It can be pretty hard to sell some people on horror movies. The jumpscares are startling, the characters are often really stupid and unlikable, and the plots often exist just to set up more scares. In short, they don’t seem to care about being good movies.
Fortunately, there are actually some great horror movies for people who aren’t normally into them; ones that aren’t too spooky and have cool stories. The next time you meet someone who says they hate horror, just park them in front of one of these 10.
The movie that put sci-fi horror on the map, Alien is wrapped up in enough cool sci-fi imagery and futuristic stuff that it never gets TOO scary. Just maybe get ready to jump when the cat shows up.
Near Dark (1987)
What’s better than vampires? How about Wild West vampires that roll into a town and cause chaos? Fun fact: this is an early movie Kathryn Bigelow, director of Point Break and The Hurt Locker.
One of the earliest sound horror movies is also one of the best. It keeps a creepy atmosphere thanks to its lack of music and Bela Lugosi’s iconic performance as the Count, but it’s ultimately more creepy than scary, and is plenty tame by today’s standards.
An anthology movie based on the horror comics of the post-war era, each clip manages to be creepy while also a little silly. Super fun.
These next few are especially good…
Carnival of Souls (1962)
A lesser-known movie about a woman stuck in a living nightmare, this one’s great for how dreamlike it is. Best of all, it’s public domain, so you can watch it legally for free!
Silence of the Lambs (1991)
Which it’s ultimately more of a thriller than an all-out horror movie, it makes the list thanks to Sir Anthony Hopkins’s iconic and chilling performance as Dr. Hannibal Lecter. He may only be in it for 20 minutes, but he’s still one of the creepiest villains ever.
The Haunting (1963)
This movie manages to be scary just from the combination of unsettling camera shots, creepy environments, and slow tension building. You won’t jump, but you’ll definitely be looking at your house differently.
House of Wax (1953)
Vincent Price was the undisputed king of horror movies back in the day, and he gives one of his best performances here. Just make sure to skip the remake with Paris Hilton.
Session 9 (2001)
A creepy story centered on an asylum, this one will have you guessing right until the end. Fun fact; this movie was a big inspiration for the Silent Hill video game series.
One of the oldest horror movies of all time, it’s a lot of fun to watch thanks to its creepy visuals and performances, but it’s pretty much guaranteed not to actually scare you.