Shudder, a streaming service devoted to horror movies, is why we at Arrow in the Head have compiled a list of the Best Horror Movies On Shudder Right Now. As with all streamers, Shudder has movies that come and go on a regular basis, but if you head over there today here are some of the best movies you can find on the service:
MANIAC COP 2 (1990)
Shudder used to have the entire Maniac Cop trilogy available for your viewing pleasure… well, the first two are a pleasure. The third one is more difficult. Although the Maniac Cop10 is great, it’s not on Shudder anymore. The sequels are still available, and the first sequel is one that’s even better. Robert Z’Dar plays Matt Cordell, an undead ex-police officer who stalks New York City killing innocent people and criminals on a mission to revenge. He finds an ally in serial killer Turkell and takes on hard-boiled cop Sean McKinney. Maniac Cop 2 features a healthy body count and some awesome action set-pieces, including a sequence where a person is handcuffed to a car that is sent rolling downhill through traffic.
NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD (1968)
Yes, George A. Romero’s 1968 classic Night of the Living Dead seems to be available on nearly every streaming service there is, and that’s because the movie is in the public domain due to the copyright notice accidentally being left off the film print. It would be crazy to have Night Of The Living Dead on a streaming service that focuses exclusively on horror. Shudder passes the test. They have the film that introduced us to zombies, walking corpses that only want to eat the flesh of living humans. Nearing its 55th anniversary, this is technically an old movie, but it’s also a movie that never gets old.
THE STEPFATHER (1987)
Long before playing John Locke on Lost, Terry O’Quinn starred in the 1987 film The Stepfather, playing a character that was loosely based on a real-life murderer. If you’re interested, you can look up John List. O’Quinn’s character, O’Quinn, is looking for the perfect family life. When the families he marries disappoint him, he murders them all and starts a new life. We know that he will soon be trying to kill his teenage daughter Stephanie (Shelley Hack) when he marries Susan (Shelley Hack). Directed by Joseph Ruben, The Stepfather is a captivating horror-thriller, and O’Quinn does an incredible job in the title role.
HALLOWEEN 4: THE RETURN OF MICHAEL MYERS (1988)
John Carpenter’s classic original Halloween is on Shudder as well, but today we’re going to give some love to one of the best and most entertaining sequels in the franchise Carpenter’s film spawned. Halloween4: The Return Of Michael Myers. Although this movie doesn’t feature Jamie Lee Curtis as Jamie Lloyd, we get a great performance by Danielle Harris as Laurie Strode’s young daughter Jamie Lloyd. This is the main focus of Michael Myers’ latest murder spree. Donald Pleasence is back, and he’s still amazing in the role as Doctor Loomis. Director Dwight H. Little did a great job of capturing the atmosphere and look of Midwestern Halloween. It has all that and the wonderful feeling of 1980s. Shudder also has the Halloween5 sequel. Joe Bob Briggs hosted all three of the Halloween movies the streamer has on one of his specials.
CHILDREN OF THE CORN (1984)
Stephen King’s story Children of the Corn was only about twenty pages long, but what was on those pages has spawned a franchise of eleven – so far – feature films. Although the film’s reputation has been tarnished by sequels and reboots, Fritz Kiersch’s Children Of The Corn was a short story that only lasted twenty pages. However, it is still a haunting movie with memorable performances by Peter Horton and Linda Hamilton as a couple who are forced to live in a Nebraska town where children have murdered all the adults. Courtney Gains and John Franklin play the leaders of the cult which believes in He Who Walks Behind the Rows. The god requires that anyone over the age of 19 must be sacrificed.
HOUSE ON HUNTED HILL (1959).
If this is you, you might have to take a moment and remember which story is The Haunting of Hill House or House On Haunted Hill. Shudder allows you to see both. The film, House On Haunted Hill, is directed by William Castle and stars Vincent Price as the iconic horror icon. It tells the story of a wealthy couple who invites people to spend the night in their haunted house. They offer a prize up to $50,000 if they survive until morning. This haunted house story has a lot of creepy shenanigans and was a big influence on Sam Raimi. Price and Carol Ohmart are the lovers who would kill each other and it’s a joy to watch. Bonus: Elvira hosted House on Haunted Hill for her recent Shudder special and you can watch that version of the film on there, too.
CHOPPING MALL (1986)
Hired by Julie Corman, wife of the legendary producer Roger Corman, to combine two major elements of 1980s pop culture – shopping malls and “dead teenager” movies – director Jim Wynorski came up with the cheesy classic Chopping Mall. The characters: A group of young people (including Kelli Maroney, Barbara Crampton), who decide to spend the night in a mall. The threat: Security robots whose circuits have fried and turned them into “Killbots”, electric-zapping, lazer-blasting enforcers who can execute anyone they come across. Chopping mall is fast-paced and action-packed. It runs for only 76 minutes. It’s great fun to see the Killbots run amok through Sherman Oaks Galleria. The only thing this movie is lacking is a sequel.
THE HILLS HAVE EYES (1977)
Wes Craven’s 1977 film The Hills Have Eyes gets overshadowed by his bigger movies (A Nightmare on Elm Street, Scream, etc.) It’s still one the most memorable entries in Craven’s filmography, even if it was remade in 2006. A family in desert finds themselves in trouble with their car. They discover that another family is watching them, a clan made up of cannibals who live in the hills. The civilized family must become as wild as their attackers to survive. The Hills Have Eyes has some memorable characters and performances. Dee Wallace is one of the potential victims, while Lance Gordon and Michael Berryman are the villains Mars or Pluto. Berryman’s part in this film and his poster image have made him a genre legend. (We have a video about the sequel, but we don’t have one on the original.
One the many slasher movies released in 1981 was Hell Night, directed by Tom DeSimone. It stars TheExorcist‘s Linda Blair, Marti, a college student from Alpha Sigma Rho, and her sister sorority. They spend the night at a mansion where a man killed his family twelve years ago. The mansion isn’t as empty as college students thought. Soon, someone is following them around and killing anyone they meet. Blair’s Marti is not the only one in danger. Peter Barton would also be in danger. He would meet Jason Voorhees in Friday 13th: The Final Chapter10 a few more years later. Hell Night has a cult following, but deserves to be even more popular than it is.
If you like movies that are dripping in sleaze, the 1980 slasher Maniac is a special treat. This film was directed by William Lustig who also directed Maniac cop10 movies. Joe Spinell plays Frank Zito, a disturbed and disgusting man who goes out at night to murder random people to get his hair done and then stick it on the heads of the mannequins he has filled his apartment. The film features some nauseating gore, including one of his signature exploding head effects. Spinell’s performance is what makes the movie worth your time.