Jordan Peele’s directorial masterpiece, Get Out (2017), was a mind-bending horror film that explored racism and overlooked concerns of the African American community. Safe to say, it was intellectually disturbing. However, it sided more towards suspense and thriller rather than the jump scares and gore that are common with most generic horror flicks. With a powerful theme intertwined with the classic haunted-house elements, the movie creates a captivating blend of horror and social commentary. So, if you loved this award-winning horror movie on Netflix, here are 21 cinematically genius pieces akin to Get Out that you should definitely watch! And while you are at it, do not forget to check out our list of 16 Best Movies Like “The Help”.
Here is the countdown!
1-Let The Right One In (2008):
The story of ‘Let The Right One In’ centers on a 12-year-old Eli who is a victim of bullying and spends a big part of his day reimagining his life thinking about revenge. However, soon, a young and pale girl moves in next door marking the start of a friendship deeper than one can imagine. The movie is a beautiful take on friendship with the classic bits of a vampire story with both chilling and thoughtful bits in the right balance. The movie also received a remake catered to the American audience titled ‘Let Me In (2010).
Directed by Takashi Miike, Audition is a Japanese horror flick based on a novel bearing the same title. The movie centers around Shigeharu Aoyama, who due to circumstances beyond his control, is now a widower with a son named Shigehiko. After being suggested to find a new wife by his son, Shigeharu holds an audition to look for a potential new partner. Among the resumes he receives, one catches his interest. He immediately feels enchanted by the emotional depth showcased by Asami Yamazaki. Soon, the movie takes an unexpected turn highlighting Asami’s dark past and how Shigeharu is now a victim of her conflicted emotions.
3-The Shining (1980):
If you are a horror genre fanatic and haven’t watched The Shining yet, you are in for a treat. Unlike other horror movies, this directorial masterpiece by Stanley Kubrick doesn’t rely on jump scares. From the eerie sound of the tricycle rolling on the carpeted floors of the haunted Overlook Hotel to Danny’s invisible imaginary buddy Tony, everything about this movie screams mortal danger. While the movie seems like any other horror flick, it also hints at the possibility of delusions from mental health issues like schizophrenia as displayed by Jack, the father.
4-It Follows (2014):
For the most part, horror movies rarely have any social message and are loaded with gore and some obvious erotic scenes. It Follows by David Robert Mitchell does have all the basic elements of a good horror movie. Yet, it also comes with a good social commentary, especially relevant for the young generation. The movie focuses on the dangers of indulging in casual sex with someone you do not know well enough. Normally, you would either get pregnant or STDs from such interactions due to lack of precautions. But, in the movie you are chased by a ghost. Yes, you heard that right! It Follows features a ghost that is transmitted through sexual contact.
You got to trust your family, right? Well, not if you are from the Leigh family. Annie Graham, who is married to Steve, a psychiatrist, and shares two children with him, has a troubled relationship with her mother Ellen. However, her relationship with her mother improved after the birth of her daughter Charlie. Ellen had been secretive her entire life and now she has passed away leaving her grieving family to be tormented by something diabolic. The movie highlights how Ellen was mentally ill and how it was passed down in the family. Hereditary is about the horrors the bad genes passed down from one generation to another along with the devastation it brings.
6-Rosemary’s Baby (1968):
There are very few horror classics that are remembered even today for their accurate portrayal and balance of horror and societal commentary. Roman Polanski’s 1968 horror film Rosemary’s Baby delves deep into paranoia, occult practice, Catholicism, and women’s liberation. The movie starts with actress Mia Farrow as Rosemary who lives with her husband Guy Woodhouse and soon finds out that she is pregnant. However, uneasiness and fear soon overwhelm her after she suspects that her otherwise normal neighbors might actually be a part of a satanic cult. She fears her soon-to-be-born might be a target of the cult for their sinister motives.
7-The Witch (2015):
Subtitled A New-England Folktale, and rightly so, The Witch movie showcases the story of a Puritan New England family in the 1630s that encounters evil forces in the dense and secluded forest present right beside their farm. The movie, although slow-paced, sets the scene for a beautiful pagan ending. Backed by some exceptional acting, the movie focuses on the unseen witch serving as a metaphor for eliminating the patriarchy. Moreover, the eerie vibe and historical setting throughout the movie make it a must-watch for all who love ‘Get Out’.
