film The Best Old Horror Movies  

Ranker Community
Originally by
16.5k votes 1.8k voters 165.9k views 66 items Embed

List Rules Only classic horror movies released 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 famous 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!
list ordered by

1
669 125
Frankenstein is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Frankenstein Boris Karloff, John Boles, Colin Clive

The Greatest Horror Films of All Time The Best Alien Movies Ever Made

2
615 126
Dracula is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Dracula Bela Lugosi, Tod Browning, Carla Laemmle

3
487 98
The Wolf Man is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Wolf Man Bela Lugosi, Claude Rains, Lon Chaney

4
407 92
The Mummy is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Mummy Boris Karloff, Edward Van Sloan, Noble Johnson

5
458 112
Bride of Frankenstein is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Bride of Frankenstein Boris Karloff, Walter Brennan, Billy Barty

6
446 118
Creature from the Black Lagoon is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Creature from the Black Lagoon Richard Carlson, Richard Denning, Julie Adams

7
486 105
Nosferatu is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Nosferatu Max Schreck, John Gottowt, Alexander Granach

8
376 126
King Kong is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
King Kong Fay Wray, Merian C. Cooper, Bruce Cabot

9
292 130
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde Fredric March, Wallace Beery, Miriam Hopkins

10
305 128
The Phantom of the Opera is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Phantom of the Opera Lon Chaney, Norman Kerry, Mary Philbin

11
296 119
The Invisible Man is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Invisible Man Claude Rains, Gloria Stuart, Una O'Connor

12
356 59
Night of the Living Dead is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Night of the Living Dead George A. Romero, Duane Jones, Bill Hinzman

13
348 98
House of Wax is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
House of Wax Vincent Price, Charles Bronson, Carolyn Jones

14
224 136
The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari Conrad Veidt, Lil Dagover, Hans Heinrich von Twardowski

15
277 110
The Blob is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Blob Steve McQueen, Aneta Corsaut, Lee Payton

The Dumbest Moves Made By Every Horror Movie Victim The Creepiest Kids in Horror Movies

16
316 93
The Thing from Another World is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Thing from Another World James Arness, Paul Frees, George Fenneman

17
218 81
The Hunchback of Notre Dame is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Hunchback of Notre Dame Lon Chaney, Ernest Torrence, Raymond Hatton

18
304 107
Invasion of the Body Snatchers is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Invasion of the Body Snatchers Dana Wynter, Sam Peckinpah, Carolyn Jones

19
315 113
House on Haunted Hill is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
House on Haunted Hill Vincent Price, Richard Long, Elisha Cook

20
260 117
Freaks is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Freaks Wallace Ford, Edward Brophy, Roscoe Ates

21
221 70
The Curse of Frankenstein is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Curse of Frankenstein Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, Hazel Court

22
201 40
Horror of Dracula is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies

23
193 87
White Zombie is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
White Zombie Bela Lugosi, Clarence Muse, Madge Bellamy

24
214 81
The Hound of the Baskervilles is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Hound of the Baskervilles Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing, John Le Mesurier

25
120 24
Son of Frankenstein is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
jonathan-guerra added Son of Frankenstein Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Basil Rathbone

26
220 57
The Day the Earth Stood Still is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Day the Earth Stood Still Patricia Neal, Michael Rennie, Frances Bavier

27
166 71
The Old Dark House is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Old Dark House Boris Karloff, Charles Laughton, Gloria Stuart

28
144 80
Island of Lost Souls is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Island of Lost Souls Bela Lugosi, Charles Laughton, Randolph Scott

29
84 26
The Pit and the Pendulum is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Tommie Thomas added The Pit and the Pendulum Vincent Price, Barbara Steele, Charles Victor

10 Real People Who Survived Horror Movie Situations The Biggest Turn Ons in a Person

30
157 79
I Walked with a Zombie is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
I Walked with a Zombie Boris Karloff, Frances Dee, Tom Conway

31
178 43
Ranker Video
zxray added The Body Snatcher Boris Karloff, Bela Lugosi, Bill Williams

32
148 122
Cat People is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Cat People Alan Napier, Simone Simon, Tom Conway

33
99 39
The Fly is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
jonathan-guerra added The Fly Vincent Price, David Hedison, Herbert Marshall

34
153 91
Night of the Demon is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Night of the Demon Dana Andrews, Peggy Cummins, Niall MacGinnis

35
148 119
The Picture of Dorian Gray is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Picture of Dorian Gray Angela Lansbury, Donna Reed, George Sanders

36
74 30
The Raven is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Tommie Thomas added The Raven Jack Nicholson, Vincent Price, Boris Karloff

37
105 20
House of Frankenstein is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
jonathan-guerra added House of Frankenstein Boris Karloff, Lon Chaney, Jr.

38
101 76
Ranker Video
zxray added The Golem Paul Wegener, Henrik Galeen, Lyda Salmonova

39
149 58
Them! is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
dee123 added Them! Leonard Nimoy, James Arness, Fess Parker

40
132 114
M is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
M Peter Lorre, Theo Lingen, Georg John

41
101 26
The Ghost of Frankenstein is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
jonathan-guerra added The Ghost of Frankenstein Bela Lugosi, Lon Chaney, Jr.

42
112 116
Vampyr is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Vampyr Sybille Schmitz, Nicolas de Gunzburg, Maurice Schutz

43
128 106
The Bad Seed is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Bad Seed Shelley Fabares, Patty McCormack, Eileen Heckart

The Best Horror Movies Set in the Woods The Best Reality TV Shows Since 2015

44
103 44
The Night of the Hunter is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
but chickens double d added The Night of the Hunter Robert Mitchum, Shelley Winters, Lillian Gish

45
50 11
Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Ma... is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Tom Webb added Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man Bela Lugosi, Lon Chaney, Jr.

46
87 118
The Curse of the Cat People is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
The Curse of the Cat People Simone Simon, Jane Randolph, Sarah Selby

47
82 119
Les Diaboliques is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Les Diaboliques Simone Signoret, Michel Serrault, Paul Meurisse

48
40 11
House of Dracula is listed (or ranked) 48 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
Tom Webb added House of Dracula Lon Chaney, Jr., John Carradine

49
56 25
Werewolf of London is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
jonathan-guerra added Werewolf of London Valerie Hobson, Spring Byington, J. M. Kerrigan

50
65 33
Mystery of the Wax Museum is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best Old Horror Movies
jonathan-guerra added Mystery of the Wax Museum Fay Wray, Lionel Atwill, Glenda Farrell