It’s October, and everyone is on a quest to find some highly scary viewing for the Halloween holiday. Over the next few weeks, I’ll be working my way through the decades, highlighting the absolute scariest horror films from each.
Well, here we are. Four weeks ago, I started creating these “scariest movies by decade” lists, and we have finally made it to present day. I started with the 1950s simply because it timed out well with the calendar, but I’m now lamenting that I didn’t go back further. So tune in during November as I journey back to the 30s and 40s to take a closer look at their scares as well.
But now, onto our current decade. The big question is what have been the predominant trends? The 80s were slashers and creatures. 90s were neo-slashers and even bigger creatures. The 2000s were J-horror and torture. So where does that leave us for the past six years? Well so far we have seen a lot of ghosts and haunted houses. We have also seen a rise in indie films and international horrors, many of which made this list. And I must state again, this is not the “best horror movies” or even “my favorite horror movies”. These are the ones I feel are just plain scary. Movies like THE GREEN ROOM, 10 CLOVERFIELD LANE, and the upcoming film THE HANDMAIDEN are absolutely brilliant movies. But they don’t leave audiences screaming in terror and jumping out of their seats the way the following movies do. Please enjoy our top 10 scariest movies from 2010- current.
The Demon started the decade off with a jolt by providing some choice jump scares, and the movie boasts some equally startling sound cues!
KILL LIST (2011)(Cover photo)
From the UK, this story of a hit man caught-up in a dangerous cult is shockingly brutal and disturbing. KILL LIST is the only recent screening where I can recall hearing actual gasps from the majority of the audience members.
We can all agree that kids are creepy, right? But give them a lawnmower and a video camera, and they are just pure evil. Yeah, yeah Bagul is scary, but those kids are pure nightmares.
THE CONJURING (2013)
The story of the Warrens and their battle against a mom-possessing witch has been one of the top horror films of the decade so far. And it provided another round of chilling scares from the mind of James Wan who also directed INSIDIOUS.
Though the film received mixed responses, I found this tale of a mirror that reshapes reality and your own sanity to be downright disturbing. The scene with the apple….gah!
THE BABADOOK (2014)
This Australian film about a storybook monster come to life chilled audiences around the globe. BAAA BAAA DOOK DOOK DOOK…
LAST SHIFT (2014)
For many horror fans this was an awesome Netflix discovery. The brutality, scares, and psychological nature of the movie took many people by surprise. I too stumbled on it late one night when I was home alone and found myself truly frightened!
IT FOLLOWS (2014)
Love it or hate it, you have to admit that IT FOLLOWS has some damn fine jump scares and some generally unsettling moments. Since the “monster” changed appearance frequently, it left audiences not knowing what to expect and allowed for some delightful shocks.
BASKIN was labeled as one of the goriest and most extreme movies of the decade. But there is also a lot of fear-inducing content therein, not just gore. The plot works on a psychological, almost hallucinatory level as the characters’ brains begin to play tricks on them. This, combined with the violence, makes it one gut-wrenching and frightening flick!
THE AUTOPSY OF JANE DOE (2016)
I know this one has not had a wide release yet, but it is coming in December, and you are in for a nerve-racking treat! The plot is about two morticians who stay overnight in an isolated morgue to perform an autopsy on a very peculiar body. But as the autopsy proceeds, they unravel a bizarre mystery about their unknown corpse, and weird supernatural events begin to happen around them. This has some of the scariest segments I’ve seen recently!
EVIL DEAD (2013)
THE VISIT (2015)
THE CONJURING 2 (2016)
DON’T BREATHE (2016)
THE BOY (2016)