27 Best Haunted House Movies Ever For Horror Lovers

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Watch the best haunted house movies for thrill-seekers and horror lovers – many of which are based on favorite books.

Are you scrolling for something spooky to watch right now? These comedic and terrifying movies about haunted houses are sure to satiate any film lover’s creepy cravings.

While you’ll find many haunted house horror movies, there are also quite a few that are a tad too ridiculous or just meant to be hilarious spoofs.

Some of these films are cult classics, and one was never allowed on TV again – it was too realistic! Of course, we are always adding newer movies too.

So, keep reading to uncover fantastic haunted house movies set around the world, including many with haunted mansions, hotels, and creepy AF buildings.

Be sure to share your favorites in the comments. Let’s get started!

Best Haunted House Movies with image of old gray house on empty road with no windows and spooky dark blue sky with clouds
Travel around the world with our haunted houses movie list.

Grab your favorite haunted house films and books here:

  • Express VPN – Using Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) allows you to view movies worldwide – and they help keep your information safe. Our writers couldn’t have such diverse film reviews without a VPN.
  • Amazon Prime Video – Stream thousands of ad-free movies and TV series on demand with Prime Video.
  • Audible Plus: From Amazon, listen to Amazon Originals, podcasts, and audiobooks. They add new titles every week.

27 Best Haunted House Movies

The Shining Movie Poster with white man with teeth barred and a white brunette person screaming on the other side of the doorPin

1. The Shining (1980)

One of the best haunted house movies isn’t set in a haunted house at all: it’s a haunted hotel!

Based on the 1977 Stephen King novel of the same name, The Shining is the story of a troubled writer – Jack Torrance, played by Jack Nicholson – and his young family.

They spend the off-season taking care of the historic Overlook Hotel.

Snowed in and isolated, the family is subjected to the influence of the malevolent supernatural forces of the hotel.

This is a classic of the horror genre – Stanley Kubrick’s shining directorial achievement – and gave rise to dozens of iconic images and lines (“Here’s Johnny!”).

If you enjoyed King’s The Shining, uncover even more hotel books – many of which are equally haunted.

Or, watch more movies set at and about hotels, and we promise, not all are as terrifying.

The Amityville Horror Film Poster with a quote in white that says For God's sake, get out and black and white image of two male and one female actors

2. The Amityville Horror (1979)

Do you know how real estate agents have to disclose if a house they’re selling was the scene of a murder?

Haunted house movies like The Amityville Horror are the reason that rule exists.

While claims of a real haunting at the actual Amityville house in New York were later revealed to be false, the legend has persisted in this wildly successful film franchise.

The original movie, released in 1979, grossed over $80 million at the box office and went on to become one of the most successful independently-produced features of all time.

In it, James Brolin and Margot Kidder portray the real-life Lutz family (George and Kathy), moving into a new house.

A year earlier, a gruesome mass murder – committed by Ronald DeFeo Jr. – took place there.

The story follows the terrifying paranormal events that force them to leave. It’s literally a house of horror.

If you’re wondering where to start with movies about haunted houses, The Amityville Horror is an excellent choice.

You might also enjoy these books featuring haunted houses.

Paranormal Activity Movie poster with blue tinted image of man and woman huddled together in bed with door open

3. Paranormal Activity (2007)

If you’re a young couple haunted by a supernatural presence in your home, there’s one thing you absolutely must do: get proof!

That’s what Katie and Micah try to do in Oren Peli’s 2007 film Paranormal Activity.

Only, as with so many haunted house horror movies, the best laid plans go totally awry when the couple decides not to enlist the help of a demonologist.

At first, the cameras they set up in their bedroom capture mundane curiosities: flickering lights, slamming doors, your average low-level haunting.

When the paranormal presence starts setting fire to Ouija boards, though, and dragging Katie out of bed at night, things ramp up to a horrifying conclusion.

For scary movies, this film series never seems to end.

Hereditary Film Poster with image of two people with long dark hair - one older and one younger - with grayed out tiny looking forward

4. Hereditary (2018)

Not many debut haunted house movies make the splash that Hereditary did back in 2018.

In director Ari Aster’s first time out, he made a film that received worldwide critical acclaim and became the studio’s highest-grossing film to date.

A bereaved family suffers shock after shock, and a particularly gruesome accident nearly tears them apart.

The matriarch, Annie Graham (played by the inimitable Toni Collette), learns to perform seances to communicate with the departed, which opens the door to a terrifying haunting.

This is psychological horror done right, with a twisted turn of events guaranteed to stay with you.

