We’re very close to Halloween and it’s honestly surprising how fast this year has flown. We haven’t reached the finish line yet but there are already enough movies, television shows and video games to keep us entertained – enough for two years, at least. While 2023 was short on big horror movies, it made the smaller titles stand out and seize audiences with its inventive thrills. Here are some of the best horror movies to watch this October for the spooky season.
The following list is in no particular order and takes into account horror movies that have already been released in 2023 so far (except for one movie that’s still to come). Of course, a lot of this comes down to personal opinion and what we think are unmissable horror movies of the year so far, though feel free to let us know if there’s anything you’d recommend too.
Best 2023 Horror Movies to Watch This October
No One Will Save You
Mixing an alien invasion horror with a home invasion thriller was a stroke of genius on No One Will Save You‘s part. Short on dialogue but packed to the brim with inventive scares and some of the best alien designs we’ve seen in a while, it’s also a surprisingly emotional story that sometimes gets overshadowed by the scares-per-minute rollercoaster ride it takes you on. If you’re looking for a quick burst of alien fun that will keep you talking after the credits roll, look no further.
Evil Dead Rise
While not nearly as thrilling as the 2013 Evil Dead remake, this year’s Evil Dead Rise is a mostly enjoyable slice of old-school demonic horror set within Sam Raimi’s terrifying universe. Moving away from the familiar cabin in the woods setting to a suburban apartment in the city, Rise still delivers some squirmish, intense scenes that will stay in your mind (you won’t look at cheese graters the same). Fun, fast-paced and with a memorable opening, there’s enough here to keep Evil Dead fans hooked.
Six movies deep and Scream still, against all odds, manages to be one of the most surprising horror franchises of its kind. Its trademark meta gimmick hasn’t run out of steam yet and in Scream VI, it’s still remarkably fresh. Ghostface is back hunting people but this time, the killer isn’t confined to the small town of Woodsboro, taking his murderous rampage to New York. The magic of Scream‘s Scooby-Doo twists is still effective and it still has a lot to say about the current state of horror movies.
Talk to Me
Arguably the best movie on this list, nobody expected Talk to Me to be this damn good. Unpredictable and hard to pin down, it’s a thrilling, creepy and surprisingly inventive horror movie with committed performances and masterful suspense. It’s no surprise that Talk to Me is still being talked about in the community (no pun intended). We can only recommend going in blind and letting it take you by the hand (pun intended).
The Last Voyage of the Demeter
This one might be a bit of a controversial pick since it’s received mixed opinions from fans, but it’s arguably a quintessential Dracula movie to watch. The Last Voyage of the Demeter expands the one chapter from Bram Stoker’s classic Dracula novel into a full-fledged horror movie as it follows the journey of a ship crew who are tasked with transporting the vampire’s casket across the ocean. Naturally, Dracula wakes up and it’s bad news for everyone on board. It’s a thrilling monster movie that makes a few questionable choices but it’s still worth watching.
Knock at the Cabin
Definitely leaning more on the thriller side than horror, Knock at the Cabin is still a good time and one of director M. Night Shyamalan’s best movies in years. Playing up the whole apocalyptic angle with a unique, cosy cabin setting, the movie rarely scares you as much as it makes you guess throughout. Thanks to terrific performances from everyone involved, including the underrated Dave Bautista, Knock at the Cabin is a lot more thought-provoking and quietly intense than you might expect.
Capping off this list is M3GAN, which was released earlier this year to very positive reviews. We’ve seen the whole “AI gone wrong in a doll that goes on a killing spree” story but not like this before. It certainly has its fair share of predictable horror tropes and scares but it succeeds thanks to its well-written characters that you can get invested in. It’s not going to blow you away but for a fun night with friends, it’s worth watching.
Upcoming: Five Nights at Freddy’s
As a bonus, the live-action adaptation of Five Nights at Freddy’s, based on the extremely popular indie horror games from Scott Cawthon, is set to release on 27 October. Following the story of a night shift security guard who has to contend with haunted animatronics at a run-down pizzeria, it stars Josh Hutcherson and Scream‘s Matthew Lillard. Needless to say, it’s probably the biggest horror movie of the year that you wouldn’t want to miss.