Today I am going to be ranking the 10 sub-genres of horror films! My post will be based on my own personal taste in scary movies. As an added FYI, I will use the list sourced from The Los Angeles Film School. I will also throw in some recommendations/examples per genre. There’s really not much more to say! Without further ado, let’s get into it!
My favourite horror sub-genre is paranormal. These are your ghosts, spirits and hauntings. My types of films tend to feature a haunted place, thing or person. Some great examples are: The Conjuring, Insidious, Paranormal Activity, Poltergeist and The Haunting of Hill House. I never get tired of this category. In my opinion, it can be done multiple different ways and never get old.
In second place we have Demonic. It’s similar to paranormal but focuses more on religious horror, possessions and agents of Satan. It used to be a sub-genre I stayed far away from but now I cannot get enough. I want the scares. Give me all the scares! Some recommendations are: The Exorcist, The Exorcism of Emily Rose, Sinister, Rosemary’s Baby and of course, IT. If you want more examples, check out this post.
In third place, we have psychological horror. As you can probably deduce, these films tend to focus on mental, emotional and psychological states of mind. They usually come with epic twists that stay with you long after the credits have finished rolling. I’m such a fan of this sub-genre and gravitate to it often. Some examples are: Triangle, Orphan, The Invisible Man, The Babadook and Get Out. You can get more recommendations here.
In fourth place, we have slashers. This is probably the most popular horror sub-genre for fans worldwide. It typically focuses on a non-supernatural killer picking off characters one at a time, usually ending with a Final Girl. I think slashers are so much fun and great to watch with a group of friends. My top picks are: Halloween, Scream, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Child’s Play and House of 1,000 Corpses.
Gore certainly isn’t for everybody, but it is for me! You might also hear this sub-genre referred to as splatter. That’s right, we are talking about violence, blood and guts. If done correctly, you’ll screw up your face in disgust. Some of my favourite horror movies of all time stem from this category. If you haven’t already, check out: Saw, Final Destination, Terrifier, Cube and Wrong Turn.
In sixth place, we have horror comedies. These are dark films that will make you laugh. I wrote a blog post recommending my top five favourite movies from this category, which you can check out here. Other examples include: Spree, Killer Klowns from Outer Space, Ready or Not, Hocus Pocus and An American Werewolf in London.
Now we are getting into the categories I’m not typically known to gravitate toward. I like witches but I prefer to read about them rather than watch films starring them. I don’t find them particularly scary or interesting. The ones I would recommend are: Drag Me to Hell, The Autopsy of Jane Doe, The Ritual, The Blair Witch Project and Hereditary.
Let’s be real, I was a massive vampire fan until it was oversaturated post-Twilight. Suddenly, every bookstore had a vampire section and there were way too many films about attractive bloodsuckers being made. I kind of got over it. Having said that, here are some of my favourite movies from the aforementioned sub-genre: Doctor Sleep, The Invitation, Let The Right One In, Queen of the Damned and Interview with the Vampire.
In second last place, we have monster movies. I feel like this is a broad term. You could attribute monsters to creature features. I made a post about my five favourite ones here. Again, I don’t dislike this category, I just don’t actively seek them out. My top picks are: Alien, Predator, A Quiet Place, The Thing and The Fly.
In last place, we have zombie films. I honestly do not care about this sub-genre. There is only one movie I want to recommend. It is one of my favourites of all time and that is Train to Busan. I feel like that is the best take on zombies I have ever seen. You won’t catch me dipping into this category. Sorry!
Thank you so much for reading! How would you rank this list? Do you have any recommendations/examples to add?
Peace & Love xoxo
What a great list. I think I’m paranormal, comedic, and zombie. I just watched “Happy Death Day” again ♥️
Thank you!! I love Happy Death Day so much!!
Me too. Even the sequel 😁
Interesting list. I’m glad to see “drag me to hell” in the witchcraft category. But where is the Evil Dead trilogy? It could take place in the comedic just as in the witchcraft. Most are crossing over the genres don’t you think?
Absolutely I would put Evil Dead in demonic, gore, comedic etc