Graveyard Shift The Scariest Movies Ever Made  

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
453.9k votes 20.8k voters 652.4k views 484 items

List Rules Only major releases - no made-for-TV or direct-to-video. May include movies outside the straight horror genre.

We hope you love the products we recommend! Just so you know, Ranker may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. Oh, and FYI — prices are accurate and items in stock as of time of publication.

These are the all-time scariest movies ever made. Many of these movies have become part of the pop culture lexicon due to their popularity. This list features movies from across the horror spectrum. The definition of "scary" isn't restricted or limited to a specific type of horror movie For example, The Exorcist, a supernatural horror movie would be on here similarly to serial killer movies like Halloween, The Amityville Horror and Saw. The same goes for psychological thrillers like Stanley Kubrick's The Shining, which is one of the scariest movies of all time.

Some of these films are considered the best of all time, while others feature some of the greatest actors and best directors of all time.

Vote for the best horror movies you think deserve the highest ranking, vote down any you don't like and be sure to rerank this list anyway you like - your reranks will affect the final tally.

list ordered by

1
7,205 2,722
The Exorcist is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Max von Sydow, Ellen Burstyn, Linda Blair The Exorcist is a 1973 American supernatural horror film directed by William Friedkin, adapted by William Peter Blatty from his 1971 novel of the same name. The book, inspired by the 1949 ...more

2
5,666 2,988
The Shining is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, Scatman Crothers The Shining is a 1980 British-American psychological horror film produced and directed by Stanley Kubrick, co-written with novelist Diane Johnson, and starring Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, ...more

3
4,709 2,841
Halloween is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Jamie Lee Curtis, Kyle Richards, Donald Pleasence Halloween is a 1978 American independent slasher horror film directed and scored by John Carpenter, co-written with producer Debra Hill, and starring Donald Pleasence and Jamie Lee Curtis in her ...more

4
5,239 3,000
The Ring is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Naomi Watts, Pauley Perrette, Brian Cox The Ring is a 2002 American psychological horror film directed by Gore Verbinski and starring Naomi Watts. It is a remake of the 1998 Japanese horror film Ring, which was based on the novel Ring ...more

5
4,628 2,526
A Nightmare on Elm Street is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Johnny Depp, Robert Englund, Heather Langenkamp A Nightmare on Elm Street is a 1984 American supernatural slasher horror film written and directed by Wes Craven, and the first film of the Nightmare on Elm Street franchise. The film stars ...more

6
4,767 2,433
The Silence of the Lambs is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, Chris Isaak The Silence of the Lambs is a 1991 American thriller film that blends elements of the crime and horror genres. Directed by Jonathan Demme and starring Jodie Foster, Anthony Hopkins, and Scott ...more

7
4,029 2,410
Poltergeist is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Craig T. Nelson, JoBeth Williams, Heather O'Rourke Poltergeist is a 1982 American supernatural thriller film, directed by Tobe Hooper and co-written and produced by Steven Spielberg. It is the first and most successful entry in the Poltergeist ...more

8
5,625 1,653
The Conjuring is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
carlybobarly added Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson, Joey King The Conjuring is a 2013 American supernatural horror film directed by James Wan and the first installment in the Conjuring series. Ed (Patrick Wilson) and Lorraine Warren (Vera Farmiga) are ...more

9
3,033 2,364
Friday the 13th is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Kevin Bacon, Tom Savini, Betsy Palmer Friday the 13th is a 1980 American slasher film directed by Sean S. Cunningham and written by Victor Miller. The film concerns a group of teenagers who are taken out one by one while attempting ...more

10
3,455 2,236
Psycho is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
RobertPugliese added Alfred Hitchcock, Janet Leigh, Anthony Perkins Psycho is a 1960 American horror film directed by Alfred Hitchcock. The film centers on an encounter between a secretary, Marion Crane, who ends up at a secluded motel after taking money from ...more

11
3,870 2,525
Alien is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Sigourney Weaver, John Hurt, Ian Holm Alien is a 1979 science-fiction horror film directed by Ridley Scott, and starring Tom Skerritt, Sigourney Weaver, Veronica Cartwright, Harry Dean Stanton, John Hurt, Ian Holm and Yaphet Kotto. ...more

