Halloween is just around the corner and given it’s been such a hell of a year, you’d be negligent not to prepare for whatever the world’s darkest pseudo-holiday is conjuring up for us.
Scare yourself stupid the best horror movies streaming on Netflix right now.
No One Gets Out Alive
No One Gets Out Alive follows Ambar who arrives in Cleveland illegally from Mexico, in search of a better life. After finding work at a local factory, she rents the cheapest room available in a derelict boarding house. Kept awake by the other tenants’ sobbing, disturbing nightmares and strange unearthly noises echoing from the basement, Ambar begins to wonder exactly who—or what—lives inside the house with them. Soon it becomes clear that Ambar has walked into a trap, one where she will soon be introduced to the evil that has been lurking in the basement.
Warning this movie will scare the sh*t out of you. Aftermath, which is inspired by a true story (yes, really), centres on Kevin and Natalie Dadich (Twilight’s Ashley Greene), a young couple whose marriage is on the rocks. In an effort to salvage their relationship they take a deal to move into their dream home. But soon strange events begin to unfold within the walls of their new house, and disturbing events reveal the house’s troubled history.
The Conjuring 2
The Conjuring 2 will keep you awake at night, so strap yourself in. In this sequel we once again meet husband and wife demonologists Ed and Lorraine Warren (Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga). This time around the duo travel to London where they’re hired by Peggy, a single mum whose daughter unwittingly releases a paranormal presence in the house. Dark, twisted and seriously evil, it looks like Ed and Lorraine may have finally met their match.
Things Heard & Seen
Based on the acclaimed novel, All Things Cease to Appear, this Netflix movie will straight up terrify you. It follows Catherine (Amanda Seyfried), an artist, and her husband George (James Norton) who move from their Manhattan digs to a sprawling old house in the picturesque Hudson Valley. But behind closed doors, cracks begin to appear in not only Catherine and George’s relationship but the house itself. Throw in creepy neighbours who drop hints about a grisly murder from the past and supernatural happenings and you’ve got yourself a seriously scary movie.
Psychological horror flick Orphan is truly terrifying. After tragically losing their baby, Kate (Vera Farmiga) and John Coleman (Peter Sarsgaard) decide to adopt a nine-year-old Russian girl called Esther. The couple hope her arrival will ease the tension in their struggling marriage. However, Esther soon starts displaying worrying behaviour and her mysterious past rises to the surface. With a deadly streak that no one saw coming, Kate, John and their children are pitted against each other as Esther’s evil side is unleashed.
This Aussie flick is one of the best horror flicks on Netflix right now. It goes like this: Hanna returns to the sleepy town of Billins, where her son Joey was abducted by notorious serial killer Simpkins and is presumed dead. On hearing the news that Simpkins has died and her son’s DNA was found on his property, Hanna mounts her own investigation. But the town has another dark secret: several years earlier, a school bus mysteriously ran off the road and into a river, with all the children on-board perishing. Hanna starts to see mysterious children in the town’s rolling fields and her obsession to uncover the truth also starts to reveal the town’s darkest secrets...secrets that both the living and the dead will fight to protect.
In The Tall Grass
Based on the novella by Stephen King and Joe Hill, In The Tall Grass follows siblings Becky and Cal, who upon hearing the cries of a young boy lost within a field of tall grass, venture in to rescue him. Their only problem? In doing so they become ensnared themselves by a sinister force that quickly disorients and separates them. Cut off from the world and unable to escape the field’s tightening grip, they soon discover that the only thing worse than getting lost is being found.
While it had its heyday in the early noughties, the ‘found footage’ genre is still very much alive thanks to indie flicks like Creep. The story plays out through the lens of an amateur filmmaker, who responds to a classifieds ad for a one-off job to film the final messages of a terminally-ill man—it stars the king of independent films, Mark Duplass, who nails the terrifyingly elusive oddball schtick in almost every role he plays.
Zombies but make it Australian. Set in the outback, Cargo follows Andy (Martin Freeman) as he attempts to protect his daughter from the evils that be in a largely desolate landscape; there’s plenty of everything you’d expect from a good zombie flick in this one—like blood, guts and rabid undead—but those willing to pay attention will spot the surprisingly nuanced Australianisms throughout the film. Hands down one of the best horror movies to come out of our Great Southern Land in the last five years or so.
The Babysitter: Killer Queen
Sometimes, you just need to throw something on that won’t take up too much brain capacity, and the follow-up to 2017’s horror comedy The Babysitter is exactly that. The Babysitter: Killer Queen revisits teenager Cole (played by Judah Lewis) who after surviving a cult, is now haunted by the demons of his past while trying to navigate high school. Sort of a coming-of-age-flick, sort of a comedy, and definitely a horror, chuck this on for a mindless midweek watch.
Director Alex Garland (28 Days Later, Ex Machina) created something unique in Annihilation, so unique that Australian cinemas refused to pick the film up. However, it didn’t take long for Netflix to snap up this truly original horror movie. Natalie Portman is up front, with Oscar Isaac on support duties; the pair play a biologist and a soldier respectively, who take off on a journey into an environmental disaster zone where the laws of nature don’t apply. Like all of Garland’s films, the hopeless desperation of the characters’ plights is immediately noticeable, and will induce that lump in your throat from start to finish.
Eli is the story of a young boy plagued with an unknown, debilitating illness that requires him to live completely sealed off from the outside world. After exhausting every option, his parents (Kelly Reilly and Max Martini) put their trust—and his life—in the hands of a doctor whose experimental, cutting edge treatments at her clean house facility may hold Eli’s last hope. As Eli undergoes the tremendously intense process that could potentially cure him, he begins to be haunted by experiences that make him question who he can trust and what is lurking inside the house.
If you’re looking for one of the best horror flicks on Netflix, then Hannibal is it. In this sequel to The Silence of the Lambs, serial killer Hannibal Lecter's only surviving victim Mason Verger (Gary Oldman), crafts an elaborate plan to find him and avenge himself. But he’s not the only one trying to track down Hannibal, Clarice Starling (this time around played by Julianne Moore) is one again assigned to his case but this time around the stakes are higher and the deadly game of cat and mouse will have you peeking out from behind your hands.
In this futuristic prison, inmates are kept on various concrete platforms, where each day a slap, laden with decadent food descends floor by floor. The only problem is that prisoners on the top floors are greedy, eating everything they want and leaving those below them starved and desperate. Brutal, gory and terrifying, The Platform isn’t your typical horror film but it’s absolutely worth a watch.
Image credit: Warner Bros