As long as there have been motion pictures, there have been horror films. The genre has gone through numerous evolutions since the first three-minute horror short, “Le Manoir du Diable” (“The House of the Devil”) was shot in France in 1896.
In early silent classics like “Nosferatu” (1922), fear was invoked by a hideous villain, such as a vampire or demon, who played a starring role. In the modern era, horror has grown to encompass a multitude of sub-genres, with or without a classic “monster” central to the original stories. Psychological horror, for example, utilizes mental disturbances and suspense to elicit fear, often without ever depicting an actual villain. (Everyone’s got something that they’re irrationally afraid of. Here are the 20 most common phobias.)
To identify the best horror movies of all time, 24/7 Tempo reviewed a database of over 17,000 movies and calculated an index of each movie’s IMDb rating and both audience score and Tomatometer score on Rotten Tomatoes. All ratings are weighted equally and are current as of August 2022. Information on each movie’s cast and director(s) came from IMDb.
The films represent every decade from the 1920s to the present day and from silent films like “The Unknown” to Alfred Hitchcock’s nature-gone-wild thriller “The Birds” to slasher cult classic “The Evil Dead,” to Jordan Peele’s Oscar-winning “Get Out” – with an occasional horror comedy along the way.
Now there are more horror films than ever. Streaming services have given indie and sub-genre horror a platform it never had. Fans currently have a plethora of first-rate fear-inducing options at their fingertips, including serialized horror shows. Here are the most popular horror shows on TV right now.
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