CNET logo Why You Can Trust CNET

Our expert, award-winning staff selects the products we cover and rigorously researches and tests our top picks. If you buy through our links, we may get a commission. Reviews ethics statement

The Best Horror Movies on Max to Watch Right Now

Max has the horror goods.

Meara Isenberg Writer
Meara covers streaming service news for CNET. She graduated from the University of Texas at Austin with a degree in journalism. When she's not writing, she likes to dote over her cat, sip black coffee and try out new horror movies.
Meara Isenberg
3 min read

Max hosts a ton of content, but how's its horror selection? If you like flicks like Carrie, Midsommar and Evil Dead Rise, it's worth scanning the streamer's library for a title to spend a creepy evening with. 

Here are nine standout scary movies on Max. All these films received generally favorable reviews or better, according to Metacritic. If you're wondering what Max is all about, here's more on the streaming service, which unites the HBO Max and Discovery Plus libraries. 

Video screenshot by Meara Isenberg/CNET

Black Swan (2010)

Reserve your seat for this surreal psychological horror movie about a talented ballerina's unraveling. Natalie Portman's character Nina feels pressure to embody not only the innocent and elegant White Swan but the dark and sensual Black Swan for the leading part in a production of Swan Lake. But she doesn't fit the latter swan's mold as much as newcomer Lily (Mila Kunis) does. The film follows her obsessive hunt for perfection.

Libra Films

Eraserhead (1977)

David Lynch's first feature-length film will make you feel like you're in a bizarre nightmare. The 90-minute black-and-white horror flick is packed with odd sounds and imagery, and the result is incredibly eerie. Don't even get me started on the main character's freakish, otherworldly looking "baby" (that's oddly still kind of cute?). There are messages about men and parenthood here, but even setting aside the bigger picture, Eraserhead's surreal world is absolutely worth a visit. 

Csaba Aknay/A24

Midsommar (2019)

Horrors take place in broad daylight in this haunting film from Ari Aster. Set at a midsummer festival in a remote Swedish village, Midsommar has plenty of disturbing surprises in store for its guests. Prepare for some shocking scenes and a gripping performance from Florence Pugh.


Hereditary (2018)

This is one you shouldn't watch alone. The feature-length directorial debut from Ari Aster (Midsommar) is about what a family uncovers after the death of its matriarch, and it may be the scariest entry on this list. If you're up for a disturbing flick with great performances, venture cautiously into Hereditary. 


It Comes at Night (2017)

This grim horror film is about a family living in a secluded home in the aftermath of an unnamed cataclysm and what happens when a desperate couple with a young child enters the picture. The terrors aren't supernatural, but this harrowing flick will haunt you.

Red Bank Films

Carrie (1976)

It's more Stephen King, and you have to watch Sissy Spacek's Oscar-nominated portrayal of the prom queen at least once in your life. Why not now?

Warner Bros.

Evil Dead Rise (2023)

A family accidentally unearths some unimaginable evils in this gory supernatural horror story. It's the fifth entry in the film franchise after The Evil Dead (1981), Evil Dead II ('87), Army of Darkness ('92) and Evil Dead (2013).

Video screenshot by Meara Isenberg/CNET

The Witch (2015)

This historical horror movie pretty much guarantees nightmares. The disturbing flick centers on a family in 1630s New England and marks Anya Taylor-Joy's film debut. Over the 90-minute flick, strange and shocking things happen to a farmer and family who've relocated to a remote area on the edge of a forest. 

Video screenshot by Bonnie Burton/CNET

Night of the Living Dead (1968)

George Romero's first horror film is an easy recommendation. A group of survivors take refuge in a house while members of the undead swarm outside. The influential flick is often regarded as the first modern zombie movie, and while it may not offer Freddy Krueger-level frights, you'll be drawn in by the characters at the center of its story. You're going to want to leave the door open for this one (but in the case of an actual apocalypse, keep it very, very shut).