8-The Game (1997):
Directed by David Fincher, The Game has a unique premise involving a wealthy and selfish San Francisco-based investment banker Nicholas. At lunch with Conrad, his estranged brother, he receives an unusual birthday gift which leads him to play a game. This unique game integrates with his daily life in a strange way. Soon, it is evident that it simply isn’t a game, rather a plot that is a part of a bigger conspiracy. The movie is beautifully shot and keeps you on your toes as you go from scene to scene with no idea what would happen to Nicholas now. The movie highlights how Nicholas is lonely and distant like his father, yet fears meeting a suicidal end similar to what his father went through.
9-The Gift (2015):
The Gift is a 2015 psychological thriller by Joel Edgerton that will leave you thinking, “Did He Do It?” the movie is a story of a young couple that tries to reinvent their marriage after losing their unborn baby to a sudden miscarriage. Their move to the LA suburbs brings to light a horrifying truth from the husband Simon’s past after more than two decades. With an unexpected guest knocking on their door named Gordon, the movie highlights the after-effects of bullying and attempts at revenge. While in most horror and thriller movies there is someone who is slashed, buried, or maimed, nothing of this sort happens in The Gift. Rather, the movie is an elaborate scheming by Gordon ending up in an unpredictable scene that leaves the viewers questioning whether it really happened or not!
10-The Lighthouse (2019):
With Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe at the center stage, The Lighthouse is a movie that has managed to defy categorization. Depending on how you view it, it can be a horror, psychological thriller, character study, or even a survival flick among many others. The movie centers around two lighthouse keepers in the 19th century who are in turmoil after being stranded at this outpost in New England while dealing with a dense stormy situation. The movie takes up the mantle of expanding on the 19th-century era’s taboos, superstitions, and social dogmas with some exceptional acting skills added to the mix.
11-The Stepford Wives (1975):
The Stepford Wives by Bryan Forbes is a psychological thriller/horror with hints of good satire every now and then. The movie is about Joanna, a young and aspiring photographer who relocates with her husband to the suburbs of Stepford, Connecticut. However, as Joanna tries to get along with the women in this new town, she experiences something eerie. She feels uneasy watching these women be submissive and showcase an almost-robot-like behavior towards their husbands. The creepy portrayal of the women in the town with their empty eyes showcases the effects of patriarchy on women in society. It also highlights how in the 60s/70s era, women were held back by the men in the community with no scope for liberation.
12-10 Cloverfield Lane (2016):
If you are hunting for a psychological horror masterpiece with some excellent cinematography, make sure you add 10 Cloverfield Lane to your list of movies to watch this weekend. This directorial debut by Dan Trachtenberg tells the tale of a woman, Michelle, who is a victim of a car crash. However, when she wakes up, she finds herself surrounded by two men in a bunker. But, what is the twist in this tale? Well, one of these men, Howard, insists that an unknown event has made the Earth’s surface uninhabitable. However, as time passes by Michelle, and Howard’s second captive Emmet grow suspicious of whether the truth is really what Howard claims. The film ends on a note that keeps you wanting more in this Doomsday setup.
David Fincher’s psychological thriller Zodiac is set in the 60s/80s era where there is an ongoing hunt for a notorious serial killer who is popularly known as Zodiac. With 2 journalists and 2 police departments involved, the movie couldn’t have done justice to the criminal proceedings and investigations as it dives deep into everything that leads to a criminal being caught. With Mark Ruffalo and Jake Gyllenhaal in lead roles, the movie is a masterpiece in the neo-noir thriller/mystery genre. Zodiac sits on the throne as the 12th best movie of the century. This makes it a must-watch for all who seek stories with deep social commentary.
14-I Saw The Devil (2010):
No one can beat Korean horror flicks when it comes to establishing a great narrative and highlighting the dark side of society with scary scenes that won’t let you sleep at night. Kim Jee-woon’s I Saw The Devil isn’t necessarily something that belongs to the horror genre, rather, it makes up more of an action thriller movie. The story follows Kim Soo-hyun, a NIS agent, who is on a dangerous quest to seek revenge after someone brutally murders his wife. If you are seeking a heartfelt or happy movie, this is something for you. The movie is rather depressing and sad highlighting only loss that gets intense with each scene. I Saw The Devil underlines how a man must become a monster to defeat one.
15-Memories Of Murder (2003):
Directed by Bong Joon-ho, Memories Of Murder is a gripping thriller movie. It showcases detectives Seo Tae-yoon and Park Doo-man’s struggles while investigating rapes and murders in the late 1980s in Hwaseong. The emotional turmoil and the gore of it breaks these young detectives working on the cases. The emotional intensity is so high that Park Doo-man decides to quit his job haunted and creeped up by the cases. The one thing that makes it more eerie is the fact that the story is based on real events in rural Korea. It is a balanced mix of hilarious moments and hard-hitting facts in a grounded atmosphere. Best of all, it is painfully realistic and immerses you into the storyline as you sit on the edge of your seat wondering, what next?
