Do you ever find yourself sitting at home really wishing you could be watching a horror movie, but want something that is the perfect combination of bad AND good? You know, those movies that either have a horrible reputation but actually turn out to be great, OR are like a classic Disney Channel Original Movie that are so bad, they’re good? Oh, honey, well do I have a list FOR YOU! This just so happens to be my PERSONAL greatest talent; I can find the best-worst horror movie on Netflix every. Damn. Time. So buckle in, get comfy, and prepare yourself for a movie marathon that might make you gag (but in a fun way).
The Purge Series (2013-2018)
I need you to keep any pre-conceived notions you have about this series TO YOURSELF for the remainder of this section of the article. I know how it comes off – another apocalyptic story about rich white people trapped in a house blah blah blah… BUT the sequels to this movie are some of the best I have ever seen. They are not the typical retelling of the same situation but slightly different – they explore parts of the world that were created in the first movie in a way that not-so-subtly applies to our everyday experiences. Some of the most effective and interesting political commentary within a horror movie that I have ever seen and NO I will not stop recommending this series to everyone who asks!!!
Truth or Dare (2017)
This isn’t the Lucy Hale version with the creepy smiles – this is the made for TV movie of the same name that came out a year before. You can pretty much guess the premise – a bunch of college students end up in a house with a malevolent spirit that turns their game of truth or dare deadly. And while this movie absolutely has some of those classic unnecessary gore scenes, it has some really interesting and engaging twists that left me on the edge of my seat the entire time. It’s also the perfect blend of a movie you can watch and make fun of, while also staying entranced by.
The Babysitter (2017)
This Netflix original definitely doesn’t present itself well – not only is Bella Thorne a featured actor, but it has that unfortunate twinge of Softcore Porn for Horny Pubescent Boys to Watch with Their Friends that horror movies tend to have. However, this movie absolutely redeems itself in its actual comedy, ability to keep you guessing, and the way it twists itself into a heartwarming coming of age story. Curious about how in the hell a horror movie can be heartwarming, or end up reminding one of their own entrance into adulthood? Go watch it, duh.
The Haunting of Whaley House (2012)
I discovered this gem when I was about 16-years-old and it is my go-to for good-bad horror movie recommendations. The name is forgettable, so you know I thought it was worth the watch by how long I spent Googling different combinations of terms (the winner was “horror movie haunted house girl ghost teenager” for those of you who are curious). Not only does one of the opening scenes include one of the best 2012 mildly homophobic lines, “Breathing’s for gays, dude,” but the dialogue of the majority of the movie is so laughably bad, that I spend almost the whole time I watch it questioning if it was originally meant to be one of those A Haunted House parody movies.
The Autopsy of Jane Doe (2016)
This movie presents itself like a Simon Pegg/Edgar Wright Comedy-Horror, almost like Odd Thomas but a little creepier. From the get-go I was hooked – the mystery, the creepiness, the simplicity of the set-up. Directed by a Norwegian screenwriter, the whole movie is just… Weird. But, like, a good weird. The kind of weird that keeps you interested, keeps you guessing, and leaves you sitting on your living room couch going, “Wait… What?” and then spending an hour in a YouTube hole trying to figure out what exactly just happened. This movie is totally worth a watch, even if it’s just see if you’re smarter than me and can guess the ending (plus, it’s scary without keeping you up at night).
I’m not an expert, but I’ve watched my fair share of good-bad horror movies. There are plenty that I’ve left off this list because the ratio was off, and I’m sure one day I’ll be able to create another. But for now, these are my go-to movies when I want something that will make me uneasy, make me laugh, or surprise me.