Hellraiser (1987)via amazon.com
One of the scariest movies because: This murderfest is filled with unsavory characters—humans with dark personalities and darker motives, plus an assortment of bizarre and terrifying beasts. Not for the faint of heart.
What the critics say: “It’s the voluptuous residues of Hellraiser, not a low-voiced dude with a porcupine head, that spark the fear of mortality.”—Eric Henderson, Slant
The Thing (1982)via amazon.com
One of the scariest movies because: It’s impossible to know whom to trust in this film about an alien parasite that imitates humans.
What the critics say: “The Thing is a peerless masterpiece of relentless suspense, retina-wrecking visual excess and outright, nihilistic terror.”—Adam Smith, Empire
28 Days Later (2002)via amazon.com
One of the scariest movies because: These zombies are faster than you, plus their brain-eating disease is transmitted via blood. Which flows in excess here, naturally.
What the critics say: “28 Days Later is loaded with terrific images and extraordinary little moments… even as it inexorably deteriorates into Scooby-Doo terrain.”—Andrew O’Hehir, Salon