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Scaringly Good: The Best Horror Movies 2023

Best horror movies 2023

Horror enthusiasts have much to anticipate in 2023, as this year promises a spine-tingling assortment of cinematic terrors. The best horror movies 2023 cater to a wide array of fears, from the technological dread of “M3GAN” to the visceral tension of “Saw X,” ensuring that every type of horror fan finds their next nightmare fuel 1. As the industry continues to push boundaries, these films not only terrify but also innovatively explore the depths of horror.

This article compiles a ranked list of the must-watch horror movies in 2023, delivering a blend of high-stakes thrillers, tech-gone-wrong narratives, and intimate apocalyptic dramas 1. Whether it’s the chilling narrative of “Knock at the Cabin” or the haunting tale of “Birth/Rebirth,” readers will discover a treasure trove of films that define the year in horror. Amidst these stories of fright and fantasy, the article also provides insights into 16 horror movies released this year, offering a comprehensive guide to navigating the best horror movies 2023 has to offer 12.

Talk to Me (Best Horror Movies 2023)

“Talk to Me” emerges as a standout in the realm of best horror movies 2023, weaving a narrative that is both terrifying and thought-provoking. Below are key highlights that contribute to its acclaim:

  • Narrative and Setting:
    • A gripping tale set in Australia, featuring impressive practical effects that craft a 21st-century horror masterpiece 3.
    • The story revolves around a deadly game involving a ceramic-encased severed hand, leading to terrifying encounters with the supernatural 5.
    • Central character Mia, portrayed by Sophie Wilde, delivers a compelling performance, anchoring the film’s exploration of teenage fears and traumas 4.
  • Themes and Direction:
    • Directors Danny and Michael Philippou blend horror with social commentary, examining the consequences of social media obsession and the pursuit of validation 6.
    • The film delves into the impact of grief and trauma, presenting them as gateways for malevolent forces, a concept that adds depth to the horror experience 6.
  • Innovative Elements:
    • Unique incorporation of a kangaroo in a key scene, showcasing the Philippou brothers’ creativity and connection to the Australian setting 4.
    • Inclusion of a transmasc actor in a pivotal role, handled with sensitivity and without exploiting their gender identity, adds a refreshing dimension to the narrative 4.

“Talk to Me” stands out for its innovative storytelling, deep thematic exploration, and skilled direction, making it a must-watch in the best horror movies of 2023.

The Angry Black Girl and Her Monster (Best Horror Movies 2023)

“The Angry Black Girl and Her Monster” is a film that intertwines elements of best horror movies 2023, mystery, and thriller, offering a fresh perspective on the genre. Directed by Bomani J. Story, this feature debut is recognized for its assured direction and bold thematic exploration 912.

Key Aspects:

  • Plot and Themes: The narrative centers around Vicaria, a teenager with a profound interest in science, who embarks on a quest to reverse death following her brother’s tragic demise in gang violence. The film adeptly reimagines Mary Shelley’s “Frankenstein” in a contemporary setting, addressing significant issues such as the impact of violence on Black culture, cycles of mourning and anger in Black communities, and systemic racial failures 810.
  • Performance and Style: Laya DeLeon Hayes delivers a compelling performance as Vicaria, embodying the character’s intelligence, wit, and emotional depth. The visual and auditory elements, including CG lightning bolts, neon lighting, and a dynamic score, contribute to the film’s unique atmosphere 8.
  • Critical Reception: Critics have praised the film for its exploration of grief, death, and the racial dimensions of its narrative. However, some critiques have been raised regarding the depiction of the monster and the potential impact on Black viewers, sparking discussions about the portrayal of resurrection and its implications 121314.

By delving into themes of grief, loss, and the quest for understanding life and death, “The Angry Black Girl and Her Monster” stands out as a thought-provoking addition to the horror genre in 2023 1114.

M3GAN (Best Horror Movies 2023)

“M3GAN” has quickly become a box office sensation, captivating audiences with its unique blend of best horror movies 2023, mystery, thriller, and sci-fi elements. Directed by Gerard Johnstone and produced by notable companies such as Blumhouse Productions and Atomic Monster, the film has garnered attention for its innovative take on the tech-gone-wrong narrative 15. Released in theaters on January 6, 2023, and available for streaming by January 24, 2023, “M3GAN” offers a runtime of 1 hour and 42 minutes under a PG-13 certification, making it accessible to a wider audience 1518.

