The 30 best Halloween horror movies you can stream on Netflix, Amazon Prime (and more) now

20. Event Horizon (1997)

Available on: Starz (US), Amazon Prime (UK), Now TV (UK), Sky Go (UK)

Haunted house in space. That's the premise of this sci-fi horror flick from Mortal Kombat director Paul Anderson. After the first ship to test an experimental warp drive suddenly re-appears years after going missing, it's an unfortunate rescue crew's job to check for survivors. Spoilers: it doesn't go well. The ending is definitely the weakest link in Event Horizon's chain - probably because it was re-written three times - but it's still not a bad conclusion, and everything that comes before it more than makes up for a few goofy subplots being thrown together at the last minute. Fun fact: some Warhammer 40K fans consider the film to be a prequel to their universe!

Gore level: High

Violence level: Medium

19. Three... Extremes (2004)

Available on: TubiTV (US), Shudder (UK), Amazon (US / UK) 

A collaboration between standout directors Fruit Chan, Park Chan-wook, and Takashi Miike, Three... Extremes is a collection of (you guessed it) three short horror films that approach fear from starkly different but equally terrifying angles. Cut tells the tale of a director kidnapped by a spurned extra, tormented with violent mind games that'll make your fingers curl in horror. Box follows a young woman who dreams of a crate locked deep in her subconscious, building to the horrible truth she'll find inside. And in Dumplings, a woman goes to gruesome lengths to regain her youthful beauty, and let's just say don't eat during that one. All brilliant glimpses of East Asian horror at its best, Three... Extremes has something for just about every taste. But seriously, no eating.

Gore level: Varies from low to high

Violence level: Medium

18. Scream (1996)

Available on: Amazon Prime (UK), FandangoNOW (US), Amazon (US / UK) 

Also known as how horror got its groove back. When there are still Scary Movies parodying the same film, you know you’ve done something right, and scare maestro Wes Craven revitalised '90s horror with this post-modern slasher flick. Scream is the tale of Sydney Prescott - the wonderfully breathy Neve Campbell - who, still suffering from the murder of her mother, is stalked by a mask wearing, knife wielding psychopath. With clearly thirty-something teenagers, a script sharper than the masked killer’s weapon of choice, and plenty of endearing lambs to the slaughter, Scream is the epitome of pitch perfect '90s horror. You do like scary movies. A lot.

Gore level: Medium

Violence level: Medium

17. The Babadook (2014)

Available on: Netflix (US / UK), Showtime (US), Amazon (UK) 

Simply one of the most powerful and emotionally affecting serious horror films of the last decade. The Babadook’s allegorical tale of a worn-down single mother juggling parenthood and grief is a delicate, intricate, masterfully unsettling film. Its invasive, creeping dread is as primally effective as its cold, dreamlike direction.

When an unknown (and disturbing) pop-up book appears in their fractured family home and plays havoc with her already-troubled young son, Amelia - already hanging on by a thread - is slowly plunged deeper and deeper into an a relentlessly growing, unknowably ambiguous nightmare. One of the few horror films to make daylight hours as terrifying - if not more so - than night, The Babadook’s instinctive direction and painfully believable performances will see it slip insidiously under your skin and stay there for a very long time.

Gore level: Low

Violence level: Low to medium

16. Antiviral (2012)

Available on: Hulu (US), Shudder (UK/US) 

Remember when David Cronenberg was all about cold, disaffected, quietly disturbing body horror, before he got into (admittedly very good) character dramas? His son, Brandon, clearly does. Antiviral is the best modern revival of ‘80s Cronenberg you could imagine, at once cut from the same, blood-sopped cloth and entirely fresh as a work of its own.

A pitch-black satire of celebrity culture and those fans who prostrate themselves before their idols in the hope of reflected glory, its near-future tale of commodified celebrity illnesses and the business that thrives on them starts cleverly unpleasant, and then spirals and unravels in grossly extravagant, but deeply calculated fashion. Like very little else you’ve seen over recent years, if you can handle its underplayed, sickly detachment and are willing to intellectualise its escalating unpleasantness, you’re in for a very rewarding time.

