Psychological horror fans rejoice! The new game homebody has been announced, adding another great addition to the sub-genre. There are already plenty of games and movies in the sub genre that have garnered a fan base, but unfortunately, some unintentionally fly under the radar, movies especially.
It’s unfortunate when a good psychological horror is underrated. These films don’t get enough recognition for one reason or another, even if they have a great cast and a story worthy of recognition. Ranker voters have weighed in on which movies deserve more love.
Note: Ranker lists are live and continue to accrue votes. Some rankings may have changed after this publishing. There are also films listed here that feature inaccurate representations of mental illness.
10 Frailty (2001)
A common theme in psychological horror movies is religion. There is either some connection or a religious theme that plays a significant part in the film. frailty is one of those films that adds religion and the common serial killer trope into the story that involves a father and his two sons killing people after receiving a vision from an angel.
The film will cause viewers to question the sanity of the characters involved and whether or not the visions that the characters have are real. While it would later gain the popularity it deserves, after its initial release, it would not make enough at the box office and did not receive the attention filmmakers were hoping for, leaving it to sink into obscurity.
9 Identity (2003)
The other most common trope that viewers will find in the psychological horror category is serial killers who are mentally ill. Identity falls into that category and despite its inaccuracies when portraying mental illness, the film’s story and the cast of characters found a fan base.
Identity is not a terrible movie. It has an interesting premise that leaves the viewers’ minds blown at the experience to be had upon seeing the movie. It did, however, suffer from similar issues that frailty had in the box office numbers and heavily split opinions on the film. This led to it being considered underrated, but it would later gain much more attention than it had initially received.
8 Jacob’s Ladder (1990)
Some films are up for debate on whether or not they are underrated. This is mainly due to the following and reviews it has received over time. One of these contentious movies is Jacob’s Ladder.
The movie revolves around a Vietnam veteran struggling with the horrors he witnessed that still plague him. The film is known for its disturbing imagery and eerie vibes that put viewers on the edge of their seats. Despite barely making more than its production cost, it still gained a cult following that continues to praise it for its effects, story, cast, and horrifying moments.
7 The Cell (2000)
Some movies try to add a bit more of an artistic flair to its scenes, but that doesn’t always save it from falling into obscurity, such is the case with The Cell.
The Cell adds disturbing imagery to describe the antagonist’s mind. The audience gets to see the abuse the antagonist went through and the crimes he committed, showing the killer’s descent into the dark path. What didn’t help was it was too alienating for its time and would have received a more significant following had it come out later on.
6 Angel Heart (1987)
The underrated films that don’t get enough credit for one reason or another typically have darker themes in the story. This could be for many reasons, but one film that seemed to have received this treatment was the 1987’s film Angel Heart.
The film contains gruesome and highly ritualized murders that force its main character, Detective Harry Angel, to nose dive right into the world of the occult. While it may not have gotten enough attention in theaters, it is one of Christopher Nolan’s favorite horror movies.
5 The Lodge (2019)
Occasionally, some films will become overlooked due to viewers’ expectations before watching. When it does not meet expectations, it tends to receive poor reviews and can affect the number of viewers. Such is the case with The Lodge.
Many viewers expected a straight-to-the-point supernatural film due to the unexplained events that occur, along with the premise of a religious cult involved. While the film was creepy and caused plenty of psychological terror, it’s not what many expected. Unfortunately, this has happened to the movie, and it has become one of the lesser-known horror films that are worthy of being watched.
4 A Tale Of Two Sisters (2003)
There are a lot of great foreign films that end up gaining a cult following in North America, but when A Tale of Two Sisters was in theaters, it didn’t receive much attention until much later.
A Tale of Two Sisters is a great South Korean psychological horror film that involves the reuniting of sisters, resentment, and strange events in the sisters’ lives. It’s an intense movie that has garnered a cult following and deserves more attention.
3 Goodnight Mommy (2014)
Another film that is up for debate on whether it could be considered underrated is the film Goodnight Mommy. While there may be many people who don’t know about it, there are also a lot of people who know it well.
Goodnight Mommy is considered one of the best female-directed horror films in 2010 and was up for an Academy Award. The criticism it received concerned the film’s ending as some viewers thought it fell flat. But if there is one thing that can be agreed on is this movie’s portrayal of evil children.
2 The Babadook (2014)
similarly, The Babadook is well known to some but still overlooked by many, despite the fact that it earned a lot of attention at the time of its release, and spawned a lot of fan art and memes.
Many still say the movie is overrated, but others say it is underappreciated and should be watched and praised, particularly since its horrific villain received very little screentime.
1 Funny Games (2007)
One film that has fallen into obscurity and has not received much attention is the movie funny Games. The film centers around a family taken hostage in their lakeside vacation home by two clean-cut young men that want to play inhumane psychological games.
The problem the film had was trying to present itself as a horror film when it didn’t have enough scares to be considered one. It’s not a bad film and should be given a chance, but it wasn’t what people expected.
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