Train to Busan falls in the horror genre and has plenty of action, it is from South Korea, it was released in 2016 and was directed by Yeon Sang-ho. The film stars Gong Yoo, Ma Dong-seok, and Jung Yu-mi, among others. The film is a gripping story of a father and daughter trying to reach Busan amidst a zombie outbreak.
Train to Busan received rave reviews and managed to garner many awards. The story follows several passengers who are onboard a train bound for Busan. Havoc is wreaked when an infected person climbs aboard the train. What follows is a gripping trip of incredible thrills and action.
Considering the great special effects and incredible action sequences of trains derailing and people punching zombies, the film had a budget of only $8.5 million. At the box office, it saw a somewhat decent return of $98.5 million. If you enjoyed this film, you’ll like our top picks, which are: #Alive (2020), World War Z (2013), and I am Legend (2007). For these and more exciting recommendations, be sure to read on.
#Alive is another South Korean zombie movie. This film was directed by Cho Il-Hyung and was released in 2020. The film is about one man’s survival in Seoul, in an apartment block when a zombie apocalypse breaks out.
The film stars Yoo Ah-in and Park Shin-Hye. The film’s budget is unknown; however, its box office return was only $14.5 million. The film received good reviews for many of its components, such as the acting and the overall unsettling atmosphere it sets. The film also identified the sensation of isolation that many felt due to lockdowns that occurred worldwide, owing to the Covid-19 pandemic.
The film is available on Netflix. If you enjoyed the alternative take on zombies that are unlike those of, say, in The Walking Dead, you are sure to appreciate this film that indeed does a great job of capturing the fear and helplessness one would feel in this particular scenario.
2. World War Z
World War Z is an action horror film released in 2013 and directed by Marc Forster. The film’s source material was the novel, by Max Brooks, which holds the same title and was published in 2006. The film centers around a man, Gerry Lane, a former United Nations investigator who goes around the globe in search of a way to stop a zombie pandemic that has broken out.
The film stars Brad Pitt in the lead role, and with him are Mireille Enos, James Badge Dale, and Daniella Kertesz, among others. The film received praise, mainly for Pitt’s performance, but was criticized for its anti-climax and not being faithful to the source material.
The film did exceptionally well financially and saw a return of $540.5 million on its approximate budget of $190 million. Critics gave the film average reviews; however, the audience members truly fell in love with the movie. If you liked the speed at which the infection spread and the fact that the zombies could run in Train to Busan, you’ll be delighted with World War Z.
3. I Am Legend
This 2007 post-apocalyptic action thriller, was a loose adaptation of the novel of the same name, published in 1954. Francis Lawrence directed the film, and the story follows a lone man who lives in New York City after a virus has turned humans into nocturnal mutants eerily similar to zombies.
Will Smith plays the lead role of this scientist trying to find a cure for the infected. The movie also stars Alice Braga, Charlie Tahan, and Dash Mihok. The critics gave the film fair reviews, but once again, the audience decided that the film deserved a 9 out of 10 ratings.
The film had a budget of $150 million and saw a return of $585.3 million at the box office. If you have a love for zombie movies, but would like to see them in a light other than that of flesh-hungry beasts, there are various endings to this film, which offer an array of different conclusions to how the audience feels about these beasts.
4. Day Of The Dead
Day of the Dead is a horror film released in 2008 and directed by Steve Miner. The film follows a virus outbreak that changes people into zombie-like creatures. In a small town in Colorado, there is a small group of survivors who try to escape in the hope of finding safety.
The film stars Mena Suvari, Nick Cannon, and Michael Welch. The film did not sit well with some, and the box office regrettably mirrored this as the film saw its $18 million budget only make a return of $301,771.
However, if you want a film with plenty of violence and gore and the issue of tension between humans amidst a zombie outbreak, then you may find this to be worth a watch.
Ravenous or in French, Les Affamés is a 2017 Canadian horror film of the French language. The film was directed by Robin Aubert and depicts a small town in rural Quebec, where residents have to survive an outbreak that causes individuals to turn into zombie-like people.
The film stars Marc-André Grondin, Brigitte Poupart, and Monia Chokri, and it received excellent reviews for various aspects and was said to be bold and reinventive.
The box office return for the film was $182,883, and the budget is estimated to have been around $3.7 million. So, unfortunately, it did not make any money; however, if you are looking for a zombie movie with a twist to it that has more of an eerie feeling than that of horror, then this is the choice for you.