Poltergeist Movie Poster with image of young child with hands on tv screen

5. Poltergeist (1982)

It’s a familiar enough story in haunted house movies: malevolent ghosts invade a suburban family home and focus their attention on the youngest daughter.

It’s the combined powers of directors Steven Spielberg and Tobe Hooper that make Poltergeist a true classic of the haunted house genre.

Their unique creative relationship gave rise to some of the most iconic jump-scares and haunting reveals in movie history – including the infamous clown doll attack.

Poltergeist was such a smash that it was followed by two sequels and remade completely in 2015. However, nothing beats the raw energy of the original.

Beetlejuice Movie Poster with image of man in black and white pin stripped suit with white woman dressed as bride and headless ghost in tuxedo with white house in background

6. Beetlejuice (1998)

If you prefer lighter movies about haunted houses, check out Beetlejuice, Tim Burton’s 1998 fantasy-comedy film.

It’s a cult classic now, beloved for its camp costumes and extra characters.

It tells the haunted house story from the other side, the perspective of the ghosts doing the haunting.

A newly-dead couple – played by Geena Davis and Alec Baldwin – calls upon the services of a “bio-exorcist” from the Netherworld to help them haunt the new (living) inhabitants of their home.

This one has more spills than chills. It offers a fascinating insight into Burton’s early creative vision.

Skeleton Key Movie Poster with up close of person's eye with person walking toward house in reflection instead of pupil

7. The Skeleton Key (2005)

Who could forget that haunting movie poster with Kate Hudson?

Though she’s better known for her rom-coms than her movies about haunted houses, The Skeleton Key is not to be missed!

This Southern Gothic film follows a hospice nurse who takes a new job at a plantation home, not knowing that she’s stepping into a tangled web of hauntings, history, and Hoodoo.

The psychological elements of this film, along with its reckoning with the impact of America’s slave history, will have your mind reeling.

A must-see for all fans of the Southern Gothic – and keep your eyes peeled for the unexpected ending!

The Others Movie Poster with white woman holding a brightly glowing lamp in dark

8. The Others (2001)

If you’re tired of haunted house movies with over-the-top special effects and gore galore, you should try watching The Others. This is a beautifully rendered story with stellar dramatic performances.

The central character, Grace, is played to perfection by Nicole Kidman, with her characteristic understated elegance.

The critically acclaimed score ramps up the spook factor without any of the schlock.

The Henry James-inspired story – a family discovers that ghosts in their home are disturbing their perception of reality, bringing them to the brink of madness – is so well served, The Others is proof that the best haunted house movies can be true works of art.

Ghostwatch Film Poster with three white people with one wearing black suit and red tie and one in one jacket with person in pink jacket holding their arm

9. Ghostwatch (1992)

Can you imagine movies about haunted houses so scary and realistic that they cause a literal nationwide panic?

It actually happened with Ghostwatch back in 1992!

The mockumentary was aired on Halloween night, so viewers were already in the mood to have their pants scared off.

The made-for-TV movie was styled to be viewed as “breaking news” about suspected poltergeist activity in a house in London.

The broadcast caused a massive surge in phone calls to the BBC; over 1,000,000 people called the switchboard to register their complaints and concerns about its contents.

Ghostwatch has never been aired on TV again! Read more about the “spoof that duped the nation.”

And, if you enjoy Ghostwatch, find even more scary British horror films to watch.

The Conjuring Movie poster with bare tree with rope hanging from it in front of gray white house in fog

10. The Conjuring (2013)

“Paranormal investigator” sounds like a dream job for fans of haunted house films; doesn’t it?

That’s the job title of Ed and Lorraine Warren in The Conjuring, a supernatural horror movie about a case that “changes it all.”

The investigators come to the aid of the Perron family, new residents of a farmhouse that their dog refuses to enter, subject to the whims of malevolent spirits.

This film is based on the same supposed “real life” haunting that inspired the Amityville Horror franchise. However, it’s a very different take, and still worth a watch.

The franchise also has an interesting romantic subplot that will really subvert the horror fan’s expectations.

Notably, Academy Award-nominated actress (and with an expansive career), Vera Farmiga, plays paranormal investigator Lorraine Warren in all of the Conjuring films.

The Haunting film poster with blurred spooky mansion in the dark with supernatural glow

11. The Haunting (1999)

Before the 2018 Netflix drama series, The Haunting was one of the best haunted house movies based on Shirley Jackson’s book The Haunting Of Hill House.

There have been many adaptations; it’s extremely versatile source material!

There were many big names attached to the project; Steven Spielberg worked with Stephen King on the initial script, and Liam Neeson, Catherine Zeta-Jones, and Owen Wilson all scored starring roles.