Gore level: Medium to high

Violence level: Medium

15. Drag Me to Hell (2009)

Available on: Amazon Prime (UK), FandangoNOW (US), Amazon (US / UK) 

If you feared that Sam Raimi had lost it and been swallowed up by the decadent puff of Hollywood after the confused bloat of Spider-Man 3, you need to watch Drag Me To Hell immediately. Gleefully mean-spirited, deliriously kinetic, with slapstick delivery equalled only by the delicious unpleasantness of its ideas and images, this is every bit the modern companion piece to the original Evil Dead trilogy. Taking likeable leads and then beating the hell out of them for non-stop shits and giggles, it’s an endearingly malicious little bastard of a film that, should you have warm feelings to toward the hilariously horrible, will leave you giddy.

Gore level: Medium to high

Violence level: Medium to high

14. Martyrs (2008)

Available on: Amazon Prime (UK), Vudu (US), iTunes (UK/US)

This is one for the hardcore only. I mean that. I’m not patronising you, and I’m not joking. Martyrs is a film whose very mention evokes winces and controversy among even the most hardened horror fans, and with good reason. Uncompromisingly disturbing in both tone and graphic imagery, it’s a surreally powerful descent into hell. A film that brutalises its audience and characters with unapologetic ferocity, it is also a cruel master of misdirection, repeatedly letting both participant and spectator become just accustomed to the horror at play before revealing deeper, darker levels.

Several times you’ll think you’ve seen how bad it can get. All but one of those several times, you’ll be wrong. Featuring one of the most distressing and upsettingly graphic sequences in recent memory, Martyrs is a film that will horrify and infuriate you in equal measure, its humour-free allegory and oblique commentary on the torture porn genre setting it on an almost nihilistic mission to see how just how far it can push you. Do you like gore? Do you really?

Gore level: Very high

Violence level: Very high

13. The House of the Devil (2009)

Available on: Shudder (UK/US), Vudu (US), Amazon (UK)

If you’re an old-school horror stalwart in need of a shot of the bleak old days of the ‘70s and early ‘80s, Ti West’s House of the Devil has you covered. Made in 2009, West’s direction is a visual Wikipedia of historical horror techniques, taking in the glacial pacing, claustrophobic lighting and framing, and even discordant title sequences that typified horror three decades ago. More importantly, this is no mere pastiche or tribute band, utilising the tools of vintage American horror, but using them well, to become a legitimate late entry into the canon itself.

Gore level: Medium

Violence level: Medium

12. Kill List (2011)

Available on:  Amazon Prime (UK), Sundance Now (US), iTunes (UK/US)

Probably the best horror film to come out of the UK in the last five years, Ben Wheatley’s slow-burning, increasingly unsettling tale of two contract killers on a mysterious, multi-part job is a masterpiece of pacing, claustrophobia, and gradually unravelling, mystery storytelling. Blunt and brutal in its tone, Kill List’s increasingly choking, ambiguous threat and all-pervading sense of menace are amplified immeasurably by its naturalistic direction and affectingly real performances across the board. It hooks you in with believably grim, kitchen-sink drama, and escalates to a nightmarish climax that’s truly dizzying. Watch it once for the affecting, visceral journey, then watch it again with the pause button on stand-by to make sense of its dark, briefly glimpsed secrets.

Gore level: High

Violence level: High

11. An American Werewolf in London (1981)

Available on: Amazon Prime (UK/US), Shudder (UK), Hulu (US), Epix (US)

True classics never go out of style, and John Landis' deliciously gory and downright hilarious werewolf movie is one such case. David Naughton and Griffin Dunne play two Americans, David and Jack, backpacking through the English countryside. One night the pair are attacked by a wolf on the moors, leaving Jack a shredded corpse, and David with a series of conflicting visions foreshadowing his fate. It received acclaim for Rick Baker's effects work, in particular for the creation of prosthetics donned by Naughton during the film's climactic transformation sequence. That year Baker nabbed the Oscar for Best Makeup.

Gore level: High

Violence level: Medium