Best Horror Movies like the Insidious Series

Best Horror Movies Like The Insidious Series

The Insidious series of movies has drawn to a close (for now) with Insidious: The Red Door. And while there’s no sequel (or prequel) on the cards, there are plenty of other similar movies to explore. So if you’ve bid farewell to the Lambert family and are ready to check out the best horror movies like the Insidious series, here’s what you need to know. 

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Here’s What to Watch After Insidious: The Red Door

The Lamberts never did get around to calling the Ghostbusters, but Insidious: The Red Door ties things up neatly enough that the franchise is probably done for now. So, where do you go next? If you’re looking for a similarly supernatural experience, here are the best movies you should check out.

Poltergeist (1982)

Forget the middling 2015 remake, Tobe Hooper’s original ’80s horror is so face-peelingly good it’s a must-watch, not just for Insidious fans but for all horror lovers. It follows the story of the Freeling family whose daughter, Carole Anne, is stolen away by supernatural forces. There are jump scares, but the whole movie is fraught with tension.
Where to watch it: Amazon/HBO Max

The Conjuring (2013)

The Conjuring is based (loosely) on the exploits of two real-life supernatural investigators, Ed and Lorraine Warren. It sees the pair assisting a family whose daughter is, it seems, possessed. You might do a double take when you see that Patrick Wilson is played by Patrick Wilson, but if you can get past that this is a suitably chilling outing. It went on to spawn a whole Conjuring-verse of related movies, including Annabelle and The Nun.
Where to watch it: Amazon/HBO Max 

1408 (2007)

Based on a Stephen King story, 1408 sees John Cusack’s skeptic checking into a supposedly haunted hotel room. His intention is to debunk its reputation but his experiences prove that there just might be something to the story. Stephen King adaptions are a mixed bag, with Cusack later starring in the middling Cell. But 1408 is a haunting horror fable, no matter which of the many endings your version has. 
Where to watch it: Amazon

It Follows (2014)

There may be no supernatural investigators in sight, but the entity in It Follows is as insidious as it gets. Maika Monroe stars as Jay, a girl who becomes the target of a sexually transmitted curse. She’s slowly stalked by an entity that can look like anyone, but it never runs, never gives up, and only she can see it. She could take a plane to the Antarctic and, while it might take a half a year, would reach her eventually. How do you deal with something like that? You’ll have to watch to find out, and this one of the most original, unsettling movies you’re likely to see.
Where to watch it: Amazon/Paramount Plus

The Exorcist (1973)

50 years old this year, The Exorcist is as unsettling as it’s ever been. Even the infamous pea soup scene, which has been parodied on multiple occasions, is horrifying when seen in context. It sees a priest attempting to exorcize a demon from a young girl—a harrowing spiritual battle that even Patrick Wilson would struggle with.
Where to watch it: Amazon/HBO Max

The Taking of Deborah Logan (2014)

With a lot of found footage films, the obvious question is “Why the hell would you explore such a blatantly haunted place?” But The Taking of Deborah Logan’s camera crew are just out to record a woman dealing with her mother’s dementia. When things take a turn for the weird, they’re there to document it. Throw in an incomplete magical ritual and you’ve got a recipe for a truly disturbing outing.
Where to watch it: Amazon/Shudder

Grave Encounters (2011)

Grave Encounters’ crew, on the other hand, is willingly roaming an abandoned asylum. But these paranormal investigators are in it for the money so it’s greed, not stupidity, that gets them into trouble. It’s a bit of a slow burn, but it’s all the better for it. It doesn’t immediately fling ghosts in your face. Instead it hints at something being very, very wrong.
Where to watch it: Amazon/Tubi/Shudder

Those, then, are the best horror movies like the Insidious series. And if you really want to go down the supernatural investigator rabbit hole, there are eight movies in The Conjuring series, with a ninth arriving later this year

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Chris McMullen
Chris McMullen is a freelance contributor at The Escapist and has been with the site since 2020. He returned to writing about games following several career changes, with his most recent stint lasting five-plus years. He hopes that, through his writing work, he settles the karmic debt he incurred by persuading his parents to buy a Mega CD. Outside of The Escapist, Chris covers news and more for GameSpew. He's also been published at such sites as VG247, Space, and more. His tastes run to horror, the post-apocalyptic, and beyond, though he'll tackle most things that aren't exclusively sports-based. At Escapist, he's covered such games as Infinite Craft, Lies of P, Starfield, and numerous other major titles.