The film, about an insomnia sleep study gone horribly wrong, was panned by critics but became a blockbuster success regardless.

Insidious Movie poster with young brunette boy in red plaid shirt in front of dark gray tinted house

12. Insidious (2010)

As with so many haunted house movies, Insidious begins with a young family moving into a new home.

But the supernatural horror flick still has some twists and turns in store for viewers, including endless jump scares!

This version of the haunted house tale has one of the sons of the family fall into a coma, and astrally project to do a malevolent spirit’s bidding.

Director James Wan has said that he developed the film in response to the Saw film franchise.

He wanted to prove that a movie could be just as good and just as scary without the level of gore for which that franchise is (in)famous.

Find a famous cast, including Tony award-winning and Emmy and Golden Globe-nominated Patrick Wilson, who was also in the film Phantom of the Opera.

The Sentinel Movie Poster with woman's face tinted green and hard to see people with terrified looks on their faces

13. The Sentinel (1977)

No, not the action-packed Michael Douglas political thriller of 2006 – this is the 1977 supernatural horror film of the same name, The Sentinel.

(Though surely the White House is haunted – if any filmmakers are looking for ideas for haunted house horror movies!)

It’s one of those so-bad-it’s-good movies that you’ll want to watch with friends and a big bowl of popcorn.

Cristina Raines stars as Alison Parker, an unstable fashion model who moves into a Brooklyn brownstone only to discover that it is, in fact, the gateway to Hell.

Variety called it “a grubby, grotesque excursion into religioso psychodrama,” so obviously it’s a must-watch.

The Sixth Sense Movie poster with white male in collared shirt and person walking with red golden light around them

14. The Sixth Sense (1999)

When it comes to haunted house movies and ghost stories, is there any more iconic line than “I see dead people?”

Haley Joel Osment was just eleven years old when he delivered the line to Bruce Willis’s shocked countenance in The Sixth Sense.

Over two decades later, it’s still the moment for which he’s best known.

The film’s storyline is pretty much encapsulated in that scene: a child confesses to his psychologist that he can communicate with the dead, and then there’s that twist.

This is the movie that introduced M. Night Shyamalan and his famous storyline curveballs to the world.

1408 movie poster with Black and white man's half faces one on each side of an object resembling a golden staff

15. 1408 (2007)

Another one of the best haunted house movies for horror fans based on a Stephen King story is 1408.

John Cusak stars as Mike Enslin, the skeptical author of books about supernatural phenomena.

At a particularly low point in his life, he receives an anonymous message on the back of a postcard from the Dolphin Hotel in New York.

The message says “Don’t enter 1408,” – so, which room do you think Cusak requests upon his arrival?

Samuel L. Jackson plays a supporting role as Gerald Olin, the hotel manager who tries to warn Mike about the dozens of deaths that have occurred in that haunted room.

Watch even more terrifying movies set at and about hotels.

We Are Still Here Movie Poster with three ghosts coming out of top of haunted house surrounded in red and blue fog and lights

16. We Are Still Here (2015)

Of all the settings for haunted house movies, a former Victorian funeral home has to be one of the best!

How did the main characters of We Are Still Here not know it was going to be haunted?

Granted, Anne and Paul had a lot on their minds when they moved into the New England house.

Their son, Bobby, had recently been killed in a car accident, and Anne was spiraling into a deep depression.

When Anne starts claiming that Bobby’s spirit is with them in the house, and the neighbors warn them that they should leave, Paul is ready to pack his bags.

But Anne insists on hanging around, calling in spiritualist friends to see if she really can connect with her son across the divide.

What lies beneath movie poster with white hand only holding onto a possible railing with white background

17. What Lies Beneath (2000)

Harrison Ford and Michelle Pfeiffer were two iconic hotties in their prime.

They starred together in What Lies Beneath, making them one of the sexiest on-screen duos in the history of haunted house movies.

Ford plays a successful college professor, skeptical of his cellist wife’s belief that there is a spirit haunting their Vermont home.

It hits all the essential notes of movies about haunted houses: a failed seance, a young woman missing (or two!), demonic possessions, jewelry and locks of hair, mysterious messages appearing in the steamy mirror…

But, it’s all the better for being based on one of the filmmaker’s own personal experiences with the paranormal.

The Woman In Black Movie Poster with sepia gray tint over woman in dress standing in front of ghosts

18. The Woman In Black (2012)

The Woman In Black was a 1983 Gothic horror novel by Susan Hill, which has since been turned into two great haunted house movies.

