The Best Old Horror Movies Films
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The Best Old Horror Movies

List Criteria: Classic horror movies made before 1960.

The best old horror movies include classic scary films designed to terrify. Early horror movies tapped into our deepest fears of the unknown, combining compelling, unique stories with outstanding character acting. Whether it's zombies, ghosts, vampires or other supernatural creatures, this list of old horror movies includes some of the greatest frightening films ever made. Be sure to vote for your favorites, and add any older horror movies that are missing.

Modern horror movies are great, but they have nothing on the classics. In fact, many of the modern-era scary films are remakes of the movies listed here. Some of the common sources for these classic old horror movies include novels and folktales about frightening monsters (Dracula and Frankenstein are good examples). Some of the horror movies listed here are silent films, but that doesn't mean they aren't as scary - not at all. Both Nosferatu and The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari are extremely creepy movies, even without sound.

What makes for a truly outstanding horror movie? Bottom line, it scares the living daylights out of us by tapping into some dark, primal fear we have. The best older horror movies manage to chill, thrill and terrify by exposing us to monsters -- both real and imagined. If you're looking to delve into classic horror movies, this is a great place to start. The films here are innovative, popular and downright horrifying.

For more spooky fun, check out these lists of the best horror books and 13 horror movies and the 'true stories' they're based on and of course, the greatest horror films ever made!

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  1. 1
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    the people's #1 & most listed
    Bela Lugosi, Tod Browning, Carla Laemmle

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    Boris Karloff, John Boles, Colin Clive

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    Bela Lugosi, Claude Rains, Ralph Bellamy

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    Boris Karloff, Walter Brennan, John Carradine

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  5. 5
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    Max Schreck, John Gottowt, Alexander Granach

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    Fay Wray, Bruce Cabot, Merian C. Cooper

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    Nestor Paiva, Julie Adams, Richard Carlson

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  8. 8
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    Boris Karloff, Noble Johnson, David Manners

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  9. 9
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    Lon Chaney, Norman Kerry, Mary Philbin

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  10. 10
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    Fredric March, Wallace Beery, Miriam Hopkins

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    Conrad Veidt, Lil Dagover, Hans Heinrich von Twardowski

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  12. 12
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    Elly Annie Schneider, Wallace Ford, Edward Brophy

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    Claude Rains, Gloria Stuart, Una O'Connor

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  14. 14
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    Sam Peckinpah, Carolyn Jones, Dana Wynter

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  15. 15
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    Steve McQueen, Lee Payton, Aneta Corsaut

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    James Arness, Paul Frees, George Fenneman

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  17. 17
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    Charles Bronson, Vincent Price, Carolyn Jones

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  18. 18
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    Vincent Price, Richard Long, Alan Marshal

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    Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, Hazel Court

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    Alan Napier, Tom Conway, Jack Holt

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    Bela Lugosi, Clarence Muse, Madge Bellamy

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  22. 22
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    Lon Chaney, Ernest Torrence, Raymond Hatton

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    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Angela Lansbury, Donna Reed, George Sanders

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    ranked low on reranks & added by alex08212905
    Max von Sydow, Ellen Burstyn, Linda Blair

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    George A. Romero, Duane Jones, Bill Hinzman

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    Bela Lugosi, Charles Laughton, Randolph Scott

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    Alfred Hitchcock, Tippi Hedren, Jessica Tandy

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  28. 28
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    Peter Lorre, Theo Lingen, Georg John

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    Dana Andrews, Niall MacGinnis, Athene Seyler

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    Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, John Le Mesurier

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    Paul Wegener, Henrik Galeen, Lyda Salmonova

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    ranked low on reranks & added by bojanthebest
    George Sanders, Barbara Shelley, Michael Gwynn

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  33. 33
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    Boris Karloff, Charles Laughton, Gloria Stuart

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    Sybille Schmitz, Nicolas de Gunzburg, Maurice Schutz

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  35. 35
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    Kent Smith, Simone Simon, Sarah Selby

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  36. 36
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    often listed
    Shelley Fabares, Patty McCormack, Paul Fix

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  37. 37
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    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Simone Signoret, Paul Meurisse, Michel Serrault

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  38. 38
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    Patricia Neal, Michael Rennie, Sam Jaffe

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  39. 39
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    Horror of Dracula

  40. 40
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    ranked low on reranks & added by alex08212905
    Alfred Hitchcock, Anthony Perkins, Janet Leigh

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  41. 41
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    Boris Karloff, Frances Dee, Tom Conway

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    Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Henry Daniell

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    William Schallert, Paul Langton, Billy Curtis

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    often listed & ranked high on reranks
    Fay Wray, Lionel Atwill, Lee Tracy

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  46. 46
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    added by dee123
    Leonard Nimoy, Fess Parker, James Arness

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  47. 47
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    added by zxray
    Vincent Price, Ernest Torrence, Richard Barthelmess

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  48. 48
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    Jamie Lee Curtis, Kyle Richards, Donald Pleasence

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  49. 49
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    Vincent Price, Agnes Moorehead, Darla Hood

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    added by BobEqualityGreen
    Leif Erickson, Hillary Brooke, Milburn Stone

    ) open
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