6. 28 Days Later
This 2002 post-apocalyptic horror film is a British one by director Danny Boyle. The film is about four survivors who need to evade those infected with a terrible virus, which was accidentally released.
The movie stars Cillian Murphy, Christopher Eccleston, and Naomie Harris. Critically the film was a success, and many praised Boyle for his direction, the actors’ performances, and the screenplay. Although Boyle does not consider it a zombie movie, it was credited with revitalizing the zombie genre.
The film had a rather small budget of only $8 million and managed to make a fairly sizable $85.7 million return. If you are in search of a zombie film that is not supposedly one, yet has all the elements of a great thrill ride, then be sure to catch it.
7. Land Of The Dead
Land of the Dead is a post-apocalyptic film, which was released in 2005 and written and directed by George A. Romero. The setting of the film is a world where zombies, or “the living dead” have taken over and the remainder of humanity lives in a walled-off city that protects them from the outside.
The film, which stars John Leguizamo, Asia Argento, and Simon Baker, received predominantly positive reviews from critics and audience members were just as eager about the film, if not more so.
The film had a budget of between $15–$19 million and managed to gross $46.8 million, which is not terrible, but we feel that the film deserved more attention than it received initially. As in Train to Busan, the characters in this film believe themselves to be safe, but the threat is closer than they imagine.
As the name suggests, Zombieland is a zombie film, but it meshes with comedic elements this time. Released in 2009, the film was Ruben Fleischer’s directorial debut. The film follows a nerdy college student who is traversing a post-apocalyptic landscape of zombies.
On his journey, he meets three strangers, and together they take a trip across the Southwestern United States in search of a sanctuary that is hopefully free from zombies. Jesse Eisenberg takes the lead role, and with him are Emma Stone, Woody Harrelson, and Abigail Breslin.
The film received exceptional reviews and managed to pocket $102.4 million on its $23.6 million budget. If you are looking for something with the intensity of Train to Busan, but with a nice dose of humor incorporated, then Zombieland is a must-see.
9. Zombieland: Double Tap
This 2019 film is the sequel to the 2009 film and was also directed by Ruben Fleischer. We have the same main characters featuring: Columbus, Tallahassee, Wichita, and Little Rock. Who moves into the Whitehouse and face off against zombies which have evolved. Also, though, there is friction building amidst the “family” unit, and it’s only a matter of time before things fall apart for them.
The film stars the original cast of Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone, Woody Harrelson, and Abigail Breslin. This time, along with for journey, are Rosario Dawson, Avan Jogia, Zoey Deutch, and Luke Wilson.
This film had a budget of $45 million and made a box office return of $122.8 million. Critically it did not perform as well as its predecessor but was said to be a great reunion of existing characters with some awesome twists.
10. Shaun Of The Dead
This 2004 film, by Edgar Wright, is a horror-comedy about two friends, Shaun and Ed, who are caught unaware that there has been a zombie outbreak. During the film, they try to take refuge in a local pub and fight off hoards of the undead.
The film stars Simon Pegg, Nick Frost, and Kate Ashfield, among others. The film is the first of the Three Flavours Cornetto trilogy and was followed by Hot Fuzz (2007) and then The World’s End (2013).
This film makes reference to the Dead films by George A. Romero, one of which is Land of the Dead (2005). This film was a critical success and was nominated for two British Academy Film Awards. It was made on a budget of $6.1 million and unfortunately only made a return of $30 million. It has, however, developed a cult following.
11. Night Of The Living Dead
This independent horror film was written, directed, shot, and edited by George A. Romero, who also directed Land of the Dead (2005). This film is about seven people who find themselves trapped in a farmhouse that comes under attack by the undead.
The film stars Duane Jones, Judith O’Dea, and Karl Hardman. The film had a budget of approximately $114,000 and made roughly $230,000 at the box office. Although it was met with some controversy, the film is highly rated today by critics and audiences alike.
Like in Train to Busan, there is the element of our heroes being trapped and entirely outnumbered. Although they hope to remain safe in the house, it is only a matter of time before they are at the mercy of the hungry zombies.
Carriers is a post-apocalyptic film that was both written and directed by Alex and David Pastor. The film was released in 2009 and is about a group of four survivors of a viral pandemic. They try their utmost best to stay uninfected, but it is not as simple as it would seem.
Starring in the film are Chris Pine, Lou Taylor Pucci, and Piper Perabo. The film generally received positive reviews and was praised for the story, its themes, and the performances; however, the culmination of the plot was criticized.