16-The Invisible Man (2020):
Perfect acting, great execution of storyline, and some jump scares that will make you gasp! This defines the elements that make up this amazing movie, The Invisible Man. As I watched this movie, I realized this movie is the first of its kind in the horror/thriller genre where the lead character is actually smart. The movie is based on a novel by H.G. Wells that shares the same name. It is a story about the lead, Elisabeth Moss, who strongly believes her dead ex-boyfriend is somehow stalking her. And how is he doing that? Well, his rich status had allowed him to create a suit that gives him the ability to attain invisibility. The movie focuses on the theme of domestic abuse and gaslighting. However, the intensity is manifold with the backing of power and status that comes with wealth.
17- Us (2019):
Another masterpiece by Jordan Peele, US has a creepy tone with a social message just like Get Out. The story is about a family that visit their beach house in an effort to spend quality time with friends. However, their weekend bliss soon turns to chaos and tension after a pack of strangers tries to invade their house. So, what is so different about the US? Well, this group of strangers called The Tethered look exactly like the family. It sure has more blood, violence, and gore as compared to Get Out. Yet, it manages to keep it subtle and not overwhelming like Hostel or Saw movie series. What makes it more creepy is when you find out the real reason these Tethered folks exist. So, do not forget to check it out.
18-His House (2020):
His House is the perfect example of everything a horror movie should have with some deep social commentary. The movie dives into the lives and experiences of the leads in the story as they tackle violence, persecution, and their own survivor’s guilt. His House beautifully highlights how human beings deal with their strengths and weaknesses while topping in terms of horror elements. Rial and Bol flee from South Sudan which is currently dealing with the consequences of a war. As they attempt to find a better life, they find a house with dismal furnishing and peeling walls in a town close to London. While dealing with hatred and racism from neighbors, they also have to survive the evil that lurks beneath.
19-The Skeleton Key (2005):
Directed by Iain Softley, The Skeleton Key delves into the supernatural mystery of Hoodoo rituals. This is a one-of-a-kind movie in the horror genre where the antagonists take the big win at the end. It also establishes a smart distinction between magic and religion from the Hoodoo angle. The movie’s narrative follows Caroline Ellis who is a young hospice aide. She is to take care of a mostly paralyzed owner of a plantation house in Louisiana. However, things take a wild turn after Caroline suspects that the reason behind the owner’s paralysis is voodoo magic. The captivating twist in the end raises several questions in one’s mind. Most of these questions poke at the theme of good versus evil.
When looking for movies like Get Out, do not forget to add Candyman to your list of movies to watch. This supernatural horror/slasher movie is another one of Jordan Peele’s masterpieces. It focuses on themes of bullying and classism by the so-called ‘upper classes in society. With Yahya Abdul-Mateen II in the lead, the movie serves as a spiritual sequel to the original 1992 movie. While the movie isn’t as scary in the horror genre sense but it does have its moments. Despite the surreal proposition, the portrayal of violence and police abuse does seem believable and realistic. Even the shadow puppet end credits montage adds to the whole eerie vibe of the movie.
If you are a fan of Japanese psychological thrillers, Confessions is something you shouldn’t miss. The film explores themes of guilt, vengeance, and the consequences of bullying. It also highlights how contemporary Japanese society obsesses over academic achievements that could eventually give birth to bullying. The plot revolves around Takako Matsu, a grief-stricken teacher, who wishes to seek revenge for her daughter’s death. This masterpiece by Tetsuya Nakashima excels in establishing a suspenseful and tense atmosphere. Backed by thought-provoking themes, this movie gradually decodes the complex web of lies, relationships, and hidden motivations. This eventually leads to devastating consequences. Confession challenges viewers to acknowledge the destructive power of societal pressure and unresolved emotions.
22-The Manchurian Candidate (2004):
Directed by John Frankenheimer, The Manchurian Candidate seamlessly blends the horror genre with thought-provoking themes. It highlights the political manipulation, terrors of war (psychological), and the subsequent erosion of one’s own sanity. Set in the Cold War era, the story is about Raymond Shaw, a solider from America. With political paranoia and communism prevalent, he is now a brainwashed sleeper agent for the enemy. Raymond’s brainwashing depicts how easy it is to lose personal autonomy in conflicting situations. This is especially true when faced with the manipulation tactics of larger institutions.