wildly, indelibly ambitious about this beautifully scary film. And that score by Thom Yorke!
Watch it now on Amazon

The Uninvited (2009)

Stepmothers have gotten a bad rap in fiction, and The Uninvited leans into this nightmare of a fairytale-trope with all of its weight. The movie centers on a young woman named Anna (Emily Browning) who returns home from a stint in the hospital following a suicide attempt after the disturbing death of her mother, only to find her father remarried to her late mother’s former nurse. Not only is she haunted by what feels like an entirely new home life, but she also sees visions of her dead mother yearning for her to uncover the truth of her death. The plot may be pretty predictable, but there’s a handful of frights that will leave you just as fearful as Anna in her own home. 
Watch it now on Amazon

uzumaki spiral movie
Omega Micott

Uzumaki (2000)

Horror master Junji Ito's manga comes to gruesome, horrific life in this live-action adaptation of Uzumaki, which tells the story of a small remote town plagued by a "spiral sickness" that causes the residents to become obsessed with the whirling shapes—some so badly that they end up transforming their bodies into spirals themselves in a series of gory deaths. 
Watch it now on Amazon

We Need to Talk About Kevin (2011)

Horror at its most primal. Director Lynne Ramsay teams up with the incredible Tilda Swinton for a stylized, psychologically rich portrait of a mother sent into crisis after her son commits an unforgivable crime. Featuring winning turns from John C. Reilly and Ezra Miller, the movie explores visceral, ugly truths without blinking. It's the type of movie that will get you talking—unless you're left in stunned silence. 
Watch it now on Amazon

the wicker man
British Lion Films

The Wicker Man (1973)

A police officer visits a bizarre, isolated island community while looking for a missing girl, only to (slowly) realize that there's some super-creepy old-school witchcraft afoot. The Wicker Man is one of those "slow-burn" horror stories, and yes, you should definitely skip the goofy Nicolas Cage remake that spoiled some of the original's surprises. This Christopher Lee-led mystery is a truly disturbing horror classic for those who settle in and pay close attention. 
Watch it now on Amazon

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