The first, released in 1989, was made for television and reached a relatively small audience (though it won multiple BAFTAs).

The 2012 version, however, starred Daniel Radcliffe (yes, that Daniel Radcliffe) and was released to critical acclaim and major commercial success worldwide.

The story follows a widowed lawyer investigating the malevolent ghost of a young woman, who appears to be seeking vengeance in the small village where she once lived.

Both versions are worth a watch, but beginners should start with the Daniel Radcliffe one to get the full experience.

The Grudge movie poster with person with hair covering face and one eye looking out

19. The Grudge (2004)

If you’re a millennial, you probably remember The Grudge coming out in cinemas when you were in high school.

It was billed as the haunted house horror movie to beat all haunted house horror movies, with a huge (terrifying!) marketing campaign.

The worldwide theatrical release was actually a remake of the Japanese horror film Ju-On: The Grudge, though the same director worked on both versions.

The non-linear plot follows the results of a curse that is cast whenever someone dies “in the grip of extreme rage or sorrow.”

Anyone who encounters the curse will die, and it passes from victim to victim in the most twisted version of a game of pass-the-parcel ever.

Dont Be Afraid Of The Dark Movie Poster with young girl on stairs with black shadow hands on red wall

20. Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark (2010)

Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark is comic book artist, Nixey’s, first full-length film, directorial debut, with the screenplay written by Guillermo del Toro and Matthew Robbins.

Based on the 1973 made-for-TV movie of the same name, Don’t Be Afraid Of The Dark levels up all of the tropes of haunted house movies.

A family moves into a 19th-century house in Rhode Island, and the kooky loner daughter begins seeing malevolent spirits rising from the mysterious pit of ash at the bottom of the house.

Critics praised all of the leads – Katie Holmes, Guy Pearce, and Bailee Madison – for the performances that Nixey (and del Toro) drew from them, as well as his direction, atmosphere, and score.

Watch even more movies based on popular books across the ages.

More of the best movies about haunted houses from Christine

Affliction Movie Poster with images of 5 people with their mouths and yes scratched outPin

21. Affliction (2021)

If you are craving haunted house horror movies from Indonesia, tune into Affliction.

Nina might just learn the truth about her husband, Hasan, who left Central Java to pursue a career as a psychologist in Jakarta.

Having recently lost her mother, Nina is now fearful for Hasan’s mother, Dayu, who is also sick. Is it dementia, or is there something more sinister at play?

The family heads back to Hasan’s childhood home, but something is clearly off.

Is the house haunted? Are those bones in the backyard? And most importantly, will Nina and her family leave alive?

A newer haunted house movie on this list, there is a trigger warning for suicide, which happens at the beginning of the movie.

By Indonesian horror standards, this film is fairly tame and is a slow-burn thriller. Watch even more movies in all genres from Indonesia.

We Have A Ghost Movie Poster with image of house with large moon behind it and ghost and human doing a fist bump

22. We Have A Ghost (2023)

For sweet movies about haunted houses, We Have A Ghost promises a delightful cast of your favorite actors.

Jennifer Coolidge plays a psychic while Stranger Things star David Harbour is our lost and mostly benign spirit.

You’ve also got American stand-up comedian, Tig Notaro, as well as the young Randall Pearson from This Is Us, Niles Fitch.

Based on Geoff Manaugh’s short story, “Ernest,” watch as the Presley family moves into a dilapidated haunted house.

While the father, Frank, is hoping to exploit the ghost due to his own life’s shortcomings – with newfound income/success via YouTube stardom – their youngest, Kevin, and his friend try to help Ernest crossover.

Add in a less-than-ethical intervention from the CIA, and we can all only hope that Ernest finds the peace he deserves.

The Innocents Movie Poster with image of white person with blonde hair's face

23. The Innocents (1961)

If you are looking for old-school haunted mansion movies, The Innocents is a classic ghost story you won’t soon forget.

Miss Giddens is a governess played by Deborah Kerr. She takes care of two young orphans in a remote Gothic mansion as their previous governess died suddenly.

As the days pass, Miss Giddens becomes increasingly convinced that the children are possessed by malevolent spirits she senses within the house.

This Gothic horror film masterfully builds tension and psychological unease, blurring the lines between reality and the supernatural.

Of course, we’d expect nothing less as the movie is based on Henry James’ novella The Turn of the Screw and adapted by Truman Capote and William Archibald. 

The Legend of Hell House Movie Poster

24. The Legend of Hell House (1973)

Another one of the classic haunted house horror films, The Legend of Hell House follows a team of researchers.

They are tasked with exploring the infamous Belasco House, also known as the “Mount Everest of haunted houses.”