The film’s budget is unknown; however, it made approximately $5.8 million, which is somewhat unfortunate as it should have received more significant viewership. If you enjoyed the human dynamics of Train to Busan, then you’ll appreciate this one.
Cargo is a post-apocalyptic horror drama released in 2017 and was directed by Ben Howling and Yolanda Ramke. The film follows a father searching for someone to protect and look after his child after an epidemic spreads across Australia.
The film stars Martin Freeman, along with Simon Landers, Susie Porter, and Anthony Hayes. There was no theatrical release, but instead, it is available for streaming on Netflix.
Critics approved the film, and audience members also found it a refreshing take on the zombie genre. If you liked how the father in Train to Busan was willing to go to any lengths to protect his daughter, you’ll love this film.
Extinction is a science fiction action film that was released in 2018 and was directed by Ben Young. The film is about a man who has recurring visions of losing his family at the hands of an evil force.
The film stars Michael Peña, Mike Colter, and Lizzy Caplan, among others. The film received mixed views from audiences, and the critics found it to be muddled and having pacing issues. There was no theatrical release and instead it is available for streaming on Netflix.
The film does not deal with the outbreak of zombies, but there is a nice twist on who the invaders are. This film begins just as ordinarily as Train to Busan but also turns into chaos just as quickly. It also offers an intriguing end to it.
15. The Silence
The Silence, released in 2019, is a horror film that John R. Leonetti directed. The film follows a family, one of whom is a deaf teenager, who, along with her family, seeks shelter from creaturs that hunt using sound.
Kiernan Shipka, Miranda Otto, and Stanley Tucci star in this film, which unfortunately did not do too well with critics and had audience members torn between how they felt over the film.
If zombies aren’t scary enough, imagine a predator that could seek out its prey simply through sound, and they can fly. On top of that, one of the characters is deaf to the world around her. There is also the threat of other humans, who may pose more of a problem in the end.
16. The Darkest Hour
The Darkest Hour, which was released in 2011, is a science fiction action film directed by Chris Gorak. The film depicts an alien invasion in Moscow, where five young people have to fight back against those who seek to take over.
The film did incredibly poorly with the critics, but audience members felt completely different about it and gave it an average of 8 out of 10. Unfortunately, it only saw a return of $64.6 million at the box office after spending $34.8 million on production.
In Train to Busan, they had to face off with zombies, but what if your enemies were an alien race that you could not even see? This is what our heroes are up against in this heart-stopping thriller of a film.
17. District 9
District 9 is a science fiction action film, which was released in 2009. Neill Blomkamp directed the film, and it was his feature film debut. The film is about the violence sparked when an alien race whose ship has come to a stop above Johannesburg, South Africa, is forced to live in slum-like conditions.
The film received many awards and was also nominated for four Academy Awards. The film sat well with the critics and was a box office hit, making $210.8 million on a relatively small $30 million budget.
The film stars Sharlto Copley, David James, and Jason Cope. We see in this film, like with Train to Busan, the story of a man who changes as the narrative plays out, and with this one, in the end, we are left with the question of, “will there ever be a sequel?”
18. The Divide
The Divide, released in 2011, is a post-apocalyptic horror film, which Xavier Gens directed. The film shows survivors of a nuclear attack who find themselves isolated in the basement of their apartment building. Soon though, fear takes hold, and when supplies start to run dry, people’s true natures show.
Starring in the film are Michael Biehn, Milo Ventimiglia, and Lauren German. The film did not sit well with critics citing that it felt more cynical than bleak. On the other hand, viewers were divided on how they felt about the film.
Although the budget is unclear, the box office of the film sat at $130,839. So, unfortunately, it was no commercial success. However, if you were fascinated with the degeneration of humanity and the selfishness of some, then this one will strike the right cords for you. But viewer discretion is advised for this film as it delves into the darker aspects of what humans can become.
19. Army Of The Dead
Army of the Dead, released in 2021, is a zombie heist film directed by Zack Snyder. The film is about a group who intend on robbing a Las Vegas casino while there is a zombie apocalypse.
The film features an ensemble cast of Ella Purnell, Dave Bautista, and Omari Hardwick, among others. The film mainly earned itself positive reviews and was noted for being an exciting mash-up of genres.
The film had a budget of between $70–$90 million and only made a box officer return of $1 million, but this is due to its short time in theatres and being made available on Netflix. If you enjoyed the action elements of Train to Busan, then this film will delight you.
