Skip To Content

    Here Are The Absolute Scariest Movies To Watch On HBO Max This Halloween

    All you need is a subscription and a cozy blanket to hide underneath this holiday.

    We hope you love the shows and movies we recommend! Just so you know, BuzzFeed may collect a share of revenue or other compensation from the links on this page. Oh, and FYI — platform, prices, and other availability details are accurate as of time of posting.

    1. Us (2019)

    A woman walking into a room with red lighting
    Universal Pictures

    From the mind of Academy Award winner Jordan Peele, this film follows the Wilson family as they take a trip to Santa Cruz and subsequently find themselves in the crosshairs of a group of menacing doppelgängers. The film will leave you in shock at the events that follow and frantically googling what it all *means*.

    2. Open Water (2004)

    Two people in the middle of the ocean
    Lions Gate Films

    You can really never go wrong with a shark movie. There's something so frightening about, well, open water and not knowing what could be lurking in its depths. A couple on their honeymoon accidentally get left behind by their tour group during an underwater snorkeling excursion. Now they desperately hang on for survival in shark-filled waters.

    3. Annabelle Comes Home (2019)

    A young girl staring in shock
    Warner Bros. Pictures

    In this third installment, demonologists have kept the eerie Annabelle doll locked up until her evil is awakened by a young girl who lets her out of her cage. Now she's out for a night of revenge for the little girl, her friends, and even her babysitter. A great reminder to never trust creepy dolls!

    4. The Curse of La Llorona (2019)

    A woman looking into the camera
    Warner Bros. Pictures

    You've probably heard of the legendary La Llorona being spoken about in frightening tales, but you haven't seen anything yet. Ignoring the warning of a troubled woman, a social worker and her children are in danger against La Llorona's wrath. Their only hope for escape is a disillusioned priest who practices mysticism.

    5. The Devil Inside (2012)

    A woman lying in bed surrounded by priests
    Paramount Pictures

    If you're into movies about demons and found footage–style of film, this one is for you. Thirty years after her mother murdered three people, Isabella seeks the truth about what happened that terrible night. Was it actually a murder or a demonic possession?! Who knows?! You might, though, if you watch it.

    6. The Invisible Man (2020)

    A distraught woman sitting
    Universal Pictures

    Elisabeth Moss has been winning us over with bone-chilling performances in The Handmaid's Tale, Us, and Her Smell, and she's back to wow you with this suspenseful thriller of a flick. She stars as a young woman who managed to finally leave her abusive relationship...or so she thought. He fakes his death and returns for the sole purpose of terrorizing her. You'll find yourself entranced by the suspense in nearly every scene.

    7. Alien (1979)

    A robotic man in pieces
    20th Century Fox

    There's nothing like a classic scary flick on Halloween, and Alien won't disappoint. This sci-fi chiller follows seven astronauts in space who encounter a creature like no other. It seems indestructible and they are running out of time while it picks off each crew member one by one.

    8. Jeepers Creepers (2001)

    A man standing in front of a window
    MGM Distribution Co.

    I can never hear the song "Jeepers Creepers" again without getting exceptionally creeped out. Brother and sister are driving home to the countryside from spring break when they notice a mysterious being dumping something into a tunnel of some sort. The two go and investigate. Well, the creature later picks up their scent and goes on a hellbent journey to capture them for his collection.

    9. Night of the Living Dead (1968)

    A man hammering a door shut
    Universal Pictures

    What's Halloween without a zombie movie? This classic film follows a group of Pennsylvanians who barricade themselves in a rural farmhouse to protect themselves from the flesh-eating monsters who are trying to get inside. Sometimes, an old-school horror flick is exactly what you need on a spooky night.

    10. The Mummy (1959)

    A mummy
    Universal-International

    Honestly, why would you mess with a mummy? In 1895, archaeologists discover and decide to open the tomb of the Egyptian princess Ananka. Much to their dismay, this has grave consequences: She now stalks the men who defiled her tomb.

    11. Lights Out (2016)

    A woman and a little boy staring at each other in the dark with dim lighting
    Warner Bros. Pictures

    Get ready to sleep with the lights on after watching this terrifying flick. The movie revolves around a young woman who has to help her mother and stepbrother survive the wrath of a malevolent spirit that only comes out when it's dark. It features Teresa Palmer, the exceptional talent of Warm Bodies fame — such a cute zombie film, if do say so myself. Yes, I said cute.

