The world is scary enough as it is right now, but there’s still something cathartic about getting the crap scared out of you every once in a while. That’s why we’ve taken the liberty of compiling all the best horror movies from film studio A24.
The independent entertainment company has only been around since 2012, but it’s already put together an undeniably impressive roster of jaw-dropping horror pictures. Working with the likes of Ari Aster and Gaspar Noé, among others, the studio is responsible for such horror gems as The Witch, Hereditary, and Midsommar.
Of course, these titles don’t adhere to the typical “boo, we startled you” type of horror. There are often psychological elements at play that stick with you long after you’ve turned off the TV.
Find the best A24 horror movies below, ranked according to Rotten Tomato ratings.
Director: Gaspar Noé
Cast: Sofia Boutella
Rotten Tomatoes: 69%
Editor’s Notes: Gaspar Noé’s Climax is set during a party that quickly spirals out of control. The all-night celebration begins following the successful opening night performance by a group of young dancers. Reverting back to high school days, someone decides to spike the punch with LSD, leaving everyone in attendance to grapple with the excitement that turns to chaos and all-out anarchy.
9. The Blackcoat’s Daughter
Director: Oz Perkins
Cast: Emma Roberts, Kiernan Shipka
Rotten Tomatoes: 73%
Editor’s Notes: The Blackcoat’s Daughter is pretty much the worst-case scenario for anyone who has ever attended a prep school or similar institution. In the film, two girls are isolated to themselves after their parents mysteriously fail to pick them up from school for winter break. Two separate stories end up merging together in the end, as a troubled young woman makes her way to the prep school where the other two girls — who happen to be experiencing strange occurrences — are staying.
8. The Killing of a Sacred Deer
Director: Yorgos Lanthimos
Cast: Colin Farrell, Nicole Kidman, Barry Keoghan, Alicia Silverstone
Rotten Tomatoes: 79%
Editor’s Notes: Forget Colin Farrell and Nicole Kidman, Barry Keoghan will have you glued to the screen while watching The Killing of a Sacred Deer. The movie largely centers around a fatherless teen (played by Keoghan) and his relationship with a respected cardiovascular surgeon (played by Farrell) who becomes somewhat of a father figure to the boy. The more involved the teenager is with the surgeon’s seemingly picture-perfect family, the more unsettling his behavior becomes until he ultimately confronts the patriarch regarding a long-forgotten wrongdoing.
7. The Monster
Director: Bryan Bertino
Cast: Zoe Kazan, Scott Speedman, Ella Ballentine
Rotten Tomatoes: 81%
Editor’s Notes: Bryan Bertino’s The Monster makes a case for never taking backcountry roads, especially late at night. The film picks up as a divorced mother and her daughter are on their way to see the girl’s father when a car accident quickly derails their plans. After realizing they can no longer travel by vehicle, the mother and her daughter also learn they are not alone as evil is lurking off in the distance.
Director: Ari Aster
Cast: Florence Pugh, Jack Reynor, William Jackson Harper, Vilhelm Blomgran, Archie Madekwe, Ellora Torchia, Will Poulter
Rotten Tomatoes: 83%
Editor’s Notes: Anyone expecting Ari Aster to falter with his Hereditary follow-up could not be more off base. Midsommar is another home run from the American filmmaker, who managed to deliver a decisively disturbing horror film set during the day. Led by Florence Pugh, the picture follows a group of friends who are immersed in the cult activities of a remote Swedish village.
5. The Hole in the Ground
Director: Lee Cronin
Cast: Seána Kerslake, James Quinn Markey, Simone Kirby, Steve Wall
Rotten Tomatoes: 84%
Editor’s Notes: If you’ve ever felt like you were living with a blood relative that is a total stranger, The Hole in the Ground may seem all too real. After disappearing near a gigantic sinkhole in the Irish countryside, Chris resurfaces, but he’s not the same as before the incident. His mother becomes fearful as he exhibits increasingly disturbing behavior of the likes she’s never known, leading her to believe the boy who returned is not her son after all.
4. It Comes at Night
Director: Trey Edward Shults
Cast: Joel Edgerton, Riley Keough, Christopher Abbott, Carmen Ejogo
Rotten Tomatoes: 87%
Editor’s Notes: In case a cast led by Joel Edgerton hasn’t convinced you, It Comes at Night tells the story of a man who will stop at nothing to protect his family from a mysterious, unnatural threat that is terrorizing the outside world. This delicate infrastructure begins to crumble, however, when a young family stumbles onto the property in search of refuge.
Director: Ari Aster
Cast: Toni Collette, Gabriel Byrne, Alex Wolff, Milly Shapiro
Rotten Tomatoes: 89%
Editor’s Notes: Ari Aster grabs your attention right from the start in his feature debut. There is no easing into this one. What begins as a family tragedy turns into so much more as the Grahams find themselves struggling to avoid their sinister inheritance.
2. The Witch
Director: Robert Eggers
Cast: Anya Taylor-Joy, Ralph Ineson, Kate Dickie
Rotten Tomatoes: 90%
Editor’s Notes: Anya Taylor-Joy is truly captivating as a teenage girl accused of witchcraft in 1630 New England in The Witch. Banished by the church to a remote area on the edge of an ominous forest, her family falls victim to a series of strange and unsettling occurrences, ranging from failing crops and malevolent animals to a disappearing child and another who becomes possessed.
1. Green Room
Director: Jeremy Saulnier
Cast: Patrick Stewart, Anton Yelchin, Imogen Poots
Rotten Tomatoes: 91%
Editor’s Notes: From leading the X-Men to running an underground nightclub as a cover for an illegal operation, Patrick Stewart shows us a side of himself that we’re not all that familiar with in Green Room. The movie centers around a struggling punk band who is held hostage after playing a last-second gig at a backwoods location.