The best horror films streaming in the UK this Halloween

an american werewolf in london
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Jeepers creepers! We’re here with the very best horror films on streaming this Halloween (and most of them are free)…

Like, zoinks! It’s Halloween-eve, and you forgot to pick a spooky movie from Blockbuster Video. No, put the car keys down, you’re about ten years too late. Fortunately for you, we’re here with a big list of the best horror films streaming in the UK. Aren’t we nice (in a suitably spooky way)?

From new spooks to naughty spooks and everything in between, there’s plenty of choice out there this year – and most of it available for free with a TV license. We’ve tried to include a wide mix of styles and services, so whatever your taste, hopefully something will tickle your fiendish fancy. Onward!

Talk To Me (2023)

Directors: Danny Philippou; Michael Philippou

Starring: Sophie Wilde; Zoe Terakes; Joe Bird

Streaming on: Netflix

Sophie Wilde in Talk To Me.

The newest entry on this list, Talk To Me is currently running largely unopposed as the (as much as we love The Pope’s Exorcist) best horror film of 2023. Nasty, brutal, and with one petrified eye on social media and modern loneliness, the Philippou brothers’ debut is one of the best possession films we’ve seen in years. When a party game involving a mummified hand goes wrong (as they tend to do), a band of kids must work together to figure out the rules to a possession game no-one quite understands. Sophie Wilde leads a brilliantly natural young cast, while Miranda Otto’s delightfully sweary grown-up Sue adds a touch of lightness to a film erring on the grim end of the horror spectrum. The first of many debut features on this list, this Australian horror has a chill that lingers long after you’ve let go of its spooky, mummified hand.

The Babadook (2014)

Director: Jennifer Kent

Starring: Essie Davis; Noah Wiseman

Streaming on: BBC iPlayer; Prime Video

the babadook

Another modern Australian horror classic, The Babadook was widely hailed as a masterpiece on its 2014 release, and for good reason. When a widow and her troubled young son find a sinister pop-up book in their Adelaide home, Essie Davis’ Amelia fights hallucinations and personal demons in a genuinely terrifying mediation on grief. A brilliant example of a creeping tone being more important than jump scares, The Babadook is available on two different streaming services too – spooky!

An American Werewolf In London (1981)

Director: John Landis

Starring: David Naughton; Jenny Agutter; Griffin Dunne

Streaming on: Prime Video

an american werewolf in london

Credit: Universal Pictures

You don’t need me to tell you to watch An American Werewolf In London. John Landis’ 1981 horror-comedy has aged like a member of the undying – magnificent creature effects, a wicked sense of humour, and a room full of hallucinogenic Nazi werewolves add up to deliver a gory, corpse-cold classic. For a generation more accustomed to seeing Jenny Agutter on Call The Midwife, too, American Werewolf proves itself a delightfully entertaining revelation.

Host (2020)

Director: Rob Savage

Starring: Haley Bishop; Jemma Moore; Emma Louise Webb

Streaming on: BBC iPlayer

host movie

Can we scaredy-cats watch this yet? When Rob Savage’s micro-budget horror crept out of lockdown mid-pandemic, there were plenty of reasons to avoid it – it was almost winter, and we all spent most of our waking lives on Zoom. Fast-forward to 2023, we still spend all our time on the internet, but at least we can pop out for a bit if the video-conference horror stuff hits a bit too close to home. It’s only 65-minutes long, but more importantly, it’s really bloody good.

Buried (2010)

Director: Rodrigo Cortés

Starring: Ryan Reynolds

Streaming on: ITVX

buried movie

Claustrophobics really shouldn’t apply. Honestly. This film isn’t for you. For everyone else with a more manageable fear of being buried alive, enjoy Ryan Reynolds’ truck driver being, well, buried alive. Spinning a genuinely tense couple of hours out of a man stuck in a person-sized box is no mean feat, and Ryan Reynolds has rarely been better than when he’s trapped in a wooden coffin with a snake. So, if you still fancy being traumatised without all the usual vampire bats and bolts through necks, you could do a lot worse than ITVX (hey, that rhymes).

Censor (2021)

Director: Prano Bailey-Bond

Starring: Niamh Algar; Michael Smiley; Vincent Franklin

Streaming on: Channel 4


Another tastefully modern, very British entry, this. If you’ve ever wondered how the BBFC does its ratings, take a look at this deeply atmospheric film on the Video Nasties era – with a few added hallucinations and the odd killing spree, of course. Censor is a thoughtful, assured debut from Bailey-Bond, and anything with Vincent Franklin in it is worth a watch, surely.

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