Now Christmas is out the way and there is no pressure to only have to watch festive films, let’s get the scary ones watched, or maybe you are feeling a bit of romance. Trying to pick a film on Netflix can be quite a chore sometimes, especially if you don’t know which one you’re feeling. So, I have scoured Netflix for, in my opinion, the best films from the chosen genres on there. First up, the scary films.
Slender Man (2018) directed by Sylvain White
This films wastes no time with jumping straight into it with scarily tense scenes and eerie music. Four girls decided to summon Slender Man as a fun thing to do whilst on a sleep over, not thinking that the legend is true. However, soon after a friend goes missing and the three girls that are left decide to venture into the sinister woods to get her back. One by one, the girls start getting affected by the entity with hallucinations and even suddenly disappearing. It’s definitely one to watch for those of you who enjoy a psychological horror.
Sinister (2012) directed by Scott Derrickson
Even though it was released nine years ago, it is still one of the scariest films out there. The movie follows Ellison, played by Ethan Hawke, who moves to a new house with his family so he can write his book. However, things take a terrifying turn when Ellison finds some creepy tapes in the attic. From then on, Hawke tries to find out what happened to the people in the tapes whilst trying to keep his family safe. Unfortunately this family sees first-hand what happened to those people. A must watch for people who love to unravel a mystery whilst getting the living day scared out of them.
Dark Skies (2013) directed by Scott Stewart
Probably one of the biggest plot twists in horror movie history, this one will have viewers on the edge of their seat. The family are living a peaceful life in the American suburbs when chilling occurrences start happening around their house. The more experiences that the family observe, the worse they get… some suffer more than others. However, what some viewers think is that the ‘bog-standard’ ghost haunting is more frightening. Then comes the plot twist, a moment that the whole film builds up to, only for something more shocking to happen. The perfect movie for lovers of anticipating the supernatural.
Annabelle (2014) directed by John R. Leonetti
One of the most scariest films to be made and part of The Conjuring franchise, it had to make it on the list. For anyone who hasn’t seen it, a woman named Mia likes to collect porcelain dolls and her husband gifts her… Annabelle. Mia is also well into her first pregnancy and has to stay home alone with the doll; slightly cliché. As expected, being in the house all day means there are a lot of spooky and jumpy moments that will get your heart racing.
The Conjuring (2013) directed by James Wan
The film that started the whole Conjuring series, this one is a classic for those looking for a toe-curling scare. A family reach out to the famous paranormal investigators, Ed and Loraine Warren, to help rid them of an unknown entity that is haunting them. Viewers will follow this families journey, through many jump scares and absolutely petrifying scenes, on their road to freedom. Once everything starts going down, there is no break from the constant unnerving and spine-chilling action.
The Visit (2015) directed by M. Night Shyamalan
For people who get creeped out easily, this is not the film for you. Two kids go and stay with their grandparents for a while, but something isn’t right. The grandparents become more and more creepy as the film goes on, with disturbing interactions between the four of them. Viewers are given clues along the way as to what is really happening until a terrifyingly shocking discovery is made. There is a range of cool shots in the movie, with scenes during the day looking like a film, but during the night the shots look like you are watching them through CCTV, almost like Paranormal Activity. This film will have your guts twisting in fear and hiding under your blanket.
Veronica (2017) directed by Paco Plaza
This Spanish horror will have viewers peaking through their fingers. A group of school girls use an Ouija board in the hopes of contacting a dead father. They think they have made contact, until it becomes clear that it isn’t Veronica’s father but a demon. Veronica is haunted by the demon at home and the supernatural occurrences get worse and worse, they even begin to take toll on her younger siblings. Watch as life at home becomes increasingly terrifying until a complete switch-up, it is truly a heart-breaking ending.
Annihilation (2018) directed by Alex Garland
Based on the book series written by Jeff VanderMeer, five women venture into an unknown area called Area X to uncover the mystery of what happened to the previous team. There they encounter a strange and otherworldly environment that is a habitat for peculiar and dangerous mutated creatures. Whilst coming across clues left behind by the previous team, the women are tested physically, emotionally and mentally by this disturbing, outlandish place. How will they handle all of the eerie surprises waiting for them? More importantly, will all of them make it home alive?