Key Highlights:

  • Plot Overview: Set against the backdrop of a high-tech toy company, the movie introduces M3GAN, a prototype designed to act as both a teacher and babysitter. As the story unfolds, themes of grief, creation surpassing its creator, and the consequences of consumerism are explored, all while delivering pithy one-liners with a tongue-in-cheek tone 16.
  • Critical Reception: Critics and audiences alike have praised “M3GAN” for its entertainment value and thematic depth. Robert Roten of Laramie Movie Scope hailed it as “a very well made and entertaining horror film,” while Jackson Weaver from CBC News described it as “chaotic, dumb — and nearly perfect” 15. The film’s ability to balance humor with horror has been highlighted as a key factor in its success, with a critics consensus noting it as “unapologetically silly and all the more entertaining for it” 19.
  • User Reviews: Viewer responses have been varied, with ratings ranging from 2/10 to 8/10. Comments have touched on its suitability for a teenage audience due to the PG-13 rating, with some noting it as a “solid horror” experience, while others criticized it for not being scary enough 17.

“M3GAN” stands out in the realm of best horror movies 2023 for its clever mix of genres, engaging plot, and the ability to entertain and provoke thought in equal measure.

Knock at the Cabin (Best Horror Movies 2023)

In “Knock at the Cabin,” directed by M. Night Shyamalan, audiences are thrust into an intense narrative that combines elements of mystery, thriller, and drama 2021. The film, based on Paul Tremblay’s book “The Cabin at the End of the World,” unfolds the harrowing tale of Wen and her two dads, Eric and Andrew, who face a chilling ultimatum from four strangers: to prevent an apocalypse, they must choose to sacrifice one of their own 20. This premise sets the stage for a gripping exploration of moral dilemmas and the essence of human value.

Key Components:

  • Cast & Crew: Featuring Jonathan Groff, Ben Aldridge, and Kristen Cui, with standout performances by Dave Bautista and Rupert Grint, the film boasts a strong ensemble cast. Behind the scenes, Jarin Blaschke and Lowell A. Meyer’s cinematography alongside Herdís Stefánsdóttir’s haunting score amplify the tension 2022.
  • Reception: While the film received mixed reviews, Dave Bautista’s portrayal of Leonard was universally praised, being described as a “career-best performance” 2325. However, some critics and viewers noted the film’s predictable plot and questioned the lack of significant twists, with the pacing and character backstories receiving particular scrutiny 23.

Despite these critiques, “Knock at the Cabin” is lauded for its emotional depth and the complex moral quandaries it presents. The film’s exploration of belief, sacrifice, and the human capacity for understanding elevates it within the horror genre, making it a significant contribution to the best horror movies of 2023 2025.

Huesera: The Bone Woman (Best Horror Movies 2023)

In “Huesera: The Bone Woman,” director Michelle Garza Cervera crafts a haunting narrative that delves deep into the dark side of motherhood, combining elements of body horror with psychological thriller 2627. The film, predominantly in Spanish, showcases a stellar cast including Natalia Solián as Valeria, whose journey into motherhood takes a sinister turn when she begins to experience terrifying visions and physical transformations 26. The narrative is enriched by its exploration of themes such as post-partum depression, the anxiety of life choices, and the societal pressures surrounding motherhood 28.

Key Points:

  • Originality in Horror: The film offers a fresh perspective by intertwining pregnancy with elements of horror, drawing comparisons to classics like “Rosemary’s Baby” but with a unique, modern twist. The presence of a demonic spirit, signified by the eerie sound of cracking bones, elevates the tension and horror 27.
  • Aesthetic and Mood: Characterized by its millennial color palettes and artfully composed shots, the film’s aesthetic complements its prickly score, creating a chilling atmosphere that immerses viewers in Valeria’s increasingly unsettling world 27.
  • Critical Reception: Described as a “bone-chilling body horror,” “Huesera” has been praised for its innovative take on the horror genre, particularly for its exploration of the complexities and often horrifying aspects of pregnancy and motherhood. The film’s climax, featuring the hallucinatory ‘Ballerinas Huesero,’ showcases the movie’s creative prowess and thematic depth 2627.

