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Tuesday, February 13, 2024

The Best Horror Movies on Max to Stream Right Now (February 2024)

The exploration of horror through an overcrowded streaming market continues. Since each month brings a plethora of new additions to streaming libraries across all platforms, from Netflix to Tubi, that means an insane selection of all styles and types of horror available at our fingertips.

Max doesn’t just serve as the spot for Warner Bros. titles, but offers hubs to connect you to HBO, Cartoon Network, TCM, and curated selections to find even more pockets of horror.

For starters, Max’s horror selection offers a relatively robust selection of foundational horror titles and franchises, including Paranormal Activity and Friday the 13th

Here are the best Max horror movies you can stream right now.


Aliens

Aliens

Whereas Ridley Scott’s Alien embraced quiet haunted house-like chills for his sci-fi movie, James Cameron took a drastic detour into action-horror territory for the epic-scaled sequel. Poor Ellen Ripley is forced to return to LV-426 along with space Marines, in search of missing colonizers that were attempting to terraform the exomoon. It goes without saying that the xenomorphs are back in plural form. Aliens expands the body count and lore in spades, but it’s anchored by two fierce mothers going toe-to-toe in Ripley and the xenomorph queen.


The Brood

The Brood

Frank Carveth (Art Hindle) is in the midst of an embittered separation process from his estranged wife Nola (Samantha Eggar), a disturbed woman currently undergoing experimental therapy. Her psychotherapist, Hal Raglan (Oliver Reed), has developed a unique process that allows his patients to let go of their suppressed emotions via physical manifestations on their body, weird growths, and skin anomalies. That means Nola channels her rage into a brood of psychically manifested children, who then act on her fury through murder. It’s visceral body horror meets genuine family tragedy and drama. With a new David Cronenberg body horror movie on the way, now’s a perfect time to watch this one.


Carnival of Souls

Carnival of Souls

When Mary Henry miraculously survives a harrowing car accident, she finds herself inexplicably drawn to a mysterious, abandoned carnival. Shot at the Saltair Pavilion, one of the first amusement parks in the west, the setting enhances the eerie atmosphere. A slow burn befitting of an episode of the Twilight Zone, this carnival is one you won’t wish to take a trip to anytime soon. Instead of high octane thrills, this trip to the carnival is one of slow, permeating dread.


Carrie

Carrie

A common thread in coming of age tales is the journey of self-discovery. That’s hard enough for a hormonal teenager, but it’s even more so when that teen is an outcast targeted for bullying. Poor Carrie White grew up extremely sheltered thanks to her fanatically religious mother, so when her first period came in the middle of her post-gym class shower, she thought she was dying. Cue excessive bullying. Her foray into puberty comes with newfound telekinetic power, and with it enough strength to rebel against her mother and find herself. Carrie’s road to self-discovery is paved with a lot of blood and death. While there are multiple adaptations of Stephen King’s novel, it’s tough to beat Brian De Palma’s classic.


Cast a Deadly Spell

Cast a Deadly Spell

This made-for-cable movie is more of a loving send-up, marrying comedic horror-fantasy to noir. Set in an alternate 1940s where magic and magical creatures exist, Detective Harry Philip Lovecraft (Fred Ward) is hired to track and retrieve the stolen Necronomicon. That job leads to a much bigger conspiracy involving femme fatales, assassins, ancient evils, and a bid to bring about Armageddon. It’s a charming creature feature steeped in noir convention, with a stacked cast too.


Cronos

Cronos

Guillermo del Toro’s feature debut reframed the vampire mythos at nearly every turn. Antique dealer Jesús Gris discovers a strange mechanical scarab hiding within a statue. It stings him, injecting Jesús with a solution that restores his youth, increases his energy levels, and instills a powerful thirst for blood. Throw in a dangerous businessman that’s been after the scarab for years, and Jesús’s newfound vampirism causes a wake of destruction. While vampires are often portrayed as romantic figures of eternal life, del Toro centers his story around an aging grandfather, presenting a different, poignant side to romanticizing vampiric immortality.


Don Monjes (Two Monks)

Two Monks

Two Monks, aka Dos Monjes, tells the nonlinear tale of the rivalry between Javier and Juan. Set in a Gothic monastery, Oro employs a heavy German Expressionist style for his violent narrative told from two different perspectives. It’s moody and minimalist, biding its time in revealing the truths behind the men’s opposition. This eerie gothic tale is foundational horror, especially when venturing into classic horror from Mexico as it’s written/directed by Mexican horror trailblazer Juan Bustillo Oro.


Eraserhead

eraserhead baby max

1977 propelled body horror forward in a major way with David Lynch’s Eraserhead. It centers around poor Henry Spencer. He’s just trying to survive his strange industrial world and his angry girlfriend, Mary X. And also the unbearable cries from his newborn child, a mutant. The fear of becoming a parent has never been as viscerally upsetting, abstract, or as singular than in Lynch’s hands.


The Exorcist

Exorcist

Director William Friedkin changed the face of possession horror with this classic. When daughter Regan falls mysteriously ill, single mother and popular actress Chris spares no expense on experimental treatments to heal her. When all else fails, Chris turns to the Church. The battle for faith and redemption centers around a possessed child, and Friedkin mines every moment for terror and horror in equal measure. An impeccable cast, fantastic cinematography combined with iconic shot composition, and a visceral approach to the possession make this an all-timer.


Eyes Without a Face

Eyes without a face

Georges Franju’s horror classic follows a brilliant plastic surgeon and his horribly disfigured daughter, and his extreme quest to give her a new face. The surgeon sets about finding the perfect face, which entails gruesome facial transplants involving unwilling participants. While Eyes Without a Face dwells in the psychological, the grotesque imagery involving the surgeries unsettles. It’s a lush, haunting horror film unafraid to test the squeamish.


