35 Best Haunted House Movies

Haunted home films make up over half of all horror movies, in all probability, so we determined to rank the 35 finest. Here they’re!

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By Rob Hunter · Published on October thirty first, 2022

October is outlined in Websters Dictionary as 31 days of horror. Dont trouble trying it up; its true. Most folks take that to imply highlighting one horror film a day, however right here at FSR, weve taken that up a spooky notch or 9 by celebrating every day with a high ten record. This article about one of the best haunted home films wraps up the 2022 version of our ongoing sequence 31 Days of Horror Lists.


Certain locations appear designed from the bottom as much as play host to horrors. Cabins within the woods. Cemeteries. Underground caverns. Australia. The one which brings us collectively at this time, although, is one that the majority of us discover acquainted. Our home, a spot that may very well be cozy and fashionable or massive and drafty — the frequent denominator is {that a} household of some method calls it residence. That’s what makes it so unsettling and terrifying when one thing evil begins haunting its rooms and halls.

It’s the explanation haunted home films — of 1 type or one other — make up roughly fifty-two p.c of all horror movies. It’s true. Go depend up all of the horror films ever made, perform a little math, and also you’ll see I converse the reality. We’ve all lived in a house of some sort, and the thought of unwelcome guests, notably the ghostly sort, is the sort of spooky none of us need to take care of. Makes for good, creepy enjoyable when it’s another person’s drawback although!

And so the fifth version of our annual 31 Days of Horror Lists involves an finish, as they at all times do, with an enormous record. This yr’s subject? The finest haunted home films! As at all times, we utilized some guidelines as to what constitutes a “haunted house,” and we settled on the only definition — a ghostly presence in a single-family dwelling, that means no condominium buildings, no workplace buildings, no cruise ships. (And sure, as at all times, our guidelines are topic to light massaging and fudgery.) We’ll be doing an inventory of the particular finest homes subsequent yr, however for now, preserve studying to see our picks for the 35 finest haunted home films, as determined by ChrisCoffel,Brad Gullickson,Meg Shields,Anna Swanson,Jacob Trussell,Valerie Ettenhofer, andmyself.


35. The Grudge (2004)

The Grudge

Is The Grudge an ideal film? No. Is it a greater film than the Japanese movie on which its primarily based, which can also be directed by Takashi Shimizu and which can or might not additionally seem on this record? Debatable! But what it does have is indelible and scary, and it may be described in just some phrases: knuckles popping out of someones head within the bathe! If you want a couple of extra, how about these: meowing cat-boy ghost. Scream queen Sarah Michelle Gellar. Produced by Sam Raimi. Plus, the film roots its haunted home mythology in a brutal story that carries it by means of to its intense, fiery ending. (Valerie Ettenhofer)


34. Insidious (2010)

Insidious

Stay away from attics, children. Malevolent forces lurk within the mud mites.James Wan‘sInsidiousis a relentless frightmare. Once young Dalton (Ty Simpkins) makes demonic contact with the upstairs entity, the film doesn’t stop with the jolts. Wan solely understands escalation. Prepare thy nerves.Insidiousis a little bit of a dry run forThe Conjuring, the place the director takes the jump-scares to stratospheric heights, howeverInsidious‘ cozier dread is more my speed. Of course, there’s nothing cozy concerning the movie’s third act, the place it ditches the creaking doorways and far-off spook sounds for the hellish horror that the majority movies of this kind by no means handle to attain. Insidious’finale is an enormous bang that spawns sequels and wannabes, however Wan’s micro-budgeted authentic stays king. (Brad Gullickson)


33. What Lies Beneath (2000)

What Lies Beneath

What Lies Beneath solutions that age-old query — what would a Lifetime film appear to be if it had the polish of a Robert Zemeckis movie? Claire and Norman Spencer (Michelle Pfeiffer and Harrison Ford) are a seemingly glad couple residing the right life of their quiet lakeside residence in Vermont. After a brand new couple strikes in throughout the best way, Claire begins to note unusual occurrences and suspects the husband of foul play. As she begins to analyze, she discovers horrible secrets and techniques hidden inside her own residence. What Lies Beneath is a primary plot, however with the route of Zemeckis and robust performances from Pfeiffer and Ford it’s an exciting story of suspense that manages to zoom by means of its two-hour runtime. The ultimate sequence is as thrilling as the rest on this record. (Chris Coffel)


32. The Pact (2012)

The Pact

If this record have been finest haunted home films set throughout Christmas, youd be hard-pressed to discover a higher front-runner than The Pact. For these much less within the snow-capped world of vacation horror, although, The Pacthas much more substance than its acquainted premise initially lets on. Sure, the movie begins as a rote thriller a few younger lady returning to her household residence to search out solutions to her sisters sudden disappearance. Its a setup inflected by basic haunted home tropes, however the movie quickly offers approach to an excellent better thriller that spans nicely past ghostly archetypes, providing up twists that Id wager a guess is everlasting nightmare gas for all of us. Director Nicholas McCarthy crafted a movie stuffed with hanging photographs that lean extra on subtlety than brazen shocks, which makesThe Pacta welcome change of tempo from a subgenre that usually will get its rocks off by spamming leap scares to dying. (Jacob Trussell)


31. Paranormal Activity (2007)

Paranormal Activity

In 2007, no place on earth appeared scarier to me than the random suburban residence from Paranormal Activity. Oren Pelis cleverly constructed discovered footage hit takes the inside of an exceedingly common home and makes it sinister, then leaves us observing its nooks and crannies ready for some evil to spring forth. More than many films on this record, I believe Paranormal Activity is as a lot concerning the haunted residence as it’s about its residents. I wouldnt keep in mind Katie and Micahs names with out trying them up, however I do keep in mind precisely how that bed room door seems from the safety digicam angle the place Oren traps our POV time and again. Paranormal Activity succeeds for lots of causes, however its at its finest when its letting us glimpse issues its doomed protagonists dont see in time, like a spontaneous hearth, a door slamming within the night time, or Katies eerie trance. Nearly the whole lot within the film till the clearly supernatural ending is sufficiently subtle to appear each potential and in a position to be simply missed, and thats scary as hell. (Valerie Ettenhofer)

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Related Topics: 31 Days of Horror Lists

Rob Hunter has been writing for Film School Rejects since earlier than you have been born, which is bizarre seeing as he is so rattling younger. He’s our Chief Film Critic and Associate Editor and lists ‘Broadcast News’ as his favourite movie of all time. Feel free to say hello when you see him on Twitter @FakeRobHunter.

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