Top Ten Tuesday! The Ten Scariest Movies of All Time

Feeling in the mood for some Halloween scares? Check out the movies on this list, created from a painstaking culling of countless online lists of scary movies. These are the ten that appeared most often on most of the lists.


10. Psycho (1960) Believe it or not, this one almost didn’t make the list. This is a classic that has spawned countless imitations.


9. Nosferatu: A Symphony of Horror (1922) This intrigued me by appearing on a few lists. I can’t even imagine what they found scary in 1922.


8. Halloween (1978) Although Mike Myers later went on to bigger fame and fortune on Saturday Night Live and Wayne’s World, this movie has stood the test of time.

7. The Omen (1976) I never saw this, but of it’s got Gregory Peck it must be good. I hope it has Boo Radley too.


6. The Exorcist (1973) Talk about an ugly duckling! She later went on to become Miss Nevada. First time I saw this I was completely freaked out. me and my friends didn’t sleep all night. At the time I was also sure that a film like this would never be allowed in Canada.

5. Rosemary’s Baby (1968) I’m sure this was terrifying for all the old timey folks in 1968. Ironically, Mia Farrow played Rosemary, a woman impregnated by Satan. Many years later the baby she adopted with Woody Allen would later marry Woody Allen. I’m starting to think that Mia isn’t a very good mother.


4. A Nightmare on Elm Street (1984) I started this series with Part 3 but went back and watched them all. I find a villian who can get you in your dreams to be the scariest of all. Sadly, some idiots made a remake of this in 2010. Did anyone see that? Me neither.

3. The Shining (1980) A cool classic. Nobody plays crazy quite like Jack Nicholson.


2. 28 Days Later (2002) A zombie movie from 2002 before zombies were cool. I haven’t seen this one, but it showed up so regularly in my research I want to see it now.


1. Alien (1979) This one surprised me by being on almost every list. The suspense is painful and who can forget the tag line “In space no one can hear you scream.”

So what’s your favorite scary movie? Do you like being scared? What’s scarier, the books or the movies? What would you add to this list?

Have a great Tuesday! ~Phil

32 responses to “Top Ten Tuesday! The Ten Scariest Movies of All Time

  1. ‘Wait Until Dark’!

  2. Great list!

  3. I actually thought the sequel, “Aliens”, was better than the first.

  4. I’m happy to say that I haven’t seen any of those films 🙂

  5. Guess I am just out of touch
    I don’t watch scary movies much
    The Shining was in our Netflix queue order
    But it’s just too scary for my daughter.

  6. How have you not seen The Omen??

    Too bad this is a top ten, I would add Suspiria, The Descent and The Thing (with Kurt Russell, not that remade thing!) 🙂

    • Suspiria and The Thing did make a couple lists but the ten I listed were on all or most of the lists. If I had a top 12 I think The Thing would have made it.

  7. I do like scary movies, but Nicholson was just too much over the top for me. The book was much scarier. “Wait Until Dark” is scary in a much more everyday way. I knew the story, had seen the movie, went to watch the play that my friend directed, sat next to him during the play, knew what was coming, and still jumped in my seat when it did. He just laughed at me. I’m an easy scare.Your list has some good ones.

  8. I’m a huge Stephen King fan and have faithfully read all his books … but I can’t watch a scary movie. They scare the stuffing out of me … so I can happily say I haven’t seen most of these 🙂

  9. I think you hit them all. (classics that is) I remember as a youngster being scared by War of the Worlds but in retrospect it was just my age.

  10. Don’t Look Now (1973) with Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie creeps me out quite well.

  11. I like Halloween. I thought Aliens was better than the original as well. If you want a “campy horror” flick, check out The Bates Haunting.

  12. What about the first paranormal activity? Or Blair Witch?

  13. When a Stranger Calls made me terrified each time I watched it as a (babysitting) teenager!!!
    I only watch comedies now a days! 🙂

  14. That sad moment when you have seen all of the best horror movies and you have nothing to watch on Halloween :'(

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