It was here where millionaire Emeric Belasco lived, an alleged murderer and sadist.

The current team of paranormal investigators includes psychics and mediums along with Physicist Dr. Lionel Barrett. Each brings their own unique methods to uncover the dark secrets of the house.

As they dive deeper into the mansion’s malevolent history, they encounter terrifying manifestations while facing their own inner demons.

Today, The Legend of Hell House is considered a cult classic. Nothing beats its eerie setting.

House on Haunted Hill with illustrated image of person in yellow orange dress and haunted house in background

25. House on Haunted Hill (1959)

With a 78% rating on Rotten Tomatoes Tomatometer, House on Haunted Hill remains one of the best haunted house movies of all time.

Of course, it’s also 100% of its time and was remade in 1999 with a 2007 sequel, Return to House on Haunted Hill.

Eccentric millionaire, Frederick Loren invites five guests to spend the night in a supposedly haunted mansion that he rents.

He promises them a substantial reward of $10,000 if they can survive until morning, with the doors locked and windows barred shut after midnight.

As the night unfolds, eerie occurrences and ghostly apparitions terrify the guests. There might also be a killer on the loose… along with secret lovers and deadly weapons.

With its atmospheric black-and-white cinematography and Vincent Price’s iconic performance, House on Haunted Hill remains a creepy horror classic that continues to captivate audiences.

The Changeling Movie Poster with image of wheelchair with cobwebs and shadowing person nearby

26. The Changeling (1980)

George C. Scott – known for playing complicated characters – performs as John Russell, a grieving composer who moves into a historic mansion after losing his wife and daughter in a tragic accident.

Soon after settling in, he begins to experience eerie and unexplained phenomena, including seeing disturbing apparitions and hearing loud, spooky noises.

Determined to uncover the truth behind these haunting events, John teams up with a local historian, Claire Norman, to investigate the house’s sinister past – and boarded-up rooms.

This includes the murder of its six-year-old inhabitant… who is allegedly alive and well.

The Changeling still stands as one of the great supernatural psychological horror movies about haunted houses because of George C. Scott’s outstanding performance.

However, some reviewers deemed it as a bit formulaic and predictable. But let’s be real, many haunted house movies are just that, which does not deter us.

Lake Mungo Film Poster with distorted image of mouth screaming

27. Lake Mungo (2008)

If you are looking for found-footage haunted house horror movies, Lake Mungo is a unique mockumentary and Australian film.

The Palmer family is grappling with both their grief of the tragic drowning of their teenage daughter, Alice, and the paranormal activity that follows.

Alice’s older brother sets up cameras around the house to capture Alice’s ghost.

As they unravel the mysteries surrounding her death, a series of unsettling and inexplicable events unfold, leading them to question the boundaries between life and what lies afterward.

Can they help Alice move on? What is she trying to tell them?

Grab your favorite haunted house films and books:

  • Express VPN – Using Virtual Private Networks (VPNs) allows you to view movies worldwide – and they help keep your information safe. Our writers couldn’t have such diverse film reviews without a VPN.
  • Amazon Prime Video – Stream thousands of ad-free movies and TV series on demand with Prime Video.
  • Audible Plus: From Amazon, listen to Amazon Originals, podcasts, and audiobooks. They add new titles every week.

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What are your favorite haunted house horror movies?

What are the scariest haunted house movies you’ve watched? How about the cheesiest? Let us know in the comments.

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Did you find new scary movies about haunted houses to watch? Save this list for later, and travel around the world with The Uncorked Librarian.
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Sheree Strange

Sheree (pronouns: she/her) is a writer and book reviewer living on the land of the Gadigal people of the Eora nation (known as Sydney, Australia). She has been reviewing books on her blog, Keeping Up With The Penguins, since 2017. She reads books of all kinds and shares her thoughts on them all across the internet.

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Christine Frascarelli

Christine (she/her) is the owner, lead editor, and tipsy book sommelier of The Uncorked Librarian LLC, an online literary publication showcasing books and movies to inspire travel and home to the famed Uncorked Reading Challenge.

With a BA in English & History from Smith College, an MLIS from USF-Tampa, and a U.S. Fulbright Fellowship in Christine's back pocket, there isn't a bookstore, library, or winery that can hide from her. Christine loves brewery yoga, adopting all of the kitties, and a glass of oaked Chardonnay. Charcuterie is her favorite food group.

4 Comments

  1. One to add that I highly recommend is called “The Changeling”, starring George C. Scott that came out in 1979. It’s very creepy and well written, with a mysterious twist to it. A must see!

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