Who doesn’t love a good ghost story? An old fashioned paranormal tale of haunting and loss is perfect for those cold winter nights when everyone is stuck inside with the apparitions. Light a fire, turn down the lights, and grab a friend to watch your six as you prepare for hours of those things that go bump in the night. Luckily, Shudder has a handful of seriously great ones to tingle your spine, make your neck hairs stand on end, and have you checking over your shoulder.
A good ghost story should creep you out. A great ghost movie will stay with you. Here is our list for the best ghost films on Shudder. We curate a list each week of the best Shudder has to offer. Recent lists include The Best Horror Movies You’ve Probably Not Heard Of and The Grossest Horror Movies on Shudder. Be sure to check back for more suggestions as Shudder adds new movies often.
The Last Will And Testament Of Rosalind Lee
A man becomes convinced his religious mother is trying to contact him from the dead in this subtle supernatural thriller from Rue Morgue Magazine founder Rodrigo Gudiño. After the mysterious death of reclusive Rosalind Leigh (Vanessa Redgrave), her estranged son, Leon, arrives at her house to take stock of his inheritance. But there’s more to this house than dark corners and dusty antiques. Rosalind has left something behind, and it’s been waiting for Leon. Now this force from beyond the grave will pursue him during a night of constantly increasing terror…
Cast: Aaron Poole, Vanessa Redfrave, Julian Richings
This atmospheric slow-burner is perfect for those that like a more atmospheric scary movie. There area few truly surprising moments that are sure to raise the hairs on the back of your neck. This doesn’t get the respect it deserves. It is a fun bit of bloodless horror.
Stênio works the graveyard shift in the morgue of a vast, violent city. He toils all night, but he’s never alone, for Stênio can talk to the dead. And they talk back. But when the whispers of the dead reveal secrets of his own life, Stênio unleashes a curse that brings forth danger and darkness. A SHUDDER EXCLUSIVE.
Cast: Daniel de Oliveira, Fabiula Nascimento, Bianca Comparato
A paranormal chiller from Brazil is a gritty supernatural take on ghosts, family obligations, and curses. It is a personal favorite for the incredible cinematography. The smells, sounds, and grime of the city’s seedy underbelly literally leap right off the screen. The Nightshifter is a cool little film that is okay for older kids or fans of less hardcore stuff.
On an ordinary suburban street in Buenos Aires, voices are heard from kitchen sinks. Bodies are levitating. Evil is here. It is up to a doctor, her colleague, and an ex-cop to get to the bottom of this neighborhood nightmare. Demian Rugna’s must-see TERRIFIED is one of the scariest movies of 2018. A SHUDDER ORIGINAL.
Cast: Maxi Ghione, Norberto Amadeo Gonzalo, Elvira Onetto, George Lewis, Agustín Rittano
This film festival darling is the real deal. It is genuinely one of the scariest films and is sure to make a lasting impression. There are several scenes you will be talking about with your fellow horror nuts for years to come. Plenty of blood, guts and eerie happenings make it a must-watch. Read our full review here.
Whilst sorting through film footage of a horrific 1900s murder case, archivist David (Rupert Evans) discovers his family home was the scene of the gruesome crime in question. Initially dismissing the case as ancient history, David begins to question everything when the horrific crimes of the past bleed into reality. Teetering on the brink of insanity, a shattering betrayal sends David over the edge as he finds himself embroiled in a sinister plot. Based on an Irish ghost story, Ivan Kavanagh’s THE CANAL is an effective murder mystery with a compelling supernatural twist. Contains sexual scenes, violence and gore.
Cast: Rupert Evans, Antonia Campbell-Hughes, Hannah Hoekstra
This modest film is far greater than it should be…..on paper. It’s not the most original plot, but it does familiar things very well. Surreal and haunting this is a quality ghost story for lovers of this sub-genre. A little bit of everything is in this with elements of classic ghost stories, body horror, and even found footage. This is a great often overlooked film.