From Dusk Till Dawn

From Dusk Till Dawn

This vampire classic by director Robert Rodriguez and screenwriter Quentin Tarantino bides its time getting to the horror. The first act plays like a crime thriller, with the Gecko Brothers (George Clooney and Tarantino) taking a family hostage to get them across the border while running from the law. They wind up at an all-night truck stop, unaware that it’s home to a hive of vampires that use the place as their feeding ground. It’s the type of creature feature with it all: humor, action, and loads of viscera. The vampires may start human-like, but they quickly reveal their monstrous form once the blood starts spilling.


Hausu

Hausu

A Japanese cult classic takes the haunted house concept to wacky extremes in the best way possible. The premise has a group of seven high school girls traveling to a remote home belonging to one of their aunts, and it happens to be haunted. That doesn’t adequately prepare the viewer for the madness. Take the haunted house tropes, like spooky cats, bleeding walls, and vengeful ghosts, and combine them with hallucinogenic visuals and funhouse sensibilities. You have the most bizarre haunted house horror movie you’ll ever see. I mean that as a compliment.


Hereditary

Hereditary

Ari Aster’s feature directorial debut presented a master class in foreboding atmosphere and subtle background scares that embedded deep under your skin. The haunting imagery in Hereditary is the type that lingers with you long after the credits roll. The title sells the premise well; this horror movie takes a sobering look at what subsequent generations inherit from their parents. In this case, the unlucky Graham family is unwittingly held prisoner to their matriarch’s dark designs, leading them down a destructive, dark path.


Jennifer’s Body

Jennifer's Body

Hell is a teenage girl. If ever there was a well-rounded coming-of-age horror movie that tried to encapsulate the teen girl experience, it’s Jennifer’s Body. When Jennifer becomes possessed by a man-eating demon in a sacrifice gone wrong, her best friend Needy must learn to step out of Jennifer’s shadow if she hopes to stop her. Toxic friendships, self-discovery, the heartbreak of first loves and first traumas, and more are explored in this bitingly hilarious horror-comedy.


Kwaidan

Kwaidan

Director Masaki Kobayashi’s anthology, which roughly translates to “Ghost Stories” from the term Kaidan, draws from Lafcadio Hearn‘s collection of folk tales. Kwaidan presents four vignettes of terror, often revolving around a form of supernatural or violent karma. The haunting tales and stunning cinematography helped earn this rare horror anthology a Best Foreign Language Film nomination at the Academy Awards. As if that’s not reason enough to watch this horror classic, the second segment, “The Woman of the Snow” serves as inspiration to another memorable segment from 1990’s Tales from the Darkside: The Movie.


The Lure

THE LURE

What if the original Hans Christian Andersen version of The Little Mermaid, in its bloody glory, was set in the 1980s in a Polish cabaret? Oh yeah, and it’s a musical. That’s the concept behind Agnieszka Smoczynska’s stunning film featuring mermaid sisters Golden and Silver, who come ashore and wind up getting adopted by a local nightclub band. A visually resplendent horror fairy tale that’s unafraid to get weird, bloody, and downright tragic.


Pet Sematary

Pet Sematary

Director Mary Lambert’s adaptation of Stephen King’s novel remains a high point in the pantheon of King adaptations. When the Creed family moves into their new home on a rural but deadly stretch of road, their plucky neighbor Jud (Fred Gwynne) introduces them to the neighborhood pet cemetery. But there’s stony, sour ground beyond the deadfall there, and it reawaken things that were better left dead. That the charming cast makes you first root for the Creed family before Lambert layers in absolute nightmare fuel (hello, Zelda) ensures this film holds up well.


Scanners

Scanners HBO

A futuristic sci-fi thriller that centers around industrial conspiracy and espionage as a scientist sends a man, Revok (Michael Ironside), with extraordinary psychic powers to hunt down others like him. This is the type of sci-fi horror feature where its villain and a now iconic head popping scene somewhat overshadows the film itself, which is far headier than the violent head burst suggests. Scanners marks the first of David Cronenberg’s films that spawned sequels, though he wasn’t involved with subsequent entries in this franchise.


Twin Peaks: Fire Walk With Me

Twin Peaks Fire Walk with Me

It should surprise no one that David Lynch‘s prequel movie refused to give in to expectations and polarized upon release. “Twin Peaks” frequently leaned into the supernatural, but it was offset with a sense of quirky humor. Not so in this feature, which is devoid of any levity. The film chronicled Laura Palmer’s final days and embraced experimental horror, capturing Laura’s visceral terror with an oppressive feeling of dread.


Under the Skin

Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin follows an extraterrestrial, credited as The Female (Scarlett Johansson), as she seduces lonely men in Glasgow, luring them to an otherworldly place for consumption. Soon, this process unlocks a journey of self-discovery for the Female. Glazer documents the alien’s burgeoning curiosity with a cold distance, the Female’s horrific acts captured with a sterility that somehow enhances the horror. Never is that more disturbing than a devastating beach scene. Under the Skin is as elusive as it is mesmerizing, even as its aloof nature effectively induces maximum discomfort.


The Witch

The Witch max horror

Robert Eggers’ feature debut centers around a young woman coming of age under the harshest of conditions. After exile from their community, Thomasin’s family relocates to a rural area near dark woods to rebuild their lives. Thomasin’s adolescence is marred with puritanical oppression and a witch in the woods wreaking havoc on the family. What would self-discovery look like in 1630s New England, when the freedom to do so doesn’t exist? Never have we cheered so hard for a teen to live deliciously and find her place in the world.

The post The Best Horror Movies on Max to Stream Right Now (February 2024) appeared first on Bloody Disgusting!.



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