Now let’s switch it up and move on to some romance…
The Notebook (2004) directed by Nick Cassavetes
This absolute classic had to be first on the list as, surprisingly, there are still people out there who have not seen the film. Allie (Rachel McAdams) and Noah (Ryan Gosling) become separated due to World War II. Allie is a war nurse and meets a soldier who falls for her… he proposes some time after the war. When Allie goes to visit Noah, she is torn from going back to her husband or staying with her first love. It is definitely a must watch for anyone in the mood for a true romance story, however, do prepare yourself for a tearful ending.
Safe Haven (2013) directed by Lasse Hallstrom
Another heart-warming romance where Katie (Julianna Hough) moves to a quiet town to escape from her old life. There she meets a kind neighbour, Jo (Cobie Smolders) and Alex (Josh Duhamel). You get to see Katie and Alex slowly fall in love. However, as soon as she builds the life that she has always wanted, her past comes to haunt her. This is the perfect film if you’re looking for a plate of romance with a side of drama.
Set It Up (2018) directed by Claire Scanlon
A sweet romance with the cliche plot of two people falling for each other, separating, but coming back to each other for a loved up ending. Zoey Deutch and Glen Powell play two assistants who are working together to get their bosses in a relationship with each other. However, whilst spending a lot of time planning and wasting their new free time at work with each other, they fall in love. It really is sweet to see the two characters unintentionally realise they have feelings for each other when they are meant to be setting other people up. The perfect film to save for a rainy day.
Twilight (2008) directed by Catherine Hardwicke
In my opinion, this film gets a lot more hate than it deserves as this film and the rest of them are actually pretty good. Bella (Kristen Stewart) moves to live with her dad in Forks and that is where she meets the mysterious boy at her school, Edward (Robert Pattinson). However, Bella soon realises why he is a little Strange, Edward is a vampire who has been waiting for his true love, Bella, for a while. Together they face another vampire that wants Bella too, but for all the wrong reasons. Based on the book series written by Stephenie Meyer, these films are ideal for those looking to binge a whole series in one day.
13 Going On 30 (2004) directed by Gary Winick
This film will make you smile throughout with its quirky storyline and its uplifting love story. A girl wishes that she was 30 as, coincidentally, wishing dust falls on her head in a cupboard. She then wakes up as the women she will be when she turns 30, which is when Jennifer Garner comes in. It’s funny to see how this 13 year-old in an 30 year-old’s body adapts to her new life, with having a stable job and dealing with men. In the future, she meets the older version of the boy who has a crush on her, unfortunately he’s married. It is very representational of the fact that the choices you make when you are younger affect your future, which makes it even more beautiful when she goes back and changes things.
The Holiday (2006) directed by Nancy Meyers
Even though this is classed as a Christmas film, there is enough romance that it can be watched any time of the year. It is so soul-stirring to see the two couples get together, from all different walks of life, it really sends out a strong ‘there is someone out there for everyone’ message. A house switch between Amanda (Cameron Diaz) and Iris (Kate Winslet) results in them meeting the men of their dreams, Graham (Jude Law) and Miles (Jack Black).
Friends With Benefits (2011) directed by Will Gluck
It is almost refreshing that this film is not full of intensely romantic scenes throughout the whole thing, it makes the theme of two friends falling in love more bearable. It is pretty clear from when the whole ‘friends with benefit’ agreement is made how things will turn out, but it is entertaining to watch the characters come to that realisation. There are also some pretty comical moments in the film which keep you smiling and helps the topic remain light-hearted.
Eurovision Song Contest: The Story of Fire Saga (2020) directed by David Dobkin
One of the best films on Netflix, in my opinion. It tells the story of two Icelandic singers who join the Eurovision Song Contest and their journey to participating in it. Full to the brim with humour, it is certainly a must watch for anyone looking to fall in love whilst also clutching at their stomach with laughter. Not only is this film completely addictive, it is also packed with some of the best songs ever, you will be listening to the soundtrack on Spotify in no time.
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