Graveyard Shift

The Best Slasher Movies  

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List Rules Top slasher flicks and horror splatter films

A list of the best slasher movies. These are some of the best slasher films ever made, but if you feel we've missed one, please feel free to add it to the list yourself. Some of the films listed here could well be considered among the greatest horror films ever made. Which ones are your favorites? Vote them up, and don't forget that you can always re-rank this list, too.

Slasher films took off like a fire storm after the late 70s when Halloween became the highest grossing independent film of all time. Few thinly sliced genres can boast the sheer amount of icons slasher movies have given us: Freddy, Jason, Mike Myers. In a lot of cases, these slasher films have become incredibly successful movie franchises, raking in millions over a period of decades.

From A Nightmare on Elm Street to Friday the 13th to the wildly popular Scream series, these films have some serious staying power. Fans of slasher films are pretty darn loyal. Once you find a great horror movie franchise they love, they rarely waver from it.

Most of these movies are horror films, but there are a few on this list of the best slasher films that are comedic. That said, they're still not for kids... unless your kid enjoys blood, guts, and inappropriate amounts of gore. So put down your knife and grab your popcorn, because if you like slasher films then the movies on this list are for you.
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1
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Wes Carpenter added 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
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Wes Carpenter added 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
3
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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
4
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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
5
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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
6
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BrandonMachado 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
7
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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
8
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Jamie Lee Curtis, Dana Carvey, Kyle Richards
Halloween II is a 1981 slasher horror film directed by Rick Rosenthal, and written and produced by John Carpenter and Debra Hill. It is the second installment in the Halloween series and is a ...more
9
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ChangesDownClub added Virginia Madsen, Tony Todd, Vanessa A. Williams
Candyman is a 1992 American horror film written and directed by Bernard Rose, based on the short story "The Forbidden" by Clive Barker, though the film's scenario is switched from ...more
10
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Betsy Palmer, Lauren-Marie Taylor, Warrington Gillette
Friday the 13th Part 2 is a 1981 American horror film directed by Steve Miner. It is a direct sequel to Friday the 13th, picking up five years after that film's conclusion. The film marks the ...more
11
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Brad Dourif, Catherine Hicks, Chris Sarandon
Child's Play is a 1988 American horror film directed by Tom Holland, written by Tom Holland, Don Mancini, and John Lafia, and starring Catherine Hicks, Chris Sarandon, Alex Vincent, and Brad ...more
12
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Patricia Arquette, Laurence Fishburne, Zsa Zsa Gábor
A Nightmare on Elm Street 3: Dream Warriors is a 1987 American slasher fantasy film and the third film in the Nightmare on Elm Street series. The film was directed by Chuck Russell, written by ...more
13
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Jennifer Love Hewitt, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Anne Heche
I Know What You Did Last Summer is a 1997 American slasher film based on the 1973 novel of the same name by Lois Duncan. The film changes many aspects of the book, which was not a slasher novel. ...more
14
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ChrisTanakis added Emilie de Ravin, Vinessa Shaw, Ted Levine
The Hills Have Eyes is a 2006 American horror film and remake of Wes Craven's 1977 film The Hills Have Eyes. Written by filmmaking partners Alexandre Aja and Grégory Levasseur of the ...more
15
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Charley Feldman added Sharni Vinson, Barbara Crampton, Amy Seimetz
You're Next is a 2011 American independent action-horror slasher film directed by Adam Wingard, written by Simon Barrett, and starring Sharni Vinson, Nicholas Tucci, Wendy Glenn, A. J. Bowen, ...more
16
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Jamie Lee Curtis, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Michelle Williams
Halloween H20: 20 Years Later, is a 1998 American slasher film and is the seventh installment in the Halloween film series. It is directed by Steve Miner and starring Jamie Lee Curtis, LL Cool ...more
17
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Sarah Michelle Gellar, Courteney Cox, Heather Graham
Scream 2 is a 1997 American slasher film created and written by Kevin Williamson and directed by Wes Craven, starring Neve Campbell, Courteney Cox, David Arquette, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Jamie ...more
18
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Jennifer Jason Leigh, Rutger Hauer, C. Thomas Howell
The Hitcher is a 1986 action horror film directed by Robert Harmon and written by Eric Red. The film stars Rutger Hauer, C. Thomas Howell, Jennifer Jason Leigh and Jeffrey DeMunn.
19
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Malcolm McDowell, Danny Trejo, Danielle Harris
Halloween is a 2007 American slasher film written, directed, and produced by Rob Zombie. The film is a remake/reimagining of the 1978 horror film of the same name; it is a reboot of the ...more
20
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Liv Tyler, Gemma Ward, Scott Speedman
The Strangers is a 2008 American horror film written and directed by Bryan Bertino and starring Liv Tyler and Scott Speedman as a young couple who are terrorized by three masked assailants, who ...more
21
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caretaker797 added Holly Hunter, Jason Alexander, Fisher Stevens
The Burning is a 1981 slasher film directed by Tony Maylam and written by Peter Lawrence and Bob Weinstein. It is based on an original story by Maylam, Weinstein, and Brad Grey, with a musical ...more
22
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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
23
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Martin Kove, Steve Miner, Fred J. Lincoln
The Last House on the Left is a 1972 American exploitation-horror film written, edited, and directed by Wes Craven and produced by Sean S. Cunningham. The story is inspired by the 1960 Swedish ...more
24
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Dee Wallace, Michael Berryman, John Steadman
The Hills Have Eyes is a 1977 American exploitation-horror film written and directed by Wes Craven and starring Susan Lanier, Michael Berryman and Dee Wallace. It is about a suburan family on a ...more
25
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Eliza Dushku, Emmanuelle Chriqui, Kevin Zegers
Wrong Turn is a 2003 American horror film directed by Rob Schmidt and written by Alan B. McElroy. The film was shot in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada and starred Desmond Harrington, Eliza Dushku, ...more