Unveiling the Shadows: A HOME Cinema Guide to the Ultimate Horror Streaming on Netflix

Storytelling is, as a whole, a primal force, but when we talk about primal, horror is always among the first words in the sentence. It permeates our dark minds like some secretion, and because of that, horror has made its way into many different cultural manifestations, reflecting our fears and anxieties or projecting them back at ourselves. Of all the primal emotions, horror is probably is among the oldest, and so are the monsters that populate our traditions and tapestry, especially since Halloween, in one form or another, seems to have been with us for millennia. However, in our contemporary, digital jungle, the absolute top spot for horror enthusiasts or those who simply like a touch of terror here and there is the online video service Netflix, and its library of horror movies, which range from the most horrific nightmares to the most psychological of rollercoasters. In the following lines, we invite you to follow us while we explore Netflix’s horror section and pick out some gems that will quickly turn your living room into a bench warrant for your adrenal glands.

HOME to Classic Horrors and Fresh Scares

As a treasure trove of titles, no streaming site does more for horror fans than Netflix. From the terrors of The Conjuring film series to the innovations of Ouija: Origin of Evil, it ranks the classics alongside the cult and the contemporary. Here are five titles to begin your horror binge.

The Conjuring Universe: A Legacy Etched in Horror

James Wan’s The Conjuring (2013) and its sequel, The Conjuring 2 (2016), are landmarks of contemporary horror cinema. Not only did they help redefine the modern ghost story – they established a new benchmark for it, making the haunted history of Ed and Lorraine Warren as terrifying as it is fascinating.

The Eerie Charm of Eastern Horrors

In The Wailing (2016), we are thrust into the wilderness of the mountain village of Gokseong, where a fever is spreading, and yet there’s something much more nefarious afoot. Part police procedural and part supernatural horror, this South Korean masterclass builds to a final act of bloodcurdling frenzy that is distinctly Eastern in its storytelling.

Slashing Through Nostalgia

Slasher horror reached its apotheosis with the A Nightmare on Elm Street series, whose ingenious kills (much of the 1984 original were directed by Joe Chappelle, now the show-runner for Fox), or darker horror undertones (the underrated ‘Freddy’s Revenge’, 1985), remind us why we loved being scared during the 1980s.

The Fresh Cuts: Modern Takes on Horror

Eli Roth’s Thanksgiving (2023), a bloodbath of post-modern slasher homage directed and co-written by Gillian Jacobs, spices up the holiday with slapstick shocks. X (2022), a slasher movie that’s part of A24’s series of atmospheric revenge horror films, makes sure that a victim’s screams will haunt viewers long after they’ve turned off the TV. Resident Evil (2002) and its numerous sequels tear through the genre, showing us what horror can still do for us – if the settings of the titular video game remain, the human essence has been removed.

Exploring The Uncharted: The Indie Horror Sensation at HOME

Netflix’s commitment to telling diverse stories does a lot to convince me of the much-debated notion that we’re living through a golden age of horror. I can’t think of any other streaming service that does as much work to push indie horrors. To give a couple of examples, the survivalist thriller Backcountry (2014) and the Iranian haunted-house flick Under The Shadow (2016) prove that you don’t need a big budget to tell a big scare, and that creativity is limitless.

Navigating the Digital Haunt: Found Footage and Social Media Horrors

Lore (2017) and ‘Incantation’ (2022) speak to our modern angst, embedding social media and found footage into a whole new level of readily recognisable fright.

Coming HOME to Horror

It’s obvious that Netflix has created a HOME for horror movies that delivers all the delicious thrills of a fun fright-fest while also appealing to a fearful emotional intelligence. Horror is an integral part of the Netflix brand, a category that is by far the most relevant at present for a company that encourages bingeing and caters to people’s desire for vicarious self-destruction. Kicking back on the sofa might teach you something new about your own life.

HOME: A Sanctuary of Scares

And there we have it: Netflix has exposed the home itself as the true landscape of horror, operating as a great portal through which we can pass season after season, knowing that there’s never going to be anywhere as safe as home. Like Netflix itself, horror can now be enjoyed year-round. Whether it’s supernatural, psychological or just gross, Netflix offers a portal into a whole new world of horror, and every night is Halloween.

Keep in mind, though, that this is a horror landscape where the next jump scare is never more than a thumb-stroke – so, adjust your streaming settings, hunker down with your favourite blanket, grab a snack, and let Netflix do the scary work for you.

Jun 06, 2024
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