My Top 5 Supernatural Movies (’90s to Now Edition)

Of all the sub-genres of horror, my personal favourite is supernatural horror. From your bog standard ghost to millennia-old demons, here’s just something horrifying about having to battle something you can neither see nor kill as they’re already members of the undead.

1. Sinister

Director: Scott Derrickson

Starring: Ethan Hawke, Juliet Rylance, James Ransone

Released: 2012

Ethan Hawke in Sinister (2012)
Sinister (2012)

Top of my list is Scott Derrickson’s 2012 horror-mystery Sinister. Not only was the premise wonderfully original, but the use of jumpscares was also kept to a minimum, instead Derrickson chose to use a series of super 8 snuff recordings dotted throughout the film to increase the tension to an almost unbearable degree, none more so than the sequence titled ‘Lawn Work’. I’ll never look at a lawnmower the same way.

2. Ring

Director: Hideo Nakata

Starring: Nanako Matsushima, Hiroyuki Sanada, Rikiya Otaka

Released: 1998

Ring

Showing my age here, but back when video rental stores were still a thing, I took home a random horror film pretty much every weekend and as this was a time before YouTube and Twitter existed, I pretty much went in blind to every movie I watched. The Ring was one such movie and boy was I in for a treat, Hideo Nakata’s skilled direction and wonderful plot based around Koji Suzuki’s 1991 novel might have been widely parodied in the 20 years since its release, however, at the time of release, I found the idea of having 7 days left before a vengeful ghost climb out the nearest screen to kill you was the hight of scary. I don’t even mind the 2002 American remake, though the original is better.

3. The Night House

Director: David Bruckner

Starring: Rebecca Hall, Sarah Goldberg, Evan Jonigkeit

Released: 2020

The Night House

A psychological horror movie with convincing visual effects, an inventive plot and an extremely dark multilayered story, The Night House is the perfect example of modern horror done right. David Bruckner crafted an atmospheric movie full of tension that had me guessing till the very end, but what made this film such a delightful watch was the impeccable acting from Rebecca Hall.

4. Last Night in Soho

Director: Edgar Wright

Starring: Thomasin McKenzie, Anya Taylor-Joy, Matt Smith, Diana Rigg

Released: 2021

Last Night in Soho

Easily one of my most anticipated films of 2021, Edgar Wright’s Last Night in Soho certainly didn’t disappoint. This dream-like experience is extremely different to everything Wright has produced before, masterfully combining mystery, drama, and horror together in a way that both entertains and scares in equal measure.

5. Lake Mungo

Director: Joel Anderson

Starring: Rosie Traynor, David Pledger, Martin Sharpe, Talia Zucker

Release Date: 2008

Lake Mungo

I won’t talk too much about this one for fear of giving away too much of the plot. Made to resemble a documentary, there’s definitely something unique about Lake Mungo and the way it stays with you a long time after watching. It’s just a shame that director Joel Anderson effectively disappeared following its release, I would have loved to see what he did next, but many that add to the mystique of the movie.

Honourable mentions: The Woman in Black, Thirteen Ghosts, 1408, Hell House LLC, Darkness Falls

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