20. Warm Bodies
Warm Bodies is a paranormal romantic zombie comedy. Yes, it sounds bizarre, but stick with me. It was released in 2013 and was written and directed by Johnathan Levine. The film is about a zombie who saves a girl who is still alive from being attacked. After this, the two form a relationship, and together they may be able to find a solution for things.
Nicholas Hoult, Lio Tipton, and Teresa Palmer star in this film that received a high rating from both critics and audience members. It is an entirely different spin on the zombie genre and combines genres you would never have expected.
The budget for the film was $35 million, and it made $117 million at the box office. If you enjoy zombies but are in the mood for something that offers a hint of Romeo and Juliet to the mix, then this is ideal for you.
21. Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse
The film is a zombie comedy, released in 2015, and was directed by Christopher Landon. The film follows three scouts who have to try and save their town from an outbreak of zombies.
Starring in this film are Tye Sheridan, Joey Morgan, and Logan Miller. Funnily enough, the film was mainly despised by film critics. However, audience members felt utterly different and rated the film as being a 9 out of 10.
The film had a budget of approximately $15 million, and unfortunately, only made $16 million at the box office. Despite this, though, if you are up for tons of zombies and some fun humor to go along with them, then grab your popcorn and get ready for more than your average scout badge test.
22. Bird Box
Bird Box, released in 2018, is a post-apocalyptic horror thriller movie that Susanne Bier directed. The movie follows the story of a mother who tries to protect her two children against beings that cause people to commit suicide.
In the lead, we have Sandra Bullock and with her are Trevante Rhodes, Jacki Weaver, and John Malkovich. The film received tremendous praise from critics and the general public.
The film had a budget of $19.8 million and had a minimal theatrical release, before being made available for streaming on Netflix. Now, although the threat is not zombies, the idea of having to walk around blindfolded so that you won’t see the entities that cause you to kill yourself is pretty darn terrifying.
Daybreakers, released in 2009 and is a science-fiction action horror film written and directed by Michael and Peter Spierig. The film’s setting is a futuristic world where vampires rule the world, and it focuses on a corporation that hunts down the remaining humans to farm them, while they search for a viable substitute to human blood.
The film stars Ethan Hawke as Edward Dalton, a hematologist that works for the corporation. His life is interrupted when he crosses paths with a former vampire, played by Willem Dafoe, who has a cure for vampirism.
The film was the recipient of mixed reviews from critics but was applauded by audience members who thoroughly enjoyed the different take on a vampire film. It had a budget of $20 million and managed to make $51.4 million at the box office. Although not zombies, the enemy of humans in this film is far more intelligent and ruthless than their mindless counterparts.
Contagion, which Steven Soderbergh directed, is a 2011 thriller movie. The story is about the spreading of a virus that is transmitted by respiratory droplets. It tells of how public health officials try to contain the disease, but ultimately it all results in social disorder once it is evident that a pandemic has begun.
The film has an ensemble cast of Marion Cotillard, Laurence Fishburne, Matt Damon, and Jude Law, among others. The film received excellent reviews and was commended for holding a lot of tension, being well-plotted, and having stellar performances from its cast.
The film had a sizeable budget of $60 million and managed to make $136.5 million at the box office. If you would like to see a film that also has the basic premise of a virus spreading, but would be more interested in the reactions humans may have to such a threat, then this is well worth your while.
25. Dawn Of The Planet Of The Apes
The film was released in 2014 and is a science fiction action film directed by Matt Reeves. It is the sequel to Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011) and is set ten years thereafter. The film is about a cluster of people struggling to stay alive in the aftermath of a plague that decimated most of humanity. Opposing them as well is Caesar and his community of evolved apes.
The film stars Andy Serkis, Gary Oldman, and Jason Clarke. The film did exceptionally well with both critics and audience members, and it turned its budget of $170 million into a whopping $710.6 million at the box office.
The film is worth a watch for varying reasons. One is that unlike zombies, who are generally seen as humans who have devolved, in this film, the antagonizing force is a group of apes that have evolved enough in their intellect to become a threat to the remaining humans on the planet.
IMDB: Train to Busan
IMDB: World War Z
IMDB: I Am Legend
IMDB: Day Of The Dead
IMDB: 28 Days Later
IMDB: Land Of The Dead
IMDB: Zombieland: Double Tap
IMDB: Shaun Of The Dead
IMDB: Night Of The Living Dead
IMDB: The Silence
IMDB: The Darkest Hour
IMDB: District 9
IMDB: The Divide
IMDB: Army Of The Dead
IMDB: Warm Bodies
IMDB: Bird Box