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Top 10 Horror Movie Trailers

VO: Rebecca Brayton
Script written by Matthew Thomas These trailers are sure to work up your appetite for a few scares. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Horror Movie Trailers. For this list, we'll be looking at the movie trailers and teasers that made us most excited to see an upcoming horror movie. Special thanks to our users 7AMart1, mac121mr0 and Jedimperial96 for submitting the idea using our interactive suggestion tool at WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Transcript
Script written by Matthew Thomas

Top 10 Horror Movie Trailers


These trailers are sure to work up your appetite for a few scares. Join WatchMojo.com as we count down our picks for the Top 10 Horror Movie Trailers.

For this list, we’ll be looking at the movie trailers and teasers that made us most excited to see an upcoming horror movie. We’ve excluded the trailer for “Psycho” because, as entertaining as Alfred Hitchcock’s commentary is, that’s really more of a featurette.

#10: “Friday the 13th” (2009)

This trailer opens with an idyllic lake scene, so audiences already suspect something is amiss. That is quickly confirmed once we hear the all-too-familiar voice of Mrs. Voorhees. The teases continue, with shots of a woman running through the woods while fearfully muttering to herself, a Camp Crystal Lake sign, and flashes of Jason filling us with fear. As this teaser was followed by an also-awesome full trailer that hints at even more of the deaths we have to look forward to, it’s clear that the team behind these previews knew what they were doing.

#9: “The Conjuring” (2013)

Many horror fans heralded this supernatural flick as the scariest film in years, and while its teaser reveals a few clues about the terror in store, it doesn’t give too much away. Of course, we’d be remiss not to mention the official full-length trailer, which features several jump scares and downright terrifying moments but it can’t compete with its teaser. We watch the family at the film’s center playing a game, while things around them move by themselves. That’s creepy enough, but it’s the teaser’s final moments that will really get your heart racing.

#8: “Dawn of the Dead” (2004)

Things starts out nicely enough here: it’s a typical day for a typical couple in a typical neighborhood. That is, until a zombified girl appears at their bedroom door and all hell breaks loose. Effectively communicating that these are not your parents’ zombies while also showing respect to George A. Romero’s original film and its concept, this trailer certainly left a mark on us all. And that’s without even mentioning its final seconds: they were specifically designed as the cherry on top of one hell of an alarming preview.

#7: “The Babadook” (2014)

Today, fans know “The Babadook” as a modern horror classic. However, when this trailer for the psychological horror was released, very few people knew anything about it. We’re introduced to this Australian-Canadian film with an opening shot of what appears to be a mother reading an innocent book to her son. The images inside the book are quite disquieting, though. Things get even more disturbing when we then see the mother at her wit’s end, a strange being coming at the camera, and her petrified boy huddling under his bed. This trailer never fails to give us goose bumps.

#6: “The Hills Have Eyes 2” (2007)

The film it advertised may’ve been pretty forgettable, but this simple yet chilling teaser briefly convinced us that “The Hills Have Eyes 2” might be worthwhile. Though it was followed by a far more conventional trailer, this teaser begins with a view of what looks like a desert. That shot is interrupted by a man struggling to pull a rope that just so happens to have a lifeless human body at the other end. Then a second person comes into view, and his rope is attached to the camera, so we get a first-person view of what their victims might be seeing. Terrifying.

#5: “The VVitch” (2015)

Wow, does this trailer ever do its job! There’s an ominous feeling of foreboding in this preview from the beginning, with the testimony of several seemingly awe-struck critics that confirm what we’ve already guessed. When a game of peekaboo goes as horribly wrong as it possibly could, we hold our breath and realize this film is not for the faint of heart. Apparently overcome by an untold evil, the family at this film’s core is in for one rough ride, and we can’t wait to see just how scary it is.

#4: “The Shining” (1980)

At first, there doesn’t seem to be anything remarkable about this trailer as credits scroll over a single static shot of a hallway. Then it happens: the words disappear and blood begins to cascade from an elevator. What begins as a small trace of crimson soon becomes waves of blood rushing at the camera. While it reveals almost no details about the film’s plot, today, this trailer would still have us getting in line faster than you can say, “here’s Johnny!”

#3: “The Exorcist” (1973)

This trailer could’ve rested on its laurels and simply shown images of a possessed little girl. That’s pretty scary! Instead, it’s masterfully edited to creep the bejesus out of us. Focusing primarily on the adults that seek to contend with the demon that has his sights set on young Regan, this trailer ratchets up the tension by showing nothing but a few glimpses of the creature itself. Including some of the most dramatic, iconic and well-constructed shots from the now-classic supernatural horror this preview is at once scary and beautiful.

#2: “Jaws” (1975)

Beginning with dramatic music, dramatic voiceover and a dramatic underwater first-person view, this teaser shows an iconic scene from an iconic horror movie. After that deep voice sets the perfect mood by describing a mysterious, bloodthirsty monster, the view moves its way upwards to focus on the famous image of a woman innocently wading in the water, unaware of the horrorthat lurks beneath her. Even when all we see are people having fun on the beach, we worry. Just like the film itself, the trailer for “Jaws” doesn’t rely on shots of the titular monster, but that may be an even more effective way of making sure we’re afraid to go in the water.

Before we reveal our top pick, here are a few honorable mentions.
- “Rosemary’s Baby” (1968)
- “Scream” (1996)
- “The Blair Witch Project” (1999)
- “Halloween” (1978)
- “Evil Dead” (2013)

#1: “Alien” (1979)

If the word “Alien” was cropped out of view while you watched this trailer, you’d have no idea what was going on, but you’d still likely be uneasy. The reveal of what appears to be a landscape leading to an egg is accompanied by off-putting sounds and indecipherable shots of people in peril. Topped off by the haunting tagline, “In space no one can hear you scream,” this trailer stands out as a masterpiece – and that’s without a single line of dialogue.

Do you agree with our list? What’s your favorite horror movie trailer? For more traumatizing Top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to WatchMojo.com.

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