“Huesera: The Bone Woman” stands out as a compelling entry in the horror genre for 2023, offering a deeply psychological and visually arresting experience that challenges conventional narratives around motherhood and identity 262728.

Skinamarink (Best Horror Movies 2023)

“Skinamarink,” a 2023 release directed and written by Kyle Edward Ball, stands as a unique entry in the horror genre, relying heavily on atmosphere and psychological terror rather than conventional horror tropes 3233. The film’s innovative approach is evident in several key aspects:

  • Visual and Auditory Experience:
    • The cinematography by Jamie McRae employs a minimalist approach, with shots focusing on dimly-lit hallways and ceilings, avoiding the depiction of faces. This choice, along with the decision to place the camera on the floor or a chair, creates an unsettling visual experience 32.
    • Sound design plays a crucial role, utilizing music and sound bites from public-domain cartoons instead of a traditional score, further enhancing the eerie atmosphere. The off-camera dialogue, often hard to discern, adds to the film’s immersive and disquieting ambiance 32.
  • Narrative and Setting:
    • Set in 1995, the film evokes nostalgia with its pre-Internet era setting, utilizing elements like a Fisher-Price phone and a cathode-ray tube TV. This backdrop, combined with the narrative of two children, Kevin and Kaylee, waking to find their parents missing and their home altered, taps into universal childhood fears 33.
    • The low-budget ($15,000) production does not hinder its impact; instead, it underscores the film’s experimental nature. Shot in the director’s childhood home, “Skinamarink” leverages its constraints to deliver a hauntingly intimate horror experience 3335.

“Skinamarink” achieves a viral status, captivating audiences with its liminal-spaces aesthetic and a narrative that feels both deeply personal and universally terrifying. The film’s ability to evoke a primal sense of dread, reminiscent of stumbling upon something forbidden, marks it as a standout in the best horror movies of 2023 3235.


Through a diverse range of narratives and innovative storytelling techniques, the horror movies of 2023 offer a thrilling insight into the evolution of the genre. From the tech horrors of “M3GAN” and the thought-provoking narratives in “Talk to Me,” to the profound societal observations in “The Angry Black Girl and Her Monster,” these films not only captivate but also delve into deeper themes of grief, identity, and the human psyche. The year’s selections showcase a blend of psychological horror, body horror, and suspense that effectively tap into our deepest fears and anxieties, proving that the genre continues to be a powerful medium for exploring complex issues.

As this genre continues to push boundaries, the significance of these films extends beyond mere entertainment; they elicit introspection and conversation around the themes they explore. The films highlighted stand as testament to the horror genre’s robustness and its ability to adapt and resonate with audiences in profoundly new ways. By fearlessly navigating the terrains of innovation and creativity, these movies not only defined the year in horror but also set new benchmarks for storytelling within the genre, inviting both enthusiasts and critics to ponder the limitless potentials of horror cinema.


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What is considered the best horror movie 2023?

The most acclaimed best horror movie 2023 is “When Evil Lurks,” which has received a 97% rating. Following closely are “Huesera: The Bone Woman” and “Attachment,” both also highly ranked with 97% and 95%, respectively.

Which horror movie is recognized as the scariest of all time?

“The Exorcist” from 1973 is widely regarded as the scariest horror movie ever made. Its chilling scenes, including the infamous 180-degree head turn by the character Regan (played by Linda Blair), have left an indelible mark on audiences.

What is the number one ranked horror movie?

The number one ranked horror movie is “The Exorcist” (1973). This film is noted for its division of horror into two categories: the ‘real life’ horrors, like those seen in “Psycho” and “Night of the Living Dead,” which bring terror into the everyday life, making it even more unsettling.

How did the year 2023 fare for the horror genre?

The year 2023 was significant for horror enthusiasts, marked by the release of eagerly awaited films such as “Scream 6.” However, it was a mixed year overall, as some sequels, including the latest “Exorcist,” failed to live up to expectations.


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