    12. The Conjuring 2 (2016)

    Two girls and one has a sinister smile
    Warner Bros. Pictures

    If you saw The Conjuring, you'd be doing yourself a disservice by not watching the sequel. Paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren take on a case in England where a single mother believes something evil is in her home. Her youngest daughter starts showing signs of demonic possession, and honestly, it's just so, so creepy.

    13. Death Becomes Her (1992)

    A man reaching for a woman laying in a fountain
    Universal Pictures

    I really wouldn't say this is a "horror" movie, but I will say that it genuinely creeps me out to this day. It features some marquee names, like Bruce Willis, Meryl Streep, and Goldie Hawn...and, boy, does it get under your skin. When Streep's character discovers an immortality treatment, she takes it as an opportunity to outdo her long-time rival.

    14. Devil (2010)

    A group of people
    Universal Pictures

    Warning: You may never want to step foot in an elevator ever again. M. Night Shyamalan often comes out with some wild flicks, and this one is no different. It deals with a group of people who get stuck in an elevator in a high-rise...and one of them is Satan. The longer they stay in the elevator waiting for rescue, the more their dirty deeds come to the surface.

    15. Coyote Lake (2019)

    A doctor looking at Frankenstein on the table
    Cranked Up Films

    This is definitely one of those films that'll leave you completely shocked. Ester and her unbelievably overbearing mother run a bed-and-breakfast near the Mexican border. One night, two unwanted guests arrive, threatening the safety of everyone. Then, in another emotional twist, we learn of a heavy secret the two have been keeping.

    16. The Curse of Frankenstein (1957)

    A man looking over a body
    Warner Bros. Pictures

    Whether you've read the classic novel by Mary Shelley or not, you'd absolutely enjoy this spooky flick this Halloween. The film is told as flashbacks from Dr. Frankenstein's point of view as he awaits execution for the murder of his wife. Even though there are countless Frankenstein movies out there, I really think this is one no one should miss.

    17. Doctor Sleep (2020)

    A child standing in a hotel corridor staring at a ceiling light
    Warner Bros. Pictures

    This new film featuring Ewan McGregor as the lead is actually a sequel to The Shining. It follows now-adult Dan (McGregor), an alcoholic struggling to find a job. He moves to NH to become a doctor, where he meets a teen with the same extrasensory gift he has called "the shine" and tries to protect her from the cult whose members feed off the shine of innocents to become immortal. If you saw (and loved) The Shining, you seriously should watch this one. I love a good sequel, and this one doesn't disappoint. Plus, it's Ewan McGregor.

    18. The Frighteners (1996)

    A ghost being run over by a car
    Universal Pictures

    You may know Michael J. Fox from Back to the Future, but he also made this gold mine of a horror flick. After a tragic accident kills his wife, he discovers he can communicate with the dead, which he uses as a way to con the living. That is, until a demonic spirit appears, threatening the lives of not just the living, but the dead as well. Can Marty McFly help these townsfolk?!

    19. Godzilla (1954)

    A huge monster terrorizing a city
    Warnes Bros. Pictures

    Sure, some people wouldn't think Godzilla is a horror flick, but think about it...it's a giant monster terrorizing a city. American nuclear weapons testing, unfortunately, results in the creation of what seems to be an unstoppable dinosaur-like monster. Now it wreaks havoc in the city, endangering the lives of everyone who lives there. It's a classic black-and-white film and might even give you some nostalgia.

    20. Gothika (2003)

    A woman staring at her reflection in the mirror
    Warner Bros. Pictures

    Honestly, I'll watch any movie Halle Barry is in. Sue me. This movie is such a mind-bender — it follows a psychiatrist whose life is derailed after she nearly hits a girl with her car one night. Later, she wakes up in her own mental hospital under the care of her peer. WHAT? She's accused of killing her own husband, but she has no memory of what happened. Slowly, she starts to uncover what happened, but she has to escape the asylum to solve the mystery. IT'S. AMAZING.

    21. The Hills Have Eyes (2006)

    A woman crying
    Vanguard

    I saw this movie once, and I'll never watch it again. (Okay, maybe two more times.) SCARY. This dysfunctional family is going on a trip in an RV across the country. They take a VERY ill-advised shortcut. Ugh, I get so mad thinking about it. They break down in the middle of the desert with no cellphone reception and try to find help. Soon, they find themselves fending for their lives against a mutant cannibal with terrifying deformities due to nuclear testing. It's a must-watch — seriously.

    Intrigued? Sign up for HBO Max for $14.99 a month and access countless TV shows and movies. Not sold yet? Test it out right now for free for a week (for new subscribers only).

    TV and Movies

    Get all the best moments in pop culture & entertainment delivered to your inbox.

    Newsletter signup form