The best horror movies of 2021 – and how to watch them

While they feature a wide array of creatures and spirits, the 2021 horror films delved into the power of the psychological fear of others. Knowing who to trust and when can mean the difference between death and life, and the horror of 2021 has shed light on both sides.

2021 marked the second year of life within the COVID-19 pandemic, a time when isolation and mistrust of others are seen as survival tools in their own right. With that in mind, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that this year’s horror films look to terrors of the mind as a starting point for creating stories about deceptive realities and manipulative monsters. In a year when it was difficult to know who to trust (including us), the horror delves into the consequences of intelligence and poor choices. Here are the eight best horror feature films of 2021 that not only explore this terrifying theme, but bring something new to the genre.

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Written and directed by Damian Mc Carthy, Caveat offers the best jump scares in recent horror cinema. Made on a micro-budget, the independent Irish feature film relies on suspicion to keep most of the story’s terror at the forefront of audiences’ minds. The plot is simple: Isaac (Jonathan French) accepts the odd job of babysitting the traumatized niece of his owner (Ben Caplan) Olga (Leila Sykes) for $ 200 a day. However, Isaac’s owner Barret failed to mention that he had to be shackled for work. A strange and supernatural cat and mouse game follows that intensifies with each new discovery. Caveat is a must-read for how he chooses the simplest setting (a box) to elicit the most edgy moments – proof that CG isn’t always necessary to tell a compelling ghost story.

Caveat is now streaming on Shudder.

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The queen of black magic

that of Joko Anwar The queen of black magic the remake is not for the faint of heart. The feature doubles up with its spooky critters and features some of the harshest body horror scenes horror has ever seen. To her credit, children are not excluded from the terrors that awaken in an old orphanage that has a secret link with a witch of black magic. The queen of black magic is a film that is better to approach without knowing too much as its twists are part of its charm. However, it’s fair to say that it centers on some sort of family reunion that reveals the sins of a father’s past that puts everyone at risk. very bloody way. Vengeful spirits are not new to horror, but The queen of black magic achieves a substantial feat – in the end, viewers will be supportive of the witch and want to borrow her menacing wardrobe.

The queen of black magic is now streaming on Shudder.

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The boy behind the door

The boy behind the door is a master class in horror rhythm. No rhythm seems out of place. Co-written and directed by David Charbonier and Justin Powell, the film follows best friends Bobby (Lonnie Chavis) and Kevin (Ezra Dewey) on the worst night of their lives. After being kidnapped, the duo seek to escape. But what sets this movie apart from, say, Saw (or really any psychological thriller), shows how a step forward for Bobby’s freedom could be a step back for that of Kevin. The boy behind the door systematically shows these young boys valuing their survival efforts against what it would cost their friend. Charming is a strange way to describe this movie, but it still elicits heartwarming feelings amid its tension. To his credit, he also doesn’t hesitate to break horror taboos by showing the abuse of boys, which only makes their attempts at capture and survival all the more heartbreaking.

The Boy Behind the Door is now streaming on Shudder.

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Directed by Elza Kephart and co-written by Kephart and Patricia Gomez, Slaxx might be this year’s most inventive horror premise. Join the ranks of movies like Rubber and Attack of the Killer Tomatoes, Slaxx is a horror comedy that focuses on a murderous pair of jeans plaguing a fashion store. However, what sets this film apart from other inanimate object turned killer horror films is that it also makes a scathing social commentary on the fashion industrial complex. While still a mad rush, it also asks the audience to consider a harsh reality: What lives are lost or impoverished in the name of the clothes people wear? Yet the film never goes into moralizing territory as it tears up everything fast fashion stands for and holds sacred.

Slaxx is now streaming on Shudder.

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Candyman shadow puppets

by Nia DaCosta Candy is a breathtaking sequel from the 1992’s Candy. While the feature is standalone, it works even better in conversation with the original film that inspired it. With DaCosta’s vision, audiences can see how the original avoided showing the people living inside Cabrini Green’s housing projects. As the original follows sociologist Helen (Virginia Madsen) as she views the housing project (and its people) as an experiment, DaCosta shows what the people of Cabrini Green have been and continue to experience while adding a entirely new and cathartic dimension to the boogeyman. Centered around Anthony McCoy (Yahya Abdul-Mateen II), audiences follow an artist’s obsession with understanding the Candyman and its roots, and the answers found unfold in what could be an exciting new myth for the world of l horror to continue to rely on in the future.

Candyman is available for rental and purchase on Prime Video.

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The way

Directed by Banjong Pisanthanakun and co-written by Na Hong-jin (the lamentations) and Choi Cha-won, The way is by far the best possession-themed horror film of 2021. Unlike many entries in the genre, there’s never a point in this film where audiences can quite guess what’s to come. . Pisanthanakun skillfully moves between what begins as a documentary of images found in a tragic family drama at a brutal phistory of ossession. While not necessarily perfect in its construction, the appeal of the film is how shamelessly it takes daring risks. For once, a film of possession dares to ask: do I really trust my faith to save the day?

The Medium is now streaming on Shudder.

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Goreman psychopath

Directed by The voidis Steven Kostanski, Goreman psychopath tells the story of what happens when the precocious Mimi (Nita-Josee Hanna) finds an item that allows her to control a former alien overlord, PG As one could be able expect, Mimi shows quite a bit of pity on bullies and embraces controlling PG – although that may mean the fate of the world is at stake. Mimi decides to trust PG as a friend and their budding friendship. is hilarious to watch it unfold. It’s a really good time for horror fans, and it would make a great horror movie for the young audience who isn’t afraid of a little splash in the midst of silly dodgeball-type battles with aliens.

Psycho Goreman is now streaming on Shudder and AMC +.

Way of the Martyrs

Written and directed by Ruth Platt, Way of the Martyrs is the most heartbreaking ghost story of 2021. The feature film is told through the eyes of her child protagonist, Leah (Kiera Thompson), and follows her as she stumbles upon her mother’s tragic secret. The beauty of this movie is how Leah questions everything and everyone and makes the kinds of mistakes only curious kids can make. At its end, Way of the Martyrs weaves a moving story about what happens to people when they don’t deal with their grief. When people don’t deal with their pain, it seeps in and wreaks havoc on others, and Way of the Martyrs shows this truth with deep empathy.

Martyrs Lane is now streaming on Shudder.

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