From major new releases to obscure cult classics, Hulu has horror movies for casual viewers and hardcore fans alike. Here are some of the best horror movies to stream on Hulu.
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Dear White People creator Justin Simien comes up with a different kind of satire in Bad Hair, a period piece set in the world of cable TV in 1989. It’s a pitch-perfect recreation of an “urban” music video network, where the pressure to fit in drives young employee Anna (Elle Lorraine) to get hair extensions. Unfortunately, those hair extensions are demonically possessed and hungry for blood (but they look great).
In between big blockbuster projects, director Sam Raimi returned to his horror roots with the delightfully nasty Drag Me to Hell. Alison Lohman plays a bank employee who finds herself cursed when she denies a strange old woman’s request for a mortgage extension. Raimi puts his protagonist through all manner of terrors, teasing her possible salvation and then cruelly but entertainingly snatching it away.
There are seemingly dozens of terrible shark-attack movies released every year, but 47 Meters Down is a reminder that these stories can still be intense and gripping. The plot here is simple: Two sisters on vacation in Mexico sign up for a cage-diving experience to see sharks up close, but the cage’s cable breaks, and they sink 47 meters down to the bottom of the ocean. It’s a harrowing survival thriller, capturing the visceral danger of undersea predators.
Swedish vampire drama, Let the Right One In, has a chilly premise to go along with its chilly setting. Lina Leandersson is mesmerizing as a preternaturally assured child who is actually an immortal bloodsucker, and whose friendship with a fellow young outcast hides a more sinister agenda. The story of two misfits finding each other is surprisingly tender, even as it reveals a whole history of horrors.
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The breakthrough film from horror master Mike Flanagan, Oculus stars Karen Gillan as a woman who believes that a cursed mirror is responsible for the tragedies in her family. Along with her brother (Brenton Thwaites), she plans to document the mirror’s supernatural powers to vindicate her theories. Flanagan shifts back and forth between time periods and blurs the line between reality and hallucination, creating an immersive, terrifying experience, led by Gillan’s wonderfully unhinged performance.
Filmmaker Brandon Cronenberg follows in the footsteps of his horror-icon father (David Cronenberg) with the graphic and unsettling Possessor. Andrea Riseborough plays a corporate assassin who can take over the bodies of other people, with Christopher Abbott as her latest victim. The movie explores questions of identity and morality while also providing trippy visuals and lots of stomach-churning violence.
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Writer-director Neasa Hardiman draws from sci-fi horror classics like Alien and John Carpenter’s The Thing for her creature feature Sea Fever. The crew of a fishing boat, with a grad student (Hermione Corfield) hitching a ride, encounters a giant monster out in the ocean. The threat becomes even more insidious when the beast leaves tiny infectious larvae behind on the boat (and in the people).
Horror anthology movies are almost always inconsistent viewing experiences, and many are thrown together from completely unrelated pieces. The filmmakers behind Southbound solve that problem by having the various stories transition seamlessly from one to the next, with some continuing characters and locations, even from different creative teams. The result is a collection of stories that captures the eeriness of the empty desert in a variety of gruesome and suspenseful ways.
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Norwegian director Joachim Trier puts a dark, captivating spin on a story about a young woman with superpowers in Thelma. The title character (Eili Harboe) embraces her telekinetic powers along with her burgeoning sexual identity when she moves from her repressive religious home to attend a university in the city. Thelma’s powers have devastating consequences, though, and as she further asserts her autonomy, the people in her life become collateral damage.
Most of the horror elements of The Vigil are pretty familiar, but writer-director Keith Thomas refreshes them by grounding his story in a very specific cultural context. It’s set in Brooklyn’s Orthodox Jewish community, where a young man who’s recently left the insular enclave returns to stand watch over the body of a recently deceased Holocaust survivor. Thomas delivers effective and relentless scares while also providing a thoughtful examination of identity and faith.
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