Hell House LLC
In this found-footage gem, a documentary crew visits the site of a haunted house attraction whose opening night ended with 15 unexplained deaths. Eventually, the crew comes across a surviving employee who has footage that shines a scary light on what really went down that night. As we watch those ill-fated thrillseekers shuffling through the horror house, the knowledge of what’s about to happen makes for a squirm-and-scream-inducing good time. Dread Central called it “a perfect fright flick for the Halloween season” which features “one of the creepiest clowns to appear in a horror movie in a long time.” Sorry, Pennywise!
Cast: Kristin Michelle Taylor, Theodore Bouloukos, Jeb Kreager, Miranda Robbins, Gore Abrams
Found footage movies are a dime a dozen. Good found footage is harder to come by. Great found footage is almost a unicorn. This is one of those rare mythical creatures. This first in the Hell House LLC franchise is the best, but they are all worth a binge if you’re looking for a night of spookiness.
We Are Still Here
When grieving parents Paul (Andrew Sensenig) and Anne (Barbara Crampton) move into the home of a family of bloodthirsty spirits, they mistakenly think the presence is their son. Seeking help, they invite psychic friends May (Lisa Marie) and Jacob (Larry Fessenden) to make contact, but soon realize vengeful spirits aren’t all they have to fear. This grisly splatterpunk spin on haunted house flicks brilliantly twists audience expectations before culminating in an outrageously bloody finale you won’t be able to shake. Named one of 2015’s top 10 horror films by Rolling Stone.
Cast: Barbara Crampton, Andrew Sensenig, Lisa Marie, Larry Fessenden
This film is on a lot of people’s best-of lists of the decade for good reason. It features great stunt casting in Crampton, who turns in a gripping performance and incredible pacing which keeps the viewer off-balance for the majority of the movie. This is one of the rare ghost movies with a ton of blood in the final act.
Gunnar receives a strange phone call from his ex-boyfriend, Einar, months after they parted ways. Einar sounds distraught like he’s about to do something terrible to himself, so Gunnar drives to the secluded cabin where Einar is holed up and soon discovers there is more going on than he imagined. As the two come to terms with their broken relationship, some other person seems to be lurking outside the cabin, wanting to get in…
Cast: Björn Stefánsson, Sigurður Þór Óskarsson, Guðmundur Ólafsson
This Icelandic thriller is a beautifully shot example of quality craftsmanship. Cinematography and sound work are near perfect and the actors deliver heartfelt and believable performances. If nothing else this is a unique and gorgeous experience.
Consumed by grief, a New York composer moves to a secluded Victorian mansion. There he finds himself haunted by a paranormal entity that may unleash an even more disturbing secret. Peter Medak’s acclaimed and celebrated THE CHANGELING is quite simply, one of the great haunted house films.
Cast: George C. Scott, Trish Van Devere, Melvyn Douglas
It’s a classic for a reason. Perhaps the ghost film that all others have been measured against and paid homage too, The Changeling is beyond creepy. It’s one of the first horror films I ever saw and certain scenes still haunt my dreams. Even after all these years this blast from 1980 still can scare the hardest of horror hearts.
Do not forget to tune into the Horror Pod Class and their weekly podcast on all things horror and science fiction, you might just learn something. Their academic perspective is unique and smart. Look for our newest podcast called Drafting Horror. Every two weeks the hosts draft their top five movies in a specific subgenre and then debate it to the death. JK, mostly they crack jokes and give fun and obscure facts about the films. Because all of the movies must be available for streaming it’s a great place to learn more about all your favorites on Shudder. It’s something new every other week. Just for Signal Horizon readers, we have a free trial that lasts twice as long as their normal offer. Signal Horizon readers can sign up for a 30-day free trial using the link and code SIGNAL. Tell us what you think and let us know if you find something in the streaming service that warrants further discussion.
As the Managing Editor for Signal Horizon, I love watching and writing about genre entertainment. I grew up with old-school slashers, but my real passion is television and all things weird and ambiguous. My work can be found here and Travel Weird, where I am the Editor in Chief.