Our Favorite Foreign Horror Films

by IMDb-Editors | last updated - 11 months ago

We've rounded up a list of some of our favorite horror titles from across the globe. Check to see if any your picks match ours.

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Jeremy Cooper in The Reflecting Skin (1990)

The Reflecting Skin (1990)

One of Viggo Mortensen's earliest movies, this film a first look at the leading man he would become. While still chilling more than 25 years after its release, writer/director Philip Ridley's impressionistic take on life in 1950s America should continue to be celebrated for its goth/black comedy leanings. — Arno

Óscar Casas in The Orphanage (2007)

The Orphanage (2007)

A heartbreaking story coupled with a chilling ghost story make this more than just another horror film. Beautifully shot, it marked the first feature of an exciting new filmmaker, J.A. Bayona, and is a rare example where I was left feeling empathy for the "monster." — Michael

Meiko Kaji in Female Prisoner #701: Scorpion (1972)

Female Prisoner #701: Scorpion (1972)

This movie sets into motion a four-film anthology that stars Meiko Kaji — also beloved for Lady Snowblood — as Nami Matsushima, an innocent woman who is sentenced to hard time at a women’s prison after being set up by her detective boyfriend. The physical and psychological horrors she endures throughout the movie extends into the overall series that all hinges on Kaji’s incredible repeat performances. It’s exploitation moviemaking as its finest. — Arno

Nanako Matsushima in Ringu (1998)

Ringu (1998)

This Japanese horror classic delivers heart-pounding scares with its chilling atmosphere and unnerving visuals, rather than blood and gore. Watching it alone, on a rainy winter’s night, was a bad idea as the surprising, terrifying denouement led to a sleepless night. — Michael

Kåre Hedebrant in Let the Right One In (2008)

Let the Right One In (2008)

Although the English-language remake, Let Me In (2010), is itself a great film, the original Swedish version is even better. Two outcasts -- a bullied boy and a vampire girl -- find strength and love in each other. My favorite scene is when we see what happens when a vampire enters a home without an invitation, seeing that Eli will do anything for Oskar and adding to vampire lore. — Dan


The Host (2006)

Following the SARS and Bird Flu epidemics of the early 2000s, this Korean film perfectly paired that pandemic panic with a classic Godzilla-style giant monster movie, creating something new and modern. Alternately creepy and hilarious, it follows an often dysfunctional family as they do whatever it takes to rescue one of their own. — Dan

Eihi Shiina in Audition (1999)

Audition (1999)

I wasn’t familiar with Takashi Miike or his films when friends invited me to see Audition. This was the first (and only time) I was so uncomfortable I actually wanted to leave the theater. It’s been over 18 years since I saw the film, and the thought of it still freaks me out! — Michelle

I haven’t seen this one. But I know a few folks who have, and they say it is the creepiest movie they’ve seen. — Kris

Soo-jung Lim and Geun-young Moon in A Tale of Two Sisters (2003)

A Tale of Two Sisters (2003)

A Korean psychological horror thriller that will keep you on your toes throughout the whole movie. You think you have the movie figured out, but at the end you will definitely be thrown off guard. So many hidden messages and hints in the movie that you almost have to watch it several times. The two actresses are very famous in Korea, and they do an amazing job in their roles with this movie. — Sarah

Elias Schwarz and Lukas Schwarz in Goodnight Mommy (2014)

Goodnight Mommy (2014)

An Austrian horror film that is full of surprises as the story reveals itself. Makes you second-guess wanting twins at some point in the movie. Great acting, and shows a dark side of humanity when something can’t be accepted. You’ll know what I mean once you watch it. — Sarah