Best Monster Movies Ever Made: 10 Most Iconic Monstrous Masterpieces That Send Shivers Down Your Spine

In some ways, monster movies might not seem as important now that scary things are happening. But in a time when our fears seem bigger than life and the world always looks like it’s about to fall apart, the best examples of the genre can almost seem documentary-like in their accuracy, showing our reality as clearly as vérité ever could.

It can be hard to figure out which movies are worth your time because this genre has a lot of different movies, from some of the best horror movies to the best dramas.

You have come to the right place if you need help figuring out where to begin with the scariest movies. We’ve searched way back into the history of movies to bring you this list of the 10 best monster movies, which really show what the genre is all about.

Best Monster Movies Ever Made

1. Godzilla 


Godzilla is the only King of the Monsters. We love Kong as much as the next movie fan, but Kong is not Lord of the Monsters. You could have put almost any of the great lizard’s movies on this list (except for the Roland Emmerich one, of course), but we chose Godzilla ’54 because it was the first cinematic kaiju movie.

Godzilla has become an iconic character in pop culture. The movie is an amazing work of art that mixes some truly impressive technical achievements—most notably pushing the limits of “suitmation” to new heights— with a surprisingly deep story about the dangers of nuclear weapons.

One of the things that will always be remembered about the movie is how beautiful Godzilla is. He is both scary and cute at the same time.

2. The Thing

The Thing

A bloody and creepy version of “Who Goes There?” by John W. Campbell Jr. The Thing is one of the scariest and funniest monster movies ever, and it’s also one of the best movies of the 1980s. The movie, which was directed by John Carpenter, is about a group of scientists in an Antarctic base who have to fight an alien that can change its form and has joined their group.

Though the idea behind The Thing was silly, Carpenter turned it into a real monster masterpiece with the help of Dean Cundey’s spooky photography, a great cast led by Kurt Russell, and Rob Bottin’s skilled work on the gory practical effects. But what really makes The Thing work is Ennio Morricone’s beautifully brutal score, which creates a tense mood that feels like a heartbeat.

3. King Kong

King Kong_

King Kong is so sad. He came out before Godzilla in the movies by more than 20 years, but his scaly foe often gets more attention. Kong may not be the King of Monsters, but his movie was technically groundbreaking. Directors Merian C. Cooper and Ernest B. Schoedsack worked on it more than twelve years before the first computer was made.

In order to make us believe that a huge ape is walking among us, King Kong has to use more tricks than a stage magician. He has to use stunning stop-motion, beautiful matte paints, and amazing miniature work.

4. Jaws 


Jaws is the movie that made Steven Spielberg famous. It’s a scary story about a shark that eats people that terrorizes a coastal town right before the summer break. It’s not as bloody as some of the other movies on this list, but Bill Butler’s underwater camera work and Verna Fields’ smart editing make Jaws just as scary.

Spielberg was able to build suspense and hint at the shark’s presence through their work, which paid off in the explosive ending when the hungry beast finally comes out for a close-up.

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5. The Fly

The Fly_

To call a movie “sticky” would be strange, unless it was made by David Cronenberg, in which case it makes perfect sense. One of Cronenberg’s films that sticks with you the most is The Fly, which is a modern take on the Vincent Price classic.

Jeff Goldblum plays the title character, the fly, but at the beginning of the movie, he’s Seth Brundle, an old scientist who is working on teleportation. One night, Seth manages to move himself and combine his DNA with that of a fly while he is drunk.

The next part of the movie is one of the most painful changes in movie history. As the fly DNA changes Brundle’s flesh, we, the watchers, get to see him lose his humanity like the world’s weirdest voyeurs.

The Fly is probably Cronenberg and Goldbum’s best movie. It is both beautifully disgusting and heartbreakingly sad.

6. The Blob

The Blob

Even though the new version of The Blob doesn’t have the campy fun of the original from the 1950s, it more than makes up for it with dark humor, amazing practical effects, and so many dead bodies that George R. R. Martin would be embarrassed.

That may not sound like much of an endorsement, but director Chuck Russell does a great job of keeping the scary mood going by killing off his key characters all the time in the most painful ways possible.

Russell and Frank Darabont co-wrote the story, which is also very subversive. It uses the fact that movie fans will already know the original Blob to trick people all the way through.

7. Tremors


 It can be very hard to combine horror and comedy, and for every Shaun of the Dead, there are about ten Lesbian Vampire Killers. Still, the genre has some great movies, and Tremors, in which a town fights giant ancient worms called Graboids that want to eat people, is one of the best.

Tremors is a love letter to the creature features of the 1950s. It is very self-aware and has a lot of interesting characters. Even though it’s funnier than scary (possibly one of the best horror comedies of its time), that doesn’t mean it’s not thrilling.

Director Ron Underwood does a great job of turning up the chills by showing us the Graboid’s unfortunate victims from a “worm’s eye view” before finally showing them in all their slimy glory.

8. The Little Shop of Horrors 

The Little Shop of Horrors 

Please let me know about news and deals from other Future brands.Our chosen partners and sponsors will send you emails from time to time. As a fun and scary musical, The Little Shop of Horrors shows that scary movies don’t have to be sad to be great. Frank Oz adapted the movie from the same-named stage show.

He brings the same unquantifiable spark to Little Shop that he did to The Muppets. The movie’s lively charm and catchy songs (“Dentist!” is a bop) can win over even the most cynical moviegoers.

A big part of that is, of course, how likeable our main character, Seymour Krelborn (Rick Moranis), is. He’s so cute that you almost forget he kills someone and feeds their body to an alien plant that plans to take over the world.

9. Troll Hunter

Troll Hunter_

Troll Hunter is the funnier cousin of The Blair Witch. It’s about a group of students who are horrified to learn that the man-eating trolls from Norwegian myth are real. There are some fantastical aspects in Troll Hunter, but the movie is mostly a dark satire.

The director, André Øvredal, and the cameraman, Hallvard Braein, keep it on the scarier side of the horror comedy coin. But, as you might expect from a monster movie, the trolls are the real stars of the show.

These strangely cute but scary giants were created by Øvredal and concept artist Nikolai Lockertsen. They look like they walked out of a Brother Grimm fairy story.

10. The Mist

The Mist

The Mist, which was based on Stephen King’s short story of the same name and directed by Frank Darabont, is best known for its scary ending, which is one of the best movie ends of all time. The really great thing about Darabont’s The Mist is that it stays simple, even though the movie’s shocking ending is very surprising.

We don’t see any big plans to take over the world. Instead, there is a slow buildup of stress as a group of strangers fight to stay alive in a supermarket while being trapped by tentacled monsters we can barely see.

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