No matter how you like your horror, the last few years have been an especially rich time for the genre. In the realm of studio horror, blockbuster hits like IT and A Quiet Place have thrilled critics and audiences. If franchise horror is more your speed, The Conjuring, The Purge, andthe triumphant return of Halloween this year have led the charge. As for indie horror, things have arguably never been better with folks like A24, Blumhouse and IFC Midnight keeping the release date calendar lined with stranger visions of terror a la Hereditary, The Witch, and last year’s surprise giant Get Out. Across the board, horror storytellers have more support — from audiences, studios and distributors alike — and more reach than anytime in recent memory. Get Out even went to the Oscars… and won!
In fact, there’s so much excellent horror content to go around right now, that naturally, a lot of good horror movies — movies that might have been the talk of the town less fruitful years — end up falling through the cracks. In a year where Steven Soderbergh made his horror debut and nobody saw it (!), it’s safe to say a lot of great horror this year flew under the radar. For every Heredtiary and Halloween, there are twice as many movies that should have made it to theaters but didn’t, and even films that faltered at the box office like Suspiria and Annihilation became a larger part of the conversation than so many horror movies that seemed to arrive in silence from general audiences.
Part of it is no doubt the amount of content; between streaming services, VOD releases, and theatrical hits, there’s just a lot to keep up with. Just look at Shudder; the horror streaming service continues to build an excellent lineup of Shudder Originals and Exclusives (many of which are in the list below), but the platform simply isn’t as big as other household name streaming services yet.
Fortunately, there’s no fandom more passionate and eager to talk about the movies they love than horror fans. If you miss a great horror movie, the folks on Twitter and Reditt are going to let you know. With the year drawing to a close and the time of Top 10 lists upon us, I wanted to look back at some of the bets horror movies of the year you might have missed, from theatrical releases to streaming exclusives.