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5 best horror films currently streaming on HBO Max

Some of the best horror films currently streaming on HBO Max (Images via IMDb and Rotten Tomatoes)
Some of the best horror films currently streaming on HBO Max (Images via IMDb and Rotten Tomatoes)
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Adrita Roy Chowdhury

Horror is undoubtedly one of the most popular and time-tested genres out there. With new films being added every year and a host of streaming platforms to choose from, it can be extremely difficult to pick one to watch.

But if you're a horror veteran, you know that when it comes to horror, the classics are almost always the most reliable ones to give you that scare you're looking for.

Luckily for you, HBO Max has all the classic horror films in one place along with a number of new additions, including It, Freaky, and many more. Take a look at this list we've curated of the best horror titles currently available on the platform.

1) The Conjuring

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This 2013 film directed by James Wan is a staple in every horror film lover's list. Starring Vera Farmiga, Patrick Wilson, Ron Livingston, and Lili Taylor, the film single-handedly catapulted Wan into becoming the master of the genre, and also spawned a successful franchise called the Conjuring Universe, with popular titles like The Nun and Annabelle.

Arguably the scariest film of the entire franchise, this inaugural film features a haunted farmhouse in Rhode Island from the real-life case files of paranormal investigators Ed and Lorraine Warren.

Concentrating on the disturbing experiences of the Perron family, the film throws both emotion and jump scares your way to give you a unique experience. The big jump scares of this stylish film often come without the standard build-up, which makes it a thousand times scarier.


2) The Shining

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Stanley Kubrick's 1980 film starring Jack Nicholson, Shelley Duvall, Danny Lloyd, and Scatman Crothers, is based on Stephen King's novel of the same name. The iconic film revolves around the Torrance family's experience when they become the winter caretakers of the secluded Overlook Hotel in the Colorado Rockies.

The hotel is haunted by restless supernatural forces who start creeping into the lives of the Torrance family and into Jack's troubled mind that ultimately leads him to lose his sanity.

The film achieved cult status due to its haunting audio-visual effects and chilling sequences, like Jack chopping down the bathroom door to get to Wendy or Danny cycling in the hotel and meeting the twin Grady girls.


3) 28 Days Later

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Danny Boyle's 2002 film stars Cillian Murphy, Naomie Harris, Christopher Eccleston, Megan Burns, and Brendan Gleeson. The post-apocalyptic film features a dystopian London where Jim, a bicycle courier, wakes up from a coma to discover that a highly contagious virus called Rage has infected most of the world.

The virus causes people to become ferocious beyond human capabilities and kill non-infected humans. The film breathed new life into the classic zombie film genre with its haunting portrayal of Jim and the other survivors being chased by zombies through the deserted streets of London. The film also has an impressive sequel, 28 Weeks Later, which is also available for streaming on HBO Max.


4) The Exorcist

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William Friedkin's 1973 film starring Linda Blair, Ellyn Burstyn, Max von Sydow, Lee J. Cobb, and Jason Miller is another classic horror film that will send chills down your spine. The film revolves around the demonic possession of a young girl and her mother's attempt to rescue her through an exorcism conducted by a pair of Catholic priests.

The film, based on William Peter Blatty's novel of the same name, went on to become the first horror film to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Picture.

Needless to say, the film sets a really high standard for the genre with scenes that will remain etched in your memory forever, like the possessed Regan's green vomit, graphic head-rotation, and spider-walk.

This is another classic that has spawned a highly successful franchise containing multiple sequels and even a TV series.


5) The Blair Witch Project

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This 1999 found-footage film, written and directed by Daniel Myrick and Eduardo Sánchez, stars Heather Donahue, Michael Williams, and Joshua Leonard. The film revolves around three film students who attempt to make a documentary about a local legend known as the Blair Witch.

In 1994, the students disappeared after they traveled to the woods near Burkittsville, Maryland, to investigate and document strange happenings, but their equipment and footage were discovered a year later. The recovered footage from their cameras is what the viewer sees in the film.

The film showcases the true potential of the found-footage horror genre that can convince its viewers that what they're watching is real. Its success also led to multiple sequels and a host of other horror films made using the found-footage technique.


Be ready to have your heart racing as you turn off the lights and put on these films on HBO Max.


Edited by Prem Deshpande
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