Graveyard Shift

The Best Intelligent Horror Movies 

Ranker Film
Updated November 13, 2019 666.7k votes 25.5k voters 267.1k views 113 items

List Rules Vote up the best intelligent horror movies.

If you think horror movies are nothing more than slashers slashing, supernatural creatures wreaking havoc, and gallons of the red stuff, think again; intelligent horror movies demonstrate that smart horror exists - and is really good to boot. The best intelligent horror films operate at multiple levels, weaving social commentary into plot lines that are equal parts thought-provoking and terrifying. 

From Jordan Peele's Get Out to John Krasinski's A Quiet Place, there's no shortage of films that prove horror is actually smart. But what are the smartest entries in the intelligent horror genre?

list ordered by
1
Ranker Video
2
Ranker Video
3
Ranker Video
4
Ranker Video
5
Ranker Video
6
Ranker Video
David Lamotte added
John Travolta, Sissy Spacek, Piper Laurie

More Carrie 

#69 of 351 The Best Movies Based On Books #20 of 799 The Best Horror Movies Of All Timefeaturing The Scariest Quotes From 'Carrie' Will Have You Seeing Red

7
Ranker Video
8
Ranker Video
It
Jaeden Lieberher, Bill Skarsgård, Jeremy Ray Taylor

More It 

#63 of 799 The Best Horror Movies Of All Time #2 of 35 The Scariest Clown Movies in Film Historyfeaturing The Best Characters In The It Movie

9
Ranker Video
10
The Ring is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best Intelligent Horror Movies
11
Ranker Video
12
The Conjuring 2: The Enf... is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best Intelligent Horror Movies
13
The Amityville Horror is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best Intelligent Horror Movies
Wade Moosewah added
James Brolin, Margot Kidder, Rod Steiger
14
Alien is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best Intelligent Horror Movies
15
Ranker Video
16
Ranker Video
17
Ranker Video
Chris Hemsworth, Sigourney Weaver, Amy Acker

More The Cabin in the Woods 

#751 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #52 of 799 The Best Horror Movies Of All Time

18
Ranker Video
David Lamotte added
Cillian Murphy, Christopher Eccleston, Naomie Harris

More 28 Days Later 

#389 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #356 of 599 The Greatest Epic Movies Ever Madefeaturing The Best '28 Days Later' Quotes Will Bring You Out Of A Coma

19
Ranker Video
David Lamotte added
Ethan Hawke, Vincent D'Onofrio, Fred Thompson
20
Scream is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best Intelligent Horror Movies
21
Ranker Video
David Lamotte added
Tom Savini, Ken Foree, James A. Baffico

More Dawn of the Dead 

#21 of 799 The Best Horror Movies Of All Time #56 of 180 The Best Movie Sequels Ever Made #127 of 568 The Greatest Disaster Movies of All Time

22
Ranker Video
23
Ranker Video
24
Psycho is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best Intelligent Horror Movies
Greg Kootstra added
Alfred Hitchcock, Janet Leigh, Anthony Perkins

More Psycho 

#4 of 254 The Best Psychological Thrillers of All Time #203 of 1,699 The Most Rewatchable Movies #7 of 799 The Best Horror Movies Of All Time

25
Ranker Video