Graveyard Shift

The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies  

Ranker Film
1k votes 91 voters 1.4k views 55 items

The greatest small town horror movies offer something special for people who like to be scared. In these settings, there are fewer places for characters to hide from whatever evil is lurking. Because the best locations are often remote, help isn't necessarily nearby, either. That makes the stories inherently frightening to watch. The peril for the characters seems all that more real. The scariest movies about small towns include classics such as The Amityville Horror and Halloween, but there are many others. So if you are into terrifying movies that take place in an isolated or seemingly picturesque setting, this list is for you.

Vote up your favorite small town horror films and help them get to the top of the list. If you don't see your favorite scary movie, add it and then check back later to see how other users are ranking your pick.

list ordered by
1
Halloween is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
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
2
Jeepers Creepers is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Justin Long, Eileen Brennan, Victor Salva
Jeepers Creepers is a 2001 American horror film written and directed by Victor Salva. The film takes its name from the 1938 song "Jeepers Creepers", which is featured in the film.
3
Pet Sematary is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Jason Clarke, Amy Seimetz, John Lithgow
Pet Sematary is a 2019 American supernatural horror film directed by Kevin Kölsch and Dennis Widmyer, based on the novel by Stephen King. When his toddler son is killed in an auto accident, ...more
4
Sinister is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Ethan Hawke, Vincent D'Onofrio, Fred Thompson
Sinister is a 2012 supernatural horror film directed by Scott Derrickson and written by Derrickson and C. Robert Cargill. It stars Ethan Hawke as fictional true writer Ellison Oswalt who ...more
5
30 Days of Night is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Josh Hartnett, Melissa George, Ben Foster
For centuries, vampires have stayed in the dark, forced to hide each morning or else be destroyed by the burning power of the sun. But in Columbia Pictures' 30 Days of Night, based on the ...more
6
Jeepers Creepers 2 is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Justin Long, Nicki Aycox, Ray Wise
Jeepers Creepers 2 is a 2003 American horror film written and directed by Victor Salva, produced by American Zoetrope, Capitol Films, Myriad Pictures and distributed by United Artists, a ...more
7
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Jessica Biel, R. Lee Ermey, Mike Vogel
This film is a 2003 American horror film, and a remake of the 1974 horror film of the same name. It is a reboot of the franchise, marking its fifth installment, and was directed by Marcus Nispel ...more
8
Halloween III: Season of the W... is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Jamie Lee Curtis, Tom Atkins, Dan O'Herlihy
Halloween III: Season of the Witch is a 1982 American science fiction horror film. The film is the third installment in the Halloween franchise and notable for being the only entry in the series ...more
9
It is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Jaeden Lieberher, Bill Skarsgård, Jeremy Ray Taylor
It (also known as It: Chapter One) is a 2017 American supernatural horror film directed by Andy Muschietti, based on the 1986 novel by Stephen King. In the summer of 1989, a group of bullied ...more
10
Jaws is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
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
11
Phantoms is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Ben Affleck, Rose McGowan, Liev Schreiber
Phantoms is a 1998 American-Japanese science fiction horror film adapted from Dean Koontz's 1983 novel of the same name. Directed by Joe Chappelle with a screenplay by Koontz, the film stars ...more
12
The Gift is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Katie Holmes, Cate Blanchett, Keanu Reeves
The Gift is a 2000 American supernatural thriller film directed by Sam Raimi, written by Billy Bob Thornton and Tom Epperson and based on the alleged psychic experiences of Thornton's mother. ...more
13
Gremlins is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Steven Spielberg, Corey Feldman, Phoebe Cates
Gremlins is a 1984 American horror comedy film directed by Joe Dante, released by Warner Bros. The film is about a young man who receives a strange creature called a mogwai as a pet, which then ...more
14
It: Chapter Two is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Bill Skarsgård, James McAvoy, Jessica Chastain
It: Chapter Two is a 2019 American horror film directed by Andy Muschietti, based on the 1986 novel by Stephen King. 27 years later, the Losers Club have grown up and moved away, until a ...more
15
John Carpenter's The Fog is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Jamie Lee Curtis, Janet Leigh, Tom Welling
The Fog is a 1980 American horror film directed by John Carpenter, who also co-wrote the screenplay and composed the music for the film. It stars Adrienne Barbeau, Jamie Lee Curtis, Tom Atkins, ...more
16
Lake Placid is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Lake Placid Betty White, Mariska Hargitay, Bridget Fonda
Lake Placid is a 1999 American monster horror comedy film. The film was written by David E. Kelley and directed by Steve Miner, starring Bill Pullman, Bridget Fonda, Oliver Platt, Brendan ...more
17
Slither is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Elizabeth Banks, Jenna Fischer, Rob Zombie
Slither is a 2006 American science fiction-comedy horror film written and directed by James Gunn in his directorial debut, and starring Nathan Fillion, Elizabeth Banks, Gregg Henry, and Michael ...more
18
Crawl is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Kaya Scodelario, Barry Pepper, Ross Anderson
Crawl is a 2019 American horror film directed by Alexandre Aja. A young woman (Kaya Scodelario) becomes trapped in a flooding house trying to save her father (Barry Pepper) during a Category 5 ...more
19
The Hole in the Ground is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Seána Kerslake, James Cosmo, Kati Outinen
The Hole in the Ground is a 2019 Irish horror thriller film, directed by Lee Cronin. An unpleasant encounter with a mysterious neighbor throws Sarah O'Neill (Seána Kerslake) into an ...more
20
Polaroid is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Kathryn Prescott, Tyler Young, Samantha Logan
Polaroid is a 2019 American horror film directed by Lars Klevberg, based on his 2014 short film of the same name. High schooler Bird Fitcher (Kathryn Prescott) stumbles upon a vintage Polaroid ...more
21
Sssssss is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Strother Martin, Dirk Benedict, Heather Menzies
Sssssss is a 1973 horror film starring Strother Martin, Dirk Benedict, and Heather Menzies. It was directed by Bernard L. Kowalski and written by Hal Dresner and Daniel C. Striepeke, the latter ...more
22
Artik is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Chase Williamson, Jerry G. Angelo, Lauren Ashley Carter
Artik is a 2019 American horror action film directed by Tom Botchii Skowronski. A boy befriends a mysterious stranger who threatens to reveal his family's horrible secret.
23
The Texas Chain Saw Massacre is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
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
24
The Faculty is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Salma Hayek, Usher, Famke Janssen
The Faculty is a 1998 science fiction horror film written by Kevin Williamson and directed by Robert Rodriguez. The film stars Josh Hartnett, Elijah Wood, Shawn Hatosy, Jordana Brewster, Clea ...more
25
The Town That Dreaded Sundown is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Scariest Small Town Horror Movies
Dawn Wells, Ben Johnson, Andrew Prine
The Town That Dreaded Sundown is a 1976 American horror film by producer and director Charles B. Pierce who also co-stars as a bumbling police officer named A.C. Benson, also known as ...more