Skip to main content

The 30 greatest slasher movies

21. Blood & Black Lace (1964)

The Slasher Movie: Another group of nubile teenage girls are in the crosshairs in Mario Bavas grisly thriller, only this time theyre not studentstheyre models! With a decidedly inventive killer on the prowl (stay away from the oven with this chap around), its safe to say theyre in for a long night.

Coolest Kill: Eschewing the more prosaic thrills of the carving knife, Bavas killer dons a medieval spiked glove, and punches one of his victims in the face with it. Needless to say, its a knockout blow

20. The Burning (1981)

The Slasher Movie: Attention all horror movie denizens! You really must attempt to avoid burning peopleit never ends well. In the case of The Burning, a caretaker at a summer camp (yep, another one) is badly scorched in a bungled prank and sets about taking his revenge with a pair of gardening shears. Tom Savini deserves a mention once again for some truly awesome effects.

Coolest Kill: When the brilliantly named Cropsy bursts out of a sleeping bag and rams his shears through one kids neck. Surprise!

19. Eyes Of A Stranger (1981)

The Slasher Movie: Murder mystery meets full-on slasher in this tense tale of a journalist on the hunt of a serial killer. Foolishly engaging her quarry in a game of cat and mouse, the hunter soon becomes the hunted as our heroines disabled sister (a young Jennifer Jason Leigh) finds herself in his sights. Mingling suspense with gore, its well worth a look if you can get your hands on the uncensored version.

Coolest Kill: Head, meet fishtank. Fishtank, head.

18. The House On Sorority Row (1983)

The Slasher Movie: Another sorority house comes under attack in this trashy 80s offering, only this time you could argue the occupants probably deserve it. Theyve accidentally killed their housemother you see, but somebody knows, and theyre not in a forgiving mood. Ever wondered where I Know What You Did Last Summer nicked its plot from? Now you know.

Coolest Kill: Severed head in a toilet bowl. Thats all you need to know!

17. Sleepaway Camp (1983)

The Slasher Movie: Ludicrous dialogue, TV-movie acting, gore by the bucketload Sleepaway Camp serves up everything you could ask for from a slasher movie and more as a collection of teenagers are picked off one by one at the eponymous summer camp. Watch out for the brilliantly OTT twist at the endwho saw that one coming, eh?

Coolest Kill: A beehive is dropped into a toilet stall, causing the occupant to be stung to death. Horrible.

16. Black Christmas (1974)

The Slasher Movie: Another set-text on the slasher movie curriculum, this cheery festive tale sees a sorority house driven to distraction by an unwelcome caller. But hang on a minutethat call seems to be coming from inside the house! As if Christmas wasnt stressful enough without someone trying to hack you to pieces

Coolest Kill: The sorority housemother gets a crane hook embedded in her skull, from which she is then hanged. Seasons greetings!

15. Stage Fright (1987)

The Slasher Movie: Stage Fright merits inclusion on this list if only for the fact that the killer is a beserk former-actor, whose disguise takes the shape of a giant owls head. The play within the film is also worth mentioning, in that it tells the tale of a psychopath who rapes and murders singing prostitutes. Who wouldnt go to the theatre for that?

Coolest Kill: If theres a stranger way to go than being assaulted by a giant owl with a power-drill, weve yet to see it.

14. Malevolence (2004)

The Slasher Movie: Low budget creepiness abounds in this stalk-and-slash thriller that pits a group of bank-robbers against a rural wackjob. The first rule of bank robbery is that you never hide out in an abandoned farmhouse! Havent they seen Scarecrows? Probably not, in fairness

Coolest Kill: The ridiculously shocking opening kill (we wont spoil it for you here, suffice to say that it aint one of the crims who gets got) sets viewers on edge right from the off

13. Friday The 13th Part 3 (1982)

The Slasher Movie: In terms of filmmaking quality it falls short of the atmospheric original, but in terms of grisly, gory fun, Friday The 13th Part 3 cant be beat. Using its 3D gimmickry to chucklesome effect, director Steve Miner sends all manner of splatter hurtling out of the screen, as Jason debuts the iconic hockey mask for the very first time. Put that in your pipe and smoke it Cameron!

Coolest Kill: Poor old Vera takes a harpoon in the eye-socket. Ouch.

12. Torso (1973)

The Slasher Movie: A thoroughly barmy entry into the Italian giallo genre, this 70s slasher might not be as gory as some of its contemporaries, but it more than makes up for that with its combination of laugh-out-loud dialogue (they dont seem very politically aware, so what, Id like to get with all three of them) and out-there narrative (one scene takes place from the perspective of a tin can). There is also a kung-fu professor involved. What more do you want?

Coolest Kill: One of our heroines must stealthily slip away as the killer dismembers one of her chums. Remember dear, dont scream

George Wales
George is GR's resident movie news person, based out of London. He understands that all men must die, but he'd rather not think about it.