The best horror films, as voted for by over 100 experts including Simon Pegg and Roger Corman
Time Out proudly presents the 100 best horror films, as chosen by those who write in, direct, star in and celebrate the genre.
Horror cinema is a monster. Mistreated, misunderstood and subjected to vicious critical attacks, somehow it keeps lumbering forward, leaving a trail of destruction in its wake. For some, horror films are little better than pornography, focused purely on evoking a reaction – be it terror, disquiet or disgust – with little thought for ‘higher’ aspirations. For others, they're just a bit of fun: a chance to shriek and snigger at someone’s second-hand nightmare.
But look again, and the story of horror is also the story of innovation and non-conformity in cinema, a place where dangerous ideas can be expressed, radical techniques can be explored, and filmmakers outside the mainstream can still make a big cultural splash. If cinema itself has an unconscious, a dark little corner from which new ideas emerge, blinking and malformed, it must be horror. The question is – which are the best horror films?
We polled well over 100 horror enthusiasts – with big names like Roger Corman, Guillermo del Toro, Simon Pegg, Clive Barker and Alice Cooper, and horror legends like Coffin Joe, Kim Newman and Tom Six – and came up with a definitive top 100 list.
The result may surprise you: while the top ten may be stuffed with big hitters, the full list is wonderfully unpredictable and packed with oddball leftfield choices. But what about your opinion?
As always, we’re keen to know what we got wrong and what we got right, so leave your opinionated rants (‘Where the hell was “I Bought a Vampire Motorcycle”?!’) on Facebook or on Twitter using #besthorrorfilms, by voting in our poll or in the comments below. Meanwhile, enjoy the list and prepare to be frightened. Very, very frightened.