12
4,098 1,631
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Gunnar Hansen, Marilyn Burns, Edwin Neal This movie is a 1974 American slasher film, directed and produced by Tobe Hooper, who cowrote it with Kim Henkel. It stars Marilyn Burns, Paul A. Partain, Edwin Neal, Jim Siedow and Gunnar ...more

13
4,233 1,936
It is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
ChadrickH added Tim Curry, Seth Green, John Ritter It is a 1990 psychological horror/drama miniseries based on Stephen King's novel of the same name. The story revolves around an inter-dimensional predatory life-form, which has the ability to ...more

14
3,586 2,540
Jaws is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Steven Spielberg, Richard Dreyfuss, Roy Scheider Jaws is a 1975 American thriller film directed by Steven Spielberg and based on Peter Benchley's novel of the same name. The prototypical summer blockbuster, its release is regarded as a ...more

15
4,370 1,863
Insidious is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Rose Byrne, Barbara Hershey, Patrick Wilson Insidious is a 2011 American supernatural horror film directed by James Wan, written by Leigh Whannell, and starring Patrick Wilson, Rose Byrne and Barbara Hershey. It is the first installment ...more

16
3,158 1,664
The Omen is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Gregory Peck, Lee Remick, David Warner The Omen is a 1976 British/American supernatural horror film directed by Richard Donner. The film stars Gregory Peck, Lee Remick, David Warner, Harvey Spencer Stephens, Billie Whitelaw, Patrick ...more

17
3,073 2,097
The Thing is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Kurt Russell, Keith David, John Carpenter The Thing is a 1982 American science fiction horror film directed by John Carpenter, written by Bill Lancaster, and starring Kurt Russell. The film's title refers to its primary antagonist: a ...more

18
3,109 1,354
The Amityville Horror is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
James Brolin, Margot Kidder, Rod Steiger The Amityville Horror is a 1979 American supernatural horror film, directed by Stuart Rosenberg, based on Jay Anson's bestselling 1977 novel of the same name. It is the first film in the ...more

19
2,770 1,825
28 Days Later is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Cillian Murphy, Christopher Eccleston, Naomie Harris 28 Days Later is a 2002 British post-apocalyptic horror film directed by Danny Boyle. The screenplay was written by Alex Garland. The film stars Cillian Murphy, Naomie Harris, Brendan Gleeson, ...more

20
2,662 2,067
Carrie is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
John Travolta, Sissy Spacek, Piper Laurie arrie is a 1976 American supernatural horror film based on Stephen King's first major 1974 novel of the same name. The film was directed by Brian De Palma and written by Lawrence D. Cohen. The ...more

21
2,374 1,918
Rosemary's Baby is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Mia Farrow, Tony Curtis, John Cassavetes Rosemary's Baby is a 1968 American psychological horror film written and directed by Roman Polanski, based on the bestselling 1967 novel of the same name by Ira Levin. The cast includes Mia ...more

22
3,044 1,522
Pet Sematary is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
TheAntiochGhost added Stephen King, Fred Gwynne, Denise Crosby Pet Sematary is a 1989 American horror film adaptation of Stephen King's novel of the same name. Directed by Mary Lambert and written by King. Andrew Hubatsek was cast for Zelda's role. Author ...more

23
2,176 2,234
Scream is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
wiabux added Drew Barrymore, Rose McGowan, Courteney Cox Scream is a 1996 American slasher film written by Kevin Williamson and directed by Wes Craven. The film stars Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox, Drew Barrymore, and David Arquette. Released on ...more

24
3,060 1,872
Saw is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
Danny Glover, Monica Potter, Shawnee Smith Saw is a 2004 horror film written by Leigh Whannell and directed by James Wan, in Wan's directorial debut. In the film, Adam (Whannell) and Lawrence (Cary Elwes) awaken chained in a large ...more

25
2,724 1,786
The Grudge is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Scariest Movies Ever Made
AnnyMouso added Sarah Michelle Gellar, KaDee Strickland, Bill Pullman The Grudge is a 2004 American horror film and the first installment in The Grudge franchise. It is a remake of the Japanese film Ju-on: The Grudge. The film was released in North America on ...more