We’re getting deeper into spooky season, but don’t worry: We’re not going to run out of streaming genre films. Did you check out our lists about the horror movies you can enjoy on Netflix and HBO Max? Well, this time we’re diving into Amazon Prime’s selection.
“We Are Still Here” (2015)
Quick Synopsis: An older couple (Barbara Crampton and Andrew Sensenig) move into a new home in a rural area after a family tragedy. What they don’t know is that the house harbors something evil, and more tragedy awaits them there.
More Information: This movie was one of the roles that brought ’80s scream queen Barbara Crampton (“Re-Animator”) back into the fray, and she’s always great. It’s a thoroughly creepy film with an interesting original lore behind its narrative. If you’re looking for a movie to give you some jump scares and maybe keep you up at night, this wouldn’t be a bad place to start.
Quick Synopsis: A young couple (Imogen Poots and Jesse Eisenberg) follow a real estate agent to a development called Yonder, where everything looks exactly alike; these aren’t just cookie-cutter suburbs — they’re literally identical homes, roads, yards and even clouds. When the agent disappears during the home tour, the couple is stuck in Yonder without escape. And things only get weirder from there.
More Information: If you’ve seen “The Art of Self-Defense,” you know that these two actors work incredibly well together. But you’ve never seen anything like this film. It’s so odd, and it’s both mundane and beautiful at the same time. It might make you feel weird to watch it during lockdown — if you haven’t realized how repetitive daily life can be yet, you will watching “Vivarium.” And it’ll keep you guessing until the end. It’s a must-watch if you like weird and semi-ambiguous films.
Quick Synopsis: A writer (William Katt) moves into an old house he inherited from his aunt, and hijinks ensue.
More Information: Do you enjoy haunted house movies as well as sillier, horror-influenced films like “Beetlejuice”? Then “House” is right up your alley. Not to be confused with the 1977 Japanese film “Hausu” (which is also known as “House” in English), this supernatural horror comedy is strange and campy, but darker than you might imagine. There are specters of all kinds to be found here, and it’s a mostly fun weekend watch.
Quick Synopsis: Pauline (AnnaLynne McCord) is an outcast. She doesn’t fit in at school or in her own family. But she has a wild imagination and, seemingly, a lack of empathy — both of which take her down a dark path.
More Information: I promise that you’ve never seen AnnaLynne McCord (The CW’s “90210”) like this before. She puts on a great performance as Pauline, who is funny, rude, gross and so much more. This movie isn’t for squeamish people; it has a LOT of blood and gore, both real and fantasy. But it also boasts a supporting cast that includes John Waters, Traci Lords, Matthew Gray Gubler, Malcolm McDowell, Marlee Matlin, Ray Wise and Ariel Winter. It’s quite a trip.
Quick Synopsis: Piotr (Itay Tiron) travels from the UK to Poland to marry a bride he barely knows. While renovating their property, he discovers something that leads him to become possessed during their wedding, and no one is sure what to do about it.
More Information: This is a modern folktale — it’s about a Jewish spirit (a dybbuk). Don’t let the above trailer fool you; this movie is largely in Polish and has subtitles. While the film is existentially terrifying and deeply unsettling (with moments of dark humor) on the surface, there’s more to it than that. This is a film exploring the terrors of WWII for Jewish people — and maybe even about reckoning with a past you don’t want to admit exists.
Quick Synopsis: Two young women (Imogen Waterhouse and Sarah Hay) travel to their wealthy but eccentric and stunted childhood friend’s (Madeline Brewer) home. They plan to rob her, but first they have to play their old games of make-believe — and does anything ever really go as planned?
More Information: Those who are familiar with Madeline Brewer from her lead role in “Cam” know just how talented an actor she is. The other two women who make up the main cast hold their own as well, and this twisted tale will throw you for several loops. There are also some really interesting visuals in this film, with bright, hallucinogenic colors and camera work that may threaten to make you dizzy. This is really about friendship and betrayal, but it’s incredibly creative.
“Come to Daddy” (2020)
Quick Synopsis: Norval (Elijah Wood) goes to his estranged father’s cabin to see him for the first time in decades after receiving a letter inviting him. But his dad isn’t quite what he imagined, and things go from weird to dangerous pretty quickly.
More Information: The less you know about this movie going into it, the better. It’s a truly wild ride, with a lot of violence and gore. Elijah Wood has made some interesting career choices, especially veering into genre films, and this one has got to be his craziest yet. You’ve just got to see it.
“House on Haunted Hill” (1959)
Quick Synopsis: You know the drill: An eccentric millionaire (Vincent Price) offers $10,000 each to a group of five strangers. The catch? They have to spend the night with him and his wife in a haunted mansion.
More Information: If you haven’t caught this classic yet, what are you waiting for? Sure, it’s cheesy now, but it’s still a really enjoyable way to spend 75 minutes. Vincent Price is one of the masters of the horror genre, and there’s a lot to love about this film.
Quick Synopsis: This film is based on the mythology around the Goddess of Plenty and her favorite son, Hastar. Humans built a temple for him, where it said that you can obtain great riches, but it’s not an easy adventure — there’s a curse associated with it. A man (Sohum Shah) plans to take his son to the temple in Tumbbad to try to retrieve the treasure.
More Information: This Indian film is storytelling on a huge scale, and it has several moments that are likely to shock and scare you. It’s a fairly slow burn movie, but it’s totally worth the payoff. And after you finish watching it, you can check out our interview with filmmaker Adesh Prasad and composer Jesper Kyd.
“The Neon Demon” (2016)
Quick Synopsis: Jesse (Elle Fanning) moves to L.A. to become a model. But while chasing fame, she discovers that her beauty may be too much for some to handle, and the envy of others could be bad for her.
More Information: When I first watched this film, I fully expected it to be style over substance. And in many ways it is, but it pulls it off better than other movies. I was transfixed by the visuals and the narrative of “The Neon Demon.” Plus its cast includes a lot of talent: Jena Malone, Keanu Reeves, Christina Hendricks, Bella Heathcote and Abbey Lee. This movie manages to be physically bright and thematically dark in a really interesting way.
What other horror movies are you watching this time of year? Don’t forget to share your recommendations — and let us know what you think of these picks too.
Originally hailing from Pennsylvania, Jackie has called Austin home since choosing to attend the University of Texas, where she graduated with a degree in multimedia journalism. She loves spending time with her dogs, writing about pop culture in all its forms and spending time with friends – eating, drinking and doing trivia.